- The 8 day Lemosho variation is the ideal schedule for this route
- The Lemosho route is a scenic hike favored by top Kilimanjaro operators
Mount Kilimanjaro is the tallest free standing mountain in the world. People from all over the globe come to Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro, hoping to stand proudly at Uhuru Point - 19,341 feet high. Crowned in ice, Mount Kilimanjaro is a spectacular sight to behold. But this view will not last long. The glaciers are melting at an alarming rate due to global warming and will be completely gone in 50 years.
The 8 -ay Lemosho variation is the ideal schedule for this route; the trek from Barranco to Barafu is broken up into two days, allowing for a short day just prior to the summit attempt. This is important because summit day begins very early, around midnight, so climbers are sleep deprived going into the toughest day on the mountain. By having a short day beforehand, climbers can be better rested.
Day 1 – Arusha
Whenever you arrive, you‘ll be personally met and transferred to a lovely hotel in Arusha. Those arriving especially early can book optional activities. Then, spend the afternoon with your Tanzania Wildlife expedition mountain guide preparing for the climb.
Day 2: FOREST
After picking up the requisite documentation at the park gate the safari continues to the Lemosho glades starting point. Less steep than the Machame route and less used, today’s trek is through the forest that laces the foot of the mountain. This evening’s camp is pitched in the forest at around 2750m.
Day 3 – SHIRA 1
Today’s trek takes you slowly up the edge of the Shira volcano. As you gain altitude the vegetation thins and exotic species of high altitude plants appear. Camp is situated near the rim of the ancient volcano and provides a good opportunity to get the first direct views of Kilimanjaro peak. Camp is pitched at about 3500m.
DAY 4: SHIRA 2
Trek to Shira 2 camp across the Shira plateau the flat caldera of a volcano that was actually bigger and is much older than Kilimanjaro. Views can be very weather specific but on good days the views are breathtaking. Bilious clouds are often observed melting down from its rim on to the heath covered plateau. Kibo also shines with a silvery luminance as the glaciers reflect the strong sunlight. At times mist covers the plateau – views come and go quickly. You arrive in time for lunch and then have plenty of time to relax and even go for a short acclimatization walk in the afternoon.
Day 5 – LAVA TOWER
Today you will walk for 3 – 5 hours, enjoying sightings of the typical Kilimanjaro mountain vegetation and reaching a high point of around 4600 meters at our Lava tower camp. The hiking takes us out of the health zone in to alpine desert where only the very toughest tussock grasses can survive. Freezing at night and blazing conditions in the day make this a hard place to exist. For those that are up to it we ascend the Lava Tower in the afternoon. Overnight lava tower (full board).
DAY 6 – KARANGA VALLEY
Today we hike from lava tower to Karanga valley. The trail initially sets of downhill into the Barranco valley before ascending the Barranco wall. In this region there are significant numbers of very nature Senecios (giant groundsels). Lunch is taken on trail before heading on to Karanga valley and up to camp. In the afternoon we have time to relax and for the very active there is a chance to head over to the Karanga valley to look at some spectacular glacial scenery. Karanga camp (full board).
DAY 7 – BARAFU
About 2 hours from Karanga you will come out on the Barafu path (part of the Mweka Train). It is a further 1 – 2 hours to Barafu Hut. The last stage to Barafu hut is quite steep, and as always we advise taking it as easy as possible. Once in camp we have lunch and then the afternoon head out on an afternoon acclimazation hike to around 4700 – 4800metres. Back at camp dinner is served. Views of Mawenzi peak are also superb here. Overnight Barafu camp (full board).
DAY 8 – CRATER
Today we ascend to the roof of Africa! After an early start we ascend up to the rim of the Kibo crater. Its slow going as there is so little oxygen here. However, with patience and determination we arrive at the rim and descend in to the crater for lunch in camp. The afternoon is taken relaxing and acclimatizing. It is a short walk over to the Furtwangler for those that are feeling active! Dinner is taken in the mess tent and then off to bed. Overnight Crater Camp (full board).
DAY 9 – SUMMIT/MILLENIUM
We rise early to try to time out ascent with the rising sun. It takes around 45 minutes to an hour to reach Uhuru peak – our ultimate goal. After sunrise we then head down the mountain down screed slopes and the biggest glacial valley on Kilimanjaro. The train passes back trough Barafu camp where we rest briefly before continuing down to Millennium camp for lunch. In the afternoon we take an easy pace down to Mweka camp, our last camp on Kilimanjaro. Dinner and overnight Mweka camp (full board)
DAY 10 – ARUSHA
The final descent takes you through the lower health section that eventually turns in to rainforest. Your time on Kilimanjaro ends at Mweka gate where your vehicle will be waiting to transfer you back to you evening’s accommodation. You may now relax take a hot shower or even relax by the pool! Enjoy a wonderful celebration dinner!