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Nature

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What is the greatest fictional animal companion of all time?

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Gizmo

Mar 20, 2015
Gizmo

Although some may assert that gremlins are not animals, there’s something decidedly pet-like about the pint-sized and huggable Gizmo. Known for his resonant singing abilities, his piano-playing skill, and his odd purring noises, he became the most desirable fictional pet for any children of the 1980s. Despite being a member of the gremlin species, he was also crucial in defeating the mastermind of the “evil” gremlins, since he was clever enough to engineer a pulley system and operate kitchen devices. Gizmo’s charm is perhaps the most memorable thing about the character, transcending his animatronic design to deliver a believable and lovable performance. And if ticket sales aren’t enough to prove the popularity of this mogwai, then one must only look at the sheer volume of plush toys and dolls made in Gizmo’s likeness.

Origin: Gremlins | First Appearance: June 8, 1984 | Physical Description: A small, fur-covered creature with pronounced ears and mammalian features. | Why They Mattered: Saved Billy (and by extension, the nearby town) from the wrath of rogue gremlins. | Human Companion: Billy Peltzer | Fun Fact: Howie Mandel, most recently known for his hosting role on Deal or No Deal, was the voice of Gizmo.

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Pikachu

Mar 20, 2015
Pikachu

Whether you played the Gameboy titles, traded the cards, or watched the animated series, there’s little doubt that you haven’t encountered this yellow ball of static at least once in your life. Pikachu was one of the most adored and sought-after Pokemon in the entire series, likely due to his famous bond with the trainer Ash. Children of the 1990s will have no trouble remembering the squeaks and pips of Pikachu, and as most can tell you, the character’s appeal only grew as Pikachu expanded into other media forms. Video games featured the yellow brawler as their cover, films turned Pikachu into a hero in their own right, and waves of holographic cards cemented the character’s legacy as an adorable but powerful asset in any player’s deck. To this day, no reboots of the Pokemon television series have been bold enough to cut out this fan favorite.

Origin: Pokemon Red and Blue | First Appearance: February 27, 1996 | Physical Description: A vaguely rodent-like creature with yellow skin, rosy cheeks, and a xigzag tail, often wreathed in electrical power. | Why They Mattered: Accompanied the Pokemon trainer Ash throughout his entire career as a duelist, and often served as the trainer's frontline warrior. | Human Companion: Ash Ketchum | Fun Fact: Pikchu's name combines two onomatopoeic Japanese words: "pika," which describes electrical fizzing, and "chu," resembling a mouse's squeaking.

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Kazooie

Mar 20, 2015
Kazooie

It’s easy to see how Kazooie could have been a forgettable tool for Rare Limited’s game developers. Many platform-based N64 titles relied on pets as little more than transportation methods, and a few featured them as even less-involved plot elements without any dialogue or emotion. Banjo Kazooie was one of the first titles to combine the rider and mount into a single entity, expecting the birdlike Kazooie to work in tandem with the bearlike Banjo in every one of its levels. Kazooie was more than an attack and movement partner, however. She was a source of comedic relief, a counter to Banjo’s innocent personality, and a contortionist capable of squeezing into the world’s smallest backpack. Although Kazooie never spoke – not in a human language, anyway – she was one of the most expressive characters in the N64 lineup.

Origin: Banjo Kazooie | First Appearance: June 29, 1998 | Physical Description: A red and yellow bird with long, thin legs, a head crest, and plumage resembling a mythical phoenix. | Why They Mattered: Assisted Banjo in his rescue efforts and enabled him to overcome impossible barriers, often by increasing his companion's speed and jumping abilities. | Human Companion: Banjo | Fun Fact: Despite being named after the kazoo, a real-world instrument, Kazooie is only shown playing an instrument which resembles a bugle.

4

Brian

Mar 20, 2015
Brian

In most media depictions, a dog is a loyalty and steadfast companion, eager to provide love and comfort in any situation. In Seth Macfarlane’s animated hit Family Guy, however, the dog is an atheist cynic with relationship and drinking problems. Brian lent the show a sense of realness and witty commentary, even if the rest of the Griffin family was designed to be a panel of oddities and over-the-top humor. His mishaps with Stewie formed some of the show’s most legendary plot arcs, and also created one of the strangest (but most effective) dog-and-human relationships in modern entertainment. Whether it’s his sarcastic delivery, his love of Frank Sinatra, or his closeness to Seth Macfarlane’s true personality, Brian is one of the most beloved and adoption-worthy characters in animated comedy.

Origin: Family Guy | First Appearance: January 31, 1999 | Physical Description: A white-haired, bipedal dog with a red collar and flopping ears. | Why They Mattered: Provided a voice of reason and logic to an otherwise nonsensical family, typically by offering financial or moral advice. | Human Companion: Stewie Griffin | Fun Fact: Brian was the first Family Guy character to make an appearance in Seth Macfarlane's other animated project, American Dad.

5

Blood

Mar 20, 2015
Blood

Harlan Ellison’s vision of a post-apocalyptic world is curious and bleak, but most of all, it’s bizarre beyond measure. Blood, a telepathic Australian sheepdog with a constant need for food, was the perfect match for his woman-craving owner, Vic. In A Boy and his Dog, the pair roamed across a devastated world, trading human faculties for canine senses in a bid to survive the wasteland and mutually profit. Blood was a level-headed, rational creature with a critical eye for his master’s habits, and proved instrumental in finding and seeking out an underground utopia. While Blood and Vic’s bond may have seemed like a superficial relationship to outsiders, the depth of connection was later revealed in one of cinema’s most absurdly comedic scenes of cannibalism. Blood’s role as a scavenger and survivor was lauded by both readers of the original stories and viewers of the film, and the fascination can be explained with Vic’s final words in the novella: “A boy loves his dog.”

Origin: A Boy and His Dog | First Appearance: April, 1969 | Physical Description: A long-haired, white Australian sheepdog with barely-visible eyes | Why They Mattered: Possessed the extraordinary gift of telepathy, enabling him to join his human companion in post-apocalyptic scavenging and philosophical debates | Human Companion: Vic | Fun Fact: The dog actor who played Blood entered the film world on The Brady Bunch, where he played the family's dog (Tiger).

