Rongai Gate (2000m) – Rongai 1 Caves Camp (2830m)
Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
Departure from Arusha at 8am and drive for some hours (two hours on rough roads) to the Rongai Gate. After completion of administrative formalities and meeting with porters and guides, begin the 3-4 hour walk to the first camp, Rongai 1 Caves Camp (2830m) – which is a name only, as there is actually no cave. The walk is at a leisurely pace through fields and then into the rain forest, where you can hope to spot the beautiful Black and White Colobus Monkey. Arrive at your camp and enjoy a hot meal and the first night sleeping in your tent.
Rongai 1 Caves Camp (2830m) – Rongai 2 Caves Camp (3450m)
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
A 4-5 hour trek through the heather will bring you to Rongai 2 Caves Camp. If the weather is clear, Mawenzi will be in plain view; a stunning sight. Enjoy stopping to see the exotic heather-zone flowers and plants which grow alongside the trail. Make sure you wear a hat, as it’s open walking in the sunlight (weather permitting).
Rongai 2 Caves Camp (3450m) – Kikelewa Caves Camp (3600m)
Hiking Time: 4 hours
Today is a short trek designed to help you acclimatize. A smaller track leads off the main trail through the moorland and towards Mawenzi’s steeply rising slopes. The trekking time is about 4 hours, arriving in camp for a hot lunch, and a chance to acclimatize while exploring the surrounding plants, rock formations and caves. The picture on the right was taken from Kikelewa Caves Camp and shows Mawenzi Tarn in the background (where you will camp next).
Kikelewa Caves Camp (3600m)- Mawenzi Tarn Camp (4315m)
Hiking Time: 6 hours
Distance: 6km but steep
First up is a steep trail to climb, but you are rewarded with fantastic views across the natural vegetation around you. Enjoy walking through the area with few people around – tomorrow your trail joins up with the Marangu Trail. As you head toward Tarn Camp, you will have spectacular views of Mawenzi above the camp. From Tarn Campsite itself you will be able to look across the saddle towards Kibo Summit – your final target.
Mawenzi Tarn Camp (4315m) – Outward Bound Camp (4750m)
Hiking Time: 6 hours
Today is a relatively easy hike across the very wide saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo peaks. It feels like you have to walk forever, but keep your eyes on the camp ahead and use the time to think about the last big push which starts at midnight tonight.
Once you reach Outward Bound Camp, rest as much as possible in preparation for the challenge ahead and enjoy an early dinner. The summit is now only 1145m above and so you will start making the final ascent just after midnight.
Outward Bound Camp (4750m) – Uhuru Summit (5895m) – Horombo Huts (3110m)
Hiking Time: 8 hours to the summit. 10 hours down to Horombo Huts
Distance: 7km to the summit then 20km down to Horombo Huts
Wake at midnight as this is summit day! The temperatures will be between -0 to -10°C, and then from 4am to 6am (just before sunrise), you can expect temperatures from -10° to -20°C.
Eat a light breakfast, get your head torch out and around 1am start shuffling up to Gilman’s Point (5685m), on the rim of the crater. This last part is the toughest and it is where you need to pull out all that mental energy that you never knew you had inside you.
Listen to your guides and concentrate on putting one foot in front of the other… you can do it! Once you get to Gilman’s Point around 7am, you will move on around the crater for a couple more hours till you reach Uhuru Peak (5895m), the summit.
The trek from camp to the summit will take approx 7-8 hours.
After a short time to catch your breath and take some pictures, you will start the descent back down to Horombo Huts. Remember the slope back down is steep, over loose rocks and scree with some boulders as you near Gilman’s Point.
Many climbers forget that there is a huge amount of trekking after summiting, so you need to summon all the energy you have and push downwards to a lower altitude level. Look out for Hans Meyer Cave on the way, which is the famous place that the first western Kilimanjaro climber described in his journals. You will pause at Kibo Hut for a short rest, before pushing downwards across the saddle to Horombo Huts where you will spend the night.
Horombo Huts (3110m) – Marangu Main Gate (1970m)
Hiking Time: 6 hours
Before starting the trek down to the main gate, you may like to take the last set of pictures of your climbing team, as well as give out all the tips to your guides.
Once you reach the main gate, say goodbye to your new Kili Brothers and afterwards drive back to Arusha. Enjoy a long overdue shower upon your return!
Price is USD $3550.00 per person
Rongai Route is Kilimanjaro’s only route beginning from the north side and is used by few trekkers.
It joins the Marangu Route on the final ascent to the summit, but otherwise not a lot of people are seen along the way.
