Kilimanjaro News 2009-2013
These are the news stories for Kilimanjaro & Tanzania for the years 2009-2013 inclusive.Kilimanjaro news stories 2013
Kilimanjaro news stories 2012
Kilimanjaro news stories 2011
Kilimanjaro news stories 2010
Kilimanjaro news stories 2009
Kilimanjaro News 2013
Goodbye to the Snows of Kilimanjaro?
Posted December 30 2013.
A depressing story to end 2013, I’m afraid. Scientists have come up with a latest estimate for when the glaciers atop Africa’s highest mountain will disappear – and sadly it’s even sooner than other, earlier predictions.
At the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union, the glaciers, estimates to be about 10,000 years old, will have completely melted away by 2030, according to Pascal Sirguey, a research scientist at the University of Otago in New Zealand.
His estimate is largely based on the fact that the Northern Icefield, the largest mass of ice extant on the mountain, has lost more than 4 million cubic metres since the turn of the millennium. This represents a loss of almost a third of its total volume, a depletion exacerbated by the fact that the mass split into two last year – an event that will only increase the rate of melting on the summit.
What this means, according to Sirguey, is that major glaciers such as the Credner Glacier, on Kili’s north-western slopes, will disappear by 2030 – and the summit could be completely ice free by the mid-2040s.
As yet, there is no conclusive answer as to what is causing the decline, though global warming and the change in weather patterns that leads to less snow falling on the summit is one obvious theory.
Pascal Sirguey’s study was conducted as part of the university’s efforts to accurately map the mountain and build a detailed digital elevation model developed using satellite images. The 3D model they hope to produce in partnership with the Tanzanian government will offer an extraordinary resolution, able to zoom in on geographical and topographical features just half a metre across.
Possible predictor for altitude sickness found?
Posted 21 December 2013
According to various news sources, a possible test to determine whether you are likely to suffer from altitude sickness, also known as acute mountain sickness (AMS) is being developed.
As you are probably aware, most people get some form of altitude sickness while on Kilimanjaro, with 1-2% developing the more serious, life-threatening forms of the condition. The symptoms range from nausea, loss of appetite and headaches, which most people get at some point during their ascent of Africa’s highest mountain, but can lead in the most serious cases to breathing difficulties, loss of coherence and confusion, ataxia (loss of balance and control of the limbs) and eventually death. AMS is caused by the rarified atmosphere present at high altitudes and the inability of the body to take in enough oxygen.
There are various things that climbers can do to avoid, or at least delay, its onset, the most important being that you should ascend slowly to give your body time to acclimatise. Drugs such as Diamox have also been proven to work for many people.
However, one of the problems with altitude sickness is that it is so difficult to predict who is going to suffer from it, and who isn’t. A person’s age, gender and fitness level all seem to matter little.
Until now. At a EuroEcho-Imaging Conference in Istanbul, details of an experiment are being presented in which 34 healthy volunteers, some of whom had suffered AMS before, had their cardiovascular function monitored by ultrasound both at sea level and at 3,842m – the altitude at the top of a cable car in the French alps. After four hours at that height the volunteers had both the oxygen saturation in their blood measured (presumably with an oximeter, which are commonly used on Kilimanjaro by guides) and their heart function, using this ultrasound technique. After 24 hours at the altitude, 13 of the 34 had developed some early symptoms of altitude sickness. It just so happened that these people also showed lower oxygen saturation levels according to the oximeter, and most interestingly a poorer function in the systolic (pumping) ability in the right ventricle.
As Dr Rosa Maria Bruno, who led the study, explained, if these sorts of results are replicated in bigger trials, then perhaps we’ll finally have a way of predicting who is likely to struggle with the altitude even before they take their first step on the mountain.
Unfortunately, she also admits that the test is a little cumbersome, for it involves the subject currently being at altitude for at least four hours. However, in time it is hoped that more efficient tests can be introduced until there comes a day when it will be possible to determine who is going to be more susceptible to altitude sickness – and thus provide them with the necessary medication to alleviate the symptoms and even prevent them from developing the condition altogether.
El Al to begin flying to Kilimanjaro Airport in 2014
Posted 10 December 2013
News has reached us that the Israeli National Airline El Al has plans to begin flying from Tel Aviv to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) from April next year. The airline hopes to fly once a week during the high season at least, bringing 150 passengers each week to the north of Tanzania and around 6000 per annum.
The airline actually had its maiden voyage between Tel Aviv and JRO last week. Sitting among the journalists and other assorted media folk were ten physically disabled passengers who are aiming to climb Kilimanjaro, while the rest of the manifest went to sample the delights of Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti etc.
Looking at the El Al website we note that they have yet to put up any details of their proposed service; but when they do, we’ll be amongst the first to let you know!
Names of 10,000 Female Kilimanjaro Conquerors Required!
Posted December 8 2013
Are you female? Have you reached the summit of Africa’s highest mountain at some point in your life? If so, then the Ladies Trekking Club is looking for you! Following on from our twitter post on Friday, to mark International Women’s Day on 8 March 2014 the Ladies Trekking Club is planning to design a unique flag bearing all of their names and to take it to the Roof of Africa. Their goal is to include the names of at least 10,000 women on the flag.
The aim of the undertaking is show respect to all women around the world.
If you’d like to have your name included too, simply visit the following webpage: http://www.ladiestrekking.com/get-involved/join-us/ . It’s as simple as that!>
Climb in aid of Open Arms Malawi
Posted 5 December 2013
In February next year Alex Gibson and his daughter Emma, from Yorkshire, UK, will hopefully be hauling their weary selves up to the top of Africa’s highest mountain with us. Nothing unusual in that, of course, nor in the fact that they are raising money for a charity as they go. The charity they are raising funds for, however, Open Arms Malawi, is rather unconventional. It’s an orphanage, but not in the conventional sense of the word. For Open Arms care specifically for babies whose mothers have died in childbirth, and whose extended family, despite their best efforts, found themselves unable to cope with a newborn. As such, Open Arms do not take the baby on permanently, as a regular ‘orphanage’ would, but looks to return the child to the family once he or she has reached two years of age – when hopefully the family finds it a little easier to cope. To ease the burden, the charity also tries to provide support and education in the village where the child lives.
The charity is also fairly close to the Gibson’s hearts as it was set up by a former teacher of Emma’s who founded Open Arms after visiting Malawi on several occasions and seeing a need for an organisation such as theirs.
You can find out more about the charity by visiting the website http://www.openarmsmalawi.org/. While to sponsor Alex, just get in touch with us here and we’ll pass on their details. Good luck both of you!
Climb in aid of local Uhuru Primary school
Posted 4 December 2013
This week I received an email rom Gautam Sachania. Gautam, from Denver, Colorado, will be climbing Kilimanjaro in aid of a local school, Uhuru Primary, in Arusha. It’s a school with family connection to Gautam for his father studied there over 60 years ago (when the school was still known as Jacaranda Primary). Gautam is hoping to raise US$5000 for the school to help them to pay for renovations to the building, testing fees, and school supplies such as uniforms, textbooks, paper, pencils, soccer balls, board games, and maintenance equipment for the mentally handicap unit. Indeed, it’s one of the very few schools in East Africa to accept disabled children.
Gautam has made a video (http://youtu.be/At-POI3khpU) of his visit to the school which tells you more about what they do and where any money raised will be spent. If you’d like to sponsor Gautam he has set up a webpage where you can donate (http://www.youcaring.com/nonprofits/kilimanjaro-for-the-kids-/89633). We do o course wish him every success and hope to be able to tell you how he got on after his return – Good Luck Gautam!
Climbing Kili is good for you – fact!
Please see separate page for this topic: Kilimanjaro is good for you
New Book by Female Kili Conquerors!
Posted October 8 2013
Just received an email about a new book on Kilimanjaro. “Dreamers and Doers” is a collection of 53 essays written by women who have climbed to Africa’s highest point.
The authors include:
– Debbie Bachmann, the holder of the record for the fastest ascent by a female;
– Samantha Larson, the youngest person (at her time) to have climbed the Seven Summits;
– Tess Burrows, author of “Cry From The Highest Mountain”, who climbed with our company in 2011;
– Joanne Gambi, who holds the Guiness world recors for the fastest female ascent of the Seven Summits;
– Theresia Ismaili Majuka, reputedly the first Maasai woman to climb Mt Kilimanjaro.
What’s more, eleven of the sixty women who have climbed all seven summits have written essays for the book.
There’s a charitable aspect to the publication too, because for every copy of “Dreamers & Doers” sold, a textbook will be donated to Tanzanian schools through the work of the Impatiens Kilimanjari Foundation (http://ikfoundation.com/).
Unfortunately, one fact that wasn’t included in their lengthy email was an online address where one can purchase the book. However, I found this online, which should suffice until somebody corrects me with a more official address:
Nairobi and the Westgate Tragedy
Posted September 25 2013
As you’re no doubt aware, for the past few days Nairobi has been in the grip of a major terrorist attack, when members of the Somali-based Al-Shabaab, an Islamic terrorist organisation, stormed the smart Westgate Shopping Centre in Nairobi, killing dozens of civilians and taking many others hostage. The president of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, finally declared the siege over yesterday afternoon. At the moment the official death toll stands at 62 civilians as well as 5 military personnel and police who were sent in to put an end to the siege. The bodies of five terrorists have also been recovered. The total death toll is expected to rise considerably as the wreckage of the mall is searched and cleared.
I’ve been asked by a couple of climbers whether this atrocity will have any repercussions over the border in Tanzania and specifically with regard to Kilimanjaro. At the moment our clients who are flying via Nairobi all seem to be getting through without any problems and the situation away from the actual site seems pretty normal, though the atmosphere is understandably a little tense.We will of course keep updated should there be any impact on Kilimanjaro (or Tanzania in general) from the fallout to this situation; while for the latest on the tragedy itself and the ongoing investigation, the BBC seems to be pretty much on the ball as usual: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-24271969
Arusha’s Sokoine Road to be made one-way
Posted September 8 2013
Admittedly, this article won’t be particularly fascinating to the average Kilimanjaro visitor. But for those who live in Arusha, or plan to stay there awhile on their visit, the article carried by the Arusha Times this week will be of major interest: plans are afoot, apparently, to convert the (frequently constipated) Sokoine Road that runs from the Clock Tower to the TFA Complex (Shoprite) and beyond into a one-way street. This thoroughfare is one of the busiest in the city, not least because of the shops and banks that line it. Indeed, at rush hour you can pretty much write-off half an hour and more just trying to get through it.
There is no indication in the article of when the switch to one-way traffic is due to be introduced but the move can only be a good thing (assuming, of course, that the increased speed doesn’t lead to a spate of accidents involving pedestrians used to the current moribund speed of vehicles on the road). There are also plans to turn the central Makongoro road (the one that runs parallel to Sokoine to the north, on which one fins the Arusha Declaration Monument) into a one-way street; one can only hope that they will also turn their attention to the road running east of the Clock Tower towards the Impala Hotel (Old Moshi Road I believe its name is), where it is sometimes quicker to dismantle your car, walk to your destination and reassemble it there rather than join the traffic jam clogging the tarmac there.
Deaths from Boda Boda accidents in Kilimanjaro region fall…slightly
Posted September 2 2013
The Arusha Times this week carried a story that deaths from boda bodas – motorcycle taxis – had fallen in the Kilimanjaro region during the first six months of this year. The taxis, which are usually driven by young men, recklessly, with no helmets and little regard for safety or the Highway Code, have sprung up only since 2009, when the government licensed them in order to reduce traffic congestion in the major cities. In the four years since then, however, they have become notorious for filling up the local hospitals with their drivers, passengers and innocent bystanders.
However, there is some bright news amongst the bloodshed: Last year, from January to August, 40 people were killed in boda boda accidents. This year that number has fallen to 29. Regional police commander Robert Boaz said that part of the decline was due to the riders attending driving schools while others have been sensitized on how to observe traffic rules.
However, the motorbikes are still responsible for over half of all serious accidents on roads in the region and our advice to visitors remains the same. You are already taking your life into your hands when you climb Kili – don’t add to the risks by taking one of these taxis too….it just isn’t worth it.
Widower to climb Kili with 200 others!
Posted August 23 2013
An article has been forwarded to me by a reader concerning a trek that is taking place next Month. Mark Roberts, from Cheshire, UK, decided to honour a promise made by his late wife, Elise, who died from skin cancer aged 37 in 2011. Before she died, Elise promised to staff at The Christie hospital in Withington, Manchester, that she was being treated, that she would raise £1 million for them.
Since then, Mark has arranged various sponsored trips for the hospital including a walk along the Great Wall of China, a cycle trip through Vietnam and Cambodia, rafting down Africa’s Zambezi River, an Icelandic lava trek and snow-shoeing in the Pyrenees.
And now, having raised the magic £1 million, Mark is taking 200 people up Kilimanjaro to raise money for the charity he founded, Challenge for Life, which will continue to support The Christie as well as supporting The Royal Marsden, Anthony Nolan, CLIC Sargent, The Eve Appeal, Breast Cancer Care, Melanoma Focus, Macmillan, Marie Curie, Lymphoma Association and Cancer Research UK.
Along with the relief that we feel that we won’t be on the mountain at the sam time as such a hug party – the biggest single group we have ever heard of on the mountain – we do of course wish Mark and all the trekkers well on their latest expedition!
Latest News on Nairobi Airport
Posted August 19 2013
It’s been just over a week since the fire and events have continued apace. Currently a series of marquees and tents are serving as the terminal following the destruction of the Arrivals Hall and other buildings. Nevertheless, flights are continuing to fly in and out of NBO and the authorities are hoping to have a new terminal building within eight weeks (http://www.voanews.com/content/kenya-expects-temporary-airport-terminal-in-eight-weeks/1730667.html).
In other NBO news, seven police officers are being questioned after they were caught on CCTV camera looting the airport during the chaos. Alcohol and cash were taken. And according to a report in the Jerusalem Post, the Israeli Secret Service Mossad are investigating the fire – even though terrorism was ruled out by the Kenyan authorities just a couple of days after the fire (http://www.jpost.com/International/Report-Mossad-joins-investigation-on-Kenya-airport-fire-323305). And UNEP – the United Nations Environment Programme – will be investigating the environmental impact on the fire after it was revealed that asbestos could have been used in the construction of the building and harmful chemicals could have been used in extinguishing the blaze too (http://allafrica.com/stories/201308161153.html).
