Mt Kenya and Mt Kilimanjaro makes a challenging and rewarding combination for trekkers. Approaching Lenana point via Chogoria route ensures we experience the best views of the peaks and Lake Michaelson and Gorge Valley. Ascending to Mt Kilimanjaro-Africa’s highest peak is an exhilarating climb. Standing at Uhuru Peak looking over the sunrise over the glaciers will make a highlight of this trip.
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Upon arrival we will be met by our driver/guide, after a pre-briefing, we drive to Chogoria where special land Rovers will be ready for onward drive to the Meru Mt. Kenya Bandas (3000m). After a quick lunch in Chogoria, the Land rovers take us through a dense Bamboo Forest on very slippery roads to the Meru Mt. Kenya bandas where our crew prepares a delicious meal while we take a stroll in the area. We need to be careful because we may meet Elephants or Buffaloes. At dinner time our Mountain Guide gives a detailed briefing about the days ahead. Overnight stay will be at the Bandas.
After breakfast, we take an easy hike from 3000m to the shores of Lake Ellis at 3400m through a beautiful alpine landscape with the Mt. Kenya peaks towering above us. We arrive at the camp for lunch. In the afternoon we hike to the Mugi Hill (3650m) not only for the superb view from the top but also for better acclimatization. At dusk we return to our fly camp for dinner and overnight.
We set off early in the morning, trekking away from Lake Ellis on its west side, across moorland up to a ridge which eventually joins the main Chogoria trail. As we descend to Lake Michaelson, we get incredible views of Vivienne Falls and the Gorges Valley. Before we descend to the Gorge Valley to camp at the shores of Lake Michaelson we stop for lunch. The camp is set at a scenic spot between Giant groundsels and Lobelias. The hike to today took about 6 to 7 hours and we are looking forward to our dinner and good night rest.
Today’s hike is rather short but the increasing altitude makes us considerably slower. With packed lunch, we hike along the Gorge Valley towards Point Lenana. The hike gets gradually steeper and vegetation more sparse. Finally we ascend a ridge and get to the Simba Tarn at 4600m. We have left the vegetation behind. The view over the peaks of Batian, Nelion and Lenana is spectacular. Dinner and overnight will be again in a fly camp.
After an early morning breakfast at 5.00am, we embark on a steep ascend via a steep screed to the Simba Cole and further on to Point Lenana (4895m). At sunrise, we arrive at the summit and enjoy the magnificent views over the plains below and Batian and Nelion opposite us. Finally we descend via Simba cole to Shiptons Camp for a rest and a second breakfast. We still have another 15km and 800m descend through the scenic Mackinder Valley ahead of us. In the late afternoon, we arrive at the Old Moses Camp for a well-deserved dinner and overnight stay at the camp.
After breakfast, we descend (9km) to the Sirimon Gate where our vehicles will be waiting to take us past Nairobi to Maazoni Lodge near Machakos for dinner and overnight stay. We stop at Karatina for lunch, a town which prides itself for having the largest open air-market in Eastern and Central Africa. Dinner and overnight stay will be at the Maanzoni Lodge.
Today we have an early breakfast. A 200km drive on good but busy roads takes us to the southern border of Kenya with Tanzania where Kilimanjaro “The rooftop of Africa” is waiting to be conquered. After passing through Loitokitok and clearance at the border in Tarakea, we arrive at the Nalemoro starting point at about 11.00 am. We are introduced to our crew, and have a quick bite before we embark on 10km hike through farmland and natural forest. With some luck we may spot Colobus Monkeys. We reach the Sekimba camp at the edge of the forest at 2700m late in the afternoon. Camp has been set and we enjoy our dinner while marveling at the Kibo towering above and the plains below us.
Today we enjoy our breakfast as the sun rises immersing the Kibo summit in a golden light. At about 8.00am our hike through the moorland leads to the 3rd Caves (3900m), where vegetation ends and gives way to alpine desert. Although only 12 km in distance, the climb takes about 6hours. We notice the decreasing oxygen levels as we gain altitude. We have a lunch break at the 2nd Caves, a scenic spot at 3300m. Dinner & overnight will once again be in a fly camp.
After the last good rest before the summit ascend, we hike through rocky moonlike landscape to School Hut at 4750m. This hut originally by the Outward Bound Trust and renovated by us in the early nineties is now under the management of the Kilimanjaro National Park Authority. Usually, it is not crowded & provides a good shelter for rest before next day’s challenge. By lunch time we arrive at the hut where our crew has prepared a meal. In the afternoon, we relax at the hut and take in the spectacular views over Mawenzi and the cloud formation below. Dinner and overnight stay will be at the hut.
After a short night and a hot drink, the final ascend starts at about 1.30am. The path gets gradually steeper finally taking us to the Gillman’s point (5685m) where we can watch the sunrise over the Mawenzi Peaks luminating the magnificent northern ice fields. After a short break, we proceed along the crater rim to the Uhuru Peak (5895m) reaching there between 8.00 and 9.00am. The distance is only about 1km along the crater rim but it may take up to 2 hours. After our summit photo, we descend to Kibo Hut for lunch before another 3hours descend to Horombo (3720m) where we spend the night in a fly camp.
After breakfast and a final glance at the Kibo summit which we have conquered, we now start on the final leg. The 6 to 8 hours hike takes us from the moorland into a beautiful natural forest characterized by giant ancient trees. After lunch at Mandara, we will get to the Marangu Gate (1800m) at 1.00-3.00pm depending on our speed and remaining strength. Here we will be awarded certificates for a successful climb & bid the crew goodbye. We drive to Moshi for dinner and overnight stay at the Salsalinero Hotel.
After breakfast, depending on the timing of our flight we transfer to the airport for departure.