The Lemosho Route offers an unspoiled, remote and beautiful trail up to Shira Plateau. It can either be used in combination with the Western Breach Route or with the Kibo South Circuit ascending via Barafu Camp. This route is one of the quietest on the mountain and offers panoramic vistas and some game viewing as the forests around the Lemosho Glades are rich in buffalo, elephant and other big game animals.
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Arusha City|
|DEPARTURE TIME||Please arrive at least a day before the Safari.|
Day 1: Londorossi Gate to MTI Mkubwa (5 km)
Our day starts with breakfast and a 3 hour drive from Arusha 1,500m/ 4,921ft to Londorossi park gate 2,250m/ 7,382ft where the guides and porters prepare and pack the supplies and your equipment in the village. Lunch will be provided here along with mineral water. From here a forest track requiring a 4WD vehicle leads to the start of the Lemosho Route 2,300m/ 7,546ft, where your Kilimanjaro Lemohso route climb is underway. We will walk along forest trails to Mti Mkubwa (big tree) campsite at 2,800m/ 9,186ft, 3 hours. Our porters will arrive at the camp site before you will have your tent set up on your arrival. We use quality mountain hard wear tents. In the evening the porters will boil drinking and washing water and the chef will prepare dinner before you retire to your tent for the night. Night temperatures can already drop to freezing point at this campsite.
Day 2: MTI Mkubwa to Shira One Camp (8 km)
ou rise early at Mti Mkubwa camp, after breakfast, you climb an hour and a half to top of the forest at 3,000m/ 9,842ft. Your Kilimanjaro Lemosho route day 2 is underway. The trail moves to more open terrain. We will then go up and down a few hills before arriving at our lunch spot. Tents will be set up and lunch served. After lunch the trail steepens up along a ridge heading towards the Shira Plateau. We will stop for many breaks along the way, making sure we stay hydrated and take our time, slowly walking toward the crest of the ridge. We will continue by traversing across the Plateau where we will be rewarded with spectacular views back into the rain forest and the summit comes into view. We will then head down hill towards Shira Camp One at 3,500m/ 11,482ft in the moorlands of Kilimanjaro for our second nights sleep.
Day 3: Shira One Camp to Shira Two Camp (7 km)
After an early start, your Kilimanjaro Lemosho route day starts, we have a gentle walk across the Shira plateau which leads to Shira Camp Two on moorland meadows next to a beautiful stream 3,850m/ 12,631ft. By now you will be able to see, in an easterly direction, the Western Breach Route up Kilimanjaro with its stunning glaciers. There will also be stunning sunset views across the dormant Shira volcano. The porters will boil drinking and washing water, before serving dinner. As this camp is quite exposed, it can be substantially colder than the previous night, with temperatures dropping below freezing.
Day 4: Shira Two Camp to Barranco Valley Camp (10 km)
The route now turns east into a semi desert and rocky landscape surrounding the Lava Tower, where you reach an altitude of 4,600m/ 15,190ft after approximately four/five hours of walking. Lunch is served in a designated area before ascending the rocky scree path to the Lava Tower. This is definitely the toughest day so far. It is normally around this point, where for the first time, some climbers will start to feel symptoms of breathlessness, ill humour and headaches due to the high altitude. After lunch you descend again by almost 680m/ 2,231ft to the Barranco camping area and after reaching the high altitude of at the Lava Tower, the true acclimatization benefit of this day becomes clear. This descent to Barranco camp takes about 2 hours and offers great opportunities to take some beautiful photographs of the Western Breach and Breach Wall. The camp is situated in a valley below the Breach and Great Barranco Wall, which should provide you with a memorable sunset while you wait for your dinner.
Day 5: Barranco Valley Camp to Karanga Valley Camp (5 km)
After spending a night under the Great Barranco Wall, we make our way up this awesome looking obstacle, which in the end normally turns out to be easier than anticipated. Topping out just below the Heim Glacier at 4,200m/ 13,779ft, you now appreciate just how beautiful Kilimanjaro really is with the spectacular views. The route then heads down through the Karanga Valley over intervening ridges and valleys, and then joins up with the Mweka route. There can be amazing panoramic sunset views from the Karanga Camp while we enjoy our evening at 4,010m/ 13,156ft.
Day 6: Karanga Valley Camp to Barafu Camp (3 km)
The first part of the day after breakfast is a slow walk to the crest of the ridge, then we will cross a plain and after another hour or so, we reach the Barafu Hut in 3/4 hours. The last water stop on the route is the Karanga Valley, as there is no water at Barafu camp, so we will move plenty of water up to high camp. Barafu is the Swahili word for “ice” and it is a bleak and inhospitable camping area to spend the night as it is located at 4,650m/ 15,256ft. Totally exposed to the ever present gales, the tents are pitched on a narrow, stony, and dangerous ridge. From here, the summit is now a further 1,245m/ 4,085ft up and we will make our final ascent the same night. As we arrive to the Barafu camp early in the day, we will spend some time preparing equipment for the summit attempt. You will get dressed and ready for your summit attempt. You will retire to your tent at about 3pm or earlier and try to get some precious rest and sleep before our 12 am departure for the summit.
Day 7: Summit
We will rise around 10pm, and after some tea, coffee and breakfast, we will move off into the night. We head in a north-westerly direction and ascend through heavy scree towards Stella Point on the crater rim. For many climbers the approximately 6 to 7 hour walk to Stella point is mentally and physically the most challenging on the route. At Stella Point 5,756m/ 18,885ft we will stop for a short rest and will be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see (weather permitting). From Stella Point we might encounter snow all the way on our 1 hour ascent to Uhuru Peak. Once we reach the Uhuru Peak at 5,895m/ 19,341ft we will enjoy our accomplishment and take pictures before we begin the decent back to Barafu Camp and further down the mountain. After the three hour journey back to the camp, we will have a short, well-deserved rest, collect our remaining gear, and head down to the Mweka Hut at 3,100m/ 10,171ft. The route to the Mweka Hut is not difficult but you will be tired. This route will take us down the rock and scree path into the moorland and eventually into the forest with lots of downward steps. The camp is situated in the upper forest and mist or rain can be expected in the late afternoon. Dinner and washing water will be prepared as well as drinking water.
Day 8: To Mweka gate
After an early, and well-deserved, breakfast, it is a short and scenic trek back to the park gate. At Mweka gate 1,900m/ 6,233ft. you sign your name and details in a register and successful climbers will receive their summit certificates. Those climbers who reached Stella Point are issued with green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak receive gold certificates. From the Mweka Gate we drive back to Arusha for a long overdue hot shower, dinner and celebrations!! Your Kilimanjaro Lemosho route climb is over.