Mount Kilimanjaro Climbing Umbwe Route

Hotline No: (+254) 722 706 584
(+254) 722 706 584 

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Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe Route
umbwe route kilimanjaro | kili | kilimanjaro umbwe route

Umbwe route is the hardest but most spectacular and direct way to reach Uhuru Peak. Extra days can be added to our itinerary to explore or relax along the route or to camp in the Karanga River valley. Accommodation on the mountain is in tents; you will need a sleeping bag and mat. The porters will pitch the tents for you.

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route is among the hardest but most spectacular and direct way to reach Uhuru Peak. It follows a forested ridge to the moorlands, and then traverses below the Southern Icefields to reach the Barafu Route which is followed to the summit. An early start is made on the summit day to reach Stella Point, on the Crater Rim at dawn. Uhuru Peak lies a further 40 minutes along the rim.

Accommodation on the mountain is in tents which the porters will pitch for you; you will need a sleeping bag, warm clothes and walking poles. This is a steep, tough and in places slightly exposed trek within the limits of a fit individual used to walking in mountain areas. An extra day can be added to our itinerary to explore or relax along the route, (best taken at the Barranco Hut). If you are not accustomed to camping and mountain walking you could consider the Marangu Route as the most suitable. This follows easy angled paths through magnificent rain forests to the Mandara Hut. Shortly beyond it passes Maundi Crater, a fine view point located at the edge of the forest belt. Above you enter the moorlands with their fine giant heathers stands, groundsels, lobelia and other exotic tropical high altitude plants. The next hut is the Horombo Hut, soon after this hut you reach the Saddle, a high altitude desert separating the rugged Mawenzi summit from Kibo. The final ascent starts from the Kibo Hut and involves steep paths on loose scree. There is fresh running water at all the huts apart from Kibo where it will be carried by your porters. You will be accommodated generally in 4 person clean huts with mattresses.

The other routes are all more demanding as regards steepness and in places involve some scrambling. Accommodation is in tents and there is no running water at the campsites though warm water for washing is provided. The scenery more than compensates for these difficulties. Whichever route you choose it is essential to allow enough time for acclimatization to the altitude.

Although Mt. Kilimanjaro can be climbed throughout the year it is worth avoiding the two rainy seasons (late March to mid-June and October to the beginning of December) when the route becomes slippery. Probably the best time to visit is January to February and September to October when there is usually no cloud.

Mount Kilimanjaro (19340') (5895m) lies just 3 degrees south of the equator and is one of the highest volcanoes in the world. It rises some (15000') (4572m) above the surrounding plains and savannahs. The Kilimanjaro National Park covers some 1864 sq. Km (720 sq. miles) The base of this immense mountain has diameter of 80 Km (48 Miles) and the outstanding features are its three major volcanic centers: Shira (4160m) in the west. Mawenzi (5280 m) to the east and the permanently snow-capped Kibo in the middle.

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route, the terrain passes from a tropical to an artic clime in just a few days. The encircling rain forest ensures the fertility of the lower lying shambas and is rich in birdlife. Above the rain forest lies the Alpine Meadow, beautiful moorland, offering many splendid views. Exotic plants such as the giant Lobelia and the fork-like Groundsel are to be seen. The latter blooming once every 50 - 70 years. Leaving the Alpine Meadow we reach the Alpine Desert and eventually the ''snows of Kilimanjaro''.

It is strictly prohibited to sleep inside the caves since it has caused death to some climbers due to slight earthquakes.

6 Days / 5 Nights Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route

Day 1:  Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route

Before the climb starts there is an hour's drive to the start of the trek at 1650 m. This is an opportunity to be introduced to the assistant guide, the cook and porters, who will do their best to assist you to get to the summit. From here we walk thorough farms and montane forest to Umbwe cave camp (2850 m - 1200 m of ascent). Now a National Park, Kilimanjaro's lush rainforest lower slopes are home to many beautiful birds and animals and by walking quietly, we have good chances of spotting black andwhite colobus monkeys as well. Climbing slowly and steadily, we eventually reach Umbwe cave, where the tents are pitched amongst the lichen covered trees.

Day 2:  Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route

Continue the climb through the forest and then emerge into the giant heather zone. You then climb through a rocky area to the camp site near the Barranco hut (3950 m).

Day 3:  Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route

The trail climbs up the formidable looking Barranco wall - but like many such trails it looks worse from a distance. Once on the wall care is needed in a few exposed places and here the guides will assist. Mostly however it is a good track, although steep, and you should reach the top of the wall in just over an hour. The trail then undulates towards the south east before dropping steeply to the Karanga valley camp site at 4100 m.

Day 4:  Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route

An undulating route goes from the Karanga valley to the junction of the Mweka route. From here there is a final pull up to the Barafu hut. (Barafu - ice is Swahili) total ascent 600 m. There is little vegetation here at 4600 m, and the tents are pitched between rocky outcrops. There are however magnificent views of the peak and of Mawenzi in the east. Bird life is restricted to thewhite necked ravens with their echoing croak as they wheel about scavenging for food.

Day 5:  Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route

This is the toughest day of the whole trek - 10 -15 hours walking at high altitude over steep ground total ascent 1300 m. We set off from Barafu hut at 1.00am with head torches to climb the steep scree slope to Stella Point on the crater rim - 5700 m. We should reach the rim just in time to enjoy the incredible spectacle of sunrise. From Stella Point it is another 1-1 and a half hours along the rim to Uhuru Peak - 5895 m. Snow may be encountered on the scree slope and walking poles are useful for ascent and descent. After the exhilaration of the summit you descend slowly to your overnight camp for a late breakfast and 2 hour rest in your tent. All too soon the guide will be urging you to start the long descent to Mweka hut, via the heather moorland. You reach Mweka hut camping area in late afternoon for a deserved rest.

Day 6:  Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Umbwe route
Descent to the gate and return to the hotel.



Hotline No: (+254) 722 706 584
(+254) 722 706 584 


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