| An English
mountaineer, Edward Whymper, led the first successful climb to
the top of the Matterhorn in 1865. That first climb turned out
to be really sad. Out of seven, four people died when a rope
snapped and they plunged down the north face. One of the bodies
was never found.
The Matterhorn is well known for it's magnificent outline and it's position above the Swiss village of Zermatt. If you've visited Disney Land in California you have no doubt seen a replica of it.
The Matterhorn is not the highest mountain in the Alps, or even the highest peak in Switzerland, but it has four very marked ridges and faces that make it look like a pyramid. Its beauty is made even more striking by the way it stands by no other mountain close by.
About 40 million years ago, the Alps were created, when two sections of the Earth's crust crashed into each other, throwing up rock into a chain of buckled, folded mountains.
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