TANZANIA BADASS ADVENTURE

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Destination
Tanzania
Trip Length
10
Group Size
10-12
Activity Level
Expert
Mountain Climbing
Safari
Cultural Outings
Sightseeing
Camping

As the world’s tallest freestanding mountain, Mt. Kilimanjaro is a natural wonder defying all science and logic. Located just 200 miles south of the equator, its snowy peak is a breathtaking sight. Rising to over 19,000 feet, climbing this giant is no small feat and only just over half reach the summit. The climb is steady rather than exhausting, but the elevation and elements make it challenging, nonetheless. 

Home to 16 of the world’s most carefully protected national parks, Tanzania goes above and beyond to care for its world-renown wildlife. Here we can explore over 16,000 square miles of pristine wilderness teeming with antelope, gazelles, zebras, elephants, giraffes, lions, hippos, and more.

4-star Moshi hotel before and after the climb, tents during the climb.

Machame Route – 7 days/6 nights

Mt. Kilimanjaro (19,340’), the highest freestanding mountain in the world and the roof of Africa, has three distinct volcanic cones, two of which are extinct and one that could erupt again. It lies within the nearly 300 square mile Kilimanjaro National Park, one of the few places on earth that encompasses every ecological life zone—tropical jungle, savannah, desert, montane forests, and alpine. Known for being stunningly scenic, the Machame Route also has the best summit success rate. This route allows you to “climb high, sleep low”, giving your body time to adjust to the changes in altitude over several days. As we ascend, we’ll be climbing through the ecological life zones. This diversity makes it seem like we are in a completely different world from one day to the next. 

DAYS 1-2:  ARRIVAL

Fly out of your city of origin with a destination of Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO). Our Tanzanian, English speaking guide will meet us at the airport and take us by private bus to our hotel in Moshi or Arusha. After checking in we will relax, eat, and rest from the flights. Everyone will sleep two to a room. On day 2 we will tour Arusha, sort and finalize preparations of our gear, and relax in preparation for our climb. 

DAYS 3-9:  CLIMBING

We will cover 38 miles of moderate to strenuous trekking over a 7-day period.

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All six mornings on the mountain will begin at 6:30 a.m. with coffee or tea served in your tent. A complete breakfast will be served at 7:30 - 8:30 a.m. and the day will begin promptly at 9:00 a.m. except for summit day. Lunch will be served at designated areas on the trail and breakfast and dinner will always be served in camp. The dining tent, our personal tents (2 people per tent), and bathrooms will be set up at each campsite. Porters will carry one mountain duffel of your climbing gear weighing no more than 44 pounds. This allows you to carry a smaller day pack. 

 

DAY 3

MACHAME GATE (5,900FT) TO MACHAME CAMP (9,800FT) 

Elevation Gain: 3,900 feet 

Hiking Time: Approximately 6 to 7 hours 

Habitat: Rainforest 

1st mountain day—After breakfast, we’ll get picked up from our hotel in Moshi and driven to the starting point at Machame Gate (approximately 45 mins). After registration and gear organization, we will begin our journey to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro using a well-maintained trail through Montane Forest. On the way, we’ll walk through dense rainforest and coffee plantations as our guide talks us through some of the local flora and fauna. Here we will also get a very good chance to see Black and White Colobus monkeys, as well as many different species of colorful birds. The climb is a steady and gradual incline to Machame Camp which is located on the edge of the rainforest and giant heather zones.

DAY 4

MACHAME CAMP (9,800FT) TO SHIRA CAMP (12,600FT) 

Elevation Gain: 2,800 feet 

Hiking Time: Approximately 5 to 6 hours 

Habitat: Moorland

2nd mountain day—We will trek out of the rainforest ascending a slightly steeper gradient through the 

moorland vegetation zone. Here we will start to get fantastic views of Kibo, the summit cone of Mt. Kilimanjaro while continuing along a rocky ridge to Shira Plateau. Shira is a collapsed volcanic crater and was the first of Kilimanjaro’s three volcanic cones to expire. Once on the plateau, the trail becomes easier as we make our way to Shira Camp. If it’s a clear day, we’ll also get to enjoy superb panoramic views. Shira Camp is very exposed and will feel colder with temperatures dropping below freezing at night.

DAY 5

SHIRA CAMP (12,600FT) TO BARRANCO CAMP (12,650FT) VIA LAVA TOWER 

(14,900FT) 

Elevation Gain: 2,300 feet 

Elevation Loss:  2,250 feet 

Hiking Time: Approximately 6 to 7 hours 

Habitat: Alpine desert 

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3rd mountain day—As we continue our adventure, the route now takes us into semi-desert and rocky landscapes surrounding Lava Tower, a 300-foot-high volcanic rock formation. We’ll then ascend the rocky scree path to Lava Tower for great panoramic views, before a steep descent into the Barranco Valley. We may find this trek a little tougher than the previous days as some of us may start to feel the altitude. Although we will finish today’s climb at almost the same elevation as we started, this is very good for acclimatization and will help prepare our bodies for summit day. Barranco Camp lies below the imposing Barranco Wall in a beautiful, sheltered valley.

