Sep 1, 2010 at 1:47 am #1262871
Always wanted to hike this mountain, and am seriously thinking about doing it early next year. Before I start doing research, anyone done it? Tips? I have heard that it is required to have a local guide company.
My only obstacle right now is that my wife says no way can I go but I can probably overcome that. :)Sep 1, 2010 at 6:34 am #1642180
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
I believe that you are correct that a local guide is required. It is not that the trails are so difficult. It is more of a government-sponsored work project.
For years, the regular route was called the Coca-Cola Route, because local teens would carry Coca-Cola in bottles up the trail and sell them at the various overnight camps. It is a little weird to be at 15,000 feet on your way up a big peak and there is some kid hawking soda outside your tent. Local guides liked it because they could hustle the tourist up and down the mountain in minimum time, yet they were getting paid by the trip. Lots of tourists get sick that way.
For ten years or so, there has been a move to get more tourists off that route and onto more diverse routes. They tend to be more scenic and a little longer. This means more porter-days, so this aids the government-sponsored aim.
If you are on a tight budget, you will hire your local guide when you get to Marangu, and then you will hope for the best. They just want to take your money. You might get better results by signing on with a stateside travel agency. It will cost a lot more, but the amenities may be a lot better, and you will feel safer.
I was there in June 2000 and went up the Shira Plateau-Western Breach Route. I think it was later closed due to unsafe rockfall conditions onto the Arrow Glacier. However, I felt like our route was slightly longer, more scenic, and preferable to the Coca-Cola Route. I enjoyed it, and it was one of the easiest big peaks that I have ever done. (I believe that this route has been re-opened).
–B.G.–Sep 6, 2010 at 6:29 pm #1643496
I am looking for someone interested in joining me on a climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro in mid-February 2010. I have booked a trip with Henry Stedman’s company, Climb Mount Kilimanjaro (www.climbmountkilimanjaro.com). I will take either their Unique Rongai route (2/14-2/20) or the Unique Lemosho route (2/13-2/19). Both of these routes have an extended acclimatization period (provide the greatest chance of reaching the summit), avoid the worst of the crowds, and take advantage of the full moon. If there are at least two climbers, the cost is significantly reduced. If you are interested, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.Sep 6, 2010 at 6:47 pm #1643504
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
I'm not interested this year. I went in June 2000. I think that Rongai Route is kind of offbeat. I haven't heard of too many going up that way. OTOH, I believe that there was somebody going up that way when I was coming down off the summit. I had gone up the Shira Plateau Route and up the Arrow Glacier, which I recommend. That seems to be close to the Lemosho Route. It is kind of a kick to camp inside the crater at 18,800'. However, except for one small glacier, there is no water there. Good luck.
Many people do some safari days after they get down off the mountain. My trip had been arranged differently, so I was at a safari camp for three days prior to the mountain. That is probably time well-spent.
–B.G.–Sep 6, 2010 at 6:47 pm #1643505
W I S N E R !Participant
Right on Nick.
I'll come down and hike/run San Jacinto with you if you want a training partner every now and then.Sep 6, 2010 at 10:53 pm #1643558
Thanks for the offer. I will definitely keep you in mind. I have several trips on my calendar over the next few weeks, so I am not going to spend any serious time researching until November or so. Acclimatization is not an issue for me, so I am leaning towards a faster pace than most the tours offer.Sep 6, 2010 at 10:56 pm #1643559
Anytime starting at the beginning of October you want to go. Don't expect any snow before Thanksgiving.
Ojas and I did a route from Idlywild last week (Marion Trail). That allowed us to avoid most of the crowds and the desert heat.
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