Hiking Mount Kilimanjaro
Embark on a breathtaking adventure hiking Mount Kilimanjaro in a span of six days following the Rongai route. Challenge yourself with this once-in-a-lifetime experience that will test your limits and leave you rejuvenated. The team is ready and adventure awaits; you can join a group or undertake the hike solo in the company of our climbing crew.
Mount Kilimanjaro stands at 5,895 meters above sea level and is the highest mountain in Africa in addition it’s nicknamed “the roof of Africa”. This mountain is most famous for its three summits which include Shira, Kibo, and Mawenzi. Kilimanjaro is synonymous with Africa and triggers an imagination of how mighty the continent is.
Our hiking adventure is crafted for thrill seekers who are willing to take the challenge of climbing mount Kilimanjaro to the summit while enjoying various breathtaking vistas. Conquering Kilimanjaro is simply being on top of Africa and a venture that should be in your bucket list.
Scaling the mountain’s heights is a feat that takes plenty of perseverance and it’s important to undergo acclimatization before climbing the mountain to reduce the risk of altitude sickness.
The team at Kenya epic safaris is involved in every step of the planning, preparation and packing of our expedition. Behind the scenes we take care of all the nighty grities to ensure a smooth ripple effect for the purpose of a successful mount Kilimanjaro hiking experience.
Mountain guides & porters
Our mountain guides & porters are highly skilled on mountaineering and more importantly they possess years of experience on climbing mount Kilimanjaro. They are highly trained, certified, very knowledgeable and play a key role to a successful climb to the summit. Furthermore you will also enjoy the company of our professional guides & porters as you hike Mount Kilimanjaro.
Accommodation on the mountain varies on the route a climber chooses. There are permanently built mountain huts and designated camping sites. Our guides have selected various hotels for overnight stays close to the base of the mountain to ensure acclimatization and above all avoid mountain sickness.
Meals & Drinks
As part of our team; we have a dedicated professional cook who prepares excellent, delicious and healthy meals. Our cook will ensure a diverse menu accommodating different tastes and appetites. The menu consists of high protein foods, carbs, vegetables and fruits. Equally important we cater for special dietary requirements with advance notice at no extra charge. You are advised to bring your favorite snacks / energy bars.
You only require bottled water on the first and last day however on the mountain we will boil water or add purifying tablets then filter using MSR water filtering pump before refilling in your water bottles every morning.
We organize transportation from your hotel to the park’s entry point. The number of people, their budget and preference dictates the mode of transport we can offer and in addition if you are located in Nairobi, we can pre arrange a shuttle coach to Arusha or Moshi.
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Take a step towards the most ideal trekking adventure by getting in touch with our personnel. We will assist you with information, what to expect and guide you where necessary so as to achieve your travel goals.
Six Das Mount Kilimanjaro Hiking Rongai Route. [Itinerary]
Day One: Arusha – Cave Camp
A representative from Kenya epic safaris will meet you at your hotel or pick you up from the airport and after formalities he or she will hand you over to your assigned mountain guide to facilitate your mount Kilimanjaro hiking adventure.
The guide will brief you on what to expect and check if you have the right gear. Shortly afterwards depart Moshi and you will be driven to Marangu gate for registration and clearance then head to Rongai trail where you will start hiking to Cave camp which is at 2750 meters above sea level.
The small winding path crosses maize fields before entering pine forest, and then climbs gently through a forest. The trail is not at all steep, but is rather a gentle hike through beautiful country. Dinner and overnight stay at the camp.
Day Two: Cave Camp – Kikelewa Camp
After a delicious breakfast hike to Kikelewa camp which is about 3500 meters above sea level. The views start to open up and you begin to feel you’re on a really big mountain. Water is in the obvious stream below the cave, although you might have to wander downhill a way to find some. Dinner and overnight stay at the camp.
