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8 Days Mt. Kilimanjaro (Lemosho Route)

Considered the most scenic trail on Mt Kilimanjaro, the Lemosho route boasts panoramic vistas on various sides of the mountain. The route approaches Mt Kilimanjaro from the west, beginning with a long drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate. Afterward, the first two days are spent trekking through the rainforest to Shira Ridge. In a pleasant, relatively flat hike, the Lemosho plateau crosses the entire Shira Plateau from west to east. The crowds are usually low until the route joins the Machame route near Lava Tower, then from there, the route transverses underneath Mt Kilimanjaro’s southern ice field on a path known as the Southern Circuit before summiting from Barafu. The descent is made through the Mweka route. Here’s what to expect on your 8-day climb.

Inclusion

  • 2 transfers from Arusha to the park gate -return
  • 3 meals per day while trekking - Vegetarian/Non-Vegetarian
  • Accommodation in camps/huts while trekking
  • All park entrance fees and government levies
  • English speaking mountain Guide and assistant guides
  • Porters - a maximum of 3 per client
  • Mess Tent, tables, chairs, Sleeping tents, Rescue fees

Exclusion

  • Two return transfers from airport/city to Arusha
  • First and Last night accommodation at the hotel
  • Gloves, Sunglasses, Sleeping bag, Hats, Rain suits, Warm Jacket, Heavy boots, Scarf's, Rain Trousers
  • Emergency Oxygen, Ox meters, First Aid Kit with Diamox and other related medicines, - Walking Poles
  • Extras at the lodges i.e. drinks, telephone, laundry, etc.
  • Visa and Travel Insurance
  • Tips to mountain crew (highly recommended)

Tour Highlights

8 Days / 7 Nights

  • 1
    Mti Mkubwa Camp
  • 2
    Shira Camp 1
  • 3
    Shira Camp 2
  • 4
    Barranco Camp
  • 5
    Karanga Camp
  • 6
    Uhuru Peak
  • 7
    Mweka Camp

DAY BY DAY

Day 1
Moshi/Arusha - Mti Mkubwa Camp
Drive from Moshi or Arusha to the Londorossi Park Gate. From here follow a forest track in a 4WD vehicle for about 11 km/7 mi (45 minutes) to Lemosho Glades and a possible campsite. From the Glades, walk for 3 hours along beautiful forest trails to the Mti Mkubwa (big tree) campsite.
 
  • Elevation (m): 915 m/1387 to 2,250 m to 2,000 m to 2,750 m
  • Distance: 18 km
  • Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
  • Habitation: Montane Forest
Accommodation:
Mti Mkubwa Camp/div>
Day 2
Mkubwa Camp to Shira Camp 1
The trail gradually steepens, enters the giant heather moorland zone, then crosses the Shira Ridge at 3,600 m/11,810 ft and drops gently to Shira Camp 1 located by a stream on the Shira Plateau.
 
  • Elevation (m): 2,750 m to 3,500 m
  • Distance: 12 km
  • Hiking Time: 5 hours
  • Habitation: Semi-Desert
Accommodation recommendations:
Shira Camp 1
Day 3
Shira Camp 1 to Shira Camp 2
A gentle walk across the plateau leads to Shira Camp 2 on moorland meadows by a stream. A variety of walks are available on the plateau making this an excellent acclimatization day.
 
  • Elevation (m): 3,500 m to 3,840 m
  • Distance: 6 km
  • Hiking Time: 6 hours
  • Habitation: Alpine Desert
Accommodation:
Shira Camp 2
Day 4
Shira Camp 2 to Lava Tower to Barranco Camp
After breakfast, you will hike east up a steepening path above the highest vegetation toward Kilimanjaro’s looming mass. After several hours, you walk through a rocky landscape to reach the prominent landmark called Lava Tower at 4,630 m/15,190 ft. This chunky remnant of Kilimanjaro’s earlier volcanic activity is several hundred feet high, and the trail passes right below it. For extra credit, the sure-footed can scramble to the top of the tower.
 
After a lunch stop near Lava Tower, descend for 2 hours below the lower cliffs of the Western Breach and Breach Wall to Barranco Camp at 3,950 m/12,960 ft. There are numerous photo opportunities on this hike, especially if the walls are festooned with ice. Barranco Camp is in a valley below the Breach and Great Barranco Walls, which should provide you with a memorable sunset while you wait for your dinner. On this day, be careful to notice any signs of altitude sickness.
 
