Climb Mount Kilimanjaro for 7 Days using the Rongai Route
Day by day itineraies for 7 days climbing kilimanjaro Rongai route
After breakfast we will drive to Rongai. We first head out on the main road to Marangu Gate for registration formalities and then go around the mountain to Rongai, which is a 2 to 3 hour drive on rough track through the villages. The climb begins from the attractive wooden village of Nale Moru (1950m) on a small path that wind through fields of maize and potatoes before entering pine forest. The track then starts to climb consistently, but gently through attractive forest that shelters a variety of wildlife, including the beautiful black and white Colobus monkey. These monkeys are black with a long ‘cape’ of white hair and a flowing white tail. The forest begins to thin out and the first camp is at the edge of the moorland zone (2600m) with extensive views over the Tanzania and Kenyan plains.
This side of the mountain does not receive anywhere near as much rain as the western flank and the underfoot conditions do not deteriorate into the thick boggy mud that is not uncommon on the Machame route. We will ascend 650 metres today. (3 to 4 hours walking). Overnight camp, B,L,D.
Today the trek leads directly across “The Saddle” between the two volcanoes of Mawenzi and the towering Kibo. As you cross the alpine desert of the Saddle, the open landscape affords all round views; all the way through the day there is Kibo looming up ahead. Eventually you can make out the winding summit path high above on the flanks of the mountain. Keep an eye out for the elusive eland that inhabits this high altitude zone, this is largest antelope in the world and is horse like in proportions. Throughout the day you should try to eat as much as possible in preparation for the summit attempt, which starts very early tomorrow morning. Keep snacking through the afternoon if you can. We should get into Kibo Camp (4700m) by early afternoon. The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent.
Once rested you should pack your day sacks for the morning and change your clothes in advance so that you are wearing the correct layers for the summit day. We go to bed very early (18:00 hrs) and hopefully get to sleep soon after that. You will be woken at around 23:30 for tea and biscuits. We will ascend 370 metres today. (4 to 5 hours walking). Overnight camp, B,L,D.
We will leave Kibo Camp (4700m) and start the final and by far the steepest and most demanding part of the climb by torchlight around midnight. There are five to six hours of trudging up generally well-graded zigzags in the dark. We plod very slowly in the darkness. On some stretches the ground is stable, whilst on others the loose volcanic scree scrunches and slides underfoot.
Heading up past Williams Point (5000m) we keep going to Hans Meyer Cave (5182m). All the way our climbing guide is keeping you going at a very slow plod, taking regular rest stops to drink and catch your breath. The temperature though is very cold and it is better to keep going very slowly. We walk on the switchback trail through loose volcanic scree to reach our first summit, the crater rim at Gilman’s Point (5685m) in time for sunrise. When you reach this point the park authorities will grant you a certificate. We will have ascended 985 metres (5 to 6 hours walking) so far. We will rest here for a short time to enjoy the spectacular sunrise over Mawenzi before those who wish, continue to Uhuru Peak (5895m) the second summit and Kilimanjaro’s true peak.
The optional three hour round trip to Uhuru Peak (5895m), passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area. Our journey only climbs 210 metres but this is deceptive. Eventually we will reach the summit and the wooden notice board confirming that you are actually standing on the roof of Africa. By now the warming rays of the sun will be thawing out our cold bodies. We will have time to absorb the fantastic scene and take those all-important summit photographs. Climbing to Uhuru Peak we will ascend a total of 1196 metres so far. (8 to 9 hours walking).
Summit Descent to Horombo Camp (3720m)
Coming down is much easier than going up and “skiing” down the scree is easy, quick and lots of fun. The descent to Kibo huts (4700m) is surprisingly fast. Here we will rest and have some refreshments before continuing to reach our final campsite at Horombo (3720 m). We will descend 3016 metres. (4 to 6 hours walking). Overnight camp, B,L,D.
Leaving Horombo Camp our steady descent takes us down through moorland to Mandara Hut (2700m), the first stopping place on the Marangu route. We then continue descending through lovely lush forest on a good path to the National Park gate at Marangu (1830m).
Your vehicle will be waiting for you at the bottom of the hill. Here we will say goodbye to our porters and distribute well-earned tips. We will descend 1890 metres. (5 to 6 hours walking). You now drive back to Moshi for a long overdue hot shower, dinner and celebrations!! Overnight
Transfer to and from the base of the mountain
Rongai route trek as itinerary depicts
Full board accommodation whilst on the trek.
Meal plan as detailed: B=Breakfast, L=Lunch and D=Dinner
All park entrance fees to include government taxes
Service of an English speaking professional Mountain guide on the mountain, porters and skilled cook
All services begin and end at Kilimanjaro Airport as per the itinerary
Treated water on the trek
Tips, laundry, sleeping bags, drinks and climbing gears
Medical evacuation, US$ 30 per person value
International flights and taxes
Items of a personal nature and any other extras not detailed in the above itinerary