This route gives you the opportunity to witness up close the Mawenzi volcano, the second highest peak of Kilimanjaro, and the magnificent saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo Peak (which is the summit).
Each day you will see many changes of vegetation and scenery. Accommodation is in mountain tents and dining is in a mess tent.
Please contact me for further details on low season packages.
Should any details change, we reserve the right to re-calculate the tour price accordingly.
This quotation is valid until 2nd February 2014.
When you choose a climb or adventure operator there are certain points that should be checked before you place your life in their hands. Everyone has their own set of criteria – we list below some important issues regarding your Mt Kilimanjaro Climb that may be of interest.
There are a few more points that may help you in this decision:
Price issues – these always come up when groups “research“trips and then compare options. Some will want to go for the cheapest option, some want the better quality and peace of mind of booking through an experienced, reliable licensed operator. At the end of the day, you all buy safe vehicles, put safe tyres on them, and plan to live a long life – don’t compromise on something as important as summiting Kilimanjaro. Temperatures drop to minus 200C, and if you don’t have the correct gear, crew, food and so forth, you may be putting your life, and others, at risk. You want to get to the top, safely – and have a good time doing it.Just looking at our success rate of 95%+, and the AVERAGE success rate of about 50 – 60%, you have about a 30% better chance with us than a budget operator. You don’t want to waste your money. This is where our experienced staff, kit lists, detailed presentations at our offices etc help a LOT.
A lot of the reasons for our success rate boils down to money – we pay enough to get good guides, crew, and to buy you good food, and use decent equipment (which is maintained/upgraded regularly). When you consider that about $600 per person on a 6-day climb goes on park fees alone, and you work out what a budget operator has got left to run a business on, you can see that on budget trips corners will probably be cut. All to the detriment of YOU, the guest.
This could be done in many ways:
It has been estimated that in GOOD weather, your summit chances with a budget operator are probably only slightly less than if you climb with a decent operator. In BAD weather, the chances of summiting – indeed surviving without injury – are 40% better with a higher standard of climb. Basically a good, qualified, well paid crew, with decent leadership and good gear, is what you need – and get – from our standard of climb.
It is not a luxury trip, but we ensure that both standards and service are maintained to a high level. Our trips are not cheap – and they never will be. We pay our crew well, use good gear, pay local taxes, operate ethically etc. You will however, get good value for money and a good chance at the summit.
Consider the above points well – they are ALL questions you should be asking. I am confident that, knowing the above, we will soon see you on a Wild Spirit Kilimanjaro Climb. If you want cheap, we suggest you contact many of the other “operators“ out there.
Hope to see you up there soon.
Wild Spirit Adventures
The following are included in the price of your Mount Kilimanjaro trekking adventure trip:
The following are not included in the price of your Mount Kilimanjaro trekking adventure trip:
“Adventure Grade” Camping Safaris are run with a crew of a cook / assistant plus guide. It is a viable option for those keen to camp and stay in more remote places.
You are accompanied by an experienced, knowledgeable guide, a camp assistant and a cook – all fully trained professionals who will prioritise your comfort and safety as well as striving to ensure optimal game-viewing opportunities throughout your journey.
Meals usually consist of a cooked breakfast or brunch, light lunch and a three course dinner. Fridges are used for safe and efficient storage of meat and food, and cool boxes are used for keeping your drinks cold – your guide will show you the best places to purchase these prior to departure and along the way.
You are requested to erect your own tent on arrival at camp and dismantle your tent on departure. This is very simple to do and takes about five minutes – your guide will show you how this is done. The balance of the chores (cooking, washing up, etc) will be taken care of by the camp assistant and cook.
It is important to note that this is a quality camping product, and not a luxury mobile camp. Accommodation is in the public campsites of Tanzania’s National Parks and, despite our best efforts, we have very little control over the quality and standards of ablution facilities at the campsite.
Please be aware that the toilets in public campsites are long-drop style without flush.
Game viewing at Lake Manyara National Park with picnic lunch included.
Lake Manyara is a shallow, alkaline lake at the base of a sheer stretch of the western Rift Valley escarpment.
The north-western area of this lake is protected in a 330 square kilometre national park, which contains a remarkable diversity of terrestrial habitats: the grassy floodplain of the lakeshore, the rocky base of the escarpment, a belt of thick acacia woodland and a lush patch of groundwater forest just inside the northern entrance gate. An interesting biodiversity of fauna and flora can be observed here and a variety of large mammal species including elephant, buffalo, wildebeest, giraffe and lion.
