Lemosho Crater is our most popular itinerary for its beauty and the excitement of spending an overnight at Crater Camp next to the Furtwangler Glacier at 18,800 feet inside the crater on Kilimanjaro. Climbers spend 9 total days on the mountain for maximum acclimatization. The route takes us from the west across the Shira Plateau, with an ascent to the base of the majestic Lava Tower. From Lava Tower this approach via Barafu to the east offers a longer and less steep climb than straight up via the Western Breach, and it allows climbers to summit twice, if they wish. After the overnight camped in the soft sand of the crater, we have a sunrise climb to Uhuru Peak before descending toward the southeast and incredible views of Mawenzi, Kilimanjaro’s remnant volcanic cone.
per person, double occupancy (single supplement US $450)
Contact us to discuss dates and route you would like.
• 9 Total days on the mountain for superior acclimatization.
• Overnight inside the crater at 18,800′ / 5730m.
• Climbers can summit twice (afternoon and following morning).
• Morning summit ascent starts at dawn (rather than night-time on other routes).
|Hiking Distance||Hiking Time||Elevation Start||Elevation Finish||Elevation Gain|
Mbahe Farm Cottages.
|2||Village cultural walk, rest, climb preparation.|
Mbahe Farm Cottages.
|3||Hiking day 1.|
Lemosho to Big Tree Camp.
|4||Hiking day 2.|
Big Tree Camp to Shira 1 Camp.
|5||Hiking day 3.|
Shira 1 Camp to Shira 2 Camp.
|6||Hiking day 4.|
Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower Camp.
|7||Hiking day 5.|
Lava Tower Camp to Karanga Camp.
|8||Hiking day 6.|
Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp.
|9||Hiking day 7.|
Barafu Camp to Crater Camp.
|10||Hiking day 8.|
Crater Camp to Uhuru Peak to Millennium Camp.
|1 hour to Uhuru|
4 hours to Millennium
|11||Hiking day 9.|
Millennium Camp to Mweka Gate.
Ameg Lodge or Pink Flamingo Hotel, Moshi Town.
|12||Moshi Town tour.|
We pick you up upon arrival at the Kilimanjaro International Airport and bring you to Mbahe Village, located in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro, approximately 2 hours from the airport. Accommodations are in SENE’s private cottages at Simon Mtuy’s Mbahe Village Farm.
Overnight: Mbahe Village Farm Cottages.
Day 2: Mbahe Village, Kilimanjaro
You have the morning to rest and relax. Enjoy delicious “homebrew” coffee, grown and roasted on the farm, and meals made with fruits and vegetables from the garden. Your trip leader provides a climb orientation and equipment check. This is also a day to take a guided tour around Mbahe Village, the Mtuy family farm, and to swim in the river and waterfall running through Simon’s land.
Overnight: Mbahe Village Farm Cottages.
Day 3: Londorossi Gate to Big Tree Camp
After breakfast we drive to Londorossi Gate, where you meet your other guides and mountain crew and enter the Kilimanjaro National Park. From the trailhead, we walk for a few hours uphill through the thick and undisturbed montane forest to our camp for the night. Many beautiful flowers are seen en route and with luck we will observe colobus monkeys at play. In the evening you may hear the unforgettable shrieking call of the tree hyrax.
Overnight: Big Tree Camp.
Day 4: Big Tree Camp to Shira 1 Camp
Today we reach the west side of the Shira Plateau in a hiking time of 6 hours. Taking our time walking through the forest allows us to observe its animal and bird life. The day’s hike takes us from the montane forest, through a transition zone, and into the heather zone, where old lava flows are visible. Your guides will point out unique environmental differences that characterize each zone. After a picnic lunch we reach the edge of the Plateau and eventually our camp that offers a dramatic view of Kilimanjaro and its permanent glaciers.
Overnight: Shira 1 Camp.
Day 5: Shira 1 Camp to Shira 2 Camp
Today is an easy paced acclimatization day of 4 to 5 hours hiking. Camp is set higher on the Shira Plateau with more expansive views of Kilimanjaro. There is a conditioning hike in the afternoon where you can examine the clusters of giant lobelias and senecios that grow at this elevation.