Day Three: Kikelewa Camp – Mawenzi Tarn Camp
Todays hike is short but steep climb up grassy slopes which offer superb views of this wilderness area. The vegetation zone ends shortly before you reach Mawenzi Tarn camp spectacularly situated beneath the towering spires of Mawenzi. Mawenzi Tarn camp is at 3850 meters above sea level. Spend the afternoon acclimatizing and exploring the area. Dinner and overnight stay at the camp.
Day Four: Mawenzi Tarn Camp – Kibo Hut
After breakfast begin the days hike ascending on the east side of Kibo crossing the saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo taking 4 to 5 hours to reach Kibo Hut(4700 meters). The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent, which begins around midnight. Dinner and overnight stay at Kibo Camp.
Day Five: Kibo Hut – Uhuru Peak – Horombo Hut
Today you will face the most demanding stretch of the climb. Wake up very early at mid night and have a light breakfast; coffee or tea with some biscuits. Begin the ascend to Uhuru peak which is at 5895 meters above sea level. The first section of the on the Summit trail consists of a rocky path to the Hans Meyer Cave (5150m) and it is also a good resting spot.
The path then zigzags up to Gillman’s point (5 681m), which is located on the crater rim. This section is very steep with a lot of stone scree, requiring a great physical and mental effort. Probably the most demanding section of the entire route.
From Gillmans Point you will encounter snow all the way up to Uhuru peak (5895m), the highest point in Africa. After a photo / selfie session descend to kibo hut (3 hours) and after a short rest descend further to Horombo hut (3 hours) for dinner and overnight stay.
Day Six: Horombo Hut – Arusha
The home stretch is here, after a scrumtious breakfast descend to Marangu gate via Mandara hut where you will sign out and be awarded with a summit certificate.
Those climbers who reach Gillman’s Point (5685m) are issued with green certificates and those who reach Uhuru Peak (5895m), receive gold certificates.
Transfer to Arusha and check in to your hotel where your Mount Kilimanjaro hiking expedition ends. A hot shower and rest is most rewarding after conquring Kilimanjaro.
End of services.
- Transport to and from the base of the mountain.
- Park entrance fees.
- Accommodation in mountain huts / camps.
- Meals as described in the itinerary.
- Services of a mountain guide, porters & a cook.
- Rescue fee.
- H.F Radio communication for backup in case of an emergency.
- All government taxes.
- International airfares.
- Climbing equipments.
- All expenditure of personal nature such as telephone calls, hard drinks, soft drinks and laundry.
- Travel Insurance.
Mt. Kilimanjaro Hiking Route
Rongai Route is the only route that appraoches Kilimanjaro from the north, near the Kenyan border. Rongai’s ascent profile is very similar to that of Marangu. It is probably the only route where seeing wildlife in the first days is possible. Rongai is beautiful because it travels through an unspoiled rain forest and remote wilderness area.
However, it is not as scenically varied as Machame and Shira. Rongai is ideal for those who are not confident in their ability to hike over steeper paths, those who want to avoid traffic, and those who want to enjoy a quieter hike. It is also preferred when climbing during the rainy season because the north side of the mountain receives less precipitation.
Mount Kilimanjaro Topography
Mount Kilimanjaro vegetation zones are characterized by tropical forest, open moorland, alpine desert and finally rocks and ice fields. From 1850 m – 2800m we have the montane forest. The area is usually damp or wet due to rainfall. Notably there isn’t a bamboo forest on Mount Kilimanjaro. From 3200m the montane forest paves way for moorland which extends beyond the heath.
The nights in this zone are cold while the days are sunny and the air thins. Giant groundsels and lobelia thrive in this zone. The moorland paves way to the Alpine desert at 4000m, this zone is characterized by minimal vegetation, the sand is loose and the weather is intense. Above 5000m there isn’t any vegetation and all you can find are rocks and ice fields.
Mount Kilimanjaro is only 3 degrees south of the equator and is influenced by the passage of the Inter-tropical convergence zone. There are two rainy seasons. The long rains occur from March to the end of May and the short rains occur from October to November, but can extend into December.
