The Roof of Africa

This is the Lava Tower, on Mt. Kilimanjaro. The team got to 19,341 feet for this breathtaking view of Uhuru, Kilimanjaro's highest point.

Mount Ebrus, Russia

This picture, taken from the West slope, looks down from the highest peak in the Caucasus Mountain range.

Barrel Huts, Mount Elbrus

Note the patriotically painted huts, made from fuel barrels when Russia was part of the Soviet Union.

Aconcagua Plaza, Argentina

Not Burning Man for donkeys and criollo ponies, you understand, but one of the stop-off points on the way to the top of the this Andean peak.

The top of Aconcagua

And that's what you see when you look down towards the province of Mendoza, Argentina's wine-making region.

Kala Pattar, Himalayas

This is one of the best views that a trekker can get of Mt. Everest. Kala Pattar is easily reachable, at just over 18,000 feet.

Tengboche Monastery

The Google team made it inside this beautiful Tibetan monastery, Tengboche, for a nice cup of tea and a sit-down during their Himalayan excursions.

Mudslide Bridge, Everest

If you hear someone chanting, "Mola Ram," run.

Tengboche Monastery

An exterior shot of the Buddhist retreat.

Google Street View Touches World's Highest Peaks—Well, Almost

When it comes to going boldly, just ask the Google Street View team.

Not content with plunging into some of the world's most beautiful reefs and hiking through the Grand Canyon, Google Street View has now gone mountaineering. The firm published a behind-the-scenes post on its Lat Long Blog of how these amazing images came to be.

Thank the Google Mountain Enthusiast Team, who eschewed the Trekker kit—all 40 pounds of it—for a more lightweight pack, usually used for Google's Business Photos program. They went up Argentina's Aconcagua peak—all 22,841 feet of it—as well as Mount Elbrus in Russia, Kilimanjaro, and getting as far up Everest as South Base Camp. Wired's Roberto Baldwin interviewed Dan Fredinburg, one of the team, who works as a technical program manager for security and privacy, who revealed just how the climbing bug affected him during his Everest expedition.

"It was only planned to go to the basecamp," says Fredinburg. "I did try to convince my guides to take me further up. I was very excited when I got to basecamp."

His enthusiasm led to an awkward conversation with the guides, who refused to take him any higher than base camp. He pressed the issue, and offered to pay them for their trouble. Still, they refused. It eventually dawned on him that perhaps it was too risky. So he asked about the odds of dying.

"Certain," came the response. "100 percent."

[All images from Google]

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