Machame Route for the Adventurous
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Machame, known as the “Whiskey” route, is now the most popular route on the mountain. Compared with Marangu, the days on Machame are longer and the walks are steeper. It is considered a difficult route, better suited for more adventurous folks, and those with some hiking or backpacking experience.
The minimum number of days required for this route is six days, although seven days is recommended. Climbers sleep in supplied tents at designated campsites, and eat meals either outdoors or inside a large dining tent. Staff prepares all meals and sets up the tents.
The Machame route is scenically beautiful and varied.
Machame approaches from the southwest and descends using Mweka, rewarding climbers with views of the expansive Shira Plateau, an optional scramble up Lava Tower, a climb up the Great Barranco Wall, and a traverse underneath Kilimanjaro’ Southern Ice field.
Arrive in Arusha /Kilimanajaro Meet and Great with Authentic Kilimanjaro representative transfer to the Hotel We will meet you late in the evening for a short climbing orientation. We will give you a climb briefing and answer any questions you have about the climb. We will also do an equipment check with each person to be sure that you are fully prepared. Accommodation and meals at Impala Hotel -Arusha
Machame Hut Camp (10,000′) (day 1 on the mountain)Drive for 1 hour from Arusha to Machame gate (10,000ft) for registration, and meet the rest of the crew (Cooks and Porters) ready for the climb. We will start the climb through rainforest and the giant heathers for 6 hrs to our first overnight camp.
Shira Camp (12,480′) (day 2 on the mountain)Short day but rather steep rocky and dusty trails. It’s a slow hike with plenty of breaks and enough time to acclimatize. Most of the route is rather bare of vegetation providing little shade from heat. You will cross many ridges and see the first of many Senecias
Day 04 Barranco Camp (13,000′) (day 3 on the mountain)Start with climbing over boulders and very few rocks, then steady uphill climb to Lava tower and stop for lunch around noon.
For those interested we may climb up the Lava tower which is 14850ft (You may start to get a mild headache due to altitude change). From Lava tower we will go down for about 2 hrs through dusty and rocky trails to the Barranco Camp at 13000ft.
Karanga Valley Camp (13,450′) (day 4 on the mountain)Start scrambling up the Barranco wall for an hour and half which is steep and you will be using your hands to reach and steady yourself like rock climbing, although it’s not as challenging as rock climbing. At the top of the wall you can see the Barranco valley and the campsite you spent a night before. You will walk up and down the greener valley which is the last water point to the mountain.
Barafu Hut Camp (14,200′) (day 5 on the mountain)Short but steep uphill climb across barren landscape with lots of boulders and shattered rocks. You will see the Decken glaciers on your left. Keep going a very steep ridge until we reach a rocky section for more scrambling for about hour and half. Our next camp will be on large rocks with very steep cliff faces. We will go to bed very early because we will have to wake up at 11.00p.m for the summit
Summit Day and Mweka Hut (10,500′) (day 6 on the mountain)We will start the climb at around midnight. We will start with very steep rocks for 1 hour, and then will enter a snow covered area where you can see glaciers above. If it’s a moonlight night, you may turn off your headlamp and walk in the moonlight, it is a wonderful experience. Next 2 hours to Stella Point, we will take a break every 15 minutes as a struggle gets more mentally and physically challenging. Then we will get to Stella Point where the Lava fields are like loose sand. It’s very funny and frustrating because you will take a step up and slide back gaining 0 distances and if not careful slide back 2 steps and gain negative 2 steps. After breakfast, we will climb to UHURU PEAK for 1 hr just as the sun appears over the Mawenzi peaks. We will be at UHURU PEAK (19370ft) around 6.00 or 7:00am. We will start our descent which is steep and rigorous via Stella Point to Barafu hut Camp. We will stop at Barafu Camp for lunch and a good rest before we proceed down to Mweka camp, a very comfortable hike, but very dusty and long.
Arusha (day 7 on the mountain and hike out) Today’s hike will take us about 4 to 5 hours to make the 4,500 feet descent to the park gate. We will check out and receive Kilimanjaro climbing certificate at the park gate office, then eat our lunch and say goodbye to our mountain staff. After lunch we will drive through very beautiful coffee plantations and small villages of the Chaga people back to Arusha, for a nice hot shower or swimming at the lodge and relax, .ready for departure home or onto wildlife safari the next day (Dinner and overnight at Arusha Hotel
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