6

Sam

Mar 20, 2015
Sam

Simply mentioning an animal companion in a film is enough to make a grown man cry, provided they’ve seen I am Legend. Many post-apocalyptic films and novels feature a dog as the protagonist’s sidekick, but few were able to create the bond shared by Will Smith’s character and his canine confidant. For the first half of the film, the audience grew attached to Sam by watching their daily routine, including treadmill exercise alongside Dr. Neville and tinned tomato products. Even without speaking, Sam became an integral part of the story, and Neville’s last connection to a lost family and civilization. Years after the film’s release, most people have probably forgotten the details of the plot – but no dog lover will ever Will Smith singing a final song to Sam.

Origin: I Am Legend | First Appearance: December 14, 2007 | Physical Description: A dark-haired German shepherd with cropped ears and a muscular frame. | Why They Mattered: Served as Dr. Neville's only confidant and fellow living creature after the outbreak of a crippling disease. | Human Companion: Robert Neville | Fun Fact: While Sam is a significant part of I Am Legend's film adaptation, the dog found in Richard Matheson's original novel appears, becomes infected, and dies within the span of a few chapters.

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Cheshire Cat

Mar 20, 2015
Cheshire Cat

In most modern tales, anything with piercing eyes, massive fangs, and a penchant for tree-slinking is likely to be a murderous creature. But for Lewis Carroll, the Cheshire Cat was a fond and riddle-loving introduction to the world of Wonderland, greeting Alice and accompanying her through her strange journey as a sort of ever-present guide. The Cheshire Cat’s trademark stripes and haunting grin have been immortalized in various film interpretations, as well as American McGee’s Alice, a series of video games which take Wonderland in a sinister new direction. As one might imagine, the Cheshire Cat and its devilish smile require little tweaking to exist in such a story. Whether viewed as a light-hearted trickster or a nightmare-inducing predator, the Cheshire Cat is one of the most famous animal characters to ever emerge from British literature.

Origin: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland | First Appearance: November 26, 1865 | Physical Description: A long, striped cat with a wide, toothy grin, commonly paired with expressive (and crazed) eyes. | Why They Mattered: Guided Alice through her various tribulations and riddles in Wonderland, often taunting or seeking to aid the girl. | Human Companion: Alice | Fun Fact: Although Lewis Carroll popularized the Cheshire Cat, there are a large number of cultural references and art pieces predating Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

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Argos

Mar 20, 2015
Argos

Everlasting dedication is one of the traits most commonly desired in a dog, and Argos was the originator of this ideal in literature. His owner, Odysseus, left for a 20 year adventure around the world, which left the dog to a life of neglect and starvation. After Odysseus’ home was filled with suitors for his mother, Argos was further shut away from everyday life, but refused to abandon hope of his master’s return. When Odysseus finally appeared at the palace incognito, he shared a final and heartbreaking moment of recognition with Argos, which allowed the dog to finally die after decades of faithful waiting. An updated homage to Argos marked a rare moment of seriousness on the animated show Futurama, where a dog waited decades – without success – for the return of its master. While these dogs may be fictional, their determination and commitment live on in society’s image of the “ideal companion.”

Origin: The Odyssey | First Appearance: 7th Century BC | Physical Description: Never recorded, aside from basic canine features. | Why They Mattered: Demonstrated exceptional loyalty to his master, remaining alive and vigilant for decades after Odysseus' disappearance. | Human Companion: Odysseus | Fun Fact: While the dog's exact age was never revealed, the length of Odysseus' disappearance makes Argos well over 20 years old.

9

Garfield

Mar 20, 2015
Garfield

One does not need to be a cat lover to enjoy the Garfield section in the Sunday paper. In fact, those who despise cats are an equally valid audience for these comic strips. Garfield is one of the most cynical and blunt animal characters in comedy, and his passionless humor – which often stuck out in sharp contrast to his dog companion, Odie – was ultimately what drove his success. Despite the outward appearance of apathy from the lasagna-addicted cat, there were many layers to Garfield’s personality and disposition, and it often came out through a deep love of food. Garfield has another reason to be the centerfold of every cat fan’s calendar: he was one of the progenitors of “intelligent” cats in animation and media. In fact, according to creator Jim Davis, he was conceived to offer competition to a slew of canine counterparts.

Origin: Garfield | First Appearance: June 19, 1978 | Physical Description: An orange-haired tabby cat with a round figure and oversized paws. | Why They Mattered: Brought a sense of cynical and deadpan humor to comic strips and animated TV. | Human Companion: Jon Arbuckle | Fun Fact: Garfield's sardonic personality was modeled after creator Jim Davis' grandfather, James Garfield.

10

Lassie

Mar 20, 2015
Lassie

This collie is, without a doubt, one of the most well-known and idolized dogs in fiction. With a legacy spanning books, radio plays, films, and television programs, Lassie was the quintessential rescue dog, and performed so many heroic duties that she practically became a trope. While a great number of children were saved from the bottoms of wells due to this dog’s heroism, several films explored Lassie’s more “eclectic” side, including battlefield forays and experiences with the legal system. Lassie also represented one of the first superstars to emerge from the world of animal companions, proving that readers and viewers were willing to watch an animal-centered show as long as its characters and plots were compelling enough. Lassie’s fame endures in the world of dog naming, where millions of collie owners reach for the name out of tradition alone.

Origin: The Half-brothers (short story) | First Appearance: 1859 | Physical Description: A rough collie with a white mane and similarly-colored paws. | Why They Mattered: Rescued countless children from the bottoms of wells, the freezing cold, and even Nazi-occupied territory. | Human Companion: Varying, most famously Joe Carraclough | Fun Fact: After the death of Lassie's original actor, Pal, new actors were found among the collie's children and grandchildren.

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Epona

Mar 20, 2015
Epona

Although Epona falls into the video game category of “animal companion as transportation,” the Legend of Zelda was clever in how it presented Link’s treasured horse. In her earliest forms, Epona was a simple and often nameless horse. The N64’s Ocarina of Time, however, was quick to change that dynamic. Rather than having the player purchase Epona as a nameless and forgettable method of swift travel, the game forced the player to compete in a series of trials to simply win the horse, creating an automatic bond through the shared gauntlet. Epona came equipped with a rich and detailed backstory, which could be assembled and understood by Zelda fans which had played multiple titles in the series. Epona was also one of the earliest examples of a persistent animal companion in the 3D world of gaming, making her feel more alive and realistic than creatures like Yoshi.

