Africa —Kilimanjaro —1

Photo documentary of our adventure climbing to the roof of Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro

Africa.  Kilimanjaro was our goal.  I had planned on going there as my next big adventure.  Then I met David...and we got married.  So instead of going solo I was going with my new husband and the trip, to climb Kilimanjaro, was our official honeymoon.
 
We lucked out.  A friend of ours gave us the name of a guide company, Uhuru Expeditions.  Tunzo, the owner was born and raised in Tanzania.  So after a delay of a year we set off to go to the roof of Africa.  To climb Kilimanjaro to see the remaining glaciers before they disappear. 
 
We decided on the Lemosho route.  The route takes 8 days and there is a better chance of success because of the time to acclimate.  Also this route goes through 5 different climate zones.  It starts out in the cultivated forests, then tropical forest, moor lands, alpine desert, and cloud forest, barren desert, and ice glaciers of the summit.  The temperature starts out warm and humid and as we found out on the summit it was -20F with a bitter wind chill of below that.
 
Here was our route and itinerary.
 
25th. Jan. 2012: After meeting at the Airport, drive to all the way to Moshi, the drive takes 45minutes. Overnight at Park view Hotel.
 
26th. Jan. 2012: After the breakfast, drive to Londorosi gate,secure the permit papers drive to the starting point at Lemosho trail. The walk to first camp (Mti mkubwa) takes about 4hours in the rain forest. Lunch along the way,dinner and overnight at Mti mkubwa camp site. 2900m.a.s.l.
 
27th. Jan. 2012: After the breakfast trek to Shira one camp.The walk tahes 6-7 hours up in the less forest and then in the moor land, down to the Shira plateau.Lunch on the way to Shira,dinner and overnight at Shira one camp 3600m.a.s.l.     
 
28th. Jan. 2012: After the breakfast, start walking in the moor land for 5 hours to Moir camp. Lunch at the Scott Fisher camp on the way, dinner and overnight at Moir camp 4200m.a.s.l.    
 
29th. Jan. 2012: After the breakfast, walk for about 5-6hrs past the sharks tooth to the lava tower 4600m.a.s.l., then down to the Baranco camp 3940m.a.s.l.Lunch along the way, dinner and overnight at the Baranco camp.     
 
30th. Jan. 2012:  After the breakfast, climb the great baranco wall, then proceed to the Karanga valley 4200m.a.s.l. The walk takes 3hours. Lunch, dinner and overnight at Karanga valley.     
 
31st. Jan. 2012: After the breakfast,  ascent to the base camp Barafu. the walk takes about 3hours in the alpine desert.Lunch,dinner and overnight at Barafu camp 4700m.a.s.l.     
 
1st. Feb. 2012: In the early hours of morning, wake up and have a light breakfast. Start the ascent to the summit. The walk takes about 6hrs to Stella point then 1hr to Uhuru peak 5895m.a.s.l. After a short celebration at the summit, descend down to Barafu hut for lunch then proceed to Mweka camp 3100m.a.s.l for dinner and overnight.     
 
2nd. Feb. 2012: After breakfast, start the walk down through the rain forest for about 3 hours to Mweka gate, to catch up with your transport back to the hotel for lunch dinner and overnight.
 
3rd. Feb. 2012: After the breakfast, drive all the way to Monduli juu via Arusha town. At Monduli juu pay a visit to the Maasai bomas, experiance their life style in the evining they perform the maasai dance, how they take in their cows and how they do the milking. Lunch, dinner and overnight at Monduli juu camp site.
 
4th. Feb. 2012: Early morning after the breakfast, drive to Serengeti National park. On the way, pay a visit to Olduvai gorge which is a historic site. Lunch along the way, dinner and overnight at Serengeti Wildlife Lodge.
 
5th. Feb. 2012: Early morning before the breakfast, go for the morning game drive, then come back for the breakfast. After the breakfast, you can have a rest then soon after your lunch you can go for the afternoon game drive, then come back to Serengeti Wildlife Lodge for dinner and overnight.
 
6th. Feb. 2012: After the breakfast, take your Lunch and have the enroute game drive to Ngorongoro. Lunch along the route, Dinner and overnight at the Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge.
 