Arrivals Hall at Nairobi International Burnt Down
Posted August 7 2013
News is coming in that the Arrivals Hall at Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta Airport has burnt to the ground overnight. Details are sketchy at the moment and we have no idea how the blaze was started, whether there were any casualties (though ambulances are at the scene) or whether flights are being rerouted and, if so, where to. What we do know is that the entire airport has been closed and passengers evacuated, and the authorities are saying that the fire is now under control.
Jomo Kenyatta is the main hub for East Africa and also one of the main airports for trekkers looking to climb Kilimanjaro. Though the mountain has its own airport – Kilimanjaro International – many climbers fly into Nairobi instead as the airfares tend to be a fair bit cheaper due to the sheer volume of flights that use Nairobi when compared to the half-dozen airlines that utilise JRO. From Nairobi a shuttle bus takes just 6-8 hours to get to Arusha in Tanzania, where many Kilimanjaro trekking outfitters are based.
Possibly coincidentally, the fire comes 15 years to the day after the Nairobi and Dar es Salaam US Embassy bombings in which 224 people were killed – though there has so far been no suggestion that terrorism has played a part in this disaster.
We have no idea at the moment how long Jomo Kenyatta will be closed for and where passengers will be rerouted to in the meantime but we will of course keep you updated on any news as soon as we have it.
For more details on the blaze visit the bbc website and the following URL:
Police hunt culprits behind Kilimanjaro fire
Posted July 23 2013
Those responsible for starting the fire that blazed on Kilimanjaro’s northern slopes are still being hunted by the authorities, according to reports. The Kilimanjaro Regional Commissioner (RC), Mr Leonidas Gama, visited the affected area this week to witness the devastation for himself. The fire raged for four days in total and over 40 hectares of forest were destroyed, affecting the Amboni, Ushiri, Keryo, Kimori and Shimbi districts.
However, hopes that the culprits would soon be apprehended are slim, given that they entered into the conservation area through illegal routes through the Amboni region and fled as soon as the blaze got out of control.
Obama (and Bush)in Tanzania
Posted July 2 2013
On Monday US President Obama finally flew in from South Africa to Tanzania as part of his eagerly waited three-country tour of Africa.
Having been greeted by throngs of locals, many dressed in white T-shirts emblazoned with his image, the president spent a long while greeting the crowds who lined the temporarily named Obama Avenue.
The president’s trip is seen as vital for the long-term economic and strategic interests in the region, particularly after the new Chinese president, Xi Jinping, made Tanzania his first port of call in a three-country tour of the continent just ten days after taking office. He also signed 16 trade, cultural and diplomatic accords in the country, and there are said to be more than 8000 Chinese-owned businesses operating in Tanzania. It is also the second largest entity trading with Tanzania with only the EU now doing more business).
For his part, Obama announced a US$7 billion programme, Power Africa, to improve the continent’s electricity supply and Tanzania’s power grid. He also announced Trade Africa, an initiative aimed at doubling intra-regional trade in East African Community (EAC) countries and boosting exports to the United States by 40%.
“I’m making this trip early in my second term, because I intend for this to be the beginning of a new level of economic engagement with Africa,” Obama said. “If people across this continent are just given a chance, if they’re just empowered with the skills and the resources and the capital … they can achieve extraordinary progress.”
Meanwhile, today, (Tuesday), Barack Obama joined ex-president George W Bush in laying a wreath at the memorial to those who died in the bomb blast back in 1998. The bomb, planted by Al Qaeda, targeted the US Embassy in Dar es Salaam and killed eleven people, as well as injuring hundreds more.
Bombers of Arusha still being sought
Posted June 26 2013.
Police are still seeking the culprits behind the bombing of a political rally in Arusha eleven days ago that killed three people, left twenty others seriously injured and damaged Tanzania’s hard-won status as one of the more stable and peaceful nations in East Africa. The incident occurred last Saturday, 15 June, when a hand grenade was thrown near the National Chairman of the main opposition party, (CHADEMA), as he finished addressing a rally at Soweto Basketball Grounds in Central Kaloleni Ward.
In another twist, it appears that the police were blocked from making any arrests this week despite making good progress in the case.
The bombing has similarities to the bombing of a church in Arusha’s Olasiti district last month, and occurred just a few days before Sunday’s nationwide by-elections in which the country’s ruling party, CCM, won 16 out of the 22 seats up for grabs.
Call to improve the roads leading to Kilimanjaro
Posted June 20 2013
The local MP for the Kilimanjaro region has called for four of the roads that lead up to the gates of the national park to be improved. Dr Cyril Chami (Moshi Rural, CCM), said that Kilimanjaro National Park contributes about 40% of the total revenue of the Tanzanian National Parks Authority (TANAPA) – even though only two of the roads leading to the six gates are actually fully sealed. The call, made in Tanzania’s parliament at Dodoma, is seen as an attempt to put pressure on President Kikwete, who promised these road improvements as part of his election manifesto.
In his speech Dr Chami went on to cite the four roads that he wants to see improved. Among them was the road to Umbwe, of which, Dr Chami claimed, only 19 out of 43 kilometres had been rehabilitated. He also went on to say that by improving the roads, the potential for the mountain to earn even more foreign exchange would be even greater.
Park fees to increase at the end of the month
At the end of this month the long-heralded increases in the park fees for Kilimanjaro finally come into force. From July 1 the Park Entry fee (now known as the Conservation fee) will increase from US$60 to US$70 per day; similarly the Hut fees (the latter applicable to those climbing on the Marangu Route only) will also increase by US$10 per night, from US$50 to US$60; note, however, that it appears that the Camping fees (applicable on all routes except those taking the Marangu Route) remain unchanged. (Note that it is usual for the park fees to be included in the price of your package anyway – it’s very rare that it isn’t nowaday – so if you’ve already booked a trek with an agency, you don’t need to worry about these increases….unless, of course, your agency is particularly incompetent!
Theses increases are part of a countrywide rise in park fee charges; a full list of all the park fees can be found online at http://www.tanzaniaparks.com/parkfees/applicableFees2013.pdf
Tanzania gets ready for Obama
Posted June 13
At the end of this month US president Barack Obama will be paying a visit to Tanzania as part of his first tour of Africa. The visit is seen as something of a coup for the country as it is one of only three – the others being South Africa and Senegal – that the president will be visiting during his one-week whistle-stop tour of the continent. Perhaps surprisingly, his schedule does not include his ancestral home of Kenya, home of his late father. One presumes this is because the president is unwilling to be seen with Kenyan leader Uhuru Kenyatta, who was elected president in March but will shortly be making an appearance at the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity, where he will be on trial for the part he is alleged to have played in post-election violence in 2007-08.
The visit by Obama is arousing particular interest amongst seasoned diplomatic observers as it follows hot on the heels of a visit by the Chinese leader Xi Jinping back in March. During that trip deals worth over US$800 million were signed including an agreement to build a new port at Bagamoyo. Visitors to Arusha and the capital will already have seen the extensive investment China is ploughing into the country in the form of new roads, shiny high-rise office blocks and other major construction works. Obama’s visit could be seen as an attempt by the US to make sure their superpower rivals don’t have it all their own way in East Africa, particularly as the region is currently enjoying a boom in gas and oil discovery and production.
The visit also provides Tanzanian president Jakaya Kikwete with the opportunity to showcase the social investments made with the first tranche of the $689.1 million Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) fund- and in doing so help to smooth the way for the second tranche to arrive. The MCC fund is a US initiative that rewards countries that are commited to good governance and democracy.
Climb for Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (PSC)
May 9 2013
On the 17th June 2013 one fearless forty-something and three friends from the UK will be attempting to reach the highest point in Africa, Uhuru Peak, at the top of Kilimanjaro. The quartet – Matt Walmsley, Paul Dobson, Jeff Illidge and Debbie Williams – will be climbing in aid of one of the more obscure – but also one of the most worthwhile – charities we’ve come across.
Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (PSC) is a rare incurable disease that has no known cause, cure or treatment. It causes the bile ducts both inside and outside the liver to become scarred, narrowed and eventually blocked. As more ducts become blocked, bile becomes trapped and damages the liver, leading to cirrhosis and liver failure.
Symptoms along the way can often include:
• Chronic, debilitating fatigue
• Severe, uncontrollable itching
• Dangerous infections of the bile ducts
<>• Pain in the body’s Upper Right Quadrant
PSC Support is a UK charity, totally run by volunteers, that helps people affected by PSC, including sufferers themselves, and their families. PSC Support will make a real difference and will help provide information and support to those affected by PSC, promote PSC and organ donation awareness and develop effective partnerships with those involved with treatment and vitally needed research into PSC.
It is, as you may have guessed, a charity and a cause that is particularly close to Matt’s heart, for his wife, Debbie, was diagnosed with the condition not long after the birth of their first child.
You can sponsor Matt Walmsley as he attempts to climb Kili by visiting his justgiving page at https://www.justgiving.com/kilimattjaro . We also highly recommend his blog, http://kilimattjaro.com/, which details Matt’s preparation for the big expedition.
We do of course wish Matt and co every success and will let you know how he gets on at the end of the month. Good luck everyone!
Four folks fundraising for the four Fs
Posted May 2 2013
At the end of July this year four intrepid souls from Florida, Colorado and Brazil will be pitting their wits, bravery and calf muscles against Africa’s highest mountain. The four – Mike Schipper, Andrew & Deli Ford and Scott Tuel – will be (hopefully) taking six days on the popular Machame Route to reach the summit of Uhuru Peak – 5895m above sea level. In doing so, the quartet are hoping to raise money for the little-known but very important charity, the Freedom from Fistula Foundation. The Foundation helps women in Africa who are suffering from obstetric fistula caused by obstructed childbirth by providing free surgeries and access to healthcare during pregnancy and childbirth.
You can sponsor Mike and friends by visiting their justgiving page:
They have also set up a facebook page where you can follow their progress: http://www.facebook.com/MadsDoKmj2013
We do of course wish them all the best of luck and will let you know how they get on later this year.
Climb to the summit of Kilimanjaro – without ever leaving your sofa!
Those very clever people at Google have recently expanded their impressive Google Maps to include ‘street views’ of some of the world’s biggest/most famous mountains – including the most beautiful of them all, Mount Kilimanjaro!
Of course, in order to provide the images that make up their ‘street view’ of Kili, somebody actually had to visit it (and all the other mountains that they’ve included). Take a bow, therefore, 31-yearold Dan Fredinburg, who – together with his team of crack climbers-cum-computer-nerds, two sets of cameras, a set of fisheye lenses for wider shots, some lightweight tripods and (presumably) an impressive set of calf muscles – undertook the mammoth (but oh so wonderful) task of taking the images that make up their mountain ‘street view’.
For many of the larger, less accessible mountains, such as Everest, viewers will, for the moment at least, have to make do with images of their base camps; but for Kili, the view is from the very summit, Uhuru Peak – all 360° of it! You can see them for yourself at the following address.
Mountain bikers tackle Kilimanjaro
Posted April 3 2013
Following hot on the heels of January’s (largely aborted) attempt by a group of paragliders to launch from the summit of Kilimanjaro comes news of a descent by mountain bike on Africa’s highest mountain. Eighteen people in total participated in the event, all of whom were raising money to provide safe drinking water for Tanzanian communities. The ascent was largely undertaken on two feet as well as two wheels, before the 18 hurtled themselves headlong down the slopes on their bikes.
The trip, which took place at the beginning of last month, was organised by Tanzanian goodwill ambassador Doug Pitt – Brad’s brother. The post-trek publicity seems a little cagey about how many people actually made it up and down in one piece, though one of the riders described the descent as ‘technical’, and only 80% navigable by bike even for expert riders. They seem to have taken the Rongai Route up and, as is traditional with that route, the Marangu Route down. The bikes, in case you were wondering, were usually carried up by porters, not the riders themselves (when they weren’t being ridden, of course).
We do of course congratulate everyone on their bravery and skill in undertaking such an awesome challenge!
Ten-year-old girl reaches Gilman’s Point!
Posted March 20, 2013
I’ve just received a lovely email from a Katrina Yoder who has written in to ask if her daughter, Noa, has set a record by climbing to the Crater rim at the tender age of just ten years and 44 days.
Unfortunately, Noa just misses out on the record; according to a news bulletin we posted back in 2009, Silipa Swai of Moshi, Tanzania was just a few days younger when she summited 20 August of that year at ten years, and thirty-two days. Thus Silipa, the daughter of trekking agency Ahsante Tours’ owner Cuthbert Swai, remains, to the best of our knowledge, the record holder – and she also reached the actual summit of Uhuru Peak (rather than just the crater rim).
Nevertheless, just because Noa hasn’t set a record shouldn’t detract from the scale of her achievement. Furthermore, Noa actually continues something of a family tradition, being the fourth generation of her family to climb Kili – a tradition started by her great-grandfatherin the 1940s. As her muym Katrina goes on to say, “When her grandfather climbed it was the tradition to be rewarded with a garland of flowers afterward. He still has his and gifted it to Noa after her climb.”
Congratulations Noa – that’s some effort!
Youngest person to climb Kilimanjaro – has the record been beaten?
Posted March 11, 2013
There have been a few reports over the weekend of a successful climb to the summit of Africa’s highest mountain by a seven-year-old Indian boy. The child, who has been named as Aaryan Balaji, a Grade 2 student of Mahatma Gandhi International School in Port Blair, is the son of an Indian Naval Officer who is also a bit of an adventurer, having been on expeditions to Everest and both of the poles. On this occasion, however, Aaryan was accompanied by his mother, Mrs Riki Balaji, who said she wants other mothers worldwide to take their children out for constructive outdoor adventures instead of letting them play video games and television.
The pair’s climb on the Lemosho Route began on 25 Feb, and they took with them an Indian flag to unfurl at the summit. Nor is this Aaryan’s only acheivement. According to newspaper reports, the boy already holds the record as the youngest to go to a depth of 80 metres while sea diving, and the youngest to reach the summit of Mount Kalapattar (5554m) in May last year.
The only question that remains is: is he actually the youngest to make it to Kilimanjaro’s Uhuru Peak, for another seven-year-old, Keats Boyd, already holds the record which he set in 2008. We will need to look at their birth certificates before crowning one of them as the rightful holder of the record.