Origin: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time | First Appearance: November 21, 1998 | Physical Description: A chestnut-colored horse with a set of grayish hooves and a white mane, usually depicted with an affixed saddle. | Why They Mattered: Assumed the role of Link's closest friend, and also acted as his trustworthy steed in battle and peacetime. | Human Companion: Link | Fun Fact: Epona, a goddess within the Gaulish pantheon (and found in Roman circles), represented horses, mules, donkeys, and fertility.


GOAT Staff Score - Animal Companion

The candidates have been assigned a raw score across a range of criteria. The raw scores have been weighted to reflect the impact that each individual criterion has on the 'Final GOAT Score'. Only weighted scores are displayed in this table. -->TURN DEVICE SIDEWAYS TO VIEW ON MOBILE-->
 Loyalty (25%)Uniqueness (20%)Interactions with Companion (20%)Charisma (20%)Desirability as Real-World Pet (15%)Raw ScoreFinal GOAT Score
Gizmo511971143830
Pikachu 810410941815
Kazooie 67391035680
Brian 36811331620
Blood4866731605
Sam10173829590
Cheshire Cat19108129580
Argos11351525530
Garfield24115224480
Lassie9224623475
Epona7512419395

GOAT Verdict:

Gizmo is the greatest fictional animal companion of all time
You can’t feed him after midnight. You can’t offer him water. You can’t expose him to bright light. There were a host of rules accompanying the possession of a mogwai – in this case, Gizmo – but it’s a simple price to pay for owning one of these creatures. Viewers around the world were heartbroken to discover the fictional nature of the mogwai, and despite improvements with the latest science and technology, we’re no closer to creating one of these fur-covered friends than we were in 1984. Gizmo represented the height of filmmaking magic, and was popular enough to spawn a sequel to the original film, turning Gizmo from a potentially gimmicky character into a whimsical and essential ingredient for the series. Some of Gizmo’s greatest attributes were his resourcefulness, his cute factor, and his model’s physical design, which also allowed him to participate in the film’s more chaotic scenes as more than a puppet cowering behind cover. Regardless of all of the rules and impracticalities of ownership, Gizmo is the greatest animal companion of all time.

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What is the greatest mountain of all time?

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Mount Everest

Dec 31, 2014
Mount Everest

If you live on planet Earth and know anything about geography, chances are you’re familiar with the towering specter that is Mount Everest, even if you’ve never seen it in person. This mountain is actually the tallest on Earth, towering at a massive 29,029 feet above sea level, and it is one of the highest points on Earth overall. It is located in the Himalayan Mountains, and it’s one of the most climbed, most sought-out, and most talked-about mountains ever. There have been a fair share of tragedies on this mountain, especially those that took place in 1996 when eight climbers died camping out on the side of the slope, and another fifteen were killed in an avalanche, and the location is not ideal for seeing a bunch of other sights, since it’s smack dab in the middle of the Himalayan range. However, it can be seen from most of Nepal and Tibet, and for those who do decide to make the climb, it is something memorable that will last a lifetime.

Location: Between Nepal and Tibet | Range: The Himalayas | Height: 29,029 ft. | Climate: Very cold and unpredictable

Nearby Attractions: The rest of the Himalayan mountains | Legend: Everything above 26,000 feet is called the death zone because of the extremely low temperatures and low amount of oxygen | Fun Fact: In 1996 eight climbers died, and then later 15 people were killed in an avalanche

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Matterhorn

Dec 31, 2014
Matterhorn

This awesome mountain, located between Italy and Switzerland in the Pennine section of the Swiss Alps, towers above all the rest at a staggering 14,692 feet. For years people in both countries saw the peak and wanted to climb it, but feared it would be totally impossible because of the height and the distance from the beginning of the range on either side. Finally, in the mid1800s, the Swiss surmounted the peak for the first time, after one failed attempt, and when they were successful, the Italians did the same, just to prove they could. This mountain has become a staple of the Alps, and the tall and bent peak has come to symbolize the rich tradition of Swiss culture in general. The Matterhorn is right by two lovely countries, it is beautiful, and it is an excellent climb to make in the spring or summer. It is also one of the tallest and most impressive mountains out there.
Location: Border of Switzerland and Italy | Range: Pennine Alps | Height: 14,692 ft. | Climate: Rapid weather changes, lots of snow

Nearby Attractions: Other mountains in the alps to climb and the Swiss and Italian countryside | Legend: Until it was first climbed, it was feared for its shape and how intense it looked, and thought to be otherworldly. | Fun Fact: The Swiss were the first to climb, and not to be outdone, the Italians followed suite a few months later, so that the mountain was climbed by both bordering countries.

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Kilimanjaro

Dec 31, 2014
Kilimanjaro

These huge mountain in African Tanzania is special because it is the tallest free-standing peak in the world, not just on the African continent. This mountain reaches 19,341 feet, and it is not a part of any particular mountain range, it is located on the plains of the desert. It is right near the idyllic small African town of Moshi, which is another great attraction to visit in the area in addition to the surrounding nature. Technically, this is a dormant volcanic mountain, as it is topped by three cones that are inactive as of today. The name means “mountain of greatness” or “mountain of caravans” in the native tongue of the Wakamba people, due to its towering size. The peak of Kilimanjaro is so high that it is one of the only places in Africa to receive regular snow, and there is usually unpredictable weather on the top. This mountain is a great climb and the best and highest attraction on the African continent.

Location: Tanzania | Range: Free-standing, no range | Height: 19,341 ft. | Climate: warm and sunny, arid, volcanic, icy cap on top
Nearby Attractions: Near the idyllic town of Moshi | Legend: Legend has it that ancient people called it "Njaro" meaning "shining" - which may be the true origin of the name | Fun Fact: These volcanoes are still active today

4

Mauna Loa

Dec 31, 2014
Mauna Loa

Technically, this is not a mountain, because it is an active volcano, which is why it rises to 30,085 feet, even higher than Mount Everest, but is not considered to be the tallest mountain in the world. This is one of the five volcanos that formed the island of Hawaii, and today, since it has been dormant since the 80s, it is an attraction for climbing and exploring, as well as one of the great sights to be seen in Hawaii. It is also right near the wonderful beaches and cities of this small but idyllic island. The name means “long mountain,” and although it is a climbing spot for many, it still poses some threat, as it may erupt again and it is hard to determine exactly when this will happen. However, this mountain makes the skyline in Hawaii absolutely beautiful and breathtaking, and sets the tone for whole state.

