Day 1: Machame Hut Camp
A short drive brings us to the Machame trailhead (~5,700’). After the climbers and crew have checked in with the park rangers, we will hike up through the montane forests, winding up the mossy jungle, making our way to Machame Hut camp. Here you’ll get your first views of the peak.
Hiking: 6-8 hours
Overnight Altitude: ~9,900′
Day 2: Shira Plateau
After breakfast, our hike continues through the forest. We will take our time, soaking in the scenery as we make our way through the moorlands. We will be treated to spectacular views of Kibo peak.
Hiking: 6-7 hours
Overnight Altitude: ~12,500′
Day 3: Barranco Camp
Today is a long day but lots of acclimatization as you climb high, sleep low. We will take an acclimatization hike to Lava Tower (~15,000’) for lunch, before descending to the Barranco valley. For those who have energy, and if time and weather permit, there’s the possibility to scramble up the Lava Tower itself. The scenery is amazing today, passing through different ecological zones of the mountain.
Hiking: 6-8 hours
Overnight Altitude: ~13,500′
Day 4: Barafu Camp
Today is another long day of hiking as your continue your Southern Circuit traverse. You’ll hike up and down several valleys as you go from Barranco camp to Barafu Camp. Start up the great Barranco Wall (which is achievable for everyone but can be intimidating with its steep cliffs), hike past Karanga camp and eventually to Barafu camp. Here, you’ll eat and rest for a few hours before arising about 11:00 PM to start tomorrow’s summit ascent.
Hiking: 7-9 hours
Overnight Altitude: ~15,100′
Day 5: Summit and Mweka Camp
Start hiking at around midnight, using your headlamps to lead the way slowly up to Stella Point and then the summit. Due to the altitude, you will hike slowly, and will need to dress warmly for the cold. After celebrating with photos at the summit, descend down to Mweka camp.
Hiking: 6-7 hours ascent to the summit, then 6-9 hours of descent
Overnight Altitude: ~10,500′
Day 6: Mweka Park Gate (~5,000’) to Arusha
We make the final descent through the rain forest to Mweka Gate. Here we will have lunch and say goodbye to our mountain crew before leaving Mount Kilimanjaro National Park. Drive back to Arusha for a hot shower and a celebratory dinner.
Hiking: 3-5 hours