7th. Feb. 2012: After the breakfast, drive down to the crater for the game drive (as the new crater regulations, you have only to spend 6hrs in the crater and come out.) Then drive all the way to Arusha for dinner and overnight at the Park View Hotel.
 
8th. Feb. 2012: After breakfast, drive all the way to the Airport to catch your flight to Zanzibar.
 
View from our hotel room.  The great Kilimanjaro in the background.
Our hotel.
View of Moshi.
The orphanage we visited in Moshi.   I beleive there were 29 children living at this orphanage.  Just one of many in Tanzania and the greater Africa.
Dinner at the orphanage.
Corner market.
Our expedition vehicle.  We made a quick stop to pick up supplies in a local town.
Grandmother.
Bicycles.
Women carrying bags on their heads.
School children coming home from school in their uniforms.
Signing in at our first of many check points. This is the official park entrance for the Lemosho route.
Now it is time to pick porters and distribute the weight of the gear between the porters.  We had a total of eight plus two guides.  Just for the two of us.
The weight is carefully weighed as each porter is only allowed to carry so much weight.
Tea time.
Park rules.
Home made lunch to get us ready for our adventure.
This was a far as our expedition vehicle wanted to drive.  We unloaded and would walk the rest of the road up to the trailhead.
John John, our assistand guide.  John John grew up in Moshi.  He originally worked in the Tanzanite mines.  After seeing to many people he knew dying in the mines he he decided to do something different and luckily found this job as guide on Kilimanjaro.
Our first section is through managed forest and agriculture fields.
Now for the real climbing.  The first section of the trail was steep and etched out of the jungle.
It opened up a bit as we got higher up.
Our first monkey sighting.  Black-and-white Colobus monkeys.
The cook's tent.  This would be our favorite place to hang out on cold evenings.  We had our own table and chairs.  Lots of hot tea.
and even popcorn.
Early in the morning.  Tunzo, the owner of Uhuru Expeditions and also a very experienced guide, with my husband David.
Our first camp...and last camp in the trees until the last night.
All our gear and we didn't even have to carry any of it.
David getting ready for a long day on the trail.  Poli poli!
It is amazing to watch these young men carry all the equipment balanced on their heads.
Giant tree in the forest.
Break time.  David, Tunzo, and John John.
Fern like plant in the forest.
Now we are out in the moor lands.  The flora was fairly tall the first part of the day but eventually became shorter and shorter as we climbed.
Winding our way through the moor lands.
Some equisite plants we saw on the way.
Lots of flowers.
Tea time and our lunch spot!  Everyday we'd arrive to the cook tent being put up.  Our table and chairs set up.  Our outhouse tent with toilet would be set up.  Then the hot tea followed by food.  Backcountry camping doesn't get much better then this!
Climbing up on a primitive trail.
and rocky trail.
Tunzo.
Unique beautiful flowers.
The porters.
This was a common scene.  Lines of porters carrying mountains of gear on their heads.  Strung out along the trail.
Camp on our second day.
David.
Some of the porters relaxing after a long day of carrying gear.
View from our tent.
Opportunistic bird.  White necked Raven.
Our outhouse.
Somewhere in Tanzania is a young porter wearing a King County Medic One sweatshirt.
Yum, the food on this trip was fresh, home made, and delicious.
Proud cook!
Ranger huts at camp 2.
Kili poking out through the clouds that blew in each day around noon.
Another opportunist.
Clouds and sunlight along the ridgeline.
The mountain.
Evening Kili!
Evening Kili!
Evening Kili!
Evening Kili!
Morning on Day 3.  We always had sunshine in the mornings.  Then the clouds would roll in around 11 am or noon.
Morning on Day 3.  We always had sunshine in the mornings.  Then the clouds would roll in around 11 am or noon.
Morning on Day 3.  We always had sunshine in the mornings.  Then the clouds would roll in around 11 am or noon.
Morning on Day 3.  We always had sunshine in the mornings.  Then the clouds would roll in around 11 am or noon.
Our crew.
Our crew.
Our crew.
Our crew.
More unique beautiful flowers.