Location: One of the five volcanoes that make up the island of Hawaii | Range: NA | Height: 30,085 ft. | Climate: Tropical at the base, Periglacial at the summit
Nearby Attractions: Centrally located in beautiful Hawaii | Legend: There are some claims of eruptions in the 1700s by missionaries, but these have not been geographically confirmed | Fun Fact: The tallest point on Mars

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Olympus Mons

Dec 31, 2014
Olympus Mons

If you haven’t heard of a mountain that towers 69,649 ft. above sea level, almost three times the size of Mount Everest, that’s because it doesn’t exist on Earth. Olympus Mons is on Mars, and it is the tallest mountain known to mankind so far, based on what we have explored. It was once an active volcano, and beyond that, not much is known about this mysterious mound, aside from the fact that it can be seen from space, along with the great red dot. While this may not be a mountain on Earth, or an attraction that any of us can get to or check out, it certainly is one of the most epic and amazing mountains of all time, and hopefully someday, when we walk on Mars, it can be visited in person.

Location: Mars | Range: One of the volcanoes on the surface of Mars | Height: 69,649 ft. | Climate: No oxygen, not suitable for humans

Nearby Attractions: Dude, it’s Mars | Legend: Originally people thought mars was once populated and covered with water, but we now know that isn't true | Fun Fact: The tallest point on Mars

6

K2

Dec 31, 2014
K2

This impressive mountain is the second tallest in the world, second only to the great Mount Everest. The peak is located in the Karakoram Range, between China and Pakistan. The name comes from the original survey of the region, when the whole area was analyzed and each Karakoram Mountain was numbered, but no other name ever stuck. This is probably fitting, since this mountain is so cold and inaccessible. It is surrounded by high peaks and melting glaciers, and is so difficult to climb that no one has ever attempted it during the winter, as such a try would surely be fatal. This mountain may not be on your bucket list unless you are really serious about the outdoors, but it certainly is worth viewing from afar, and it is an epic sight to see.

Location: Between Pakistan and China | Range: Karakoram Range | Height: 28,251 ft. | Climate: So cold and intense that it has never been climbed during Winter

Nearby Attractions: Bordered by mountains and melted glaciers, not easily accessible | Legend: The mountain was originally named as part of the geographical survey for its place in the range, but when the mountains were renamed, the name for K2 never stuck. This been said to be fitting for its cold, impersonal nature and isolation. | Fun Fact: The mountain is so high that oxygen is suggested for use at the top

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Pike's Peak

Dec 31, 2014
Pike's Peak

This Colorado staple is found West of Colorado Springs, right in the middle of the state. While it is not the highest mountain on the Front Range or in Colorado, it has become a trademark of the area, since it was right in the heart of the Gold Rush during all the action. Although there was never a lot of gold found on the mountain itself, it still became a symbol of this time in history. The mountain was originally called “long mountain” by the Arapahoe, and stands at 14,115 feet, as one of Colorado’s fourteeners. It’s also easily accessible from Colorado Springs and all the other nearby areas, and a great place to visit as a tourist attraction.

Location: West of Colorado Springs in Colorado | Range: Front Range of the Rocky Mountains | Height: 14,115 ft. | Climate: snowy at the top but in an otherwise fairly arid and dry area

Nearby Attractions: Pike National Forest, Colorado Springs | Legend: Pike's Peak was known during the Gold Rush as a symbol of awaiting gold, but in reality there was never a lot of gold discovered on the mountain; it was just the tallest mountain in the area so it became a symbol | Fun Fact: The Arapahoe called it "long mountain"

8

Huayna Picchu

Dec 31, 2014
Huayna Picchu

This gorgeous mountain overshadows the Peruvian town of Machu Picchu, and rises to 8,920 feet above sea level. The mountain is special because it is inlaid with carved stairs and temple openings from ancient times, when the mountain was considered a holy place by local residents. Apparently, the priest of the area used to live on top of the mountain, and the temples around it were for his followers and religious ceremonies. Today, many visitors climb the easily surmountable peak and walk around on the ruins, and it is a great sight to behold from down below in Machu Picchu.

Location: Peru | Range: Machu Picchu Mountain Range | Height: 8,920 ft. | Climate: Warm and temperate, but can get snowy on top, foggy

Nearby Attractions: Machu Picchu | Legend: Used to be considered a holy, or blessed place | Fun Fact: It is surrounded by beautiful temples carved into the rock

9

Mount McKinley

Dec 31, 2014
Mount McKinley

This impressive mountain in Alaska is the tallest in the Alaskan Range, reaching 20,237 feet above sea level. It was beloved by the Koyukan Athabaskans who lived near the base, and the first American to discover it was George Vancouver. Today this mountain is rarely climbed because of how high and hard to reach it is, but it is gorgeous to behold from the ground, and a challenge for serious climbers. This may not be a climb for the faint of heart, but it is at least worth checking out.

Location: Alaska | Range: Alaskan Range | Height: 20,237 ft. | Climate: Extremely cold and frigid

Nearby Attractions: Very isolated, but near other mountains in the Alaskan range | Legend: The mountain was considered dangerous and treacherous, and not actually climbed until 1963 | Fun Fact: This is the third tallest mountain in North America

10

Mount Tamalpais

Dec 31, 2014
Mount Tamalpais

This mountain is by far the shortest on the list, reaching only 2,574 feet at its highest point. However, its location in the heart of the Bay Area and the astounding views of the mountains, ocean, and city from the top make this a spot you will certainly want to visit. It has also become a staple attraction for those visiting San Francisco. The name of the mountain is literally translated to “West Hill,” and it was once the home of a railroad and a weather station. When the mountain was first discovered, some believed the name was a reference to the “Sleeping Maiden” legend, but this turned out not to be the case. While this might not be the most epic or breathtaking mountain of all time, it certainly is one of the most culturally relevant.

Location: Marin Country, California | Range: Marin Hills - part of California Costal Ranges | Height: 2,574 ft. | Climate: Warm and temperate, foggy

Nearby Attractions: San Francisco, the Bay Area, the Mount Tamalpais State Park | Legend: Some think the name is actually a Native American reference to the "sleeping maiden" legend, but that is actually a Victorian-era legend, and the name just refers to the location | Fun Fact: David Carpenter, a serial killer, murdered a few people on the trail at this mountain, and he was known as the "trailside killer."


