Kilimanjaro by Ruta Machame
This is the most popular route on the mountain. There are no huts which makes having a good sleeping bag a must. Often referred as most beautiful route on the mountain, the sixth day allows climber to see the whole southern face of Kibo.
Machame route is one of the most beautiful and wild. The trail gets along the Kilimanjaro slopes starting from the South-West part of the volcano underneath the altitude glaciers. With the global warming and the decrease of rain falls, glaciers are rapidly melting and retreating.
Elevation: 5.895 m/ 19.340 ft
Range / Region: East Africa Mountains
Sub Range: Northeast Tanzania
Difficulty: Trek – Walk up
Route: Machame through Moshi o Arusha, Tanzania
Nearest airport: Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), Tanzania
Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, located in northeastern Tanzania, near the Kenyan border. Kilimanjaro is an extinct volcano and is one of the largest in the world. There are 15,000 feet towers above the surrounding arid plains, and 2.5 square miles of its surface are over 18,500 feet.
Beneath its ice dome, the snow extends down long gullies that have been eroded in the mountain sides. The ice cap, which was formed about 11,000 years ago, has declined significantly in recent years, as much as 80% in the last century. Scientists say they were in the first half of this century.
There is a crater at Kilimajaro’s, known as Kibo, measures 1.5 miles. The highest point, steep edge of Kibo is Uhuru, the highest peak in Africa. Nestled in the center of Kibo is a smaller, deep in sulfurous ashes crater 600 feet. Mawenzi is the third highest peak in Africa (Mount Kenya is second at 17.057 feet).
Mawenzi is seven miles east of Kibo, separated by a long depression. It is an older cone, jagged from erosion, with pure faces on all sides. Despite its lower elevation, ascent of Mawenzi is more difficult, and no approach is possible without rock climbing and ice climbing skills and snow.
Machame Gate to Machame Camp
1.830 m to 3.100 m / 6.000 ft to 10.200 ft
Distance: 18 km, Time: 5-7 hs
Habitat: Forest / Jungle
The drive from Moshi to the Mount Kilimanjaro National Park Gate takes about 50 minutes. The journey passes through the village of Machame which is located on the lower slopes of the mountain. We now leave the park gate and walk through the rain forest on a winding trail up a ridge. Lower down, the trail can be muddy and slippery. Gaiters and trekking poles are a good idea here. We continue a short distance until we reach the Machame Camp.
Machame Camp to Shira Camp
3.100 m to 3.840 m – 10.200 ft to 12.600 ft
Distance: 9 km, Time: 4-6 hs
After breakfast, we leave the glades of the rain forest and continue on an ascending path, crossing the little valley walking along a steep rocky ridge, covered with heather, until the ridge ends. The route now turns west onto a river gorge. Time for rest, dinner, and overnight at the Shira campsite.
Shira Camp to Lava Tower to Barranco Camp
3.840 m to 4.630 m to 3.860 m – 12.600 ft to 15.190 ft to 12.700 ft
Distance: 15 km, Time: 5-7 hs
From the Shira Plateau, we continue to the east up a ridge, passing the junction towards the peak of Kibo. As we continue, our direction changes to the South East towards the Lava Tower, called the “Shark’s Tooth.” Shortly after the tower, we come to the second junction which brings us up to the Arrow Glacier at an altitude of 4876m / 15,997 ft. We now continue down to the Barranco Hut at an altitude of 3860m / 12,664 ft. Here we rest, enjoy dinner, and overnight. Although you end the day at the same elevation as when you started, this day is very important for acclimatization and will help your body prepare for summit day.
From Barranco camp to Karanga Camp
3.860 m to 4.200 m – 12,700 ft to 13,779 ft
Distance: 9 km, Time: 5 hs
Habitat: Alpine desert
After breakfast, we leave Barranco and continue on a steep ridge up the Barranco Wall, through the Karanga Valley (at 4200m / 13,779 ft), and the junction which connects with the Mweka Trail, (Route of escape in case of emergency). Here we make camp, rest, enjoy dinner.