Overnight: Shira 2 Camp.
Day 6: Shira 2 Camp to Lava Tower Camp
Today is another important day for acclimatization as we hike for 5 hours to an elevation above 15,000 feet. We will pass through the alpine moorland zone where plants are extremely hardy and consist of lichens, grasses, and heather, to reach Kilimanjaro’s alpine desert zone. You will have a spectacular view of the Western Breach.
Overnight: Lava Tower Camp.
After an initial descent from Lava Tower camp we climb the Great Barranco Wall – not too steep but still an exhilarating challenge – which our guides make safe and accessible for everyone by ascending pole pole (meaning “slowly” in Kiswahili). You will be able to see the breathtaking Heim Glacier from the top of the Wall. Descend into the Karanga Valley and then climb again to our camp on a ridge above the Valley, where you will enjoy a well-deserved rest and your daily afternoon tea and snacks.
Overnight: Karanga Camp.
Day 8: Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp
As we begin hiking today the trail turns steadily uphill. Temperatures are noticeably colder and the landscape more sparse as we work our way to Barafu camp. Barafu means “ice” in Kiswahili. Hiking time is 4 to 5 hours. The camp is set on an exposed ridge and is the staging point for our push to the summit. After an early dinner, we have a summit briefing and prepare our equipment before resting.
Overnight: Barafu Camp.
Day 9: Barafu Camp to Crater Camp
Today we slowly wind our way up from Barafu to the rim of the crater by the afternoon. Hiking this section during the day gives us magnificent views of Mawenzi, Kilimanjaro’s second highest peak at 16,890 feet. From the rim we will descend across the arctic moonscape of the wide crater floor to the Crater Camp, set in soft sand near the indigo streaked Furtwangler Glacier.
Overnight: Crater Camp
Day 10: Crater Camp to Uhuru Peak to Millennium Camp
After an early breakfast we make the final ascent to Uhuru Peak, reaching the 19,340 foot summit of Kilimanjaro by 8 a.m. At this early hour, before the clouds close in, you will have spectacular views of Africa in all directions. After a brief stay for photos, hugs, and high fives, we descend 2 to 3 hours to Barafu Camp for lunch, rest, and to take off extra layers. Continuing downhill 3 to 4 hours to the edge of the Mweka Forest, we reach the final night’s camp – 7,000 feet below the summit! Eat, share your experiences of the climb, and sleep soundly. Congratulations, you touched the Roof of Africa!
Overnight: Millennium Camp
Day 11: Millennium Camp to Mweka Gate; Moshi Town
Our last day is another descent of 7,000 feet with 4 to 5 hours of hiking to the exit at Mweka Gate. The trail is steep in places and within the forest may be slippery if wet. After a hearty celebration lunch with the whole team on private SENE land near the exit gate to say goodbye to the mountain crew, the trip leaders bring you to the Ameg Lodge in Moshi Town to relax, have dinner, and enjoy its spacious garden and swimming pool. (Those going on safari tomorrow will overnight at a hotel in Arusha, closer to the wildlife parks.)
Overnight: Ameg Lodge
Day 12: Moshi Town
Those heading out on safari or to Zanzibar will depart after breakfast to continue your African adventure. For those returning home we offer you a guided tour of Moshi Town with its colorful market and curio shops. You may eat lunch in town or back at the lodge (lunch not included). Transfer by SENE to the Kilimanjaro Airport.
- All accommodations for 12 days / 11 nights.
- All meals as indicated (B,L,D) with all drinks.
- On climb, filtered water (by Katadyn Expedition® filter) and coffee, teas, cocoa.
- Services of trip leader, climbing guides, and mountain crew.
- Kilimanjaro National Park entrance, camping, and rescue fees, including supplemental crater camp fee.
- All camping and dining equipment (excluding sleeping bag and pad).
- Portable private toilet with bio-degradable waste system (Cleanwaste®) at all camps.
- Gamow bag (portable hyperbaric chamber) and supplemental oxygen for emergency descents.
- Transfers to/from Kilimanjaro International Airport and to/from park entrance/exit gates.
- Guided Mbahe Village walking tour.
- Guided Moshi Town walking tour.