GOAT Staff Score - Mountain

The candidates have been assigned a raw score across a range of criteria. The raw scores have been weighted to reflect the impact that each individual criterion has on the 'Final GOAT Score'. Only weighted scores are displayed in this table. -->TURN DEVICE SIDEWAYS TO VIEW ON MOBILE-->
 Height (20%)Legends/History (20%)Fame (20%)Nearby Attractions (15%)Cultural Importance (15%)Intensity (10%)Raw ScoreGOAT Score
Mount Everest81010510851865
Matterhorn48988744730
Kilimanjaro57765434585
Mauna Loa96274634565
Olympus Mons1046111032530
K279122930490
Pike's Peak32849329485
Huayna Picchu234106227440
Mount McKinley65333525420
Mount Tamalpais11597124390

GOAT Verdict:

Mount Everest is The Greatest Mountain of All Time
The GOAT pick for Greatest Mountain Of All Time is Mount Everest. While this may be a notoriously famous mountain and known for being the tallest peak in the world, it truly has earned all this praise. The top of the mountain is known as the “death zone” because of how low the oxygen level is, as well as how low the temperatures can drop, and many people have died trying to climb this peak. However, it isn’t all bad; it’s also great to behold from ground level, and there have been many successful climbs of Mount Everest. It’s also especially gorgeous, more so than other super-tall mountains that are completely inaccessible, and it is the best known mountain in the world. By all accounts, Mount Everest truly is the greatest mountain of all time.

What is the greatest cryptid of all time?

1

Loch Ness Monster

Dec 11, 2014
Loch Ness Monster

In the world of grainy video footage and still photographs, the Loch Ness Monster (also known as Nessie, to its many fans) is the reigning champion. Although the most famous image of the Loch Ness Monster was revealed to be a hoax just before the death of its photographer, the search for the fabled sea creature has only intensified over time. Throughout the 20th century, teams of scientists and researchers combed the loch multiple times, typically with the aid of sonar equipment and submersibles. The creature even attracted Hollywood producers, and due to several filming mishaps, full-size replicas of the Loch Ness Monster sank to the bottom of the loch (and were never recovered). Numerous theories have emerged in the debate over the creature’s origins and possible survival tactics, and if nothing else, these dialogues signal that the legend of Nessie continues to grow beneath the loch’s waters.

Origins: Debatably identified in 565, when an account by Saint Columba reported an attack by a sea-serpent on the River Ness. | Sighted In: Loch Ness, in Scotland | Appearance: An aquatic and serpentine creature with dark and glossy flesh, typically reported to possess limbs or fins of some sort | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 2,040,000

Encounter Details: A 1970 submersible expedition into the Loch's depths, initiated as a joke, picked up sonar signals from a massive fleeing object. | Strange Fact: In 1933, a motorcyclist claimed to have struck the creature on a shoreline road.

2

Bigfoot

Dec 11, 2014
Bigfoot

There have been so many reported sightings of Bigfoot – alternatively known as a Sasquatch – that the creature itself borders on parody. The creature’s image has become so prevalent that it is, in essence, the epitome of the “monster-hunting” phenomenon, which has branched into mainstream television and internet circles. Driven by the grainy appearance of an ape-like creature in the 1967 Patterson-Gimlin film, thousands of determined Bigfoot seekers have combed the forests and mountainous expanses of Canada and North America. Although the majority of these expeditions result in no proof of the beast, and the “evidence” gathered is typically little more than a set of large footprints, the hunt for Bigfoot and his Sasquatch kin is more alive than ever before. So long as the fascination around this forest-dwelling creature remains, the world’s longest-running hide-and-seek match will continue in the hills of North America.

Origins: Unknown, based in legends from the indigenous tribes of the Pacific Northwest. | Sighted In: Northwestern US, Canada, occasionally Eastern US | Appearance: An apelike creature with a prominent brow and forehead, typically hairy and extremely tall | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 27,100,000

Encounter Details: A 1924 account described a band of apelike creatures (potentially referring to Bigfoot's species) assaulting a mining cabin with rocks and attempted entry. | Strange Fact: In 2012, an attempted hoax ended in tragedy when a ghillie-suited impersonator was struck by a car.

3

Kraken

Dec 11, 2014
Kraken

Since its inception, the Kraken has appeared in the nightmares of sailors around the world. The depth of the ocean can be daunting enough on the high seas, but the prospect of a colossal, tentacle-wielding beast beneath a vessel is horrifying. Centuries after the Kraken’s first appearance in Norse sagas, it was reportedly seen throughout the seas around Scandinavia and the Atlantic, where it was believed to prey on passing crewmen and sink ships with ease. Many contemporary depictions of the Kraken have added especially alien features, including horns or a razor-toothed maw, since its initial shape (which is similar to a giant squid or octopus) has become normalized and less intimidating. If you ever venture across an ocean and try to imagine what waits beneath the waves, however, the Kraken’s original form will be more than enough to haunt your dreams.

Origins: Featured in a 14th-century Norse saga known as Orvar-Oddr, presented under a different name. | Sighted In: Multiple oceans, coasts of Greenland | Appearance: An enormous octopoid creature (or cephalopod) capable of devouring entire ships | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 21,600,000

Encounter Details: A 1781 description of the creature, written by a Swedish author, likened the Kraken to the biblical Leviathan. | Strange Fact: Krake, the Norwegian root of the word Kraken, refers to a sickly or warped animal.

4

Spring-heeled Jack

Dec 11, 2014
Spring-heeled Jack

The stories surrounding Spring-heeled Jack may seem more like urban legends than cryptid reports, but the otherworldly nature of this far-leaping entity suggests something more mysterious and physical than just folklore. Spring-heeled Jack was spotted throughout London, Liverpool, and some surrounding areas, and the number of reports was so staggering that it prompted an official response from community leaders and law enforcement. In some stories, Spring-heeled Jack wore the clothes of a dapper gentleman, but in others, he was dressed in a fisherman’s oilskin coat to disguise his burning red eyes and haunting features. Most of the public (and pop culture) has let Jack slide into obscurity, but the accounts of his reign of terror are still an indelible part of London, and make him one of the most acrobatic cryptids in existence.