But until then, it just remains for us to congratulate Aaryan Balaji for his incredible acheivement – great work Aaryan!
Wings of Kilimanjaro – an Update!
Posted February 27 2013
Last month we told you about a planned attempt by paragliders to ascend Kilimanjaro en masse – then fly down to the ground. The expedition was notable not only because this is the first time in many years that the park authorities, KINAPA, have allowed such ‘adventure sports’ on their slopes, but also because of the sheer number of people who were going to be part of the expedition.
In the end the record attempt enjoyed mixed success. On the negative side, due to strong winds only one member of the party managed to take off from the summit as planned – Sano Babu Sunawar, who was voted Adventurer of the Year by National Geographic in 2012. But though the others had to take the usual pedestrian route back down the slopes, the team had (perhaps unwittingly) probably set a new record due to the fact that all 94 of them who started out on the trek up Kilimanjaro actually made it to the summit – a feat which we believe has never been equalled before. They also have managed to raise an eye-wateringly huge US$500,000 for charity.
As Wings of Kilimanjaro’s Australian organiser Adrian McRae stated, “It was not about setting records. It was about raising money for charity and giving some of the most accomplished adventurers in the world, one of the biggest and coolest adventures they will ever have.”
We do of course offer our hearty congratulations on an incredible attempt and do hope that they aren’t put off by the slightly disappointing end to their expedition and will be back on the slopes of Africa’s highest mountain before too long.
You can keep up to date with the group’s fundraising on their facebook page at www.facebook.com/wingsofkilimanjaro
Climb for Village Education Project Kilimanjaro and meet Kaddy-Lee!
On 13 September 2013 a group of hardy individuals will leave London with only one thought on their mind: to reach the summit of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro. Amongst their number will be all-action former weather-girl Kaddy-Lee Preston – a name that’s unfamiliar, perhaps, to most of our readers, but for those who live in the south-east of England it’s a name that will be instantly recognisable for her bubbly personailty, sunny demeanour and hair of pure spun gold.
Kaddy and chums will be climbing in aid Village Education Project Kilimanjaro, based in Marangu and Sussex, which aims to mprove education in primary and pre-primary schools in the Kilimanjaro region of Tanzania by providing in-service training, providing books and materials and liaising with government officials at all levels. VEPK also run an educational computer/community centre with internet access, a vocational training school and a village crafts shop.
You, too, can join in the fun by signing up to the trek. Visit www.kiliclimbs.org for more details.
Mass paraglide attempt off the Roof of Africa for charity
Posted 17 January 2013
On January 27, 2013, a group of adventurers will gather at the foot of Africa’s highest mountain with three goals in mind. The first is the goal that just about everybody who gathers on the mountain has: to reach the summit. The second, however, is rather less common, for if and when they reach Uhuru Peak the plan is to then paraglide off it back to more normal altitudes. Oh, and the third goal? Thata is to raise the grand sum of US$1 million for charity in doing so.
The event is being organised by a small bunch of Australians called Wings of Kilimanjaro who have spent much of the past two years persuading the Tanzanian authorities to lift their ban on ‘adventure sports’ on Kili for this one-off attempt. Luckily, the new boss at KINAPA, Mr Lufungolu, is looking at ways of ‘exploiting’ Kilimanjaro and is looking at these more off-beat activities as a way of doing just this.
In addition to the 100+ ‘adventurers’ there will also be a back-up crew of over 1000 porters, guides, cooks etc to help them achieve the summit in the first place.
To read more about team and their lofty ambitions, please visit www.wingsofkilimanjaro.com.
Ten-year-old becomes youngest Brit to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted January 10 2013
A ten-year-old schoolboy from Jersey has become the youngest Brit to reach the summit of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro. Oisin McDevitt, together with his father Fergus, managed to reach the summit in just four days – quite remarkable, given that not only do most people take 5-7 days to summit (if they summit at all, of course) but also because the weather last month was appalling and led to the deaths of at least one climber and a couple of porters.
We do, of course, extend our warmest congratulations to Oisin – nice one son!
Irish ‘hero’ killed by lightning strike on Kilimanjaro
Posted January 4 2013
It has been reported that an Irish climber and expedition leader, Ian McKeever, has been killed in a lightning strike at Lava Tower, to the west of the Kibo summit. Mr McKeevor was leading a party of 20, mostly from his native Ireland, on a trek up Kilimanjaro when disaster struck, after days of unusually torrential weather. Others in the party suffered minor injuries from the lightning strike.
Ian McKeever was something of a local celebrity in Ireland, having once held the record for the fastest conquest of the so-called seven summits – the highest mountains on each of the seven continents. He had also helped his godson, Sean McSharry, become the youngest person in Europe to climb Kili back in 2008 when Sean was aged just ten.
You can read more about the tragedy at the following address:
Dog seen at the summit of Kilimanjaro
Posted January 4 2013
Sorry for the long absence – been running around, up and down Kilimanjaro for the past couple of months preparing for the next edition of the guidebook. In the meantime, here’s a story that you may have missed. Apparently, a dog has been living atop Kilimanjaro. Nobody knows what the dog was doing there – or what it ate – but tourists were advised to give it a wide berth, with the authorities believing that it could well be rabid.
You can read more about the pooch at the peak by following this link:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/01/dog-found-on-top-of-mount_n_944967.html
These are the news stories for Kilimanjaro & Tanzania for 2012:
Climb for CLIC Sargent
Early next year four brave souls from the UK will be attempting to climb Kilimanjaro. Their aim is a lofty one – and the charity they are hoping to raise money for a very worthy one. I will let one of their number, Paul Stanton, take up the story himself:
In February 2013, I am planning a trek to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest Mountain in support of CLIC Sargent, one of the UK’s leading cancer charities for children.
The reason I am supporting this charity is extremely personal, as many of you will know, last year we sadly discovered that my godson Ben Crutchley, a fantastic, lively 9 year old boy had developed a multiple brain tumour and was given a very short time to live. Ben’s family and everyone who knew him were completely devastated and they set about making the following months the happiest they could for Ben.
During this time CLIC Sargent not only provided clinical support to Ben but practical and emotional support to his family (& friends) to help them cope with the cancer and get the most out of their remaining time with Ben.
Sadly we lost Ben on the 23rd February this year, just 2 weeks before his 10th birthday. It was at this point that CLIC Sargent proved invaluable in supporting the family and as such I wanted to find a way of giving something back for the support and assistance they provided.
The trek is my way of doing this. I am funding ALL costs in relation to this trek, in order that every penny donated goes to the charity.
Ben’s father, Nige Crutchley will be one of the team who is joining me on the ascent and it is poignant that we will be completing the trek just prior to the first anniversary of Ben’s death.
So please dig deep and donate, it really is going to a good cause.
We do of course wish Paul, Nigel and his friends every success – and will let you know how they get on early next year.
More news on flights into Kilimanjaro Airport.
Following on from Qatar Airways inaugural flight on Wednesday, it was announced by Tanzania’s Natural Resources and Tourism Minister, Khamis Kagasheki that other airlines including Emirates and Turkish Airlines were also looking to begin services to KIA. If they did, they would join Qatar Airways, KLM, Ethiopian and Kenyan Airways (via their partners Precision Air) in flying into northern Tanzania’s main hub.
There are also a couple of smaller European companies offering flights too. Edelweiss are a small Swiss airline that began flying into Kilimanjaro and the Kenyan coastal city of Mombasa in the winter of 2010/2011. They currently fly in the summer (July-October), once a week on a Sunday night from Zurich to Kilimanjaro, arriving (and flying out) the next morning. While Condor are a German outfit flying every Tuesday evening from Frankfurt (Thursdays in winter), arriving early Wednesday (Friday in winter) morning at Kilimanjaro International.
Another 8-year-old reaches the summit
This is one of those stories that either fills you with awe and inspiration – or makes you a little depressed at the precocity of youth. Yes, it’s the tale of another nipper, barely weaned from his mother’s breast – and who probably only learnt to walk half a dozen years ago – but who has already made it to the top of Africa’s highest mountain. This time it’s 8-year-old Tyler Armstrong of Yorba Linda (it’s in Orange County, California, apparently, right next to the almost hilariously named ‘Placentia’ according to my googlemaps) who, together with his ‘pops’ (as he probably calls him) made it to the summit of Kilimanjaro last week.
It should be noted that Tyler’s got a bit of previous when it comes to tackling high mountains while still a mere pup: last year he became the youngest to climb the 14,505-foot Mount Whitney summit in one day.
According to local newspaper the OC Register, Tyler trained for the climb by running on a treadmill with a weighted backpack, though he still had a struggle making it. As the august Register says:
‘As he reached the 17,500-foot point, he became fatigued and “lost power in my legs.”
“My dad just kept saying ‘We can do this,'” Tyler said. “He told me to eat and then I ate some bananas and some other fruit and it made me feel good again.”
Just as impressive as the conquest of Kilimanjaro is Tyler’s fundraising, earning around $10,000 an organization called CureDuchenne, who deal with children suffering from Duchenne muscular dystrophy. The co-founder of CureDuchenne, Paul Miller, accompanied Tyler and his dad on the climb.
I guess there’s nothing left to say except offer our hearty and sincere congratulations: Nice one Tyler!
Qatar Airlines opens new route to Kilimanjaro
Good news for those planning to climb Kili in the near future. Qatar Airlines have announced that from July 25 they will be flying DAILY to and from Kilimanjaro Airport. Particularly useful for those flying from Asia (who previously have had to fly via the Middle East and Kenya to reach Kilimanjaro), they arrive daily at 8.30am or 2.40pm, departing 2-3 hours later back to Doha. Visithttp://www.qatarairways.com/ for more details.
New book on climbing Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 8:05 am, June 29th 2012.
I’ve just had the privilege of reading a new account of one woman’s climb up Kilimanjaro. Deb Denis, a life coach from Pennsylvania, USA, was in her late forties when she attempted to conquer Africa’s highest mountain. The book is titled “Kilimanjaro: One Woman’s Journey to the Roof of Africa and Beyond”. Having read through it, I found it possibly the most comprehensive account of one person’s climb I’ve come across, covering not only why and when she did it but, perhaps most important of all, how she did it too. A clearly likeable person venturing out of her comfort zone, Deb spent a year preparing for her African adventure, which begins in one of the smallest countries on the continent and ends on its largest mountain. The story of her journey – in both the physical and the personal sense – is an entertaining and thought-provoking one. You can read more about her journey on her website, www.HerSoloSummit.com, which contains some decent pictures to accompany the text. Presumably there will also, in time, be a link so that you can buy the book directly from her.
Climb for research into prostate cancer
Posted by Henry at 3:25 pm, June 27th 2012.
Next month, Dave Jones will attempt to conquer Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, in aid of the charity Prostate Cancer UK. Dave was inspired to attempt such a feat after learning that his dad was diagnosed with the condition. Thankfully, Dave’s dad’s treatment seems to be going well; nevertheless, there is a growing need to raise awareness and fund research and we applaud Dave for choosing this charity as the beneficiary of all his hard work on the mountain!
You can read more about David’s chosen charity – and sponsor him – by visiting his justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/dave-jones5.
For more information on prostrate cancer, please see http://www.prostate-cancer.org.uk/information
Dave also said that a mention on this website ‘…will give me an added incentive to leave the tent each day and I’ll do my very best to reach the summit!’ We hope this has done the trick, David – GOOD LUCK!
Climb for Parkinson’s Disease charity
Posted by Henry at 8:42 am, June 8th 2012.
In August 2012 Roger Long, from Monument, Colorado, will be battling against the odds and elements in his attempt to reach the very pinnacle of Africa, Uhuru Peak, at the top of Kilimanjaro. Roger will be climbing as part of Team Fox and is hoping to raise money for the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, founded and named after the ‘Back to the Future’ star who was diagnosed with the disease several years ago. The charity is particularly close to Roger’s heart, as he too has been battling against the disease for over nine years now, and was forced to retire from his employment at just 40. Nevertheless, a new diet and exercise regime helped Roger to combat some of the worst symptoms of the disease, and over the past couple of years Roger has hiked over 1400 miles in various locations around the US – though Kili, we confidently predict, will be his toughest challenge yet!
To find out more about both the charity and Roger, and to donate money, please visit the following webpage:
We do of course wish Roger every success, and will let you know how he gets on later this year. Good luck Roger!
Climb for Practical Action with Student Adventures.
Posted by Henry at 5:47 pm, April 6th 2012.
On 7 September 2012 Lucy Hadaway will begin the adventure of a lifetime as she attempts to conquer Africa’s highest mountain. Her aim is twofold: to reach the fabled summit of Kilimanjaro; and to raise £2500 for Practical Adventures, a charity that aims to reduce poverty around the world by employing modern technology. Simply put, the charity finds out what people in poverty are doing and help them to do it better. Through technology they enable poor communities to build on their skills and knowledge to produce sustainable and practical solutions – transforming their lives forever and protecting the world around them. They use low-cost, small-scale development solutions to help people to help themselves. All activites are always people focused, locally relevant and environmentally sensitive. You can read more about their work at http://practicalaction.org/.
Should you wish to help Lucy reach her ambitious target, please visit her justgiving page at www.justgiving.com/Lucy-Hadaway .
We do of course wish Lucy every success – and hope to let you know how she gets on later in September.
Good luck Lucy!
Rainy season climb for two charities
Posted by Henry at 7:07 pm, March 14th 2012.
In 25 May this year a team of 12, put together by one John Taylor, who will be leading a charity trek up Mount Kilimanjaro with the aim of raising £50k for charity. The two charities concerned are Helen & Douglas House, who provide respite care for families with disabled children in their specialist care centres; and Iain Rennie, who provide respite care for those same types of families in their own homes.
The trek is of particular personal interest to John who himself had two disabled children who both sadly passed away in the past seven years. The support these two organisations gave him and his family was invaluable and it was this that inspired John to arrange this event, in order to return that support.
The team consists of the following participants:
Their target is an ambitious one: to raise £25k for each organisation. They have, however, been buoyed by some healthy early donations to the just giving websites from colleagues, friends and family. As part of the fundraising activity they will also be holding a Charity Dinner on 10 May in London.
