Overview

Expedition Name(s) Mount Kilimanjaro 58...     Group Size: 10
Alternative Name(s): Mount Kilimanjaro 5895M, Wildlife Safari and Zanzibar 2017... Read more     Activity Type: Hiking
Mountain name: Kilimanjaro     Activity Level: Challenging/ Tough
Mountain Range:     Price: $ 1850
Route Name: machame route     Duration: 30 days
Country: Tanzania     Dates: 15 June 2017 - 15 July 2017

About

Machame route is the most popular path. It is the route of choice for many people because it provides impressive views and a variety of habitats. About 50% of all climbers, and most seasoned climbers, choose the Machame route. It is also one of the cheaper routes due to its easy access and shorter itinerary.

The Machame route is also known as the Whiskey route, given its reputation for being a tough climb, in contrast to the easier Marangu route, which is known as the Coca Cola route. Unlike the gradual incline and hut accomodations found on the Marangu Route, the climbers on Machame hike steeper trails, for longer distances, while sleeping in tents.
The Machame Route climb can be done in a minimum of six days (five nights) on the mountain. However, it is most often tackled over seven days (six nights), for a better altitude acclimatization schedule. The success rate is significantly higher when using the seven day route.

The trek begins at Machame Gate, located in the southern base of mountain, which is just a short drive from Moshi or Arusha. The hike starts within Kilimanjaro's lush, fertile, montane rainforest. As you might expect, the lower slopes receive a quite a bit of precipitation. The trail may be steep and slippery, so trekking poles are advised. As the route heads toward the Shira Plateau, the trees disappear and are replaced by low brush in the heather zone. Then the route climbs high to the volcanic plug, Lava Tower, before dropping and circling below the South Icefield. This circular pathway from Barranco to Karanga to Barafu is known as the southern circuit. As it traverses halfway around the mountain, climber's are exposed to great vistas. The long, strenuous approach to the summit is made from the east through endless switchbacks up increasingly loose gravel until we reach the crater rim at a mark known as Stella Point. Then the route is relatively flat for another hour to Uhuru Peak - the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. The quick descent follows the Mweka trail.

The Machame Route is approximately 62 km/ 37 miles from gate to gate. It is designed for physically fit people with some hiking experience, but plenty of first time trekker use the route as well and do just fine. It is rated as one of Kilimanjaro's better routes and thus is recommended. It is certainly a better choice than the typical tourtist's route - Marangu.
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TRIP REPORTS

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  • 1
    Day 1
  • 10 032 m / 32 913 ft
  • 1 032 m / 3 386 ft

Day One: Machame Gate (1,800m/5,905ft) to Machame Camp (3,000m/9,840ft) Elevation Gain: 1,200 meters, 3,935 feet Distance: 11 kilometers At 9am, leave Arusha for Machame Gate, where you will meet the porters, guides, and cooks that will spend the next seven days trekking with you to Uhuru Peak, the roof of Africa. The drive through coffee farms and villages to Machame Gate takes about 1.5 hours. Once you arrive, wait at the gate while guide registers your climb and the porters and guides make final preparations. Your first day's destination is Machame Camp. Each day, porters and cooks will walk ahead to set up the camp in time for your arrival. On the first day, hike through the moss-covered trees of Kilimanjaro's cloud forest. The forest will thin at the end of the hike and vegetation will change to include heathers, tall grasses and wildflowers. If the weather is clear, view the surrounding area and your ultimate destination, Kibo Peak.

  • 2
    Day 2
  • 0 m / 0 ft
  • 840 m / 2 756 ft

Start up around 08:00am, Carry plenty of drinking water, as the exposed hike can be hot on a clear day. There are several viewpoints from which you can see the plains and forests below and Kibo peak above. As you gain altitude, notice the change in vegetation. The trees diminish in size, giving way to Kilimanjaro's famous high altitude plants, Scenecio kilimanjari and Lobelia deckenii. After eating lunch, climb the Shira Plateau, created when Kibo's lava flows filled the Shira crater. Continue to Shira Camp, where you will relax for the rest of the day. Kibo lies to the west and Mount Meru to the east.

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