Origins: Victorian-era reports of a ghost or demonic entity stalking the streets of Liverpool and London. | Sighted In: London and Liverpool, in England | Appearance: A thin, well-dressed urban wanderer with red eyes and sharpened nails. | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 430,000

Encounter Details: An 1877 crowd in Lincolnshire supposedly surrounded the creature, which was cloaked in a sheep skin, and forced it to leap away in retreat. | Strange Fact: The Lord Mayor of London addressed the creature in an 1838 hearing, and after an overwhelming response from the public, dispatched policemen to hunt down the responsible entity.

5

Chupacabra

Dec 11, 2014
Chupacabra

The only thing scarier than a vampire is a vampire in the shape of a hairless dog (or a scaly, cold-blooded humanoid, if you ascribe to other reports). The Chupacabra, a blood-sucking and nocturnal hunter originally reported in South America, is one of the most bizarre but frequently-encountered cryptids of all time. Although there have been dozens of reports of this creature, with many occurring in the Southern US, most are simply a misidentified and sickly canine. The Chupacabra’s name refers to sucking the blood of goats, but this creature has been attributed to attacks on livestock of all varieties, including sheep and hens. While there has never been any concrete evidence presented in the search for a Chupacabra specimen (alive or dead), many South American farmers still swear by its existence.

Origins: Reportedly the cause of a 1995 attack on eight sheep in Puerto Rico, which left the livestock with multiple puncture wounds and devoid of blood. | Sighted In: Southern US, numerous South American nations, the Caribbean | Appearance: Ranging from a small, reptillian biped to a hairless and vaguely canine creature | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 994,000

Encounter Details: Multiple Chupacabra sightings, which involve a hairless specimen attacking livestock, have been identified as canines with severe mange. | Strange Fact: Skeptic Benjamin Radford asserts that the Chupacabra's reported sightings were based on descriptions of an alien creature from the film Species.

6

Yeti

Dec 11, 2014
Yeti

As the eastern counterpart to Bigfoot, the Yeti has a web of legends, mysteries, and expeditions around him. Some of the earliest mentions of the Yeti come from pre-Buddhist texts throughout Nepal and Tibet, and although the creature is reportedly most active in these countries, there have been scattered sightings throughout China, Russia, and beyond. The Yeti’s white fur and intimidating build are enough to strike fear into the heart of any mountain climber, but one of its most terrifying aspects is its extensive folklore reputation. The Yeti, to the indigenous peoples of the Himalayas, was a deity of hunting and killing in the frigid mountain ranges. While there may not be any photographs of this albino creature in existence, there are some cases where it’s more comforting to know as little as possible (especially when a creature’s fur is the same color as the snow that surrounds you).

Origins: Component of Lepcha religion, serving as a God of the Hunt and stalking the Himalayas. | Sighted In: Russia, Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, China, Mongolia | Appearance: A towering creature with simian features and pale fur | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 48,500,000

Encounter Details: An accomplished trekker spotted a hulking Yeti-like creature in 1832, but later declared it to be an orangutan. | Strange Fact: A 2011 science conference, hosted in Russia, declared 95% certainty of the creature's existence.

7

Mothman

Dec 11, 2014
Mothman

West Virginia, which may seem like a relatively uneventful state, also has the honor of hosting one of the most unsettling cryptids on record. Mothman, which was originally reported as a humanoid creature with wings and glowing eyes, has evolved into a local legend due to its bizarre appearance and wave of activity in 1966. After a few weeks of frequent sightings and contact with the citizens of Point Pleasant, Mothman seemed to drop away from the public eye, and was only mentioned again because of a bridge collapse the following year. Multiple novels and films have expanded upon the Mothman’s reputation and legacy within the sleepy community of Point Pleasant, but for those who lived through the hysteria of 1966 and can still recall tales of its appearance, there’s no need for embellishment.

Origins: A series of 1966 reports from West Virginia | Sighted In: Point Pleasant, in West Virginia | Appearance: A flying, bipedal creature with humanoid limbs and glowing red eyes | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 596,000

Encounter Details: In 1966, a contractor reportedly shined a flashlight into the creature's eyes, only to find that they were eerily reflective. | Strange Fact: Point Pleasant erected a 12-foot statue of Mothman, crafted from metal, in 2003.

8

Jersey Devil

Dec 11, 2014
Jersey Devil

The general appearance of New Jersey may not seem like a breeding ground for cryptid sightings, but in the forested lower portions of the state – known as the Pine Barrens – there are plenty of eerie hiding places. The Jersey Devil is commonly depicted as a winged creature with the head of a goat or a deer, and has reportedly been sighted throughout the Pine Barrens for hundreds of years. Because of the creature’s impressive speed and flight abilities, it has commonly been the subject of close capture attempts and hunting tales, but there has never been tangible proof of its existence (including a body). While the Jersey Devil may not appear in any photographs or brief clips of film, evidence of its legacy can be found in gift shops throughout the state.

Origins: Known as a dragon-like creature to the indigenous Lenni Lenape tribe. | Sighted In: New Jersey's forested coastal plains | Appearance: A winged, incredibly swift creature with claws and a mammalian head | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 6,890,000

Encounter Details: Numerous witnesses claimed to see the Jersey Devil in 1909, and police were reportedly able to fire at the creature (without success). | Strange Fact: One of Napoleon Bonaparte's brothers reported seeing the Jersey Devil on his property in 1820.

9

Beast of Bray Road

Dec 11, 2014
Beast of Bray Road

A creature with the appearance of a bipedal bear or werewolf may be an obvious cause for sensation, but the surprising aspect of the Beast of Bray Road is that its legacy has persisted for over fifty years without contemporary reports of the creature. In 1936 the most popular and frequently-cited incident occurred with this man-beast hybrid, and the story was later converted into a newspaper piece and nonfiction book publication. In 2002, the infamous Gable Film emerged, and appeared to depict an attack by the Beast of Bray Road. Although the authenticity of the film was finally refuted by the creators, it served as a powerful reminder of this cryptid’s legacy in small-town Wisconsin, and prompted another generation of potential monster-seekers to take up the search.

Origins: A 1936 report out of Wisconsin. | Sighted In: Rural Wisconsin | Appearance: Either as a hulking, bear-like creature, or a bipedal canine (popularly known as a werewolf in local newspapers) | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 106,000

Encounter Details: A 2002 hoax film recreated the appearance of an old home video, and showed the "Beast" attacking a man on a deserted road. | Strange Fact: In the 1990s, a newspaper reporter and skeptic set out to dismantle witness claims, but later became convinced by the story and published books on the topic.