Karanga Camp to Barafu camp
4.200 m to 4.600 m – 13,779 ft to 15,100 ft
Distance: 4 km, Time: 3 hs
Habitat: Alpine desert
After breakfast, we leave Karanga and continue up to the Barafu Hut. You have completed the South Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. Here we make camp, rest, enjoy dinner, and prepare for the summit day. The two peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo are to be seen from this position.
Barafu Camp to Summit and back Barafu Camp
4.600 m to 5.895 m – 15,100 ft to 19.300 ft
Distance: 7 km / Time: 6-8 hs
Habitat: Stone screen and ice-capped summit
Very early in the morning (midnight to 2am), we continue our way to the summit. You head in a northwesterly direction and ascend through heavy screen towards Stella Point on the crater rim. This is the most mentally and physically challenging portion of the trek. At Stella Point (5685m / 18,652 ft), you will stop for a short rest and will be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see (weather permitting). From Stella Point, you will encounter snow all they way on your 2-hour ascent to the summit. At Uhuru Peak, we have reached the highest point on Mount Kilimanjaro and the continent of Africa. Faster hikers will see the sunrise from the summit. It can be very cold at night at these elevations, but it will be quite warm by the end of the hiking day. You will want clothing for both extremes with you. From the summit, we now make our descent continuing straight down to the Mweka Hut camp site, stopping at Barafu camp.
Barafu Camp to Mweka camp and continue to Mweka gate – Moshi or Arusha
4.600 m to 3.100 m to 850 m – 15,100 ft to 10,100 ft to 2,800 ft
Distance: 25 km, Time: 8-9 hs
Habitat: Forest / Jungle
After breakfast, we continue the descent down to Mweka Camp is situated in the upper forest and mist or rain can be expected. Beer and soda may be available for purchase at the Mweka Hut — the only location on this route. We continue to the Mweka Park Gate to receive the summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. Gaiters and trekking poles will help. Shorts and t-shirts will probably be plenty to wear (keep rain gear and warmer clothing handy). From the gate, continue another hour to Mweka Village. A vehicle will meet at Mweka village to drive back to hotel in Moshi or Arusha.
Return or free day any other activity not included in the program. End of services.
NOTA El itinerario propuesto está sujeto a cambios debido a contingencias climáticas o de fuerza mayor que pongan en riesgo la seguridad del grupo. Los guías se reservan la autoridad de variar los programas de acuerdo a su criterio. Cualquier cambio que se realice está pensado en maximizar la seguridad del grupo, de acuerdo al conocimiento y la experiencia del guía.
- All park and camps fees.
- All meals during the approach, at Base Camp and high altitude camps. A rich diet, complete and balanced. All meals are prepared daily by the chef who accompanied the expedition. All three meals are provided: breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- Mountain Guide: Experienced, professionals, qualified to operate within Kilimanjaro National Park.
- Porter service to carry equipment and cook.
- Water for the entire trip in the mountains.
- Transport in-out Airport/Hotel in Moshi by private vehicles. Only for groups, not individual.
- Transport in-out from the city of Moshi to the Kilimanjaro park entrance.
- Three (3) nights de accommodation at a three-star hotel in Moshi or Arusha (double basis, breakfast included). We have selected an excellent hotel for the accommodation when you arrive to the city and for the last night at the end of the expedition.
- The local company will provide the best mountain tents and kitchenware, like spoons, bowls, cups, fork, plates, etc.
Not included services
- Tips for guides, porters, cook (Suggested between USD 150 to 200 per pax) The tip is distributed according each role. For 6 pax groups the local company assign 3 local guides, 1 cook, 1 serving assistant, 18 porters (20 kg each)
- Personal Equipment
- Personal Items
- Airline tickets and taxes, excess baggage.
- Meals and drinks the days of stay in the city of Moshi or Arusha at days 1, 2 and 9 of the expedition.
- All other services not mentioned as Services included.
Please contact your doctor about the following. Bear in mind that some of these vaccines need to be applied with some anticipation to take effect.
- Yellow Fever (compulsory)
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Typhoid fever
- MMR (measles, mumps, rubella)
- Meningococcal meningitis (Africa and Asia)
Scheduled departure date:
From September 26th to October 5th 2017
Guide: Heber Orona
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