The eruptions resulted to numerous distinct zones, each with their own unique flora and fauna that transform Kilimanjaro from the predictable up and down climb into one of the great trekking experiences on the planet.
The routes to reach the top of mount Kilimanjaro:
There are five recognized ascent routes on Kilimanjaro each with their own individual features and attractions.
* Marangu Route: It is the most regular used route. An estimated 65% of climbers approach the Mountain from this route. This is also known as Coca Cola Route. This follows easy angled path through magnificent Rain Forest to the Mandara Hut (2743m). This is approximately 3 hours walk from the gate.
* Machame Route: The Machame Route by comparison is the Whisky Route and is considered one of the Wilderness Routes, the choice of the more seasoned trekkers because of the camping aspects of the climb and the more remote nature of the trails.
It approaches the mountain from the Western side, climbing through rain forest to get to Shira Plateau before following a three days circuit of the Kibo Massif, the final push to Stella Point and on to Uhuru Peak. Machame route has beautiful scenery and it can be done in 6 days. You don’t need any technical climb through this route.
* Umbwe Route: Mt. Kilimanjaro by the Umbwe Route. This is the hardest but most spectacular and direct way to reach Uhuru Peak. Extra days can be added to our itinerary to explore or relax along the route or to camp in the Karanga River Valley. Accommodation on the Mountain is in tents; you will need a sleeping bag and mat. The porters will pitch the tents for you.
* Lemosho Route: This is the unspoilt, remote and little used at the same time beautiful way up to the Shira Plateau. It can either be used to gain the Western Breach route or followed by the Kibo South Circuit to ascend by the easier Barafu Route. In the very first day of this route you will be accompanied by the armed ranger for the forest around Lemosho Glades have buffaloes, elephants and other big games animals.
This is a very long route and it may end up after 8. If the group is strong enough they can do 6 days through this route by omitting campsites at Shira 1 and Karanga Valley. It is also possible to go up the Western Breach and complete the trip in 5 days, but this is a very tough option.
* Shira Route (8 days 7 nights): Shira route lies in the most Western side of Kilimanjaro. It is a difficult and less used route to climb Kilimanjaro. However if you choose Shira it will take you up to seven nights and eight days thus less popular for budget operators.
Thousands of tourists climb Mount Kilimanjaro yearly, several of them at age of 65 years. If you are only healthy, with normal condition and without fever or problem with breathing, you have very good chance to reach the top.
You should bring:
- wind tight anorak
- warm trousers
- thermo underwears
- warm socks and water tight boots
- wool hat
- sun glasses
- winter sleeping bag (comfortable at –15)
- water bottles
- sun cream
- first aid box
- torch with extra batteries
- a stick for support
- toilet papers
- rain jacket and rack sack.
You can also hire these equipments upon your arrival. You shall get full information of an experienced guide before beginning to climb.
Depending on the climate, it is necessary to equip yourself with easy clothes for warm temperature e.g. shorts, clothes for exercises.
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