10

Kelpie

Dec 11, 2014
Kelpie

The Loch Ness Monster, in the worldwide sense, is Scotland’s most famous creature. Within Scotland, however, the Kelpie is a cryptid of equal note, and has its roots in centuries of folklore. The Kelpie follows a trend of culture-specific monsters bound by a theme of mischief and water, and may have found its origins in scaring children away from the water’s edge. The Kelpie’s two main forms were an attractive human and a horse-like body, often outfitted with fins for swimming, or a covering of algae. The Kelpie could lure its victims into the water using its alluring humanoid appearance, where it would then drown the victim. The Kelpie is a constant presence in Scottish tales and literature from previous centuries, and with all the attention focused on Nessie, it may finally find some breathing room in the lochs of Scotland.

Origins: Scottish folklore, which spoke of a water-dwelling demon that appeared in both human and equine forms. | Sighted In: Lochs and ponds throughout Scotland | Appearance: Alternating between a human and horse-like form | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 990,000

Encounter Details: Sir Walter Scott's 1810 poem, The Lady of the Lake, describes a river demon rising from the water. | Strange Fact: Kelpies may have been fabricated as a method of scaring children away from dangerous bodies of water.

11

Kappa

Dec 11, 2014
Kappa

Japanese legends are practically overflowing with oddities and curious creatures. The Kappa, which belongs to an overarching family of tricksters and demonic entities within Japanese folklore and traditional storytelling, is a creature marked by its childish but reptilian appearance, as well as a turtle-like carapace. Its scaly body may create the appearance of aquatic mastery, but the Kappa – according to folklore – is powerless without the reservoir of water in its skull cavity. Japanese children (especially in older generations) are always prepared for a duel with the Kappa, which is prone to anything from tripping villagers to drowning younger victims. Of course, the Kappa is too outlandish and attention-seeking to secretly exist in the modern age, but considering the Kappa’s horrendous “pranks,” perhaps that’s a good thing.

Origins: Japanese folklore, which depicts Kappa as capable of either mischief or outright violence | Sighted In: Japan | Appearance: Youthful and humanoid, but with reptilian skin, a carapace, a beak, and a flattened skull containing water. | Number of Google Results for “Name”: 80,900,000

Encounter Details: Lacking distinct sightings, but in popular legends, Kappa are known for dragging curious visitors underwater and drowning them. | Strange Fact: Friendly Kappa will reportedly irrigate farms and bring fish to their human allies.


GOAT Staff Score - Cryptid

The candidates have been assigned a raw score across a range of criteria. The raw scores have been weighted to reflect the impact that each individual criterion has on the 'Final GOAT Score'. Only weighted scores are displayed in this table. -->TURN DEVICE SIDEWAYS TO VIEW ON MOBILE-->
 Sighting Prevalence (30%)Historical Significance (20%)Eerieness (20%)Realism / Existence Potential (15%)Contemporary Legacy (15%)Raw ScoreFinal GOAT Score
Loch Ness Monster109591144880
Bigfoot1173111042845
Kraken611108742825
Spring-heeled Jack810117137780
Chupacabra9395935720
Yeti58210833620
Mothman7273625525
Jersey Devil4484525495
Beast of Bray Road2176319355
Kelpie3612214290
Kappa1541415285

GOAT Verdict:

The Loch Ness Monster is the Greatest Cryptid of All Time
The Loch Ness Monster’s claim to fame is not necessarily in its veracity, but in the widespread wishful thinking that defines its existence. Thousands of filmmakers, researchers, biologists, and zoologists have descended on Loch Ness over the past centuries, and whether their outlooks are skeptical or accepting of the creature’s presence, the fact remains: Nessie is a cultural phenomenon. Its origins may stretch back to the pre-medieval times, but the expeditions to uncover this sea beast have only grown more involved and more resource-intensive in modern times. Millions of dollars in radar, sonar, and aerial reconnaissance assistance have been poured into the search, and despite the continual failure to unearth any appreciable evidence, the scientific community seems just as interested in settling the mystery as Nessie’s devoted fans. The Loch Ness Monster may be a prehistoric creature that continues to thrive, it may be an elaborate hoax, or it may be a demonic creature lurking beneath the waters of the loch, carefully avoiding all detection. Whatever the true case may be, the Loch Ness Monster is the greatest cryptid of all time.

0

What is the greatest tree of all time?

1

General Sherman

Sep 09, 2014
General Sherman

The most voluminous tree alive on earth today. The Giant Forest at Sequoia National Park is home to hundreds of behemoth trees, but being in the presence of Sherman feels like royalty. Now a national icon and host to thousands of tourists a year, this giant sequoia is one of the most beloved and famous trees of all time. The tree was named after the Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman in 1879. With what seems like an impossibly wide girth, and a height that may as well go up to infinity, witnessing The General in person should be on every GOAT fan’s bucket list.

Location: Sequoia National Park, California | Type: Giant Sequoia | Age: ~2,500 Years | Height: 275 Feet | Girth: 79 Feet | Volume: ~52,500 Cubic Feet

2

Lindsey Creek Tree

Sep 09, 2014
Lindsey Creek Tree

The largest single-stem organism to ever live on earth. This tree made General Sherman look like a sapling. The massive coast redwood, located in Northern California’s Grove of Titans, was felled by a storm in 1905. Loggers harvested the wood from the tree, and it was said to have a trunk volume of over 90,000 cubic feet, and weight of 7.26 million pounds. It was over twice the mass of General Sherman! While it’s hard to even find objects large enough to use as a reference, consider the fact that this tree was over 2.5 times the volume of a 747 aircraft!

Location: Fieldbrook, California | Type: Coast Redwood | Age: ~700 Years | Year Deceased: 1905 | Height: Unknown | Girth: ~119 Feet | Volume: >90,000 Cubic Feet

3

Hyperion

Sep 09, 2014
Hyperion

The tallest tree on earth. With a location that is kept highly secret to ensure the conservation of these giant trees, Hyperion is the tallest coast redwood in a region known to tree researchers as The Grove of Titans. Not discovered until 2006, Hyperion perfectly exhibits the intrigue and rarity of a true GOAT. Researchers always knew that hugely tall trees existed in this part of the world, but no one had ever confirmed the astonishing 380 foot height of Hyperion until less than 10 years ago. The tree gives us hope that there may be other GOATs yet to be discovered.

