Itinerary for Kilimanjaro Summit (Tanzania)

Day 1 Sunday: Arrival and transfer to beautifully landscaped Protea Aisha Hotel. Those participating in optional safari continue on (with an overnight bag) to bungalow campsite near Ngorongoro Canyon.

Day 2 Monday: Morning safari, early afternoon return by plane to Arusha. Rest and organization at Protea Aisha Hotel.

Day 3 Tuesday: 2˝ -hour drive to trailhead. We begin our trek at 7,600 feet, and hike through farmland and forest to Forest Camp at 9,000 feet. Easy terrain (though occasionally muddy), with a moderate ascent. Approximately 4-6 hours.

Day 4 Wednesday: A 3-4 hour morning hike across the lava-filled Shira Crater, lunch at Simba Camp, and then a 4-hour hike out of the crater to Shira Hut at 12,500 feet, where we'll spend the night.

Day 5 Thursday: Acclimatization day – Shira Hut to Barranco Camp (via Lava Tower) .We enter the alpine desert zone as we hike 3-4 hours to Lava Tower at 15,000 feet, and then descend 2-3 hours to Barranco (12800 ft.)This “climb high, sleep low” method is a key to acclimatization.

Day 6 Friday: We climb (slowly) up the Barranco Wall, then down into a valley then up again to Karanga Camp (4000 meters). The 3-4 hour hike gives us plenty of time to prepare for Shabbat. We build our amazing high-altitude eruv as Tanzanian porters watch in bewildered amusement. Showers available (in the mini-shower tent).

Day 6 Shabbat: Acclimatization day. The highest Shabbat you or (likely anyone else) will spend on the planet. Optional afternoon shbatzir (stroll).

Day 8 Sunday: Moderate 4-hour climb to Barafu Camp at 15,600 feet. The air is colder and thinner. Afternoon rest in preparation for tomorrow. Visible below are the light-dotted villages to the south of the mountain, and above, the richly star-dotted southern hemisphere sky. No trees up here – just lots of rock.

Day 9 Monday: Summit day – the most difficult day - but for which we're well prepared. Dawn departure for approximately 7-8 hours of ascent. On the way, the towering spires and majestic pillars of rock above, and the brilliant, never-ending African sky and plain below are simply unforgettable. We'll most likely be traversing some snow and ice, so the going will be quite slow. Once we've reached the crater rim, we'll get a close-up view of the disappearing glaciers, and of the mountain's dormant volcanic area - ash pits, sulphur deposits, etc. – Sometime after midday we reach Uhuru Peak at 19,160 feet, the "Top of Africa". Photos, celebration – and then a 4-hour descent back to our previous night’s campsite at Barafu Camp. A hot dinner, and then a well-deserved sleep.

Day 10 Tuesday: Early departure and down, down, down about 7-8 hours all the way out to Mweka Gate. The air is unbelievably thick and much warmer than it was at 4 am. Transfer back to hotel for hot showers, rest and a celebratory dinner.

Day 11 Wednesday: Morning bus ride to Moshi for a couple of hours to walk around, buy souvenirs, etc. Back to the hotel to pick up luggage and on to the airport for the flight home. It’s been fun – and amazing.


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