The following two just giving links give more details on the trek (and of course, are also where you can pay!):
Iain Rennie Hospice At Home http://www.justgiving.com/JohnTaylor1962
Helen & Douglas House http://www.justgiving.com/JohnTaylor1962A
We do of course wish them well – go on, give them some money!
A successful proposal atop Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 7:52 am, March 6th 2012.
I recently received an email from a client, Rod Colianni, who climbed with us at the beginning of last month (February 2012). As with all trekkers, the moment that Mr Colianni reached Uhuru Peak was one of great personal joy and an overwhelming sense of achievement. However, for Rod, reaching the summit was only one of three tasks that he’d set himself that day. I’ve reprinted the email in full, below, to let Rod tell you the story himself:
Just had to send you this email as a follow-up to our trip. Jena and I both agree that our expectations of this climb and safari were greatly exceeded in each and every category. We are also sure that the Canadian couple who went with us, Alix Pearce and John Peterka would agree. Of course, a highlight of the trip was that all 4 of us made it to the top. It was a busy event for me at the top as I was able to honor the memory of my grandma by scattering some of her ashes and asked Jena if she would marry me. With great happiness and joy she said yes! If you are interested, I uploaded the video of the proposal on YouTube. It is titled, “Mount Kilimanjaro Proposal” and even has a great song and dance by the lead guide James. If there is a way that James could get this email and/or be able to see himself doing the song and dance on You Tube, that would be fantastic. By the way, if Team Kilimanjaro could clone James so he could be the lead guide on all of the trek’s, Team Kilimanjaro would be the biggest and best in the business.
Thank you for everything!
Congratulations, of course, go to both Rod and Jena! And thank goodness you both made it to the top – one wonders what Rod would have done had either of them not been there at the summit!
Kilimanjaro’s got a new sign!
Posted by Henry at 4:08 pm, January 22nd 2012.
It’s true! For years trekkers have struggled against the elements and their own human frailties in order to conquer Africa’s highest mountain – only to be met by a tatty, beaten wooden sign, adorned with stickers and the odd bit of graffiti and draped with some rather miserable-looking Tibetan flags. It appears, however, that those good people at KINAPA (the Kilimanjaro National Park Authority) have decided that the mountain needs a makeover, and have replaced the sign with a rather smart metal number. You’ll start to see this appearing in our Hall of Fame as people achieve the summit and send in their photos.
I suppose the change was inevitable – that old wooden number has been standing there for years, and certainly since I first climbed in 2001. And at least the new sign isn’t as garish or as tasteless as some had predicted. My only question is: what happened to the old one?
Would love to get my hands on that….
Kilimanjaro News 2011
Strolling Stevedores aim for the summit of Africa!
Posted by Henry at 8:54 am, December 29th 2011.
On 26 January this year six men, of varying ages and degrees of fitness, will be beginning an expedition on Kilimanjaro that they hope will see them, 6 days later, standing on the summit of Africa’s Highest Mountain. The men – Trevor Cable, Ian Gow, Gary Newson, Nick Lord, Mel Jacobs & John Mundy – are all stevedores working at the port of Felixtowe, on England’s east coast, and aim to raise money for a local charity, the St Elizabeth Hospice which is in Ipswich. The hospice provides free palliative care to people with incurable illnesses and their families in East Suffolk. It runs an 18-bed in-patient unit, a day centre and cares for people in their own homes through its Hospice at Home service.
The trip has been totally self financed and all money raised will go directly to the hospice. The team are taking the Unique Rongai Route on the mountain.
If you wish to donate to this most worthy of causes, you can visit their justgiving page: www.justgiving.com/strolling-stevedores
We do of course wish Trevor and the gang a safe and successful climb – and we’ll let you know how they get on after February 1st – when they should be coming off the mountain.
New biography on Kilimanjaro ‘discoverer’ Rebmann
Posted by Henry at 3:31 pm, November 4th 2011.
I have recently received an email from a Mr Steven Paas, the author of a new and recently released book on Johannes Rebmann. As many of you will know, Mr Rebmann was a missionary from Switzerland who achieved fame as the first Westerner to see Kilimanjaro. He was also, unwittingly, the man who set off a twenty-year feud when he described the mountain’s summit as being covered in snow – a claim that was disputed by many African ‘experts’ (many of whom had never actually been to the continent, but preferred to pontificate from the comfort of their leather armchairs back in London and elsewhere).
The book, a must-read for African historians and Kili-philes alike, is entitled ‘Johannes Rebmann: A Servant of God in Africa before the Rise of Western Colonialism’, is published by VTR Publications and available on Amazon.com for US$29.95.
Go on, treat yourself this Christmas!
Price increases from November 1 2011
Posted by Henry at 9:33 am, October 28th 2011.
Please note that with effect from November 1 of this year we will be increasing the prices of our treks. The increase won’t be too significant – around US$70-100 per person – and are unavoidable due to an increase in costs and the prices charged to us by our supplier. Note that those who already have bookings or who have already made enquiries about our treks and have been quoted a price will NOT be subject to these price increases.
So if you want to take advantage of the 2011 prices, you have until Monday evening to book your trek!
Baboon on Kilimanjaro!
Posted by Henry at 7:18 am, October 24th 2011.
Earlier this month I received an email from Glen Littlemore, who successfully climbed Kilimanjaro recently using the Rongai Route. Glen had written in because on the first day’s walk, as you come to the wooden toilet (the first such toilet on the path) in the woods, his group had been surprised by a large baboon that strolled out of the trees – and then strolled back into them again, disappearing into the undergrowth.
As anybody who has climbed Kili will know, spotting wildlife on the mountain is not easy – save for the occasional monkey and mouse, of course. It also provides further evidence that the Rongai Route remains one of the best for such sightings (over the past year a couple of the guides also reported seeing buffalo below Mawenzi Tarn), mainly because of its proximity to Amboseli National Park in Kenya, from where the animals stroll up in the search of water. (That said, there were also reports earlier this year of a leopard near the Machame trail – proof that the animals do still hang around Kilimanjaro, it’s just that they tend to leave humans alone most of the time!)
Septuagenarian conquers Kili
Posted by Henry at 6:06 am, June 15th 2011.
We recently received an email from a Mr Duncan Burr, who conquered Kilimanjaro on April 8 of this year. Nothing unusual about this, of course – thousands of people successfully pit themselves against Kili every year. What makes Mr Burr’s climb unusual, however, is that he was seventy years old at the time, having been born in September 1940.
This doesn’t make Mr Burr the oldest to conquer Kili – the mysterious Mr Daniel, at 87, remains the record holder, while the Guinness Book of Records records a Mr Carl Haupt as the oldest, aged 79. Indeed, some people say that older people tend to do better on Kili as they go at a slower pace, thereby allowing them to acclimatise better.
Nevertheless, seventy certainly is at the upper end of the age bracket for attempting Kili, and Mr Burr did find the going tough. As he wrote to us:
‘”Hard” is an understatement!!! I live in Spain and had done so much training carrying 15kg sand on my back up all the local mountains, including a couple at 3000mteres, and spending hours in the gym, but nothing had prepared me for that last 300 metres steep bit to Gillman’s Point. Sheer determination (and a very understanding and supportive guide) got me round the crater rim to Uhuru, but the return journey on 70-year-old knees that were no longer prepared to bend was unimaginably difficult. And where I’d planned to take a gentle two days over the journey from Kibo down to Marangu Gate, my guide, being concerned at his now somewhat wheezy and breathless charge, had other ideas, so it was an umcomfortably rapid return, followed by a trip to Moshi Hospital for a quick check-over before being allowed to return to my daughter’s home in Arusha.’
As you can see, such septuagenarian feats are noteworthy and the amount of effort expended in getting to the top is extraordinary and we have put a photo of him at the summit in our Hall of Fame. Mr Burr climbed in aid of Heshima (www.heshima.org.uk), a children’s education charity based in Arusha. Heshima in Swahili means ‘respect’ – something Mr Burr is definitely due for his feats on Africa’s highest mountain.
Climb for The Born Free Foundation
Posted by Henry at 9:42 am, June 1st 2011.
In June this year Martyn Roberts from Wakefield in West Yorkshire, will be pitting himself against Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro. A noble endeavour by itself, Martyn’s quest is doubly virtuous as he’ll be climbing for The Born Free Foundation.
The Born Free Foundation is an international wildlife charity working throughout the world to stop individual wild animal suffering and protect threatened species in the wild. Anybody who’s seen the films of Elsa the lion will be aware of the foundation and how the charity was founded. But in addition to such African stars as lions, elephants, gorillas and chimpanzees, the foundation also works all over the world in their attempts to better the lot of tigers, polar bears, wolves, dolphins, turtles, sharks – and many more.
Mr Roberts will be taking our Unique Rongai Route to the top (hopefully), and aims to reach the summit on 15 June. he has set up a website to help people sponsor him: visit www.justgiving.com/Martyn-Roberts0 for further details on Mr Roberts, his climb and the Born Free Foundation.
We do, of course, wish Marty all the best on his adventure! Good luck Martyn!!
Sisters to climb for two charities – and in memory of their mum
Posted by Henry at 7:28 am, April 12th 2011.
In July this year four sisters will be pitting themselves against Africa’s highest mountain in an attempt to raise funds for two very worthwhile causes. Gill Ower and her sisters Lorna, Heather and Cerwyss O’Hare, will be climbing via our own Unique Rongia Route. The first charity they will be raising funds for is the World Cancer Research Fund, which leads and unites the work of several cancer charities in battling against the disease by means of healthy food and nutrition, physical activity and body weight. They are also climbing for Children 1st, a Scottish charity that helps that country’s vulnerable children and families by speaking out on children’s rights, influencing legislation and campaigning for change.
Both charities are close to the sisters’ hearts. Their mum, Audrey, passed away last year with breast cancer after a ten-year struggle. Audrey had learnt that she had contracted the disease while she was training to tackle the mountain herself. The daughters thus felt that there couldn’t be a more appropriate tribute to their mum than to attempt to conquer the mountain that she herself never managed to tackle. And as Audrey’s own climb was going to be in aid of Children 1st, her daughters thought it only fitting to climb for the same charity themselves.
You can sponsor the Ower sisters’ climb by visiting the website they have set up all about their climb: www.owersclimbkili.webs.com/
We do, of course, wish them all well and will hopefully let you know how they get on!
People wanted for Kilimanjaro ‘Christchurch Earthquake Fund’ expedition
Posted by Henry at 1:36 pm, March 22nd 2011.
On the 22nd February, 2011, a massive 6.3 earthquake hit Christchurch, New Zealand. A team of New Zealanders – including a few from that benighted city – and their friends in London were feeling helpless watching the unbearable events unfold on the other side of the world and wanted to do something to help. In response, they’ve decided to take on the challenge of climbing Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest Mountain, in August 2011 to help raise money for the Christchurch Earthquake Fund. All this with the aim of raising $5895 (the height of kilimanjaro in metres) to help the city and people they hold so close to their hearts get back on its feet.
All money donated through www.justgiving.com/chchearthquake will go directly to the Red Cross Christchurch Earthquake Appeal – So please
dig deep and donate.
Furthermore, if you would like to be part of the NZ Kilimanjaro expedition – please email: email@example.com or check out www.kilimanjaronz.com
Climb in Aid of the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust
Posted by Henry at 10:30 am, March 21st 2011.
At the end of the long rains in Tanzania this year, David Perrow, together with 14 friends and family members, will be attempting to climb Kilimanjaro. The trek will be particularly poignant for David, who will be climbing in aid of the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust, following the death of his wife last March after battling for four years with brain cancer.
David describes Sarah as ‘an inspirational person to all those she met’, and says that they all ‘miss her greatly’. Indeed, the climbing group includes Sarah’s father, brother and many of her friends.
David is hoping to raise a total of £10,000 towards helping fund research and provide support to those affected by brain cancer. You can help them achieve this goal by visiting their webpage on the justgiving.com site:
We do, of course, wish David and his team all the best, and will hopefully keep you informed of their progress on their trek.
Climb for Cancer Research UK
Posted by Henry at 8:56 am, March 17th 2011.
In early September this year, two brave souls from the UK will pit themselves against the might of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, in aid of Cancer Research UK.
Brandi Legon and Simon Clayton, from Benfleet in Essex, will be climbing on our Unique Rongai Route and plan to reach the summit on 12 September at around dawn. They both have a very personal reason for climbing for this charity, which aims to beat cancer by discovering new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat the disease. Simon’s mum, Hazel, lost her battle with liver cancer last month. Brandi too, has lost several family members to different forms of cancer over the past few years.
The pair have set themselves a target of £3000 – with, they promise, every penny donated going to the charity!
If you wish to sponsor them, then you can visit their justgiving.com page at the following address:
We do, of course, wish Brandi and Simon every success on their trek – and will let you know how they get on.
Good luck both of you!
Science measures effects of deforestation on The Snows of Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 10:14 am, March 9th 2011.
I am indebted to John Gregoire, one of our clients who is due to climb with us in July this year, for sending in an article on Kilimanjaro that he discovered on the Science Daily website. The article discusses work by scientists at the University of Alabama in Huntsville who are using models to measure the deforestation around the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro and the effect this has on the weather patterns on the mountain. Using data from NASA satellites, they hope to find out whether – and by how much – the deforestation is aggravating the shrinking of the snows atop Kili’s Kibo peak.
With less than 2 sq km of glaciers now existing at the summit, the study is obviously a vital one. Using July as their base month (a ‘dry season’ month, and thus one less affected by the large-scale climate systems from the Indian Ocean), Dr. Udaysankar Nair and doctoral student Jonathan Fairman, together with University of Alabama’s in Huntsville’s Dr. Sundar Christopher and Dr. Thomas Mölg at the University of Innsbruck, Austria, found that deforestation is having an impact on the climate of the mountain – and thus the amount of ice present at the summit.
In particular, it found that on the southern side of Kilimanjaro the rainfall is actually occurring higher up the mountain now, with less rain falling below 6500ft (1981m) altitude, but more rain falling between 6500ft and 13000ft (3962m). On the north side of the mountain, however, there is less rainfall altogether.
So why is this happening – and what does this mean for Kilimanjaro’s famous snowy summit? Well, because Kilimanjaro stands all alone on the plains of northern Tanzania, with no other mountain within 60km of it, so under normal circumstances airflow (wind) is able to simply blow around it. However, with the forest disappearing, there is less resistance to this airflow and the wind is able to flow up the slopes more easily as it meets less resistance.
