Day 1: Transfer Arusha to Marangu Gate, equipment checking with your chief guide, and start your climb to Mandara Hut. The balance of the day will be free to rest and recheck your equipment. Dinner and overnight – Mandara Hut at 8860 feet (2700 m).
Day 2: Early breakfast. Start your climb to Horombo Hut. It takes a good 5-6 hours to cover the 10 mile journey and we often get our first views of the Kibo summit. The trail is strenuous and slippery and takes us clear of the forests and out onto the moor land. It passes beneath the rocky southern face of Mawenzi-one of the three volcanoes that make up Kilimanjaro. Dinner and overnight Horombo Hut 12,200 feet (3720 m).
Day 3: Hike up to Kibo Hut at almost 15,500 feet. Although somewhat shorter in distance, this usually takes 7 hours because it is steeper and the altitude slows everyone down. The route passes directly up onto the Saddle, a wide, flat area with the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi looming overhead. Views from here can be fantastic. The last part of the trail passes across the arid plateau before ascending to Kibo Hut. We have a light dinner and turn in early for some sleep. Dinner and overnight Kibo Hut at 15,460 feet (4703 m).
Day 4: We are awakened about midnight, and have tea and cookies. The guides try to have everyone ready to climb as quickly as possible, leaving between 1:00-1:30 am starting off, the trail swings back and forth up a steep screed slope. The summit climb is an event you will not forget, with the night sky full of stars. Most climbers arrive at Gillman's Point, elevation 18,635 feet, in time to enjoy sunrise around 6:30 am. The views from the top looking down on the plains of Africa make it all worthwhile. Some climbers decide to summit Uhuru Peak (19,457 feet), an additional 3 hour round-trip. The descent from Gillman's Point is fairly rapid, taking about 2 hours. Most climbers take a short rest at Kibo Hut before descending to Horombo Hut for the night, arriving in the late afternoon. Dinner and overnight – Horombo Hut at 12,200 feet (3720 m).
Day 5: Hike back to the Marangu gate and the park's headquarters. With a picnic lunch, transfer to Arusha.
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Africa Tanzania Outdoor: Mountain Ranger Mountain/Rock Climbing
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