The Beginner’s Guide to Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

The Beginner’s Guide to Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

March 10, 2019 Off By buyscales

There are several reasons why Kilimanjaro is scribbled onto the container set of most adventurer’s minds. The obvious of these causes may include the very fact that is the highest free-standing mountain in the planet.

It may be due to the fact Kilimanjaro is the Photography equipment jewel inside the seven meetings crown (the highest peak in each continent). An individual may want to encounter a mountain that offers so many varying ecosystems on it, from jungle and alpine desert specific zones all the way up to arctic. Or this could just be the allure of an African adventure, like those study in John Henry Patterson’s diaries.


But typically the real beauty of Kili lies in the subtleties. They begin before an individual even hit the foundation of the mountain, arriving into the rural parts of Tanzania. Here an individual become acquainted with typically the infectious smiles of typically the Swahili people, something a person carry with you regarding a long time. Their particular positive attitude and relaxed pace only serve to be able to enrich the journey that will awaits you. The term ‘safari’ means a journey in Swahili, and in a literal and metaphorical perception, a journey is just what Kilimanjaro provides.

Tanzania is a nation that offers enjoyed relative peace, in comparison to other neighbouring nations around the world. The people credit this particular peace to their very first president, Julius Kambarage Nyerere whom they affectionately relate to as “Baba California Taifa” (the father regarding the nation).

From typically the campfire songs and heart and soul polishing laughs to the gentle evening farewells regarding “lala salama” (sleep peacefully).

Under the watch regarding the mountain, you will certainly fall in love with Tanzania, before a person even begin your climb.

Climbing Kilimanjaro

Then when is typically the best time to move?
Kilimanjaro is 300km to the south in the equator and Tanzania is iconically tropical, together with wet and dry periodic variations laid over a hot muggy climate.

Tanzania experiences two rainy periods, a short one in Nov to mid-December as well as the extended rainy season from March to May. The routes on Kili can be damp and muddy underfoot in the course of these seasons. If an individual give a flying fuck about monsoonal weather plus more about solitude then you may prefer these kinds of times to climb and there is far fewer people.

Come july 1st to October is peak time on the mountain, due to it coinciding along with the European summer getaways. It’s dry and much cooler than the Christmas months but prepare for some cold nights.

If you want to enjoy related weather but with less people then June is surely an optimal time for an individual as it’s just before the holidays, but nevertheless top climbing season.

December in order to February are much more comfortable and have good visibility. The short rainy time of year can run into January though so that it may nevertheless be wet. These months also coincide with all the Holiday holidays so it could get busy.

What’s the most effective route for you?
The particular route you decide on will mainly depend on your height of experience, fitness, budget, period of time since well as your personal wants.

The quantity of trekking days and nights are adjustable on the majority of routes as well since as well as comfort options about the hike.

You could skip acclimatisation days plus make very quick ascents on Kilimanjaro, however, this particular is not advised because altitude sickness is not a joke on the mountain. A person pay for experience in addition to this means doing things properly. Decent guides may ensure proper equipment, encounter in weather and trekking conditions, good food, in addition to a good time framework to allow for rest and realignment.

You will find 7 routes in order to choose from…

Marangu Way
A view of elaborate to come

Marangu is recognized as the Coca-Cola route. It is considered to be the very touristy route in addition to draws its name from your small huts you rest in that sell bottled cola. It is typically the only route that gives resting huts. The track is usually a gradual climb that most consider to be typically the easiest way to go up the mountain.

Machame Path

Machame is recognized as typically the whiskey route. This is a tougher climb than Marangu in addition to also quite busy. The road offers spectacular views when you move through the different ecosystems in the mountain. This walk has good options for acclimatisation because it provides higher altitude days that will settle into lower arête camps at night.

Rongai Route
Kilimanjaro – Rongai Route

Rongai is likewise considered a milder path. The road approaches the summit through the remote north together with less rainfall, meaning an individual are very likely to stay dry out. It takes longer in order to reach the starting gate than the other journeys which make it more costly, but is also more separated with higher chances of observing wildlife.

Shira Route
Mt Kilimanjaro reflection

Shira starts at 3, six hundred metres. This is greater than the other entrances and is a massive element in altitude sickness, especially if you drive upward to the gate and do not spend the time walking and acclimatising. It joins the Lemosho route on day 2, before joining Machame on the 3rd day.

Lemosho Route
Lemosho Route, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

Lemosho was created as an alternative to Shira. It has a lower gate that allows outdoorsmen additional time to acclimatise to be able to the altitude. It’s a wilder route in addition to options to see wildlife within the trek, including tembo (elephant). It also joins upwards with Machame on the particular 3rd day.

Northern Signal
Pofu Camp – Upper Circuit

The Northern Circuit is a newer way than the others. It begins along the Lemosho way, crosses the Shira level of skill and then circles about the northern slopes as opposed to the busier eastern approach.

Umbwe Route
Umbwe Route Kilimanjaro

Umbwe is considered the particular shortest, steepest and many difficult route by many people. Typically the first day involves several very steep hiking. Many operators join the Machame route around the second night at Barranco camp.

Just how do you get presently there?
Kilimanjaro treks typically established off in one of 2 towns. Arusha lies in order to the south west in the mountain and Moshi straight south. There is therefore much to learn around these types of areas, from giant waterfalls, monkey forests and scenic waterholes… not forgetting some of the most amazing and wildlife-rich national parks within the world!

You may fly into Kilimanjaro Global Airport (JRO) and obtain to both towns quickly. If you are approaching from Dar es Salaam then there are several buses, since well as flights from the paradise island of Zanzibar and neighbouring Kenya.

Many trekkers spend a few nights in town organizing for the trek and acquaint themselves with the area, but beware in doing this since it may make a person wish you’d booked a new longer trip so you can stick around.

What clothing and equipment do you want?
Although Kilimanjaro is regarded a walk up huge batch, don’t be fooled into thinking it’s easy. Planning is key, especially in case you are on a new shorter time frame or harder route. Porters could carry the food in addition to cooking implements as properly as your sleep method. Most trekking companies possess plenty of spare equipment if you are inside need, but since always, tried out and tested personal products is priceless. Pack while you would for any extended multi-day treks at arête, such as the following:

Good water-proof and breathable hiking shoes or boots and many of thick socks. These should be tried out and tested before the particular hike begins as obtaining out they may be unsuitable plus uncomfortable two days in is usually the last thing a person want.
A pack and hydration sack – one big enough to secure your personal items (camera, head flashlight, clothes and the foods you are given for the day).
Thermals regarding the cold nights (and some days) hiking.
Waterproof/windproof pants and shell, also if you are walking in the dryer periods – the weather can be cold very quickly.
Quick-dry hiking clothes and pants. Zip-off trousers are excellent for the first plus last days of typically the treks.
Fleece/down jackets usually are needed for when the particular temperature drops. It’s effortless to forget these products whilst sweating at the particular base in the mountain inside a tropical country. The summit can be as cold as -30 degrees Celsius.
Beanie and mitts.
Sunscreen and sunglasses is usually one many people forget. You can be very revealed some days and an individual don’t want to be burnt for your moment on the mountain.
The warm change of clothes for the nights is a new great idea. They help you stay cosy and break up the sum of time you require to spend in your current trekking clothes.
As together with any trek, bring simple toiletries like toothbrush in addition to toothpaste, but not a lot that you struggle to be able to carry the weight you have packed.
A head flashlight for the evenings in addition to summit night.
A little medical kit with essentials like plasters and next skin can be extremely handy. Blisters will be the previous thing you need!