50 for Tibet: Celebrating One Mountain Culture to Preserve Another.
About Us: 50 for Tibet History

• History of the Tibet Occupation • The Rowell Fund
• Galen Rowell and Barbara Cushman Rowell • Tibet at a Glance
• History of Galen's Interest in Tibet  

Tibet at a Glance

Map of Tibet.
  • Size: 2.5 million kilometers²
  • Capital: Lhasa
  • Population: 6 million Tibetans and an undetermined number of Chinese, most of whom are in Kham and Amdo
  • Religion: Tibetan Buddhism is practiced by 99% of the Tibetan Population
  • Language: Tibetan (of the Tibeto-Burmese language family). The official language is Chinese after Chinese occupation in 1959.
  • Staple Food: Tsampa (roasted barley flour)
  • National Drink: Salted butter tea
  • Typical Animals: Wild yak, Bharal (blue) sheep, Musk deer, Tibetan antelope, Tibetan gazelle, Kyang (wild ass), Pica
  • Typical Birds: Black necked crane, Lammergeier, Great crested grebe, Bar headed goose, Ruddy shel duck, Ibis-bill
  • Major Environmental Problems: Rampant deforestation in eastern Tibet; desertification, poaching of large mammals
  • Average Altitude: 14,000 Feet
  • Highest Mountain: Chomo Langma (Mt. Everest) 29,028 ft
  • Average Temperature: July 58º F; January 24º F
  • Mineral Deposits: borax, uranium, iron, chromite, gold
  • Major Rivers: Mekong, Yangtse, Salween, Tsangpo, Yellow, Indus, Karnali
  • Economy:
    Tibetans: predominantly in agriculture and animal husbandry.
    Chinese: predominantly in government, commerce and the service sector
  • Provinces: U-Tsang (Central Tibet) Amdo (N.E. Tibet), Kham (S.E. Tibet)
  • Bordering Countries: India, Nepal, Bhutan, Burma, China
  • National Flag: Snow lions with red and blue rays. Outlawed in Tibet
  • Political and Religious Leader: The 14th Dalai Lama. In exile in Dharamsala, India
  • Government: Communist (after Chinese occupation in 1959)
  • Relationship with the People's Republic of China: Colonial
  • Legal Status: Occupied