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Kilimanjaro Climb 9 Days Northern Circuit Route

Created with Sketch. Lemosho Route, Kilimanjaro

Duration

9 Days

Tour Type

Daily Tour

Group Size

Unlimited

Languages

English

Overview

The Northern Circuit route is one of the best routes on Kilimanjaro, offering nearly 360 degrees of beautiful scenery including the quiet, rarely visited northern slopes. As the longest route on Kilimanjaro, the Northern Circuit allows for the best acclimatization time and the highest summit success rate, therefore this route... More

The Northern Circuit route is one of the best routes on Kilimanjaro, offering nearly 360 degrees of beautiful scenery including the quiet, rarely visited northern slopes. As the longest route on Kilimanjaro, the Northern Circuit allows for the best acclimatization time and the highest summit success rate, therefore this route is highly recommended.

The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the west, beginning with a long drive from Arusha to Londorossi Gate. From there, the first two days are spent trekking through the rainforest to Shira Ridge, before crossing the Shira Plateau. The route then heads north and circles clockwise from Moir Hut to Buffalo Camp to School Hut, before summiting from the east.

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Itinerary

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DAY 0 - WELCOME TO TANZANIA

Arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), where you will meet our company representative (Guide or Driver), and transfer to Masailand Safari Lodge. The hotel will provide all the essentials for a comfortable stay: cosy rooms, hot water, and Internet access. In the evening, there will be a briefing with our Kilimanjaro mountain guides, who will also make sure you are ready to begin the climb.

DAY 1 - LONDOROSSI GATE AND STARTING POINT TO MTI MKUBWA

Elevation: 1830m/6000ft to 2650m/8700ft
Distance: 7km
Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Montane Forest

Leave in the morning from Arusha to Londorossi village were gate is located. The start of trail 2100m trek winds up through the lush forest zone on to the lower slopes of the northern side, going to Shira Plateau. Overnight at Mti Mkubwa 2650m, 3 to 4 hours.

DAY 2 - MTI MKUBWA (BIG TREE) CAMP – SHIRA 1 CAMP

Elevation: 2650m/8700ft to 3500m/11,500ft
Distance: 8km/5mi
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Moorland

After breakfast, you will follow a thin trail through the rainforest before leaving the green area behind heading into moorland. Erica and Lobelia plants will start to take over the landscape. After about 4-5 hours you will reach Shira One Camp where you will have your evening meal and overnight stay.

DAY 3 - HIKE SHIRA 1 CAMP TO SHIRA 2 CAMP

Elevation: 3500m/11,500ft to 3850m/12,600ft
Distance: 8km/5mi
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Moorland

After breakfast, you continue your trek, which today will be less tiring than the day before. You will cross Shira Ridge which will allow for great views of the Rift Valley and Mt Meru. The ever-changing landscape will again surprise you with a different terrain- you will walk on the ground where lava once flowed. You will also pass the big Senecien that can grow to more or less 9 meters in height. Shira Camp 2 will be your destination for the night at (3850m), 350m more than the night before.

DAY 4 - SHIRA CAMP 2 TO MOIR CAMP

Elevation: SHIRA CAMP 2 (3850M) to MOIR CAMP (4200M)
Distance covered: 14km / 8mi
Approx. time taken: 5-7 hours

Day four is a long trek heading east which passes through the ‘Garden of the Senecios’ and then enters the high alpine desert zone. The morning is spent trekking up to Lava Tower and the iconic Shark’s Tooth rock formation at 4,600 meters, where you will have lunch. After lunch, you will join the northern circuit heading down to Moir Camp at 4,200 meters (see map above). This is an important day in your trek as you will get to experience high altitude and then sleep low, which is good for the acclimatization process.

DAY 5 -MOIR CAMP TO BUFFALO CAMP

Elevation: Moir Camp (4200 M) to Buffalo Camp (4020 M)
Distance covered: 12km /7Mil
Approx. time taken: 5 - 7 hours

Day five involves a moderately steep climb out of Moir Valley. Trekkers can take a small detour here to climb the summit of Little Lent Hill at 4,375 meters before returning to the Northern Circuit trail. From here the route follows a series of inclines and declines, skirting around the northern slopes of Kibo to Buffalo Camp (4,020 meters). The trek gives great vistas out across the plains that lie north of Kilimanjaro and stretch out to the Kenyan / Tanzanian border. You will arrive at Buffalo Camp just after midday, where you will have lunch and have time to rest after a long day hiking.

DAY 6 - BUFFALO CAMP TO RONGAI THIRD CAVE

Elevation: Buffalo Camp (4020 M) to Rongai Third Cave (3800 M)
Distance covered: 8km / 5mi
Approx. time taken: 5 -7 hours

Day six starts with a climb up the Buffalo ridge and down into Porfu Camp where lunch is usually served. The route then continues east around the northern slopes to the Rongai Third Cave at 3,800 meters. The trek is shorter than the day before and by now you should be feeling well acclimatised to the altitude. You will arrive at the Third Cave just around mid-afternoon.

DAY 7 - 3RD CAVE TO SCHOOL HUT

Elevation: Third Cave Camp (3800 M) to School Hut (4800 M)
Distance covered: 15km / 8miles
Approx. time taken: 5 hours

Day seven involves a steady incline up and over the Saddle which sits between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi Peak. Trekkers then continue walking south-west up to School Hut (4,800 meters). After arriving at School Hut you will be served an early dinner and then you should get some shut-eye as you will be awoken before midnight to start your summit attempt. Remember to prepare all your gear, including warm clothes, insulated water bottles, snacks, headlamp and camera before going to bed.

