Compared to the usual 5d/4n version of the Rongai route, on this 6d/5n version there is an additional day spent on the ascent here, which gives you an extra day to acclimatize and enjoy the ever changing, dramatic scenery.
Itinerary (6 days / 5 nights on Kili):
Briefing Your guides will meet you at your hotel in Arusha or Moshi for a detailed briefing of the climb. Accommodation: hotel in Arusha or Moshi (D)
Transfer to Loitokitok gate (2000 m) - hike to Rongai 1 Caves camp (2830 m) Departure from Arusha will be at around 7:30 am for Loitokitok gate (ca. 4 hrs transfer), where you will complete the entry formalities and have lunch. You start trekking through fields and dense mountain rain forest to your first camp in the heather. 3-4 hrs trekking.
Accommodation: Rongai 1 Caves camp (B, L, D)
Rongai 1 Caves - Rongai 2 Caves camp (3450 m) About 4-5 hrs trekking through heather and moorland brings you to the second caves where you have lunch. If the weather is clear, Mawenzi will be in plain view - a stunning sight. Enjoy stopping to observe an exoctic heather-zone vegetation along the trail.
Accommodation: Rongai 2 camp (B, L, D)
Rongai 2 - Kikelewa camp (3,600 m) 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 3 - 5 hours. From the campsite you will enjoy a magnificent views towards Mawenzi anf Kibo, your final target.
Accommodation: Kikelewa camp (B, L, D)
Kikelewa camp - Outward Bound camp (4,750 m) From Kikelewa camp, it's about 5-7 hrs trekking, first through moorland and then into the highland desert, until you arrive in the saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo. The landscape grows more impressive and spectacular as you gain altitude. Prepare all your gear for the night ahead and turn in early to rest.
Accommodation: Outward Bound camp (B, L, D)
Outward bound camp - Gilman's Point (5712 m) - Uhuru Peak (5895 m) - Horombo camp (3110 m) A hot drink will arrive very early this morning. At about 1 am , you start trekking towards the rim of the crater, which you reach at Gilmans's Point (5,712 m) and from there to Uhuru Peak (7-8 hrs). The following descend to Horombo Camp is about 6-8 hrs. At the start of the trek at 1 am, temperatures usually be between -10 and 0 deg. and seomwhere between -12 deg. C (10 deg. F) to -23 deg. C (-10 F.) on or near the summit just before dawn. The slope is steep, with switchbacks, over loose rock and scree with some boulders as you near Gilman's Point. You will stop at hans Meyer cave on the way, the famous place that Kilimanjaro's first western climber described in jis journals. Once at Gilmans's Point (after ca. 5-6 hrs) at the edge of the crater, the trail becomes less steep and Uhuru Peak is reached after 1.5-2 hrs trekking along the usually snowy crater rim. After descending to Kibo hut, there is a pause for rest and food, then it's another 3-4 hrs to reach Horombo Camp. Total trekking time: 13-16 hrs.
Accommodation: Horombo camp (B, L, D)
Final descend - Transfer to Arusha It's a relaxed 5-6 hours trek straight down to Marango Gate, where you'll have lunch. After receiving your certificates and saying goodby to many of your crew, we'll bring you to the KIA lodge, where you can use day rooms for a shower, change cloths etc. In the afternoon, return to Arusha (or Moshi).
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