DAY 6

BARRANCO CAMP (12,650FT) TO KARANGA CAMP (13,106FT)

Elevation Gain: 456 feet 

Hiking Time: Approximately 4 to 5 hours 

Habitat: Alpine desert 

4th mountain day—This is a shorter day of hiking to allow for acclimatization. We will cross the floor of the great Barranco Valley and begin to ascend the Barranco Wall. This is a great place for team pictures with majestic Mt. Kilimanjaro in the background. From the top of the wall, we will then cross a series of hills and valleys before descending into the Karanga Valley then climbing to Karanga Camp where we will relax for the afternoon before dinner.

DAY 7

KARANGA CAMP (13,106FT) TO BARAFU CAMP (15,100FT)

Elevation Gain: 1,994 feet 

Hiking Time: Approximately 3 to 4 hours 

Habitat: Alpine desert

5th mountain day—We will leave Karanga and hit the junction which connects to the famous Mweka Trail. We will then continue along a rocky ridge for approximately 2 hours before reaching Barafu Camp, with more stunning views of Mt. Kilimanjaro’s summit from various angles. This is the time to get mentally prepared for an early morning summit push.

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DAY 8

BARAFU CAMP (15,100FT) TO UHURU PEAK (19,340FT) THEN DESCENDING TO MILLENNIUM CAMP (12,700FT)

Elevation Gain: 4,200 feet 

Elevation Loss:  2,400 feet

Hiking time: 6 to 7 hours to Uhuru Peak; 2 to 3 hours to Millennium Camp 

Habitat: Arctic conditions 

6th mountain day--This is where the adventure gets truly Badass! Around midnight, we will venture into the night and begin our final ascent to the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro. We will head northwest through the heavy stone scree following multiple switchbacks between the Ratzel and Rebmann glaciers until we reach Stella Point (18,851ft). This section is probably the most challenging part of the route. After a short rest at Stella Point, we will hike along the crater rim for another hour before reaching our ultimate goal – Uhuru Peak! Congratulations! We have now made it to the “Roof of Africa”. 

Weather conditions on the summit will determine how long we will be able to spend there before starting our descent back at Barafu Camp. After a short rest, we’ll gather the rest of our gear and descend to the Millennium Camp (12,600ft) where we’ll enjoy dinner and a well-earned sleep! 

DAY 9

MILLENNIUM (12,600FT) TO MWEKA GATE (6,496FT) 

Elevation Loss: 6,104 feet 

Hiking time: Approximately 4 to 6 hours 

Habitat: Rainforest 

7th mountain day—After a final breakfast on the mountain we will begin the easiest part of our adventure on Mount Kilimanjaro via scenic path through the forest to Mweka Gate. We will then drive back to our hotel to enjoy a shower, rest, and celebratory team dinner! 

DAY 10

ARUSHA—DEPARTURE/SAFARI

Today we will enjoy a leisurely breakfast and prepare for our departure home. For those participating in the optional 1-day safari, a private safari truck will depart from our hotel at 8:00 a.m. for Tarangire National Park. We will enjoy a picnic lunch in the park and return to the hotel by 4:30 p.m. to prepare for our evening flights home. Safari participants will need to make a flight reservation that departs after 8:00 p.m. Private airport transportation is provided for all flight departures. 

For those participating in the 3-day safari, we will have a similar morning departure as we spend 3-days on safari taking in the amazing wildlife in their natural setting. We will visit Tarangire National Park, Ngorongoro Crater, and Lake Manyara. Antelope, elephants, giraffe, gazelles, zebras, wildebeests, lions, hippos, and more will be among the animals we have an opportunity to observe roaming the savannah.

  • Lead American guide, local guides, cooks, porters, and drivers
  • All lodging—2 nights in Arusha/Moshi pre-climb, 1-night post climb (double occupancy)
  • All ground transportation for team functions.
  • All meals on the mountain and on safari
  • Celebration dinner after the climb
  • Group camping gear—tents (double occupancy), chairs, tables, eating utensils, and sleeping pads.
  • Portable flush toilet on the mountain
  • Emergency first-aid kit
  • Portable oxygen tanks (emergency use) and pulse-ox meter 
  • All permit and park fees

• Flights
• Meals before and after the climb
• Travel insurance
• Laundry
• Personal purchases such as souvenirs
• Tips (Suggested amount 10-20% of trip cost)
• Visa fees