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Caroline Letrange

Caroline Letrange Bring your bag to travel on the summit of the Himalayas and Kilimanjaro ! Nepal, Tibet, India, Bouthan, Mustang, Kilimanjaro... Travel to regions among the most beautiful. Discover photos and advice before booking your trip.

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KILI : Ready for Kilimanjaro ?

Par Caroline Letrange :: 18/06/2007 à 2:23 :: Climbing

The kilimandjaro is a fabulous volcano which can be climbed almost during  all year. However, it's better is climbing during the main dry seasons to have less clouds, less showers and less snow. Here are some good tips to prepare you climb ... and to get to the top !


All at the top for sunrise !!
  • What season ?
The kilimandjaro offers a great flexibility in the dates of rise because there are no monsoons or of window weather which obliges the climbing ones "to be thrown" on the heights in extremely limited times.

In the facts, you have two dry seasons:
  1. The great dry season between June and the beginning of October which enables you to benefit from less precipitations and to see the top. This period is also very advantageous when you cross the wet drill without "patauger" in mud or to endure the rains of the day.
  2. The small season dries which goes from semi January at at the end of February. This period is shorter but quite as pleasant. The nights are less cold there but precipitations can be more frequent in the course of the day. It can also snow at the top, perfect for the photographs, but sometimes the falls of temperatures are impressive and the wind can make some give up more one.
The two periods are worth and allow you to appreciate a very beautiful course. "more" estival period it is that one can take along all the family and vary the pleasures between safaris and ecotourism for mom and the children and rise for dad!

  • I live downtown, I spend 10 hour a day with my beloved laptop and weekends with my mother in law ... How the hell can i train ?

Even if Kilimandjaro is not technically difficult, altitude and thus the mountain altitude sickness are not to neglect. It is thus highly recommended to train before reaching alt.5895.

- the breath : you will have several consecutive days of walk during several days in a rough. REACH SUMMIT designed 7 days climbing instead of 5 or 6 on the Machame route to ensure you a good acclimatization and to considerably increase your chances of success. Running is the best to develop its breath and its pulmonary capacity. The oxgygen blood tranfert will be better to prevent breathlessness and mountain altitude sickness. Run on the long term to improve endurance without forcing and by monitoring your heartbeat rate. Do not push yourself, but enhance endurance.

- muscles : Why not going to the gym to strengthen the thighs and to reinforce the tendons. The knees suffer a little during the descent, it is thus necessary to take good care of them. I recommend to put knee brace if you knees are painful. The descent is done straigh after the final night which preceded one day of trek and the challenge for legs is very demanding.

- Walking slowly during your trek: it is essential. Some trekking days may sometimes seem easy to you on the way, do not accelerate. Give time to your body to acclimatize, to get accustomed to high altitude and lack of oxygen. Saved your energy for the final part which will request the best of you.

- Medication ? remain simple, the vitamins are your best friend. A good vitamin complement, 1000 Mg of C vitamin /day and one natural energetic is sufficient to prevent exhaustion. For altitude, aspirin and drink a lot, minimum 3/4 liters per day. Take soup, tea, water... whatever but drink !

TO AVOID : I do not recommend Diamox ; it is diuretic which will hide the first symptoms of altitude sickness. When the Ealtitude sickness strikes, it is often serious and too late to be treated (loss of appetite, impressing  swelling of the face, refusal to go and/or oedema)  ...  the pulmonary and cerebral oedema are not myths; you are at nearly 6000 meters!

The solution thus, small a 1h of gym apès work with a "Reply Car" (automatic answer) with your malls after 19h, "JE donot can answer you, I am in Kili drive!"and to run with the dog after the Sunday lunch.

  • Which Route to take ?
The National Park of Kilimandjaro is splendid and the crossed vegetation is a breathtaking experience. You first get through the rain forest, the Moorlands and altitude steppe before reaching the rocky desert.

- the Marangu way : also called "Coke Cola" Route,  appreciated by thetourists. Nights in refuges.

- the Machame way : western route, it is wilder and is perfect for trekkers in love with wild landscapes. nights in tent.

- the Lemosho Route through "Shira Route": Western route, longer but also one of most wild and has a huge diversity of vegetation. Healthy trekkers and those who wish to avoid the long queue of trekkers, will definitly prefer this route. REACH SUMMIT propose this route within 10 days with fresh food to benefit from tasty good food during this long trek. Tented trek.


Happy breakfast on Shira Plateau (Machame Route)

Other routes also exists, in the south Umbwe and Rongaï and in the north to diversify the climbing routes.

- the Mweka way : this is a very south one only for descent; 3 days were enough to make climb but the huge number of oedemas and deaths encouraged the authorities to close this route to get to the top of Kilimanjaro.

  • Kilimanjaro, it costs too much !
The prices vary indeed. However the park is a protected inheritance registers as the world inheritance of UNESCO. The recrudescense of the tourists has encourage the authorities to found an entry fee of USD 650 before launching out on the tracks. REACHSUMMIT includes parks fees and rescue in all its prices for Kilimanjaro ascent(the prices are in US Dollars, please convert in your own currency)


Tough job ! Porters climbing the Barranco Wall (Machame Route)

The tips and gears are also highly recommended. The local teams live tourism and are often far from their family during several days during the ascent. Don't forget to bring dollars and give good tips while arriving in Mweka Gate the last day of your climb.

  • What about visa?
You can take your visas directly in your own country or directly at the airport at arrival. If you enter and get out through Kenya a 20 USD tax will be claimed to you with each way (in and out).


I hope i have answered all the questions which are regularly asked to me for this very beautiful ascent. Please let's improve this blog by sending your questions directly on the Blog. Always happy to share with you my mountaineering experience and hope to make your travel a success.

To discover our offers at very small prices to climb Kilimanjaro, www.reachsummit.com

Photographs
are available, HERE >

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