As Nair says: “When you cut down forests you reduce surface roughness, which increases wind speed at higher elevations on the windward slopes. That faster wind over steep upper slopes causes more intense cloud formation and precipitation up the side of the mountain.” As he points out, however, more work needs to be done before any firm conclusions can be reached. To this end, the group are now looking at what happens during the mountain’s two rainy seasons to find out whether this change in the climate on Kilimanjaro has a negative – or, indeed, positive – effect on the mountain’s glaciers.
Climbing for children in India and Africa
Posted by Henry at 3:24 pm, February 25th 2011.
Tomorrow morning Rahul Talwar will begin a six-day climb on the Machame Route, destination: the summit! An ambitious enough project in itself, but in addition Rahul will be hoping to raise £5000 each for two charities. The first is Future Hope, based in Calcutta, India, which looks after street children. The second, Vipingo Village Fund in Kenya, seeks to improve the future of over 100 young children whose lives have been devastated by HIV. Most of these children have lost both their parents to the virus, while many are HIV positive themselves! Without the VVF fund, these childrens lives would be nothing, over as soon as they are born.
If you’d like to donate to either fund by sponsoring Rahul’s climb, then you can visit his justgiving pages at the following addresses:
In addition to the climb, Rahul has promised that, if he reaches the ambitious £5000 on either charity, he will then take on Mount Kenya too!
We do, of course, wish Rahul every success and will keep you posted on his progress.
Kilimanjaro conquered by 10-year-old Canadian Girl
Posted by Henry at 7:06 pm, February 20th 2011.
Following on from last week’s announcement of an 11-year-old Australian boy’s successful conquest of Africa’s highest mountain comes news of a Canadian girl who has achieved a similar feat at an even younger girl. At 2:45pm on 30th January, 2011, Amber Guderian, just 10 years old, made it to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.
She was accompanied on her trek by her father, Doug Guderian. Indeed, they were the only two in their party of seven who actually made it to the summit, even though they had opted for an eight-day trek – six up, two down.
Her reaction to her achievement was fairly understated: “When I saw the sign, I was like ‘Yay!’” she said the day after she and her father had returned to their home in Kitchener. Her dad, however, was more effusive:
“I was really, really glad for Amber that she was able to get there, and that we were able to do it together,” said Doug, 46. “I was very proud of her.”
Congratulations Amber – and, of course, Doug. Nice one!
Young Australian reaches the summit
Posted by Henry at 11:39 am, February 17th 2011.
In another of our occasional bulletins on freakishly young kids getting to the top of Kilimanjaro, a newspaper article has been sent to me by a Karl Ottogalli (presumably the kid’s father) detailing a successful climb last month by an 11-year-old boy!
The boy, Jivan Ottogalli, from Ocean Reach in Western Australia, was climbing to raise money for sick children in his home state, and reached the summit on January 9th of this year. As the local newspaper, the West Australian, says, Jivan’s mother Marika has no idea where her sons’ desire to climb mountains came from – though Jivan’s 15-year-old brother Hanson completed the climb three years ago, which presumably was some sort of inspiration.
So far Jivan has raised US$1000 for the Princess Margaret Foundation. You too can make a donation by visiting http://www.pmhfoundation.com/.
We do of course congratulate Jivan on his incredible achievement.
Posted by Henry at 5:48 pm, February 10th 2011.
On 12 February 2011, two brave souls will be pitting themselves against Africa’s highest mountain in aid of the worthwhile charity Wateraid. The pair – mother and son team Sue and Paul Power, from Buckinghamshire – have already raised over a £1000 for Wateraid, which is an international non-governmental organisation that aims to transform lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in the world’s poorest communities. You can read more about the work they do by visiting their website at http://www.wateraid.org/ .
Sue and Paul have also set up their own justgiving.com page to enable donors to give donations via credit card. The address is: http://www.justgiving.com/sueandpaul-power
We do of course wish them both well and will let you know how they get on over the next couple of weeks.
Good luck Sue and Paul!
Four Brits raising money for The Wiseman Trust and Children with Leukemia
Posted by Henry at 11:00 am, February 2nd 2011.
On 12 February 2011 four plucky women will be climbing Kilimanjaro in aid of two charities. The women – Amelia Joyner, Lindsey Suter, Lesley Taylor and Sarah Davenport – will be taking on the Unique Rongai Route and hope to reach the highest point in Africa, Uhuru Peak, on 18 February. They will be climbing in aid of two charities: The Wiseman Trust, a small charity that raises money for research into Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome, a little-known condition that accounts for the deaths of many hundreds of identical-twin newborns; and also Children with Leukaemia, the UK’s leading charity dedicated to fighting Britain’s biggest childhood cancer. Altogether, the four adventurers hope to raise at least £3000.
You can read all about their expedition and their fundraising efforts on the following page:
We do, of course, wish them all well and will hopefully let you know how they get on later this month.
Climb in aid of Teenager Cancer Trust
Posted by Henry at 9:31 pm, January 26th 2011.
In March 2011 a team of nurses, doctors, theatre staff, admin staff, families – and a whole bunch of other people! – will be climbing Kilimanjaro on behalf of the Teenage Cancer Trust.
As is so often the case, this ‘fun’ expedition has as its genesis a tragic loss. Indeed, in this case, two tragic losses, with two 16-year-olds, Hannah Newham and Rebecca Foster, losing their fight against cancer back in 2008.
All money raised from the expedition will go towards the Teenage Cancer Trust – specifically for the Nottingham Units. As is explained on their website: “Having a teenage unit at the QMC and Nottingham City Hospital will mean so much to teenagers who have been diagnosed with cancer. Teenagers need their own space and to be around people of their own age. It is often difficult for them to talk to their parents about their fears and the implications of living with cancer, which they are old enough to understand only too well. It will mean that they can have their friends to visit while they are having chemotherapy in an environment which is relaxed and more suited to their needs. It will help take their minds off the disease and allow them to feel ‘normal’ again. The needs and emotions of teenagers are very different to those of a baby, toddler or young child and indeed those of an adult.”
You can sponsor this most worthy of causes by visiting the webpage http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/TandOKilimanjaro or by calling QMC directly on 0115 9249924, ext 65016 or 63315.
The world’s highest ever Burn’s Night held on Kilimanjaro’s Uhuru Peak
Posted by Henry at 6:33 pm, January 19th 2011.
That great Scottish celebration, Burn’s Night, was celebrated a few thousand miles away from its homeland last night on the summit of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro. The feast, organised by members of the hospitality industry to raise funds for the charity Hospitality Industry Trust (HIT), was prepared by Michelin-star chef Andrew Fairlie, from Perth.
Organisers are hoping to raise a total of £150,000 from the event.
These are the news stories for Kilimanjaro and Tanzania for 2010:
Nuns climbing Kili for charity!
Posted by Henry at 3:25 pm, December 15th 2010.
In what may be a first, two nuns will shortly be climbing for charity.
The sisters, Sister Aurelia and Sister Lucy, are climbing as part of a group of five who are climbing in order to raise funds for SHOCC (Strawberry Hill Overseas Charity Concern). The other climbers include Charlotte Coleman, who is climbing with her father and collecting money for the school she is helping to build in Cherekeni, about 8km from Moshi; and Sister Aurelia’s brother.
To find out more about Charlotte and her father’s fundraising you can visit their justgiving.com webpage at http://www.justgiving.com/Coltman.
We wish them all the best and will hopefully let you know how they get on in due course.
Climb Kilimanjaro at Adventure Travel Live!
Posted by Henry at 11:13 am, December 9th 2010.
The Adventure Travel Live show will once again take place in London’s Royal Horticultural Halls, near Victoria Station. And this year there is a particular emphasis on God’s greatest mountain, with the Kilimanjaro Virtual Challenge!
Organised by those good people at the Altitude Centre in London’s Covent Garden, the challenge simulates the Umbwe Route and the conditions one can find at various altitudes in a special chamber that they are bringing to the show.
In addition I will also be giving my usual talk on climbing the mountain in the Discover Africa Theatre (Theatre 6) from 1pm to 1.45pm on Saturday 29 January 2011. All being well, I will also, as usual, be hanging around the Trailblazer stand (the publishers of the Kilimanjaro guide) afterwards to answer any questions you may have.
You can find out more about the show at www.adventuretravellive.com
I look forward to meeting with some of you there!
Kilimanjaro Marathon announced
Posted by Henry at 8:50 am, November 22nd 2010.
The Ninth Kilimanjaro Marathon was announced in a ceremony in Dar es Salaam yesterday. The annual race – Tanzania’s only international meeting – is scheduled to take place on 27 February 2011 and will, as usual, head up the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro before returning to Moshi.
Amongst the sponsors are The Tanzania Breweries Limited (makers of Kilimanjaro Beer), Moshi’s Keys Hotel, the Tanzanian Tourist Board, Precisionair and Kilimanjaro Water. One assumes that the Kiliman Challenge – where some marathon competitors choose to climb the mountain first, then cycle round the mountain, before taking part in the marathon at the end – will also be running as usual.
We’ll keep you informed of developments over the coming weeks and months to come.
83-year-old woman climbs Kilimanjaro!
Posted by Henry at 2:34 pm, October 31st 2010.
A reader has sent me an article from their local newspaper – the Rapid City Journal – about 83-year-old Bernice Buum who back in September of this year managed to climb to the top of Kilimanjaro! In doing so, I believe that Bernice has become the oldest woman to get to the summit.
Bernice, who was accompanied by her niece and long-time trekking companion Judy Myers, took six days to complete the trek – four up, two down. She began her training by climbing the 10 flights of stairs at the Rapid City Regional Hospital at the hospital where she volunteers. She described her experience as the ‘adventure of a lifetime’ – but won’t be hurrying back anytime soon, though will continue to hike around the US and near her home.
Congratulations Bernice – climbing Kilimanjaro is some achievement at any age!
Scientists warn of the dangers of altitude
Posted by Henry at 11:44 am, October 28th 2010.
A few newspapers in the UK recently carried a report on a study done on Kilimanjaro by researchers from the University of Edinburgh. It makes for worrying reading.
In it, they suggest that many people who climb Kilimanjaro are unaware of the dangers of altitude. They tested 200 people on the mountain and found that 47% of people were suffering from altitude sickness before they had reached the summit, and the majority of climbers were climbing too far too fast.
Stewart Jackson, who conducted the study that was initially reported in the journal ‘High Altitude medicine and biology’ said “We found that many climbers knew little or nothing about altitude sickness. Undertaking an acclimatisation trek before attempting to summit Mount Kilimanjaro offers climbers the best chance of a safe, successful summit.”
Climb to raise money for two rape charities
Posted by Henry at 12:23 pm, October 7th 2010.
On 17 July next year, Faye Wilson will be travelling to Tanzania to climb GOd’s greatest mountain. In doing so, she will be raising money for two charities: Rape Crisis Scotland and Corrieneuchin Aberdeenshire. Both charities help children and adults who have been raped and abused. As a a rape survivor herself who only went public this year, Faye knows how important these support charities are and is climbing Kilimanjaro in order to raise awareness of the issues around these topics and encourage others to use these services.
If you wish to support Faye in her endeavours then you can contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
We do of course wish Faye every success.
Climb in aid of Australian Cancer Relief
Posted by Henry at 8:57 am, September 29th 2010.
On 21 December 2009 2009 Robert (Bob) Short lost his four year fight against Cancer. Exactly one year later, on 21 December 2010 her wife, Karen and daughter Debbie will begin an ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro, both in memory of their husband and father and to raise funds for the Australian Cancer Research Foundation.
Though they have only been fundraising for a few short months, they have already reached their target of AU$10,000 (at the last count they had reached AU$10,400). That does not mean they have stopped raising money for this most worthy of causes, however – and you can contribute by visiting the webpage they have set up for this purpose at
We do of course wish both Debbie and Karen well in their adventure and hope to bring you an update on their progress at the end of the year.
The sky at night from Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 6:43 am, August 11th 2010.
If there is one thing that everybody remarks about on Kilimanjaro, it is the amazing number of stars people can see at night while climbing it. Unaffected by the light pollution that blights the Western World, the sky at night on Kilimanjaro is truly one of the great – and unsung- attractions of climbing Africa’s highest mountain.
Those in the US who want to know a bit more about what it is they are actually seeing up in the sky while climbing should get hold of a copy of September 2010’s Sky and Telescope magazine (http://www.skyandtelescope.com/). Shawn Quinn, the author, climbed the mountain in June of last year via the Lemosho/Western Breach trail and lugged some rather nifty astronomy equipment (including a tracking mount) with him in order to capture some beautiful images of the stars along the way.
Do check out the magazine and Shawn’s article – it’s just beautiful!
Brit becomes officially the oldest person to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 7:59 am, August 3rd 2010.
Following on from our report back in July, we are pleased to be able to announce that grandad George Solt, a retired professor from Olney in Buckinghamshire, has become officially the oldest man to reach the summit of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro.
Mr Solt, who is 82, reached the peak with the help of his daughter-in-law Hillary, and three of his grandchildren.
Nice one George!
Brit tries to become officially the oldest person to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 8:39 pm, July 5th 2010.
Next Friday George Solt, from Maidenhead in the UK, will begin his attempt to be officially recognised as the oldest man ever to stand at the summit Kilimanjaro.
Mr Solt, who is 82, will be climbing on the Machame Route and taking 8 days in total to reach the summit and descend again, will be accompanied on his climb by five members of his family.
Those Kilimanjaro-buffs among you will note that Mr Solt is in fact five years younger than Valtee Daniel, the mysterious Frenchman who at 87 is accepted by some as the oldest man on the summit. But Mr Daniel’s climb has never been recognised by the Guinness Book of Records, who insist on certain rules being followed in order for a climber’s claim to be accepted. In particular, the record attempt has to be verified by independent witnesses, must be filmed and photographed as well as meticulously documented in a log book.
As such, they currently have American Carl Haupt as the oldest man, as he reached the summit aged 79 back in 2004.
We do of course wish Mr Solt every success and hope to bring you news of his attempt as it happens.
4 wheel Bob is gunning for Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 10:46 am, July 2nd 2010.