Perhaps, however, the most immediately visible residents are the troupes of olive baboon, sometimes found in the company of the smaller and rather beautiful blue monkey. This is also a wonderful location for viewing groups of elephant and, for keen birders, Manyara has recorded almost 400 species due to the wide habitat diversity.
After game viewing, you will weave your way upwards into the dense forest slopes of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, pausing to admire the splendid view of the crater floor 600 m below at Heroes Point, before driving on to our campsite on the rim of the Ngorongoro caldera.
If we arrive and set up camp in good time, you may consider an early evening/sunset visit to a Maasai boma where you can spend some time learning about the culture, traditions and beliefs of this ancient, noble warrior tribe. This visit is at an additional cost, and should be discussed with, and paid directly to the guide.
(This is our recommendation of gear required)
|1||Roll on deodorant|
|2||Rolls of toilet paper|
|1||Zinc cream for protection from UV rays and dry air|
|1||Ladies hygiene products|
|1||Antibacterial Hand Gel|
|Camping Trekking Gear|
|1||150 litre kitbag for porter can be hired|
|1||Daypack (for personal use) can be hired|
|1||Sleeping bag and sleeping bag liner (at least -5 rating) can be hired|
|1||Self inflating mattress - 2 foam rolls are supplied but will not give a great level of comfort|
(Inflatable travel pillow or cushion insert – do not bring full size pillow)
|1-2||Walking poles – this is essential can be hired|
|1-2||Gloves, 1 inner thin pair plus thicker outer glove or mitts, water and wind proof|
|1||Torch (and spare batteries)|
|1||Head Torch (and spare batteries)|
|2||Dry bags or waterproof bags (available from camping stores) or garbage bags to keep clothing dry in kitbag|
|Water - need minimum of 4 litres
(your choice of water bottles or water bladder, you will need easy access to bottles)
|3ltr||Backpack bladder and 1 water bottle (for mixing supplements)|
|1||Water drink bottles|
|Camera + lots of film, spare batteries, disposable camera
(Note: Cameras and video recorders cannot be charged on the Mountain as there is no electricity)
|Medications as Prescribed by your Doctor
(Anti malaria, antibiotics for wounds and infections, anti inflammatory, anti vomiting, epi-pen etc…)
|1||Diamox for altitude sickness, max of 3 per day|
|12||Gastrolyte (must have)|
|1||Endura Powder (available from Chemists)|
|1||Travel Calm Tablets|
|1||Anti-Inflammatory medications (eg. Ibrofen, Voltaren, Nurofen)|
|1||Antihistamines (e.g. Telfast, Phenergan 10mg)|
|Multivitamins / B1 Tablets (start a couple of weeks prior to trek)|
|2||Antibacterial hand gel (e.g. Aqium)|
|1pkt||Blister Pads (optional)|
|1||Roll of strapping tape|
|2pkt||Large size band-aids (Elastoplast)|
|1||Knee and/or ankle guards|
|1||Antiseptic lotion/cream (e.g. Paraderm Plus, Betadine, Bepanthen)|
|1||Hydrocortisone cream (for bites)|
|10||Cotton wool balls|
|3||Insect repellent roll-on / cream
(we suggest ‘Bushman Plus’ – always keep it on)
|2pkt||Water purification tablets (highly recommend)|
|1||Sunscreen (always keep it on)|
|1||Sunglasses – wrap-around style for UV protection|
|3pkt||Glucose Jelly Beans or Glucose lollies|
|4 pkts||Glucodin Tablets|
|For every day||Munchies (chocolates, muesli bars, lollies, beef jerky, nuts etc...)|
|1||Walking boots (waterproof) and spare boot laces|
|1||Lightweight shoes to wear in camp at night e.g. running shoes|
|2||Tracksuit/ fleece pants for colder days & evenings|
|1||Waterproof pants , lightweight and breathable can be hired|
|2||Thermal underwear polypropylene or similar, must be breathable|
|4||Long sleeved lightweight fleecy shirts for layering|
|2||Synthetic pants and shirts, breathable and wind-resistant, highly recommend the zip-off pants|
|1-2||‘skins’ style sports clothing shorts
(highly recommended, great to reduce chafing)
|1||Waterproof Jacket Gortex or similar. Breathable wind and waterproof jacket, must have a hood can be hired|
|1||Lightweight poncho – for heavy rain|
|5||Thick Synthetic hiking style socks|
|5||Thin socks to help prevent blisters|
|3||Comfortable underwear / bras|
|1||Gaiters alpine type, not the anklets can be hired|
|1||Warm fleece hat or balaclava, need to ensure ears are covered|
|1||Scarf/ Buff to keep the neck warm|
|10||Long cable ties|
|1||Pocket knife or Multi tool|
|1||Small super glue|
|Diary and pen|
|Large zip lock bags (for personal items, clothes, lollies)|
* If travelling with friends or part of a group you may be able to share some of the above items e.g. creams / lotions.
