East African Mountains
Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec
Private and Group
You will be picked up at your hotel at around 08:00am and transferred to the Lemosho gate located on the western side of Kilimanjaro. After the registration process you will still start our climb steadily through the forests of the Lemosho glades to reach Big Tree camp where you will be spending the night.
Today you will trek across a plateau of grassy moorland and heather scattered with volcanic rock formations. Our destination for today is the Shira 1 Camp from where there are often views of Kibo Peak floating on the clouds. We gain a reasonable amount of altitude today and parts of the route are fairly steep.
Today you will get the chance to view the Northern Ice fields from the western side of the mountain with some unusual views of Kibo. Our steady climb across the moorland of the Shira Plateau will help with acclimatization and we enjoy great panoramic views. Our destination today is the Shira 2 Camp. In the afternoon you will take an acclimatization walk then head back to camp for dinner and overnight.
Your trek starts with an ascent with far-reaching panoramic views, walking in to the climatic zone of the upland desert and on the lava ridges beneath the glaciers of the Western Breach. You will reach the distinct pinnacle of the Lava Tower (4640 m), our high point for the day and a great place to enjoy your lunch. In the afternoon we make a steep descent to our camp for the night, located in the base of the Great Barranco Valley (3960 m), sheltered by towering cliffs but with extensive views of the plains below.
Our day starts by descending into the start of the Great Barranco, a huge ravine. We then exit steeply, up the Great Barranco Wall, which divides us from the southeastern slopes of Kibo. It’s a climb over rock, not technical but long and tiring. Passing underneath the Heim and Kersten glaciers, we head towards the Karanga valley. From here we have a steep climb up from Karanga valley to our night’s camp at Karanga camp, set at 3963m. For those feeling strong we will go for a mid-afternoon acclimatization trek up to around 4200m before descending back to camp for the night.
After a good night’s rest and breakfast, we set off on our walk to Barafu camp at 4640m. The climb will take us across desolate scree slopes with no vegetation around us at all. It’s a tough steep walk made more difficult by the altitude. On arriving at camp we eat and spend the afternoon resting as we prepare for a long night and day ahead. It is important to keep hydrated and warm. We have an early dinner and then try to get some sleep as we will be getting up at between 11pm and 12 pm to start the climb to the summit.
You will be awoken around 23:30 with hot tea and biscuits. Hopefully you have managed to get a few hours’ sleep; don’t worry if you haven’t as most people struggle to sleep before summit night. Do however make sure that all your kit, including warm clothes, headlamp, insulated water reserves and snacks are ready for a sharp departure at 24:00. The trek up Kibo is steep and slow. The trick is to keep your momentum moving forward, one step at a time. It takes about 6-8 hours to reach the top of the crater rim where you will see the sign for Stella Point (5,739 meters). You still have another 156 meters of altitude to walk around the crater rim to Uhuru Peak (5,895 meters). After reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro, a 4.5km / 3 mile ascent, you still have an 11km / 7 mile descent to Mweka Camp (3,100 meters)! Mweka is situated in the upper part of the rain-forest zone. The richness of oxygen and moisture in the air will be a very welcome surprise.
In the morning after breakfast you will be trekking down to Mweka gate. The trek is a pleasant one through the lower rain-forested slopes and down to Mweka Gate (1,640 meters). Although you cover 9km / 5.5 miles, the trek only takes 3-4 hours. Assuming you successfully reach Stella Point or Uhuru Peak you will be presented with official certificates – a green certificate for the former and a gold certificate for the latter. It is customary to tip your trekking crew before being transported back to your hotel in Moshi.
Moshi Town, Tanzania
Camping in tents every night.
Please wear: Comfortable athletic clothing, hiking shoes, hat, cold weather jacket, gloves, pants, spare clothing.
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