In another of our very occasional bulletins on extraordinary people attempting to overcome insurmountable obstacles to climb Kilimanjaro, news has reached us that Bob Coomber, aka 4wheelBob, has set his sights on climbing Africa’s highest mountain. As you may have guessed from his moniker, Bob is wheelchair bound, having developed juvenile diabetes in the 1970s, when he was still in his twenties.
Bob as a bit of previous in this field: in 2007 Bob he was the first person in a wheelchair to conquer California’s third highest peak, White Mountain (14,246′). Bob has also navigated his chair up two other Californian peaks, Mt. Diablo and North Peak, as well as Mission Peak in Fremont. In October of 2010, Bob plans to move things up a gear by tackling Kilimanjaro.
The Kilimanjaro trip is being sponsored, with the money raised going towards distributing 200 wheelchairs in Arusha, in partnership with The Wheelchair Foundation of Danville.
There are a number of ways you can keep up with Bob’s project and see how his preparation is going:
We do of course wish him the very best of luck, and will hopefully let you know how he gets on during his expedition. Good luck Bob!
Climb for Autism
Posted by Henry at 12:02 pm, June 14th 2010.
I have received a poignant email from a lady who is climbing on behalf of autism this year. In a break with tradition, rather than paraphrase her email I have decided to print it as it was received this morning:
” My name is Jackie Knechtel. I am a speech pathologist in NYC. A year ago I lost my brother. This was a catalyst for me to live my dream and now I am currently traveling around the world for a year and seeing and doing everything I can and living life to the fullest!. For the last leg of my journey I am gearing up to head to Africa! For the past few weeks I have been training body and mind to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro the tallest free standing mountain in the world and the tallest mountain in Africa:19,340 feet (5,895 meters) for a cause very close to my heart. For the past 10 years I have dedicated my life to working with children with Autism. I climb for them. I am new to climbing and suffer from altitude induced asthma. What I will put myself through is nothing compared to the challenges that families with children with Autism face on a daily basis.
Autism is the second most common developmental disorder in the United States affecting one in every 110 children born today. 1 in 100 births in Australia. It is an epidemic all across the globe. Despite some promising discoveries, the cause of autism is unknown and a cure does not exist. Research is crucial. Every 20 minutes another child is diagnosed with autism. Not only must we find ways to improve the quality of life for children and adults with autism, but we also must find a cure, and soon!
My goal is to raise much needed funds for Autism Speaks. I am nearly a quarter of the way to reaching my goal of $10,000! If just 75 people each contribute $100 I’m there! Please contribute whatever you can; no amount is too large or too small. Every donation received is will help motivate me to reach the summit!
Check out my interview in the ASHA Leader !!:
Follow This Link to visit my personal web page and help me in my efforts to support Autism Speaks:
Thank you for taking an important step in the fight against autism. A special thanks to those who have already donated! Please pass this email on to anyone you know and contact me if you have media connections so together we can reach as many people as possible!”
We wish Jackie every success with her climb and will let you know how she gets on with her climb.
Want to climb for the good of Tanzania?
Posted by Henry at 4:11 pm, June 1st 2010.
A charity group has recently been in touch asking for people to consider their cause when it comes to choosing a charity to climb for. The Touch Foundation. We are involved in helping to strengthen Tanzania’s health system via a variety of private/public partnerships and developing a model that can be replicated throughout Africa to provide a sustainable solution to the current health care crisis in sub Saharan Africa. You can find out more about their work at www.touchfoundation.org .
They are now launching a new project called “Climb for Health” campaign in which climbers will raise awareness and money for Touch’s work in Tanzania while attempting to summit Mount Kilimanjaro. Unlike many of the charity treks featured on this site, we are not doing it on a set date with a group of people, but are looking to give individual climbers (who would be coming to Kilimanjaro anyway) a chance to climb for a cause.
Interested? Then contact Joshua Doying at Joshua_Doying@external.mckinsey for details.
Fancy climbing for Children Today?
Posted by Henry at 7:40 am, May 26th 2010.
A British charity is looking for climbers to join them on a sponsored trek up Africa’s highest mountain. The charity, Children Today, is a small British charity founded in 1994 to help disabled children and young people up to the age of 25 enjoy a better quality of life by providing them with the specialised equipment they need.
The provision of equipment and aids is vital in helping children and young people overcome their disabilities and enable them to lead full and active lives with their families and friends.
They have alreay organised a climb for September this year. This is, alas, now full so they are now looking for people to join their climb on the Marangu Route between March 4-11 2011.
To find out more about the charity and their climb, visit http://www.children-today.org.uk
Want to know how you’ll fare at altitude?
Posted by Henry at 3:05 pm, May 4th 2010.
Last week I was fortunate enough to be shown around London’s Altitude Centre (www.altitudecentre.com).
Set in the heart of Covent Garden on Drury Lane – at an altitude of approximately 25m above sea level – those clever people at the Altitude Centre are able to recreate the lack of atmospheric pressure present at high altitudes.
While the centre was set up initially with an emphasis on helping athletes to conduct high-altitude training while never leaving the capital, the service they provide is of course of great interest to those about to head to very high altitudes – such as those about to climb Kilimanjaro!
Indeed, a visit to the Centre is perhaps the most reliable way of checking to see if you are likely to suffer from altitude sickness or not. And if it should transpire that, according to their assessment of you, they predict that you are likely to succumb to altitude sickness, then they have a training program that, if carried out a few weeks prior to your departure, should help you to acclimatise more efficiently on the mountain.
So how does it all work? Well the altitude centre is equipped with several clever contraptions called a hypoxicator. Place the mask over your mouth and nose, and the air you breathe will contain less oxygen than the 20.9% present at sea level – and thus mimics the effect of being at altitude.
(Pedants will point out that at altitude the level of oxygen present in the air remains at 20.9% – it is the atmospheric presure that changes. Nevertheless, the effect of reducing the amount of oxygen in the air has the same effect on the body; and by steadily reducing the amount of oxygen that one breathes, the hypoxicator can thus mimic the conditions present at ever higher altitudes).
Before being strapped to one of these machines, however, first-time visitors to the centre receive an hour-long consultation about altitude and its potential effects on the body. They are then asked to put on the hypoxicator mask and a series of tests are run in order to see how the person may react to being at altitude.
If it transpires that the person is likely to fare badly when taken to altitude, then the centre offers the chance for people to acclimatise before heading off to Africa. By training for about two-three weeks prior to the trek while on a hypoxicator, a person can increase the number of red blood cells (which take about 15 days to grow, and remain for about 3-4 months) – the essential component in acclimatisating to altitude.
All very impressive, of course, and we really think there are major benefits available from using the centre to those about to climb Kilimanjaro. However, there is of course a price for all this high-tech: the initial one-hour consultation is £99. While a 15-day course to help you acclimatise costs £299.
Kilimanjaro GPS waymarks now online
Posted by Henry at 12:12 pm, May 2nd 2010.
We have finally published our GPS waymarks online. These waymarks, or waypoints, have taken by us over the past few years and cover all the routes on the mountain.
For the relevant webpage, click this Kilimanjaro GPS Waypoints link.
The waymarks, which were previously available only in our book (and thus were not downloadable), are saved as .gdb files. The format we have used for these waypoints is known as UTM and the map datum is WGS 84 (37M) – though you can change both of these on a Garmin GPS by going to ‘Units setup’ on the ‘Settings’ menu, then changing the position format and map datum as necessary.
By downloading them onto your computer and then uploading them onto your GPS unit, you should have a fairly decent plot of your trek.
Note that those on our Unique Rongai Route can email me for GPS waypoints of this route.
Any comments on these waypoints and their accuracy will be gratefully received. Thanks.
Climb for Diabetes
Posted by Henry at 11:20 am, April 14th 2010.
In June of next year Bruce Fraser will be aiming to climb Africa’s Highest Mountain, Kilimanjaro, in aid of Diabetes UK.
Bruce decided to take the plunge and attempt the climb after his son, Kris, was diagnosed with diabetes in 2007. Diabetes is a growing condition as more and more people develop it, especially Type 2, or “late onset” as it’s otherwise known. The charity is world-reknowned for its research and support to diabetics, its website being particularly well-developed and informative.
As if climbing for this worthwhile charity wasn’t reason enough to tackle Kili, Bruce is also going to be celebrating his 51st birthday in Tanzania.
He has set up a blog about his preparations for the climb at http://www.raven-wilderness.blogspot.co.uk
We do of course wish Bruce every success and will keep in touch with his progress throughout the next year.
Spectacular conditions on Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 8:33 am, March 30th 2010.
A few of our clients who have come of the mountain in the past few days have talked about the terrible weather currently hitting Kilimanjaro. Bad weather at this time of year is, of course, nothing unusual – it is, after all, the start of the main rainy season and April/May are often difficult times to climb, so the fact that the end of March is also tough is no great surprise. What is surprising is just how bad they are, with snow strecthing down below Horombo and very wet conditions at the bottom. Indeed, one of our guides, Freddie Achedo, was saying that he had never seen such bad conditions – and he has climbed over 320 times!
One of our trekkers, KK Condon, has kindly agreed to allow people to see her photos that she has put onilne.
The address is:
The photos on this Flickr site don’t look too bad – at least until Kibo, when the snow suddenly seems very heavy and covers the entire summit! But suffice to say that it did make trekking a very difficult affair – KK explained that it took the three of them twelve hours to get from Barafu to the summit (it should take about six) – and they believe they were (unsurprisingly) the only people on the summit that day.
Climbers wanted for Kujali International charity climb
Posted by Henry at 10:05 pm, March 28th 2010.
We’ve received an email from Sarah Lowe of Kujali International requesting that we put out an advert for trekkers, who are needed for their fundraiser challenge to finish building a secondary school outside of Dar es Salaam by organizing a climb of Mt Kilimanjaro in August.
According to their website, www.kujali.org, those interested will need to sign up by the end of March – and have to commit to raising US$10,000 (!)
Further details are available on the website, where you can also find a link to a promotional video they have made (the video is at
Climb for Brain Tumour Research
Posted by Henry at 9:47 am, March 24th 2010.
In September this year two plucky young Brits will be taking on the challenge of climbing Africa’s highest mountain in aid of Brain Tumour Research.
Kelly Jo Hearsey and her friend Mandy Bocker were inspired to climb Kilimanjaro after Kelly’s son’s classmate, Taylan, died aged 7 from a rare form of brain tumour.
They have set up a justgiving page to help them collect the £7000 they are hoping to raise in sponsorship money. You will also find on this site links to their weblogs, which they are producing for every stage of their preparation and climb.
The address is www.justgiving.com/KellyMandjaro – which is just about the cleverest ‘justgiving’ webpage title I’ve seen.
We do of course wish them both well – and will keep you updated on their progress and how they get on when they’re actually on the mountain.
Climb for Generosity Water
Posted by Henry at 11:07 am, March 20th 2010.
In January next year Heidi Hurst will be climbing for Generosity Water, an organization dedicated to helping end the world water crisis. The goal is to raise enough to fund at least 10 clean water wells in needy third-world countries (approx. $90,000).
Heidi has created a website to advertise her climb and allow people to follow her progress: [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID]
We do of course wish Heidi well and will let you know of her progress in the months leading up to her trek.
Mauly Tours greatly improved say KPAP
Posted by Henry at 8:44 am, March 11th 2010.
I have just received an email from Karen Valenti, ‘boss’ of the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project that fights for the rights and welfare of porters on God’s Greatest Mountain.
In the email, Karen, surprisingly for those who know the previous reputation of the company, praises the Moshi-based trekking agency Mauly Tours.
As Karen writes: “I would like for you to know that Mauly has taken major steps to be in compliance with KPAP’s guidelines. These include the weighing procedures, [and] use of tipping sheets and salary records in which each of the crew sign for the payments.
“I honestly am quite impressed with their current performance. We will need to monitor their activities the remaining of the season, particularly with porter interviews. But I do see that they have a very good potential of becoming a Partner for Responsible Travel soon.”
This is very good news, particuarly as previously Mauly had been renowned as one of the worst performers when it came to porter welfare. We would like to offer our congratulations to Mauly for the steps they have taken – and to KPAP, of course, for persuading one of the larger operators on Kilimanjaro to improve its treatment of their staff.
We’re travelling around Tanzania!
Posted by Henry at 10:47 am, February 13th 2010.
Just a quick note to say that we will be travelling around bits of Tanzania over the next couple of weeks. As such, do please be patient if you haven’t had a response to any emails you send us over the next fortnight. We will, of course, answer all emails as soon as we are able.
Thanks for your understanding!
Microsoft executives to climb Kilimanjaro for Africa
Posted by Henry at 7:53 am, February 12th 2010.
At the end of this month Microsoft Africa executives will be climbing Mount Kilimanjaro with the intention of raising funds for Miracle Corners of the World (MCW). The funds raised by Microsoft employees, partners and customers will be used to help build learning centres in African countries, as part of Microsoft Africa’s broader initiative to support educational development on the African continent, giving back to the communities within which it operates.
MCW is a non-profit organization founded in 1999. Its vision is Local Change Through Global Exchange and its mission is to empower youth to become leaders of change. Please visit www.miraclecorners.org to donate to the initiative.
We wish them all the best on the mountain – and will let you know how they get on!
Climb for Muscular dystrophy and Out of Afrika
Posted by Henry at 8:55 am, February 11th 2010.
In September of this year Jude Mahoney, along with friends Peter Glenn and Jia Yan Gu, are climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for two charities, the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign and Out of Afrika – a charity founded in the UK that works at grass roots level with communities in Kenya to promote education to orphans and disadvantaged children to increase self-sufficiency and long term sustainability. We’re looking to raise £15,000 – an ambitious amount by anyone’s reckoning – which is why they have begun to advertise their climb 8 months in advance; and wy they’ve got in touch with us to help them in their fundraising. Which we are of course happy to do so.
Theire website is www.kjaro.co.uk.
We do of course wish them well in their endeavours.
Climb to to raise awareness of pulmonary hypertension
Posted by Henry at 9:37 pm, February 9th 2010.
On February 19-26, pulmonary hypertension (PH) specialists and Pulmonary Hypertension Association Scientific Leadership Council members, Drs. Ray Benza and Robert Frantz, along with Jessica Lazar, PA, will know firsthand what it means to be breathless. For in a joint effort to raise global awareness of PH – a condition which occurs physiologically while ascending to high altitude), they will tackle the ultimate challenge – climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain!