Apart from these factors, climbing Kilimanjaro remains fairly constant throughout the year. The maximum rainfall occurs in the forest belt, where it can reach up to 2000 mm per year. At the summit, which can be described as a “high altitude desert”, the rainfall is less than 100 mm per year. Rain and snow at higher altitudes can however be encountered at any time of the year.
The average temperatures at the foot of the mountain are 25° – 30° C and on the summit, it can range from minus 10° – 20° C. At 3000m the day temperatures range from 5° – 15° C, and at night frost is normally encountered; clearly a large variation, making it more interesting to summit the mountain.
Mount Kilimanjaro National Park
Africa’s highest mountain and the world’s highest free standing mountain, Mt Kilimanjaro which is also referred to as “The Roof of Africa” stands at 5895 meters above sea level. The mountain is a dormant volcano and has three outstanding peaks namely shira at 3962m, Mawenzi at 5149m and kibo at 5895m. Uhuru Peak is the highest summit on Kibo’s crater rim.
Kilimanjaro is a giant stratovolcano that began forming a million years ago, when lava spilled from the Rift Valley zone. Two of its three peaks, Mawenzi and Shira, are extinct while Kibo (the highest peak) is dormant and could erupt again.
Mt. Kilimanjaro History
The last major eruption has been dated to 360,000 years ago, while the most recent activity was recorded just 200 years ago. Although it is dormant, Kibo has fumaroles that emit gas in the crater. Scientists concluded in 2003 that molten magma is just 400 m (1,310 ft) below the summit crater. Several collapses and landslides have occurred on Kibo in the past, one creating the area known as the Western Breach.
Kilimanjaro was first climbed in 1889 by German geographer Hans Meyer and Austrian mountain climber Ludwig Purtscheller. There are six routes that one can use to climb the mountain namely Marangu, Mweka, Umbwe, Machame, Shira and Rongai. Only four of these routes are commonly used.
Climbing / Hiking Gear & Equipments
- Walking trousers synthetic material is recommended.
- Long Underwear Tops – Light synthetic.
- Women’s sports bras Synthetic material.
- Light fleece with a warm layer.
- Long sleeve polypropylene shirt.
- Medium weight polypropylene/thermal leggings.
- Wind – waterproof – breathable jacket.
- Gloves- light weight.
- Warm Hat or Balaclava Sun hat – wool or synthetic.
- Face mask or neck gaiter.
- Medium or large duffel bag to pack your town clothes with a lock, this can be left at the hotel or we can store them for you.
- Medium duffel bag to pack your hiking stuff with a lock. [ The porter will carry this bag. ]
- A day pack to store your essentials with a capacity of about 25 to 35 liters is recommended.
- Walking/hiking shoes – comfortable and waterproof.
- Socks – Fitting socks one thick and one thin pair.
- Head lamp with extra batteries & bulbs.
- Adjustable trekking poles.
- Sleeping bag – Rated 3 – season.
- Gaiters – make sure they will fit over boots.
- Purification tablets or filters – water for drinking is fetched from mountain streams.
- Water bottle preferably one litre.
- Female or male hygiene supplies.
- Hand wipes and camp towel.
- Personal toiletry kit.
- Lip balm.
- Sun glasses.
- Camera & extra battries.
- Passport, flight ticket, travel insurance, visa, cash & credit card.
- Basecamp entertainment i.e books, board games, playing cards or ipod.
- Favorite Snacks, candy bars or protein bars.
- Do not Litter the park.
- Do not feed the animals, i.e. monkeys or baboons.
- Do give the animals the right of way and do not disturb wildlife.
- Do not take any plant or animals remains, dead or alive.
- Do not start fires or throw cigarettes in the parks/reserve.
- Do stay in your vehicle except at designated viewing points.
- Do not shout, laugh loudly, honk or play loud music as this will keep away the animals.
- Do not provoke any animals; it’s dangerous.
Kindly don’t forget your patience, have an open mind, positive and relaxed attitude as things in this part of the world may be very different to what you are accustomed to but in the end the experience is price less and will always be memorable.