Location: The Grove of Titans, California | Type: Coast Redwood | Age: ~750 Years | Height: 380 Feet | Girth: 48 feet | Volume: ~18,600 Cubic Feeet

4

Pando

Sep 09, 2014
Pando

Certainly the heaviest, and possibly the oldest living organism on the planet. Pando is a clonal colony of quaking aspen trees in the Fishlake National Forest in South-Central Utah. The roots of Pando are 80,000 years old. It was alive during the Paleothilic Era, when Neanderthals still walked the earth. With over 40,000 stems, the tree weighs 13 million pounds, that's slightly less than the Eiffel Tower! See it in the fall, when the leaves of the massive organism burn with a vivid gold color. Walking among this forest of a tree will be an experience you’ll never forget.

Location: Fishlake National Forest, Utah | Type: Quaking Aspen | Age: ~80,000 Years | Height: Up to 100 Feet | Total Weight: 6,600 Tons | Total Area: 106 Acres

5

Árbol del Tule

Sep 09, 2014
Árbol del Tule

The stoutest trunked tree on earth. This beast of a Montezuma cypress is located on church property in the center of Santa Maria De Tule, a small town in far southern Mexico. With a mind-blowing trunk circumference of 137.8 feet, the Arbol del Tule is almost twice as stout as your typical above ground pool! The tree is also known for its gnarled bark creating animal like patterns, such as lions and elephants.

Location: Santa María del Tule, Oaxaca, Mexico | Type: Montezuma Cypress | Age: ~1,500 Years | Height: 116 Feet | Girth: 138 Feet | Volume: ~29,000 Cubic Feet

6

Sunland Baobab

Sep 09, 2014
Sunland Baobab

This tree is a functioning bar and wine cellar. And while the TGS staff has been to our fair share of obscure watering holes, we can’t say we’ve ever tipped a pint inside the trunk of a tree. The gargantuan baobab is located on the Sunland Farm in South Africa. It’s been alive for over 1,000 years and has been operating as a pub open to the public since 1933. Complete with 13 foot high ceilings and seating for up to 15, this is not only one of the greatest trees, but also one of the greatest drinking establishments on earth.

Location: Sunland Farm, South Africa | Type: Baobab | Age: ~1,060 Years | Height: 72 Feet | Girth: 109.58 Feet

7

Kannimara Teak

Sep 09, 2014
Kannimara Teak

The largest and oldest teak tree on earth. The tree is located in the Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary in southern India. With an astonishing 21.5 foot girth, and a height of 113 feet, the wood within the tree has a market value of over $600,000! The local populations believe the tree to be sacred. According to tribal belief, when the first attempt was made to chop down the tree, the open cuts in the trunk oozed with red blood. Thus the tree was named Kannimara, which roughly translates to “Virgin Tree”. Whether you believe the legend or not, this astonishing specimen is surely one of the greatest trees of all time.

Location: Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, South India| Type: Teak | Age ~450 Years | Height: 131 Feet | Girth: 21.5 Feet

8

Unnamed Bristlecone Pine (Harlan Bristlecone)

Sep 09, 2014
Unnamed Bristlecone Pine (Harlan Bristlecone)

The oldest non-clonal tree on earth. The twisted, leathered appearance of the Bristlecone Pine gives away their age, in many cases they’ve lived for over 5,000 years! And the oldest of them all was discovered by tree researcher Tom Harlan in 2013. At 5,064 years old, this un-named, un-known location, bristlecone pine in the White Mountains of California is the oldest single living organism on earth (non-clonal). The world has changed drastically over the course of 5 millennia, but the Bristlecones have been a constant, slowly growing and thriving through it all

Location: White Mountains, California | Type: Bristlecone Pine | Age: ~5,064 Years | Height: <30 Feet | Girth: < 15 Feet

9

Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi

Sep 09, 2014
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi

The oldest human-planted tree on earth. The Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi is a fig tree that is one of the most sacred relics in the Buddhist culture. The tree was planted in modern day Sri Lanka by the daughter of the Indian emperor Ashoka over 2,000 years ago. The tree has survived the rise and fall of numerous dynasties, and it has been protected as a religious site by many kings throughout the generations. Today, thousands of Buddhists visit the tree every year to pay their respects.

Location: Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka | Type: Sacred Fig | Age: ~2302 Years | Height: ~30 Feet | Girth: ~8 Feet

10

Old Tjikko

Sep 09, 2014
Old Tjikko

The oldest individual clonal tree on earth. This weathered and windbeaten Norway Spruce is located on Fulufjallet Mountain in Sweden. Carbon-dating of the roots proved the tree to be 9,550 years old. It was alive during the time of mammoths, shortly after the last ice-age. Few things in this world are as constant as Old Tjikko and you can make a confident wager that it will persevere for countless future generations.

Location: Fulufjället Mountain, Sweden | Type: Norway Spruce | Age: ~9,550 Years | Height: 16 Feet | Girth: < 10 Feet

GOAT Staff Score - Tree

The candidates have been assigned a raw score across a range of criteria. The raw scores have been weighted to reflect the impact that each individual criterion has on the 'Final GOAT Score'. Only weighted scores are displayed in this table. -->TURN DEVICE SIDEWAYS TO VIEW ON MOBILE-->
 Physical DramaLongevityNatural BeautyCultural SignificanceWeighted Score
General Sherman70.0017.5078.7520.00186.25
Lindsey Creek Giant87.505.0087.505.00185.00
Hyperion78.757.5070.0015.00171.25
Pando 43.7525.0061.2510.00140.00
Árbol del Tule61.2512.5035.0040.00148.75
Sunland Baobab52.5010.0043.7535.00141.25
Kannimara Teak35.002.5052.5045.00135.00
Unnamed Bristlecone Pine (Harlan Bristlecone)26.2520.0026.2525.0097.50
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi8.7515.0017.5050.0091.25
Old Tjikko17.5022.508.7530.0078.75

GOAT Verdict:

GOAT General Sherman
While not the tallest, oldest, or largest tree on our list, General Sherman gets our vote for the title of The Greatest Tree of All Time.   The General gets strong scores across the board, including high marks for Physical Drama, Longevity, and Natural Beauty.  Couple the physical grandeur of this tree, with it’s importance to American outdoor culture and conservation, and you’ve got a tree that can only be called one thing:  The GOAT.

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