  • Elevation (m): 3,840 m to 4,630 m to 3,950 m
  • Distance: 15 km
  • Hiking Time: 7 hours
  • Habitation: Semi Desert
Accommodation:
Barranco Camp
Day 5
Barranco Camp to Karanga Camp
After breakfast, we continue up a steep ridge to the great Barranco Wall, then you climb this imposing obstacle, which turns out to be easier than it looks. Topping out just below the Heim Glacier, you can now appreciate just how beautiful Kilimanjaro really is. With Kibo’s glaciers soaring overhead, you descend into the lush Karanga Valley to the Karanga Valley campsite. From the camp, you can look east and see the jagged peaks of Mawenzi jutting into the African sky.
 
After a hot lunch in camp, your afternoon is at leisure for resting or exploring. After two long days, this short day is very important for your acclimatization, since your summit push is about to start.
 
  • Elevation (m): 3,900 m to 4,200 m
  • Distance: 7 km
  • Hiking Time: 4 hours
  • Habitation: Alpine Desert
Accommodation:
Karanga Camp
Day 6
Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp
In the morning, you hike east over intervening ridges and valleys to join the Mweka Route, which will be your descent route. Turn left toward the mountain and hike up the ridge through a sparse landscape for another hour to the Barafu Hut where you will receive a hot lunch. The last water on the route is in the Karanga Valley; there is no water at Barafu Camp, even though Barafu is the Swahili word for “ice.”
 
The famous snows of Kilimanjaro are far above Barafu Camp near the summit of the mountain. Your tent will be pitched on a narrow, stony, wind-swept ridge, so make sure that you familiarize yourself with the terrain before dark to avoid any accidents. Prepare your equipment and warm clothing for your summit climb, and drink a lot of fluids. After an early dinner, go to bed for a few hours of precious sleep.
 
  • Elevation (m): 4,200 m to 4,550 m
  • Distance: 23 km
  • Hiking Time: 8 hours
  • Habitation: Alpine Desert
Accommodation:
Barafu Camp
Day 7
Summit Day! Barafu Camp to Uhuru Peak to Mweka Camp
You will rise around 11:30 PM, and after some steaming tea and biscuits, you shuffle off into the night. Your 6-hour climb northwest up through heavy scree between the Rebmann and Ratzel glaciers to Stella Point on the crater rim is the most challenging part of the route for most climbers. At Stella Point (5,685 m/18,650 ft) you stop for a short rest and a chance to see a supremely sanguine sunrise. At Stella Point, you join the top part of the Marangu Route but do not stop here too long, as it will be extremely difficult to start again due to cold and fatigue. Depending on the season and recent storms, you may encounter snow on your remaining hike along the rim to Uhuru Peak.
 
On the summit, you can enjoy your accomplishment and know that you are creating a day that you will remember for the rest of your life. After your 3-hour descent from the summit back to Barafu Camp, you will have a well-earned but short rest, collect your gear, and hike down a rock and scree path into the moorland and eventually into the forest to Mweka Camp (3,100 m/10,170 ft). This camp is in the upper forest, so you can expect mist or rain in the late afternoon. Dinner and washing water will be prepared, and the camp office sells drinking water, soft drinks, chocolates, and beer!
 
  • Elevation (m):4, 550m to 5,895 m to 3,100 m
  • Distance: 7 km up, 23 km down
  • Hiking Time: 8 hours up, 7-8 hours down
  • Habitation: Scree and seasonal snow
Accommodation:
Mweka Camp
Day 8
Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate to Moshi/Arusha
After a well-deserved breakfast, it is a short, scenic, 3-hour hike back to the park gate. Don’t give your porters any tips until you and all your gear have reached the gate safely, but do remember to tip your staff at the gate. At Mweka Gate, you can sign your name and add details in a register. This is also where successful climbers receive their summit certificates. Climbers who reached Stella Point are issued green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak receive gold certificates.
 
From the Mweka Gate, you will continue down to the Mweka Village, possibly a muddy, 3 km, 1-hour hike if the road is too muddy for vehicles. In the Mweka Village, you will be served a delicious hot lunch after which you are driven back to Moshi/Arusha for an overdue hot shower and comfortable night in a nice hotel.
 
  • Elevation (m): 3,100 m to 1,980 m to 890 m/ 1387 m
  • Distance: 15 km
  • Hiking Time: 3 hours
  • Habitation: Forest
Accommodation:
No Accommodation (End of tour)