In addition to raising awareness of pulmonary hypertension, they also hope to raise $100,000 for PH research.
They have set up a website about their expedition at: http://www.phassociation.org/pathtoacure/
They have also set up a training blog at www.pathtoacure.blogspot.com
We do, of course, wish them well in their climb – and will hopefully let you know how they get on!
Third Edition of Kilimanjaro guidebook here at last!!
Posted by Henry at 11:48 am, January 25th 2010.
We’re delighted (well, relieved more than anything) to be able to annunce that the long-awaited third edition is finally – FINALLY! – here. We received a boxload this morning, and presuably they’ll be in the shops ery shortly too.
We do apologise to everyone who’s been waiting, particularly those who’ve written to me wondering where they can get hold of a copy – plus, of course, those who are climbing with us and who hae been (patiently) waiting for their complementary copy too. I will personally be sending those out over the next couple of days. I will also be sorting out the Amazon links (right) so that you can once more buy the book through this website.
Once again, thanks for patience over the past few weeks.
Third edition on its way!!
Posted by Henry at 12:05 pm, January 2nd 2010.
The third edition of our bestselling guide to Kilimanjaro is finally on its way back from the printers and should be in your shops in the next month. I have seen a copy now – so I know it exists! – and it should be in the shops soon.
I notice that Amazon.com (ie the US) are estimating that they will have the book available for sale on Feb 23 but I think they are being a touch pessimistic.
If it’s not already on general sale, then perhaps one of the best ways to get hold of a copy is at the Adventure Travel Show at the Royal Horticultural Halls at Victoria, London, 29-31 January 2010.
Kilimanjaro News 2009
These are the news stories for Kilimanjaro and Tanzania for 2009
Fifteen Welsh rugby captains to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 12:45 pm, December 3rd 2009.
In September 2010 15 Welsh rugby captains will be climbing Africa’s highest mountain in aid of Velindre Cancer Centre’s Stepping Stones Appeal. The climb was inspired by Sue Evans, the wife of Huw, the official photographer to the Welsh Rugby Union, who was diagnosed with lung cancer last year.
Among those taking part are euan Evans, Gareth Thomas, Scott Gibbs, Scott Quinnell, Garin Jenkins and Rob Howley, as well as the current Wales coach Warren Gatland. The aim of the climb is to raise 1m for the charity, which conducts research into lung cancer. Interestingly, one in five people who contract lung cancer don’t actually smoke – including Sue herself.
We do of course wish the expedition well and will keep you up to date with their progress over the coming months leading up to the climb.
The melting glaciers of Kilimanjaro – an update
Posted by Henry at 4:08 pm, November 27th 2009.
An article in this month’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has confirmed that Kilimanjaro will shortly be free of glaciers – for the first time in approximately 12,000 years.
Even more depressingly, contrary to recent science they have confirmed many people’s worst fears – that the blame for their disappearance can be aimed squarely at humanity and our deleterious effects on the world’s climate.
Scientists have been measuring the decline of Kilimanjaro’s glaciers since the milennium, and have recorded the decline of both the mountain’s Southern Icefield – which lost 5.1m in height between 2000 and 2007 – and the Furtwangler Glacier, which had shrunk by 4.8m (almost 50% of its depth) over the same period.
According to the article, the mountain has never before suffered such a decline in its icy summit – not even during a 300-year drought around 4200 years ago. It is this fact in particuar that led scientists to conclude that, while drier conditions regionally could lead to some loss of ice, the fact that so much ice has been lost recently suggests that the overall rise in world temperature must be at the main reason why Kilimanjaro is slowing losing its snowy mantle.
The scientists behind such gloomy forecasts are Professor Lonnie Thompson and Dr Doug Hardy, the leading lights in a team of climatologists from the University of Ohio whose work on Kilimanjaro and other glaciers around the world has done much to increase both our knowledge of the mountain and the long-term effects of climate change.
Currently, scientists reckon that Kilimanjaro’s summit will be entirely free of ice around 2040 – though some put it as soon as 2020.
Snake coughs up new species for scientist
Posted by Henry at 3:29 pm, November 26th 2009.
As you know, in addition to writing on all-things Kilimanjaro we also like to report on Tanzanian topics that, though only tenuously linked to the mountain, are diverting enough to mention anyway. In this instance, a new species of chameleon has been discovered in the southern mountains of Tanzania after it was spat up by a snake at the feet of a researcher.
Dr Andrew Marshall, a conservationist from York University, was actually in the Magombera forest to survey the monkeys there, when he came across a twig snake in the undergrowth. Dr Marshall’s astonishment was as nothing to the snake’s, which sicked up the chameleon out of sheer terror before fleeing deeper into the forest. Rather than giving the snake’s ‘gift’ a wide berth, the good doctor did what every decent scientist would and took photographs to send to colleagues, who confirmed that it was a species previously unknown to science.
The events described actually took place in 2005 but it is only now that the creature has been recognised as being a new species – with chameleons, given their changing colour it’s difficult to actually make sure that a new discovery is just that, and not merely an unusual example of a known species.
This chameleon has been christened Kinyongia magomberae, after the forest in which it was found. Dr Marshall is hoping that the discovery of this chameleon will be enough to convince the authorities to provide some sort of official status to this as-yet unprotected forest.
Solar eclipse will be visible from Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 3:20 pm, November 20th 2009.
As if the thrill of climbing Africa’s highest mountain wasn’t exciting enough, word has reached us that a solar eclipse in mid-January 2010 will be visible from Kilimanjaro.
The eclipse is due on the morning of 15 January. The eclipse is one of only four that will be happening across the globe this year, and is known technically as an annular eclipse because it is one that occurs when the Moon covers the centre of the Sun, but not its edges, leaving a ring (or annulus) of the Sun visible around its edges.
Though Kilimanjaro lies just too far to the south of the 300km-wide trail across Kenya along which it is possible to see the entire annular eclipse, those in northern Tanzania and on Kilimanjaro will witness a partial eclipse. The phenomenon will occur at around 8.30am, when presumably a few stragglers will be making their way around the crater rim. Indeed, it may even be worth delaying your final climb to Uhuru Peak to coincide your arrival there with the eclipse.
So if you’re toying with the idea of a Kilimanjaro climb, but weren’t sure when, this could just be the incentive you need! (Though if you head to Kilimanajro at this time, make sure you take suitable protection for your eyes and don’t look direcctly at the sun at any time.)
Female paraplegic to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 3:05 pm, November 11th 2009.
In January of next year, Erica Davis is aimng to become the first paraplegic female – and only the second paraplegic ever – to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro.
Erica has been paralysed since 2005 when a microscopic bleed in her spinal cord called a Cavernous Hemangioma which left her paralyzed from the chest down. Since then, however, she has competed in seven triathlons, over ten cycling races, and a few half and full marathons – most of which she won. She has also trained at two of the USA Olympic Training Centers and hopes to officially be on the USA Paralympic team in 2012.
On her climb she will be climbing with Tara Butcher, who lost her left leg below the knee in 2005 following a car accident.
A documentary, “Through the Roof”, is being made that follows Erica and Tara’s progress towards the summit. The aim of the climb and the documentary is to benefit the Challenged Athletes Foundation, an global charitable organization that assists challenged athletes achieve their athletic dreams.
For more information on the charity and the climb, please visit
We do, of course, wish both Erica and Tara every success with her expedition, and will let you know how they get on in due course.
More information on the first paraplegic to conquer Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 4:31 pm, October 6th 2009.
It appears that the news that a paraplegic has reached the summit of Kilimanjaro is true! On September 30 2009 Chris Waddell, a paralympian skier from Park City, Utah, who had previously earned renown as the most decorated male skier in Paralympic history, winning twelve medals over four winter games (as well as participating in three summer games too), reached the summit via the Marangu Route with his One Revolution team. Waddell thus became the first paraplegic to complete the climb all the way to the summit, beating fellow American and army veteran Darol Kubacz who (contrary to previous reports) in October 2008 made it not to the summit but to an altitude of 18,400ft (around 5608m) before having to turn back through exhaustion.
Paraplegic conquers Kilimanjaro!
Posted by Henry at 5:22 pm, October 2nd 2009.
Reports are coming in of a successful attempt on the summit of Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, by Chris Waddell, from Utah, a paraplegic who made it to the top using a specially designed bomba bicycle. Mr Waddell, who broke his back 21 years ago while skiing, is used to a lifetime of overachieving, having won 12 medals in downhill ski racing over four Paralympic Games, made it to the top on Wednesday according to reports. And though he may not be the first paraplegic to make it to the summit – Darol Kubacz, also from the US, is said to have reached the crater rim in October 2008 – he is nevertheless said to be the first to reach Uhuru Peak.
We will bring you more news about Chris’ climb as soon as we get it.
Climb for British Heart Foundation begins today
Posted by Henry at 8:42 am, September 26th 2009.
As I write this, Aman Modi from the UK will be just setting out in an attempt to reach the top of Kilimanjaro. In doing so, Aman hope to raise money for the Britisih Heart Foundation. It is a charity that is particularly close to Aman, after their father passed away through heart disease last year.
If you wish to sponsor Aman’s efforts to reach the top of Africa’s highest mountain, you can do so by visiting the justgivin page as follows:
We wish Aman every success in the climb.
Climb for children’s village
Posted by Henry at 9:39 am, September 23rd 2009.
Between October 7-13 this year Hussein Alidina and friends Christina, Farhad and Paula will make a charity climb in aid of the SOS childrens village in Arusha. We have an ambitious target. They are hoping to raise the ambitious target of CA$15,000, which they estimate will be enough to enable 5 orphans in Arusha to have a home, an SOS Mother, food, clothing, school & medical care for a year.You can find out more about SOS by visiting http://www.soschildrensvillages.org.uk .
We think it’s a very worthy cause; if you’d like to donate, you can visit their donating page at
Climb for MacMillan Cancer Relief
Posted by Henry at 11:11 am, September 19th 2009.
In Oct 2010 Maria Munro from the UK will be attempting to climb Kilimanjaro in aid of Macmillan Cancer. The charity is particularly close to Maria’s heart, for in 2005 Maria’s mum was diagnosed with brain cancer. Maria’s stated aim is to raise £4000 for the charity, which to judge by her efforts so far will be a breeze: in the past month she has already raised £758 by hosting a women’s ‘Pamper’ evening and a gig by local ban The Locks.
You can follow Maria’s progress both in raising sponsorship money and training for the climb by visiting her weblog http://mariaclimbsmountkilimanjaro.blogspot.com/ . You’ll also find details there on how to sponsor her, or you can go straight to her justgiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/mariamunro/.
We do of course wish Maria every success in raising cash and, of course, in getting to the summit. GOOD LUCK MARIA.
Roman Abramovic’s climb – the truth (well, as far as we know)
Posted by Henry at 11:09 am, September 15th 2009.
As you are all probably aware, billionaire and Chelsea owner Roman Abramovic recently failed in his attempt to conquer Kilimanjaro. There are tabloid papers in the UK that are running pictures of Roman on the mountain today.
To be honest, some of us are relieved that a high-profile climber didn’t manage to reach the top: following Comic Relief’s successful climb in which all nine climbers were said to have reached the top (though we have heard reports from some people who were closely associated with the climb who say that this wasn’t the case anyway), at least Roman’s experience proves that it is not as easy as the Comic Relief climb would have you believe. We received a rash of ‘I want to climb Kilimanjaro’ emails from people following the Comic Relief climb, but it was clear that a lot of them were from people who had no idea what it entails, nor how difficult it is, but who had been inspired by seeing Chris Moyles et al make it to the top.
Anyway, reading about Roman’s climb in the Sunday newspapers, we have been made aware of a few inaccuracies in the reports. So here is what we believe to be an accurate summary of the climb.
Roman climbed as part of a group of six, together with a crew of around 113. The company he used was African Environments. Contrary to earlier reports, he did not climb via the Western Breach but instead took the Lemosho Route via Barafu. And it was at Barafu that he decided to stop after consultation with his doctor, having suffered from a bad cough since the first day of the trek. Apparently there was a strong possibility that he could have made it, but it was decided in the interests of safety not to go any further.
It was not the altitude and a lack of acclimatization that prevented him from attempting the summit climb.
The rest of his party continued the climb and made it to the top. Hopefully, the experience hasn’t put Roman off and he will make another attempt on the mountain soon.
Chelsea owner climbing Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 9:25 am, September 6th 2009.
As I write this, the owner of Chelsea Football Club, billionaire Russian Roman Abramovic, is currently attempting to reach the top of Africa’s Highest Mountain.
Abramovic, in Tanzania on a private visit, is making the assault together with six friends and bodyguards. He is hoping to reach Uhuru Peak via the 8 day Shira Route on the western slope of the mountain, via the Western Breach Wall.
Before the climb, Mr Abramovic arrived on a Boeing 747, a 200 seater jet for just his entourage, and stayed at The Rivertrees Inn, which was sealed off to outsiders during his residence.
The best website on Kilimanjaro’s changing climate – bar none
Posted by Henry at 3:25 pm, September 4th 2009.
Just thought I would point you in the direction of a superb weblog site by Dr Doug Hardy, one of the meteorological team from the University of Massachusetts that has done so much since 2000 in explaining the disappearing glaciers on Kilimanjaro and other natural phenomena. The weblog can be found at:
In it you’ll find all the very latest info on their research, as well as links to papers they have had published recently (and those boys clearly work hard, to judge by the amount of articles, interviews and papers they publish each month).
Really, if you have any interest in Kilimanjaro’s climate and glaciers, this is definitely the first place to look. It’s just wonderful.
New record for youngest girl to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 8:36 pm, August 24th 2009.
Tanzanian Silipa Swai, daughter of Cuthbert, the boss of Moshi-based trekking agency Ahsante Tours, has broken the record for the youngest female to climb Kilimanjaro. She reached the summit on 20 August 2009 at 3.06pm, which means she was 10 years, 1 month, 1 day and 22hrs when she reached Uhuru peak, the summit of Kilimanjaro and the highest point in Tanzania.
She beats the previous record, held by Kaylee Moniz of the USA who was 10 years and 3 months old when she reached the summit on June 20, 2008
We do, of course, congratulate Silipa Swai – and her dad! – on her remarkable achievement. Fantastic!
