The Marangu route is used by almost 50% of all climbers and has comfortable mountain huts with solar power lighting. Although the trail is crowded, the views are beautiful and each day of walking progresses through a different climate zone, adding considerably to the interest of the trek. The real highlight is the walk from Gillman’s point along the crater rim to Uhuru Peak, passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area. The views on a clear morning are absolutely magnificent – The Rift Valley, Mt. Meru, and the Masai Steppes stand out from the plains almost three vertical miles below as the sun rises behind Mawenzi. We also add an extra day to the standard five day itinerary to ensure maximum acclimatisation and give ourselves the best possible chance of enjoying the magnificent scenery. National Park statistics indicate that the chance of reaching the summit increases by at least 20% if an extra day is spent acclimatising. The extra day is used to make an interesting excursion towards the jagged peaks of Mawenzi.
Arriving at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) and then transfer to moshi for overnight. We will gather in the evening for a pre-climb briefing and an equipment check. We will also confirm you have the appropriate mandatory medical coverage and travel insurance.
After breakfast at the lodge transfer straight to the gate and after completing the entrance formalities at the National Park gate (1,830 m.) we climb up through attractive and unspoilt forest to reach the clearing containing Mandara Hut (2,700 m.). The volcanic remains of Maundi Crater are nearby, and make a good afternoon excursion. An alternative is to simply rest and enjoy the beautiful forest around you. [3-5 hours walking]
The first part of the walk is a steep ascent through forest, but the path soon opens out into grassy moorland and, in clear weather, there are good views of Kibo and Mawenzi peaks. We climb steadily through the moorland zone, containing giant heather and occasional stands of groundsel, to eventually reach the hut complex at Horombo (3,720 m.). Sunrises and sunsets here are often very spectacular, the site is close to the glaciated dome of Kibo, and there is a real sense of being above the clouds. [4-6 hours walking]
The day is spent making an excursion towards the base of the seldom visited Mawenzi peak, which affords excellent views of Kibo and our route up to the crater rim at Gillman’s Point. Mawenzi is an older volcano than Kibo and so has eroded further into a very jagged ridge with dramatic pinnacles. The landscape feels more alpine and there is a greater sense of peacefulness than in other locations on this route. We spend a second night at Horombo Hut to further improve our acclimatisation. [4-5 hours walking]
We climb very gradually towards the lunar desert of the Saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo. The terrain changes to scree and there is a palpable sense of high altitude wilderness. We usually reach Kibo Hut (4,700 m.) at the bottom of the crater wall by midday and the afternoon is free (to contemplate the summit ascent!!). The remainder of the day is spent resting and eating in preparation for the final climb before a very early night! [4-6 hours]
We will start our ascent by torchlight at about 1 a.m. so that we can be up at Gillman’s Point by sunrise. The initial climb is steep over loose volcanic scree, but there are some well-graded zig-zags and a slow but steady pace should reach Gillman’s (5,685 m.) in five or six hours. We will rest there and spend some time taking in the sunrise over Mawenzi. Those who are still feeling strong can make the three hour round trip from here along the crater rim to Uhuru Peak (5,896 m.), passing close to the spectacular glaciers that still occupy most of the summit area. The descent is surprisingly fast and we return to Horombo for the night. [11-15 hours walking]
We retrace our steps with a pleasant moorland walk to Mandara and then a lovely forest walk to the National Park gates. [5-6 hours walking]
Transfer back to Kilimanjaro airport and fly back home or join our safari. Kilimanjaro trekking for Charity Challenge? The above climb can be undertaken for your own personal charity or group charity. Kilimanjaro trekking Includes:
• Accomodations the night before and the night after the trek two nights in moshi
• Quality, waterproof, four-season private mountain sleeping tents:
• Professional, experienced, mountain guides:
• All Park fees
•Entry fees, Rescue fees, camping fees or hut fees.
• All meals while on the Mountain
• Arrival and Departure transfers
• Guides, Porters, cook salaries and park fees
• Quality Mess tents with table and chairs:
• Transport to the gate on starting day and after the trek
• Clean, purified drinking water:
• Fair and ethical treatment of porters:
• Kilimanjaro National park certificate for successful summit attempt
• Sleeping Mattress:
• Tanzania Visa: $50 per person on arrival
• Personal Expenses (e.g. laundry, telephone, beverages, etc.)
• Meals not listed above
• Optional Tours (short safari before or after your climb, marangu village day tour, day trip to lake challa, etc)
• Tips and any items of personal nature.