* This list is our recommendation of what to take
Safety, when undergoing these treks, is important to us and we strive to give you all available and necessary information in regards to your health and well being while going on your adventure. We strongly recommend you read the following pages of information on mountain safety – particularly in regards to health issues that can occur at high altitudes and in unfamilar climates.
In case one person gets sick and has to stay behind or even return, he or she will be accompanied by one of the assistant guides while other climbers go on with the leading guide and other assistant guide(s). Unlike most other companies who charge about US$100, we provide a free transfer from the mountain to the hotel should a climber return earlier than planned. However, if the climb is extended for any reason, we will charge $170 per day per person.
Tipping our porters, guides and cooks is an important way for us to supplement their wages. The following is a guide on what to expect to pay while in East Africa. Guide: US$10 Porter: US$5 Assistant Guide: US$7 Cook: US$4
This tipping structure is per group/per day. This is a local payment and cannot be paid directly to Wild Spirit Adventures. The amount you tip will depend on which Track you do however on average it adds approximately US$150 – US$250 to the cost of the expedition. All companies use this tipping arrangement.
Due to popular demand, we have group departures on the Marangu, Machame and Umbwe routes throughout the year.
When you book, kindly advise if your guests would like a PRIVATE or GROUP departure. Should it be the latter, we will endeavour to put them with other guests on the climb itself. Generally, Saturday arrival (Sunday climb) is the most popular days of the week as such we can more readily put your guests with others over the weekends.
Your consultant will confirm with you if your clients will be climbing with others or not, and the approximate group size during the booking process. We cannot guarantee a group departure, as certain times of the year are busier than others – and should you guest be travelling alone, then the solo / single supplement would still apply.
SOLO climber rate – This includes single room supplement at the hotel, single tent supplement on mountain, and solo climber supplement, i.e. to climb privately, not part of a group. Should you request for an individual to join a group, we cannot always guarantee the availability of others to climb, and therefore retain the right to charge the solo rate should we be unsuccessful in finding others to climb with your client.
Travel insurance, tips (budget approx USD130-150 per person for any of the six day camping route), drinks and items of a personal nature, personal equipment. Airport transfers and shuttle bus optional extra.
For all payments made by Travellers Cheque there is a service charge of US $15. Also all payments made by Credit Cards, attracts a surcharge of 7.5%.
Please pay preferably by CASH USD, small denomination notes are recommended (1’s, 5’s, 10’s etc for the smaller bills).
Telephone Calls are EXTREMELY expensive from the hotel for various reasons; please ASK FIRST before you call!
The tips have become a tradition, and are expected by the guides and porters for all attempting Kilimanjaro. Please budget around USD 170- 190 for this six day camping hike – per climber – which gets split across the group. Old clothing is also appreciated! Please do not provide tips whilst on the mountain (see tipping document).
There is cell phone network coverage on certain parts of Kilimanjaro and in
Tanzania, so remember to organise an international roaming facility.
It is imperative that you reconfirm your onward/return flights.
Most nationalities require a visa to enter Tanzania, which you can obtain on
arrival for USD 50 per person (depending on your nationality).
Please note you will need a Yellow Fever inoculation, this must be done no later than 10 days prior to departure. If you have had any previous history of liver disorders you must consult your physician first. Malaria prophylactics are a must. Please refer to our medical sheet for the mountain.
The January to March season tends to be colder and there is a much greater chance of snow on the path at this time. The days, however, are often clearer, with only the occasional brief shower. It is usually an exceptionally beautiful time to climb and is often a little quieter than the other peak season of June to October.
“As wide as all the world, great, high, and unbelievably white in the sun,
was the square top of Mount Kilimanjaro” Ernest Hemingway.
The first written reference to Mt. Kilimanjaro was by Ptolemy but even so, Africa’s highest mountain and the highest free standing mountain in the world remained relatively unknown to the outside world until 1848.
Snow capped and shrouded by clouds, the local Chagga people called it ‘Kilema Kyaro’ meaning ‘that which cannot be conquered’ or ‘that which makes a journey impossible.’ Today, it is the dream of every adventurer to conquer its summit and stand on the “roof of Africa.”
