Lemosho route is the most dramatic and beautiful route up to Kilimanjaro. It is the most remote and getting popularity now days which traverse some of Kilimanjaro most striking and least traveled landscapes, including the base of Kibo Peak’s and dramatic south-facing glaciers. This route has added benefits of trekking across the Shira Plateau a World Heritage Site trekking 180 degrees around Kilimanjaro and also this route allowed plenty of time to acclimatize to the high altitude and this is the key to your safety, comfort, enjoyment and success while trekking mountain Kilimanjaro.
Day 1 – Londorossi Gate to Forest Camp
•Elevation (ft): 7,800ft to 8,694ft /2377m to 2650m
•Distance: 7 km
•Hiking Time:3-4 hours
•Habitat: Rain Forest
We depart Moshi for Londorossi Gate, which takes about 4 hours, where you will complete entry formalities. Then drive to the Lemosho trailhead (another hour to reach the trailhead). Upon arrival at trailhead, we eat lunch, then commence through undisturbed forest which winds to the first camp site.
DAY 2 – Forest Camp to Shira Camp 1
•Elevation (ft): 8,694ft to 11,840ft /2650m to 3610m
•Distance: 8 km
•Hiking Time 5-6 hours
We continue on the trail leading out of the 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. The view of Kibo from across the plateau is amazing.
DAY 3 – Shira Camp 1 to Shira 2 to Moir Hut
•Elevation (ft): 11,5840ft to 13,800 ft /3610m to 4200m
•Distance: 14 km
•Hiking Time: 5-7 hours
We explore the Shira plateau for a full day. It is a gentle walk east toward Kibo’s glaciered peak, across the plateau which leads to Shira 2 camp on moorland meadows by a stream. Then we continue 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 is one of the highest plateaus on earth.
DAY 4 – Moir Hut via Lava Tower to Barranco Camp
•Elevation (ft): 13,800ft to 12,926ft /42000m to 3940m
•Distance: 7 km
•Hiking Time: 4-6 hours
•Habitat: Semi Desert
From the Shira Plateau, we continue to the east up a ridge, passing the junction towards the peak of Kibo. As we continue, our direction changes to the South East towards the Lava Tower, called the “Shark’s Tooth.” Shortly after the tower, we stop for lunch and acclimatization after you descend to Barranco camp. Although you will end the day at the same elevation as when you started, this day is very important for acclimatization and will help your body prepare for summit day.
DAY 5 – Barranco Camp to Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp
•Elevation (ft): 12,926ft to 13,100ft /3940m to 3995m
•Hiking Time: 8-10 hours
•Habitat: Alpine Desert
After breakfast, we leave Barranco and continue on a steep ridge passing the Barranco Wall, to the Karanga Valley campsite. Then, we leave Karanga and hit the junction which connects with the Mweka Trail. We continue up to the Barafu Hut. At this point, you have completed the South Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. Here we make camp, rest, enjoy dinner, and prepare for the summit day. The two peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo are to be seen from this position.
DAY 6 – Barafu Camp to Summit to Mweka Hut
•Elevation (ft): 13,100ft/3995m to 15,331ft/4673m (and down to 10,000ft/3100m)
•Distance: 5 km ascent / 12 km descent
•Hiking Time: 7-8 hours ascent / 4-6 hours descent
You will wake up around 11:00pm for some tea and snacks that will warm you for the summit. At 12:00am you will start your summit with steep rocks for about 2 to 3 hours and then you will start crossing zigzag area and keep moving to crater rim and finally Stella point 18800feet/ 5657m on around 06:00am. At Stella point, you will meet with other hikers from other route and join them heading to Uhuru peak and you will be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see (if weather permitting) on your way or at the summit. Once you arrive at the summit, you will stay for 10 to 15 minutes for pictures and sightseeing and descend down via the same trail for about 3 hours to Barafu Camp for rest, brunch, and descend to Mweka Hut. The distances from the base camp to the summit is 10km round trip.
DAY 7 – Mweka Camp to Moshi
•Elevation (ft): 10,000ft/3100m to 5,380ft/1640m
•Distance: 10 km
•Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
•Habitat: Rain Forest
After breakfast, we continue the descent down to the Mweka Park Gate to receive your summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. Gaiters and trekking poles will help. Shorts and t-shirts will probably be plenty to wear (keep rain gear and warmer clothing handy).
From the gate A vehicle will meet and drive you back to hotel in Moshi for hot shower and Kilimanjaro beer.