The Lemosho route is considered the most scenic trail on Kilimanjaro, granting panoramic vistas on various sides of the mountain. As one of the newer routes, Lemosho is a superb choice for your climb. It is our preferred route due to its ideal balance of low crowds, beautiful scenery and a high summit success rate. Climb and Safari Tours® specializes in guiding on the Lemosho route. Most of our clients climb Kilimanjaro using this route and they consistently report that they loved it. Thus, Lemosho is highly recommended. The route approaches Mount Kilimanjaro from the west, beginning with a long drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate. From there, the first two days are spent trekking through the rain forest to Shira Ridge. The Lemosho route crosses the entire Shira Plateau from west to east in a pleasant, relatively flat hike. Crowds are low until the route joins the Machame route near Lava Tower. Then the route traverse’s underneath Kilimanjaro's Southern Ice Field on a path known as the Southern Circuit before summiting from Barafu. Descent is made via the Mweka route.
Your driver/guide will pick you up from Kilimanjaro airport and transfers you to Ilboru Safari Lodge. This is a pleasant lodge with a beautiful garden and swimming pool, nestled on the lower slopes of majestic Mount Meru. The Ilboru Safari Lodge has been welcoming mountain climbers and safari travelers to northern Tanzania for decades. This beautiful Swahili sanctuary is ideally located and tucked away beneath ancient trees on the outskirts of Arusha town. Harmoniously woven into the surrounding African landscape, you will comfortably stay in your private bungalow reminiscent of a traditional Swahili ‘boma’. This version of the boma features a round layout with thatched rooftops while still providing you with the western conveniences for ultimate comfort.
Journey Time: 45 minutes
Accommodation: Ilboru Safari Lodge
Meal Plan: No meals inclusive today
BIG TREE CAMP- SHIRA CAMP 1
Mti Mkubwa (Big Tree) to Shira 1 Camp Elevation; 9,498 ft to 11,500 ft Distance; 8 km/ 5 miles Hiking Time; 5-6 hours. We continue on the trail leading out of the rain forest and into a savannah of tall grasses, heather and volcanic rock draped with lichen beards. As we ascend through the lush rolling hills and cross several streams, we reach the Shira Ridge before dropping gently down to Shira 1 Camp. Here we catch our first glimpse of Kibo across the plateau.
SHIRA CAMP 1- SHIARA CAMP 2
Shira 1 Camp to Shira Camp 2 Elevation; 11,500 ft to 13,800 ft Distance; 11 km/ 7 miles Hiking Time; 5-7 hours Habitat; Heath. We explore the Shira Plateau for a full day. It is a gentle walk east on moorland meadows towards Shira 2 Camp. Then we divert from the main trail to Moir Hut, a little used site on the base of Lent Hills. A variety of walks are available on Lent Hills making this an excellent acclimatization opportunity. Shira Plateau is one of the highest plateaus on earth.
SHIRA CAMP 2- LAVA TOWER- BARRANCO CAMP
Our trek will start with an Ascent with far reaching panoramic views, walking in to the climatic zone of the upland dessert and on the Lava Ridges beneath the Glacier of the western breach. We will reach the distinct pinnacle of the Lava Tower (4640 M). In the afternoon we make a steep descent to camp for the night at the base of the Great Barranco Valley (3960M) sheltered by towering cliffs but with extensive view of the plains below.
BARRANCO CAMP- KARANGA CAMP
Barranco Camp to Karanga Camp Elevation; 13,044 ft to 13,106 ft Distance; 5 km/3 miles Hiking Time; 4-5 hours Habitat; Alpine Desert. We hike the non-technical but steep, nearly 900 ft cliff. From the top of the Barranco Wall we cross a series of hills and valleys until we descend sharply into Karanga Valley. One steeper climb up leads us to Karanga Camp. This is a shorter day meant for acclimatization.
KARANGA CAMP- BARAFU CAMP
Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp Elevation; 13,106 ft to 15,331 ft Distance; 4 km/2 miles Hiking Time; 4-5 hours Habitat; Alpine Desert. We leave Karanga and hit the junction which connects with the Mweka Trail. We continue up to the rocky section to Barafu Hut. At this point, you have completed the Southern Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. Here we make camp, rest and enjoy an early dinner to prepare for the summit day. The two peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo are viewable from this position.
BARAFU CAMP- CRATER CAMP
Start; Barafu Camp (4640 m) Finish; Crater Camp (5730 m) Altitude; ↑ 1090 M Walking Time; 6-7hours. The day starts particularly early today. You will wake up with the sunrise in order to begin the most challenging day of any you will spend on the mountain. After 5-7 hours of climbing the scree and ash paths of the Kibo, you will arrive at Stella Point, the crater rim of Kilimanjaro. From here you will then hike down to the Crater Camp which lies at an altitude of 5730 m, making it the highest camp on the mountain. If the weather conditions are good, Crater Camp offers you staggering views of the surrounding glaciers.
CRATER CAMP- UHURU PEAK- MWEKA CAMP
Start; Crater Camp (5730 m) Finish; Uhuru Peak (5895 m) – Mweka Camp (3080 m) Altitude; ↑ 165 m ↓ 2815 m Walking Time; 7-9hours. The final ascent begins in the early morning hours with the first signs of the sunrise. Though this leg is just two hours long, the high altitude ensures that it is particularly slow and arduous. After ascending 170 meters or so you will reach the summit of Uhuru Peak (5895 m). Now standing on the “Roof of Africa” you will be able to see the surrounding summits and landscapes in all their glory – a truly special experience. After a short break and a few celebratory images, you will return to Barafu Camp just before midday where the rest of the climbing crew is waiting for you with a warm and well-earned meal. After an hour or so you will continue to descend to Mweka Camp (3080 m) which is approx. 3 hours away. Here you will have an evening meal followed by a relaxing evening and a good night’s sleep.
MWEKA GATE- MOSHI/ARUSHA
Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate Elevation; 10,065 ft to 5,380 ft Distance; 10 km/6 miles Hiking Time; 3-4 hours Habitat; Rain Forest. On our last day, we continue the descent to Mweka Gate and collect the summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. From the gate, we continue another hour to Mweka Village. A vehicle will meet us at Mweka Village to drive us back to the hotel in Moshi.