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The Rongai route is the only route that approaches Kilimanjaro from the north, close to the Kenyan border. Though gaining popularity amongst climbers, Rongai has low traffic. It is the preferred route for those looking for an alternative to the crowded Marangu route, for those who would like a more remote hike, and for those who are climbing during the rainy season (the north side receives less precipitation).
The minimum number of days required for this route is six days, and seven days are recommended.
Although the scenery is not as varied as the western routes, Rongai makes up for this by passing through true wilderness areas for days before joining the Marangu route at Kibo camp. This route descends down the Marangu route. Rongai is a moderately difficult route, and is highly recommended, especially for those with less backpacking experience.
Arrive anytime at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO). We will arrange a private transfer from Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) to Arusha where the rest of the day is at leisure.
We will gather in the hotel where you’ll have an overnight for a pre-climb briefing and an equipment check.
We will also confirm you have the appropriate mandatory medical coverage and travel insurance.
The climb begins from the attractive wooden village of Nale Moru (1,950 m.) on a small path those winds through fields of maize and potatoes before entering the pine forest.
The track then starts to climb consistently, but gently through an attractive forest that shelters a variety of wildlife, including the beautiful Kilimanjaro Colobus monkey.
The forest begins to thin out and Rongai One Camp is at the edge of the moorland zone (2,600 m.) with extensive views over the Kenyan plains. [3-4 hours walk]
The morning walk is a steady ascent up to the ‘Third Cave’ (3,450 m) with superb views of Kibo and the Eastern icefields on the crater rim. After lunch, we continue up to the Third Cave. (3,900 m) [5-6 hours walk].
The steady ascent continues, soon reaching the lunar desert of the ‘Saddle’ between Mawenzi and Kibo. We should reach School Hut Campsite (4,750 m.) at the bottom of the Kibo Crater wall by midday. The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the final ascent before a very early night! [4-5 hours walk].
We will start the final, and by far the steepest and most demanding, part of the climb by torchlight around 1 a.m. We plod very slowly in the darkness on a switchback trail through loose volcanic scree to reach the crater rim at Gillman’s Point (5,685 m.)
We will rest there for a short time to enjoy the spectacular sunrise over Mawenzi. Those who are still feeling strong can make the three hour round trip to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro (5,895 m.), passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area.
The descent to School (4,700 m.) is surprisingly fast and, after some refreshment, we continue the descent to reach our final campsite at Horombo (3,720 m.). [11-15 hours walk].
A steady descent takes us down through moorland to Mandara Hut (2,700m.), the first stopping place at the Marangu route. We then continue descending through lovely lush forest on a good path to the National Park gate at Marangu (1,830 m.). [5-6 hours walk].
To Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) with private departure transfer included.
Transfers to/from the gate, park fees, hut/camping fees, rescue , 2 Nights Accommodation in Arusha/Moshi, fees, Meals, tea, coffee, guide, porters and tent.
Tips, drinks, personal insurance, climbing gears, sleeping bags and all items of personal use.
Walking Boots, Training shoes, Water proof Jacket, Pants, Shirts, Trousers, Skirts, Socks, Gloves, Sun Hat, Balaclava / Woolen Hat, Gaiters, Thermal Underwear, Towel, Toiletries, Toilet Paper, Sun Glasses, Snow Goggles, Water Bottle, Walking Pole, Crampons, Torch / Flash light, Sun Cream/Sun block, lip salve, Whistle, Penknife, Day pack, Camera, Films, Emergency Foil Blanket, Four season Sleeping Bag, Heavy Duty plastic Bags, water Purification Kit and First Aid Kit.