DAY 8 - SCHOOL HUT TO UHURU PEAK AND THEN ONTO MILLENNIUM CAMP

Elevation: SCHOOL HUT (4,800 METERS) TO UHURU PEAK (5,895 METERS) AND THEN ONTO MILLENNIUM CAMP (3,950 METERS)

Distance: ~6km / 3.5 miles ascent and 10.5km / 6 mile descent

Trekking time: 6-8 hours ascent and then 4-6 hour descent

You will be awoken around 11:30 with hot tea and biscuits and will then begin the steep incline up the slopes of Kibo under the cover of darkness. Your first check-point is Hans Meyer Cave where you will take a short break. The climb steepens as you approach Gilman’s Point (5,681 meters), which will be around 5-6 hours after departing School Hut. Take a moment to enjoy the approaching dawn and incredible view out and across to Mawenzi Peak, but remember you still have 2 hours trekking to reach Uhuru Peak so dig deep for the energy. The slope flattens as you head west around the crater rim and you should arrive at the summit at or just after sunrise. Your stay here will be brief so get as many pictures as you can of the incredible views and surrounding glaciers. You will then retrace your steps back around the crater rim to Stella Point (5,739 meters) where you will turn south and head down the heavily screed slopes of Kibo to Barafu Camp (4,680 meters). Most trekkers take a short break here before continuing down to Millennium Camp (3,950 meters) for your final night on the mountain. In total, you will be trekking for 14-16 hours on day eight so it is important to pace yourself, remain hydrated and keep your blood sugar levels up. Note: some tour operators return via Gilman’s Point to Horombo Hut using the Marangu Route

DAY 9 - MILLENNIUM CAMP TO MWEKA GATE

Elevation : Millennium Camp (3,950 meters) to Mweka Gate (1,640 meters)
Distance: ~10km / 6.5 miles

Trekking time: 4-5 hours

The final day is a short hike through the dense montane rainforest from Millennium Camp (3,950 meters) to Mweka Gate (1,640 meters). At the gate you will need to sign-out with the authorities, who will also provide you with your official certificate – a green certificate for those who made it to Gilman’s Point and a gold certificate for those who reached Uhuru Peak. It is customary to give your guide and porter tips before being driven back to your hotel in Arusha.

DAY 10 - DEPARTURE DAY

Our packages include departure day services. Enjoy breakfast and a morning sightseeing in the city or join us for one of our Safari Adventures. If you are returning home our driver will bring you to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) to catch your flight home.

Included/Excluded

  • All Park Fees, including the 18% VAT
  • Airport transfers
  • Transport to and from the hotel and the trailhead/gate,
  • Tents on the mountain.
  • All meals while you are on the mountain (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner)
  • Salaries for guides, cooks and porters
  • Oxygen
  • Portable Chemical Toilet
  • Hotel accommodation in Arusha the night before and the night after the climb (Bed and breakfast)
  • Airfare to Tanzania
  • Tips for guides, porters and other staff
  • Sleeping bags, sleeping pads and other personal gears,
  • Lunch or dinners at the hotel in Arusha,
  • Soft drinks, beer and items of a personal nature
  • Laundry,
  • Visas,
  • Travel Insurance and Medical Insurance

Tour's Location

Created with Sketch. Lemosho Route, Kilimanjaro

FAQs

How much weight of equipment will I carry?
You are expected to carry your own day pack, with only things which should be able to sustain you until you reach the next camp at the end of the day. You do not need to carry your personal backpack/ duffel pack - It will be carried by our porters.
What if I am slower than the other trekkers?
No worries about that - this is a common concern. It is much better for your body if you proceed slowly and guides will permanently remind you about this (“pole-pole” - which means “slowly slowly”). By walking slowly, your body will much better acclimatize to high altitude.

There is plenty of time allocated each day for the treks, even for those who like to go very slowly.
What if I cannot make it to the top?
Some climbers may fall short of reaching the summit, but not at the expense of their overall experience. Even for those who never reached the top, the experience of the wonders of Kilimanjaro is very rewarding.

If one or more members of the group decide they cannot continue, or if a guide deems it unsafe for an individual (or a group) to continue, they are escorted to the most convenient campsite or hut.

Our guides intimately know the network of shortcuts to escort climbers to safety, and they are trained to act quickly and calmly under any circumstance.
What is the accommodation like during trekking?
For Lemosho route-Northern Circuit, you will sleep in 3 dome-style Tents, two people each. The Tents are modern and have an outer flysheet and large vestibules keep equipment from the elements. They are set up, broken down and carried- along with everything else- by our porters.

There will be dining tents with chairs and tables where all meals will be served. Before any meal, we will provide soap and hot water for washing your hands.
What is the food like on the mountain?
For each trek on the Mountain, a dedicated cook will be part of the logistical team. They are professional chefs and have the ability to prepare different kinds of dishes.
What if I get sick up the mountain?
You shouldn't worry- You are in safe hands. Our guides are professionally trained to handle all sorts of distress and respond quickly and accordingly. They all have Wilderness First Aid Responder qualification and they will all time bring you to safety. They will directly call for an emergency evacuation if the situation worsens.
When and where does the tour start?
The tours are scheduled to start in Arusha, departing on Daily basis. However, circumstances like clients’ arrival time, activities to be done and the client’s preference could affect the program. Our company is flexible for such arrangements and adjustments. Normally the program starts around 7:30 AM
When and where does the tour End?
The tours are scheduled to End in Arusha. However, our travel specialists will need to know your specific drop-off point prior to the hike to get aligned with the program.
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