Situated south of the equator – in Tanzania – at 19 340 feet, (5895m) this is Africa’s highest mountain and the highest “free standing” mountain in the world.
Huge permanent glaciers flow down from the summit, and spectacular views and beautiful ice formations are the reward for the successful trekker, as well as the satisfaction of conquering this mighty peak.
It is not for the faint-hearted – this will test you to your limits, mentally as well as physically. The main problems encountered are altitude sickness, which can be countered by use of medicines, and lack of oxygen.
The standard route is a hike – no climbing as such. It is very cold – correct kit is a must – but our kit lists and hire equipment are top quality. We have personally done the major routes; so can offer first hand advice.
Good preparation and advice, as well as good guides on the mountain, have given us an over 95% success rate (the average is 60%) – this type of thing is a “once in a lifetime ” challenge, and must not be taken lightly.
We ensure that all our climbers have all the facts – medical list, equipment list, etc, long before they travel – possibly the reason for our success rate.
Any reasonably fit person who enjoys walking can reach the summit of Kilimanjaro. The youngest to make it was nine years old – the oldest seventy-nine.
While thousands of people scramble to the top of Kilimanjaro each year, there are some extremely severe climbs available to the experienced mountaineer. There are several principal hiking routes up the mountain, like the Marangu (Coca Cola), Shira, Londorossi, Rongai, Umbwe and Machame.
The Shira plateau can be reached with a four-wheel drive vehicle up to 4 000 metres. These routes are marked and provided with simple bivouac huts and water, we choose to camp on all of these routes (except Marangu which offers communal huts)
The Machame route is one of the more scenic routes up the mountain, after the Umbwe route, this is probably the most beautiful route by which to ascend the mountain. Nights are spent in ‘alpine tents’ sleeping two persons per tent (three person tents, so there is space for your luggage).
All your supplies and camping equipment are portaged up for you (tents, 20-25 mm compressed foam sleeping mats, awnings, stools, lights, etc), and your meals are prepared.
Your personal baggage limit is 12kg for the climb.
South African tents and sleeping mats are supplied on this trip.
The Keys Hotel, your base hotel, is located in Moshi and has a swimming pool, indoor bar and garden area, patio, restaurant and satellite television coverage. The rooms are clean, neat and comfortable. Showers are en-suite with hot/cold water. It is one of the best hotels in town, although fairly basic by South African standards. The staff are very friendly and ‘nothing is too much trouble’.
The guides employed are excellent (some have climbed Kili over 400 times)! They are employed by the Keys Hotel and have looked after a multitude of our clients. Each trip is lead by a senior guide, with other guides in a ratio of approximately one guide per 2 or 3 climbers – if you are a bit slower than the rest or get ill and have to descend, a guide will always be with you.
Food served on the mountain is generally plain and wholesome, including a lot of carbohydrates, stews and soups, vegetables and fresh fruit. Vegetarians are catered for, but please notify us in advance.
When flying, we strongly suggest you wear / carry on your boots, wet weather gear and cameras – these are crucial for your climb, and you do not want to risk losing them in the hold. Make sure you have your yellow fever certificate with you – as it will be asked for on in Tanzania and on arrival back home.
On arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport, you will be met by a Representative from Keys Hotel and transferred to the hotel in Moshi (approx 1 – 1 ½ hour’s drive), where you will overnight including a continental breakfast.
There are two sister hotels – Keys Mbokomo and Keys Uru. Both of these hotels have good views of Mount Kilimanjaro and are classified as modern “Tourist” standard hotels.
They are of medium size, and rooms are all en-suite.
Some have air-conditioning, television and mini-bar.
Meals consist of buffet continental breakfast, full restaurant meals, bar snacks served all day and occasional barbecues. A bar with a full range of drinks including beers, bottled
water and soft drinks is available.
Amenities include room service, full laundry service, swimming pool, international telephone, facsimile and internet services, car parking and security.
Leave any excess clothing and valuables at the hotel – they will lock them up for
Pack your bag carefully for the climb – remember the weight limit of 12kg.
The best time to Climb Mt Kilimanjaro
The best time to climb Mt Kilimanjaro is during its two dry seasons, January to mid-March and June to October. You can trek Kilimanjaro in the rainy season but not only is there a much higher chance of trekking in the rain, the summits of Kibo and Mawenzi are likely to be wreathed in thick cloud too. Christmas and New Year, when the weather is far from perfect, are actually the most popular times for climbing Kilimanjaro.