John John and the mountain.
Stream along our route.
Sign at an intersection.
Sign at an intersection.
Sign at an intersection.
Sign at an intersection.
Lunch.
Lunch.
Lunch.
Shira Cave.
Shira Cave.
Shira Cave.
The clear path forward.
The clear path forward.
The clear path forward.
Along a rocky ledge.
Along a rocky ledge.
Along a rocky ledge.
The clear path forward.
The clear path forward.
Cold enough for ice to form at night now.
Cold enough for ice to form at night now.
Cold enough for ice to form at night now.
The clear path forward.
The clear path forward.
Now we head into the moonscape!
Now we head into the moonscape!
Now we head into the moonscape!
The clear path forward.
The clear path forward.
A Cairn and Mt. Kenya in the background
A Cairn and Mt. Kenya in the background
A Cairn and Mt. Kenya in the background
The clear path forward.
The clear path forward.
Poli, poli onward.
Poli, poli onward.
Poli, poli onward.
The clear path forward.
The starkness of the landscape is such a change from our starting point.
The starkness of the landscape is such a change from our starting point.
The starkness of the landscape is such a change from our starting point.
A large group of 20+
A large group of 20+
A large group of 20+
Now we head into the moonscape!
Rocky downhill.
Rocky downhill.
Rocky downhill.
Resting at Lava tower.  The highest point before basecamp.
Resting at Lava tower.  The highest point before basecamp.
Resting at Lava tower.  The highest point before basecamp.
The descent
The descent
The descent
The descent
It was sooo cold!  It just got colder.
It was sooo cold!  It just got colder.
It was sooo cold!  It just got colder.
Sunrise on Kilimanjaro!
Sunrise on Kilimanjaro!
Sunrise on Kilimanjaro!
The sun on my back does not mean it is any warmer.
The sun on my back does not mean it is any warmer.
The sun on my back does not mean it is any warmer.
Almost there...or so I thought!  Then there was the march of the mountaineering zombies!
Almost there...or so I thought!  Then there was the march of the mountaineering zombies!
Almost there...or so I thought!  Then there was the march of the mountaineering zombies!
John John.
John John.
John John.
Sweet Summit.  Quick photo and then I had to bundle up and stash the camera becuase the windchill was intense.
Sweet Summit.  Quick photo and then I had to bundle up and stash the camera becuase the windchill was intense.
Sweet Summit.  Quick photo and then I had to bundle up and stash the camera becuase the windchill was intense.
Looking at Kili's remaining glaciers.  Ice on dirt.
Looking at Kili's remaining glaciers.  Ice on dirt.
Looking at Kili's remaining glaciers.  Ice on dirt.
Dirt descent.
Dirt descent.
Dirt descent.
Breaking down camp.
Breaking down camp.
Breaking down camp.
Wolf Bauer and the Mountain Search and Resuce designed these on wheel stoke litters.  Just another great inovation from the Pacific Northwest!
Wolf Bauer and the Mountain Search and Resuce designed these on wheel stoke litters.  Just another great inovation from the Pacific Northwest!
Wolf Bauer and the Mountain Search and Resuce designed these on wheel stoke litters.  Just another great inovation from the Pacific Northwest!
John John looking out over our descent.
John John looking out over our descent.
John John looking out over our descent.
Snack time.
Snack time.
Snack time.
Lisa and David hanging on a thermos of tea
Lisa and David hanging on a thermos of tea
Lisa and David hanging on a thermos of tea
Our awesome team.  Uhuru Expeditions!
Our awesome team.  Uhuru Expeditions!
Our awesome team.  Uhuru Expeditions!
Hakuna Matata...Kilmanjaro!
Hakuna Matata...Kilmanjaro!
Hakuna Matata...Kilmanjaro!
Saying goodbye to the mountain.
Saying goodbye to the mountain.
Saying goodbye to the mountain.
David tries to get a feel of what it would be like to be a porter.
David tries to get a feel of what it would be like to be a porter.
David tries to get a feel of what it would be like to be a porter.
He is humbled.  It is tough work!
He is humbled.  It is tough work!
He is humbled.  It is tough work!
Colobus monkey
Colobus monkey
Colobus monkey
Road to civilization.
Road to civilization.
Road to civilization.
The end of the trip.
The end of the trip.
The end of the trip.
The certificate of altitude!
The certificate of altitude!
The certificate of altitude!
Back to Top