KILIMANJARO – Lemosho Route Itinerary
8 days / 7 nights
Lemosho – Forest Camp (9,000 ft / 2,743 m)
Today we drive to Lemosho Gate from where you commence your climb. This day consists of only a few hours of gentle walking to Forest Camp and gives you an opportunity to stretch your legs in anticipation of the long trek ahead.
Forest Camp- Shira Camp (11,000 ft/3,353 m)
After breakfast you will start a slow, 5 hour walk through the forest and up into the Hagenia zone; here the vegetation begins to thin out as you approach the Shira Plateau. Shira, Mawenzi and Kibo are the three craters of the Kilimanjaro volcanic massif. From Shira Camp there are great views of the Shira Needles and the distant Mount Meru.
Shira Camp –Shira 2 Camp (12,500 ft / 3,810 m)
This morning you will climb into the alpine heather zone, approaching the Kibo outcrop from the west. Lunch will be taken en route to Shira 2 campsite during this leisurely 5 hour walk.
Shira 2 Camp – Barranco Camp (13,000 ft / 3,962 m)
Today we walk through thinning vegetation to the Alpine Desert Zone, where few plants survive and temperatures can reach the freezing point. The trek from Shira 2 camp to the shelter of Lava Tower (15,000 ft/4,572 m), an imposing relic from Kilimanjaro’s volcanic past, takes approximately 2 hours.
Barranco Camp – Karanga Camp (13,000 ft / 3,962 m)
Karanga Camp is at the same altitude as Barranco Camp, so you should be well acclimatized to this elevation by now. This section of the trail takes approximately 4 hours and consists mostly of trekking up and down the slopes of the mountain with a bit of climb at Barranco Cliff.
Karanga Camp – Barafu Camp (15,200 ft / 4,633 m)
The scenic climb to Barafu Camp is mostly on alpine desert terrain with views of Kibo and Mawenzi Peaks. You should arrive at Barafu Camp around 3 pm and are advised to rest and sleep early in preparation for your coming summit attempt.
Barafu Camp – Summit (19,340 ft / 5,895 m) - Mweka Camp (10,200 ft / 3,109 m)
Wake to a midnight start for Uhuru Peak. The climb becomes much more difficult at this stage and you should carry as little as possible and wear all your summit gear (temperatures range from minus 4-5 degrees Fahrenheit (-15 C). Follow your guide very closely and concentrate on your feet- the track around the edge of the crater is icy and rocky.
After reaching the summit, enjoy your descent of the scree-clad peak and continue down to Barafu Camp for refreshment and relaxation before carrying on to Mweka Camp for the night. Arriving into camp at around 5 p.m you will look back and realize that today you have trekked a total of thirteen hours!
Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate
On your descent of Kilimanjaro take time to once more appreciate the tropical rainforest. The hike from Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate can take anywhere from two to five hours, depending on trail conditions (rain can occur at any time of year at this elevation and a muddy trail calls for a very slow pace).