New blog on Kili
Posted by Henry at 7:44 am, August 23rd 2009.
We’ve just been sent details of a new blog on Kili. [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID] is named after the height of Kili, as we’re sure most of you know. It’s written by David Dean and is about his climb with two friends on Kilimanjaro in aid of diabetes UK. It’s not a large blog and is amusingly written, so if you fancy getting a trekkers’ eye view on the climb, this is a diverting website.
Macmillan’s Mr Challenge attempts fourth expedition on Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 2:50 pm, August 20th 2009.
Next October David Knight will be climbing Kilimanjaro with Macmillan Cancer Support. Nothing unusual in that, of course, except that this will be the fourth time that he has undertaken one of the cancer charity’s challenges, having previously ‘done’ the Inca Trail in Peru in 2004, the Grand Canyon Hiking Challenge in 2006 and the Nepal Hiking challenge in 2008.
If you want to sponsor David in his endeavours next year you can visit his JustGiving page at www.justgiving.com/David-Knight
We do, of course, wish David every success in what he admits will be his toughest challenge yet.
Jack’s very own justgiving webpage
Posted by Henry at 2:29 pm, August 11th 2009.
Following on from the news this week of Jack Harley-Walsh’s record-breaking climb, I have been advised by his handler/agent/mum that he has his own justgiving webpage, should you wish to donate to his charities.
The address is www.justgiving.com/JacksAmazingAfricanAdventure
I hope to have more details of his climb soon.
Ten-year old Jack Harley-Walsh successful in his climb!
Posted by Henry at 2:18 pm, August 10th 2009.
I have just received a couple of pictures – no text, just pictures – that proves that Jack Harley Walsh has successfully summited in his attempt to climb Kilimanjaro. I have no details yet, but I think this makes Jack the youngest Brit to successfully scale Africa’s highest mountain.
Will bring you more news when we get it. Until then – NICE ONE JACK!
Ten year old climbs Kilimanjaro for charity
Posted by Henry at 6:53 am, August 5th 2009.
As I write, a ten-year old boy from Berkshire is attempting to become the youngest Brit to conquer Africa’s highest mountain.
Jack Harley-Walsh, of Ascot, is trekking with his mum. He’s already given himself the best possible chance by conquering the neighbouring peak of Mount Meru – the perfect acclimatizqtion trek for Kili.
Jack is collecting for two charities, the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance Trust and Sebastian’s Action Trust; the latter is a small local charity that was set up in memory of Sebastian Gates, from Binfield, near Wokingham, who died of cancer in 2003 aged nine. The trust runs a holiday home where sick children can visit with their families.
You can sponsor Jack and donate to his worthy causes by visiting his justgiving.com webpage at www.justgiving.com/jackharley-walsh
We do of course wish jack every success with his climb and will let you know how he gets on.
We’re on the mountain again
Posted by Henry at 10:32 am, July 25th 2009.
Just to inform everyone that we are going back on the mountain from tomorrow until the 2 August. Please do keep on sending in your emails as usual: your photos for the Hall of Fame, your experiences and anecdotes about your time on Kilimanjaro, your news about forthcoming climbs and your enquiries about climbing with us – and I promise we’ll answer them all as soon as we return back down to Earth.
Thanks for your patience over the coming week or so. Look forward to reading all your emails when we return!
Blind climbers reach summit of Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 5:52 am, July 17th 2009.
After a year of intense training, a group of blind climbers along with sighted guides from Phoenix-based non-profit Foundation for Blind Children, reached the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa on Monday, June 29, 2009 via the Machame route.
The entire team of 25 hikers started the trek up Mt. Kilimanjaro on Tuesday, June 22, 2009, and was guided by Expedition Leader and Foundation for Blind Children board member, Kevin Cherilla, from KC Summits. The team consisted of 8 blind climbers and 17 sighted guides.
Reaching the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro at 19,340 ft. is an incredible feat in itself, but climbing blind is an entirely different story. Indeed, as they themselves boast, there were some remarkable individual feats among their party. It is possible, for example, that one of their party, Thomas L. Hicks, was the first blinded US veteran to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro, or that another, Adam Messler, was the first albino to summit Kilimanjaro. It’s also possible that a third member, Max Ashton (13), son of Foundation for Blind Children CEO, Marc Ashton, is the youngest blind climber to summit – though there are plenty of other rivals to that crown.
Nevertheless, their feats are astounding. As experienced Kili guide Nickson Moshi, who has guided over 200 groups to the top of Kilimanjaro, said: “This is very rare to have such a large group all summit, but to summit together with two children and 8 blind climbers. Truly remarkable.”
Full details about the entire climb can be read in the blog featured on [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID]
Congratulations to everyone involved.
9-year-old reaches Gillman’s Point
Posted by Henry at 12:39 pm, July 13th 2009.
On July 2, nine-year-olld Parker Phillips from Sterling, Virginia, reached Gillman’s Point on the crater rim of Kilimanjaro, an altitude of 18,638 feet.
While not the youngest person to reach the crater rim – Keats Boyd from Los Angeles reached Uhuru Peak, the actual summit of Kilimanjaro, on 21 January 2008 aged just 7 – it was nevertheless a good effort by Parker. As his father, Todd Phillips, who was also on the expedition, says, “It’s interesting to note that in climbing to Gillman’s Peak at 18,638 feet Parker has already climbed higher than the summit of Mt. Elbrus, Mt. Vinson, and the Carstensz Pyramid.”
We congratulate Parker on his achievement.
Cerebral palsy sufferer to climb for SCOPE
Posted by Henry at 4:11 pm, June 26th 2009.
On Jan 28th 2010 Steve Curtis-Read of Thatcham in Berkshire will be embarking on, in his words, ‘an epic fundraising challenge’ (ie climb to the summit Kilimanjaro) in an attempt to raise money for the British charity SCOPE.
As many of you will know already, SCOPE help and support young children and their families who suffer with Cerebral Palsy. And it’s a chairty that’s particularly close to Steve’s heart – he was born with the condition.
Steve’s first aim before he even gets onto the mountain is to raise the minimum sponsorship of £3250 – not easy given today’s financial situation. However, as Steve says, if everyone gives what they can it’ll soon add up — allowing him more time to ‘concentrate on the training.’
If you wish to help Steve in his attempt to raise money, you can donate via his justgiving.com webpage at: www.justgiving.co.uk/stevecurtisread . You can also search for Steve’s group’s facebook page: Steve Climbs Kilimanjaro.
We do of course wish Steve the best of luck with his endeavours, and hope to be able to tell you of his successful climb next January.
Climb for clean water in Kenya
Posted by Henry at 11:25 am, June 22nd 2009.
In September 2009 Americans Lisa and Gary Bagwell from Bend, in Oregon, are hoping to reach the summt of Kilimanjaro in their quest to raise funds for Nomad Charities.
According to the charity’s website, “Nomad Charities is both a registered NGO in Kenya and a registered non-profit in the US that seeks to improve the quality of lives of adults and children who are homeless, exploited and orphaned by the devastation of the HIV/AIDS crisis in Kenya, through programs and services, so that they may realize their full potential in society”.
Lisa and Gary’s mission is to raise money and awareness to help tackle the need for clean drinking water by raising funds to help construct a large water project within the district of Kibwezi, Kenya. The project includes the drilling of a borehole, the construction of a centrally located water tower, which will be powered by solar energy and an intricate layout of pipes which will be linked to five water kiosks throughout the community of Kibwezi.
As Lisa says in her email, “The Kibwezi Water Project will benefit thousands of community members and provide a means for farmers to increase their crop output as well as provide clean drinking water for local families.”
Gary and Lisa will be climbing on the lovely Lemosho Route for their climb. You can sponsor them by visiting the Nomad Charities website http://www.nomadcharities.org where you’ll find links to their adventure.
We do of course wish them well, and will update you on their progress when they update us!
Two brothers climb Kilimanjaro in their fight against malaria
Posted by Henry at 9:52 am, June 19th 2009.
In July this year two brothers from America are going on an epic adventure in order to raise both awareness about, and funds to fight, Africa’s number one killer: malaria.
The brothers, Greg and Brandon Bargo, are both mountain guides, and in July of this year they will lead a team of seven climbers on Kilimanjaro’s Umbwe Route.
But their adventure doesn’t end there, for after the climb the two brothers will be mounting their bikes and cycling to Mount Kenya, where they will attempt to conquer Batian Peak. From there, it’s back on the bikes to cycle to Lake Victoria, before swapping pedal power for paddle power as they attempt to kayak to Uganda, in order to cycle to and then climb Mt. Stanley and summit Margherita Peak.
As Greg explains, during their epic odyssey they hope to “stop off at villages to build relationships with the African people and help educate them about malaria.” They also hope to raise about US$15,000 for tested and reliable malaria medication.
This is of course a major undertaking and you can follow their progress and donate to their cause by visiting their website at www.onebloodinitiative.org .
We do of course wish the brothers well, and hope to be able to report on thier progress through the summer.
Eight blind Americans in attempt to climb Kili
Posted by Henry at 1:57 pm, June 18th 2009.
On 23 June this year, eight blind students from the Foundation for Blind Children, along with 16 guides, will make the trek to summit of Kilimanjaro. Their goal is to raise $500,000 for Foundation for Blind Children programs.
The team will spend eight nights on the mountain, climbing via the Machame Route and summiting on the seventh day. They have set up a website to promote the climb,
In addition to the climb they are also hoping to visit a school for the blind in Arusha, their trip culminating in a safari.
This really is a worthy cause. If you wish to learn more – or to donate to their charity – then please visit [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID]. As their website says, “Help us make a difference, and See Kili Our Way!”
Charity climb for Cerebral Palsy
Posted by Henry at 4:46 pm, June 13th 2009.
In January 2010, two brave souls will be pitting themselves against Africa’s Highest Mountain in aid of cerebral palsy. Robert Hawlor and Dawn Jones, from Wakefield, are hoping to raise £7000 for their exploits.
As I’m sure most of you are aware, this is a very worthwhile cause. Every 6 hours a child is born with cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy is the most commonly diagnosed physical condition in the UK, and occurs around the time of birth when part of the brain fails to develop properly. It can happen to any child. Scope is the largest charity in the UK working with people with cerebral palsy, their families and carers.
Robert and Dawn have certainly gone to great lengths to promote their climb in their attempts to raise such an ambitious amount. There are three websites dedicated to their climb The first is a WordPress blog (http://kilamanjaro2010fundraising.wordpress.com/about/) that keeps readers up to date with their progress both with their training – and their attempts to raise sponsorship. They have also set up a justgiving.com (http://www.justgiving.com/roberthawlor) page to help them collect sponsorship online, and a facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/group.php?gid=110 501095588&ref=ts).
We do of course wish them both well – and will let you know how they get on in January.
Climb Kilimanjaro for Amani!
Posted by Henry at 3:54 pm, June 8th 2009.
One of our favourite Tanzanian charities, Amani, the children’s orphanage in Moshi at the foot of Kilimanjaro, are offering trekkers a chance to climb Kilimanjaro FOR JUST £10!
Bruce Thew, one of Amani’s long-time suppiorters, is hosting an Amani Children’s Home Golf Day for the second year in a row this September. Intrepid Guerba, is offering two free treks up to the Roof of Africa as a raffle prize for Bruce’s event, while Bruce’s company, Activenes Consultancy, will contribute £500 per person towards the costs of flights. Every cent raised in the raffle will go to help the Amani children.
Whether you have an adventurous spirit – or want to make a difference with your feet firmly on the ground – this is a great opportunity. Last year the climb raffle raised nearly £5000, sending 53 children to primary school for an entire year. With your help we can make it possible to give more children the opportunities that an education brings.
Visit http://www.justgiving.com/brucethew1 to buy your raffle tickets today!
More celebrities to climb Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 11:23 am, May 6th 2009.
Following on from March’s successful expedition by a group of British celebrities, squeaky-voiced singing sensation and Britney Spear’s ex, Justin Timberlake, is planning to climb Kilimanjaro with his mate, hip-hop artist Lupe Fiasco, in the autumn. They will be joining Ethiopian-born singer Kenna on the climb, which has been arranged to raise awareness of the worldwide water crisis.
In an interview with Elle magazine, Kenna explained his reasons behind organising the expedition: “My dad almost died as a child from waterborne diseases in Ethiopia, and he had talked to me about digging a well there, and I thought, ‘I have too many friends who would be concerned with the subject of clean water. Maybe I can help out.”
We do of course wish them well on the trek and will keep you informed of their progress as they prepare for the climb.
Climbers wanted for Autism trek
Posted by Henry at 2:16 pm, April 28th 2009.
On the 20-29 November around a dozen brave souls will be pitting themselves against Africa’s highest mountain in aid of the South African charity Autism Western Cape – and you have a chance to join them.
Gerhard Pieterse has written to tell us that, though there are 11 on the climb, there are one or two spaces free for those who want to climb for this charity. However, as Gerhard says, while he would welcome other climbers ‘if someone is going to join it would be on the basis that the individual understand he/she will be expected to raise funds for Autism and not join the trek because it’s a life dream to summit Kili.
To find out more about the charity, visit www.autismwesterncape.org.za , while for details on the trek itself visit [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID]. Gerhard would welcome emails from both potential trekkers and, of course, donors.
We do of course wish Gerhard and friends well on their trek, and will let you know how they all do in due course.
Women climbers in their sixties wanted for magazine article.
Posted by Henry at 6:55 am, April 16th 2009.
I have been contacted by Emma Pritchard who is looking for women in their sixties (or older) who have climbed Kilimanjaro recently for charity. She would like to interview somebody who fits this description for a magazine article she is writing for July’s issue of Women & Home.
If this sounds like you – or someone you know – we’d be very grateful if you could get in touch with us here at the usual address (email@example.com) and I’ll pass on your details to Emma.
Donations – and climbers! – required for Canadian MS chaity climb
Posted by Henry at 3:08 pm, April 9th 2009.
Belinda Lamoca, from Toronto, Canada, has written to tell us of an unusual charity project that raises money for a Canadian Multiple sclerosis charity.
In September 2008 23 climbers raised more than CA$155,000 by completing the Inca Trail, the first leg in a five-year project aiming to raise more than CA$1 million. The second leg is scheduled for October this year when climbers will be attempting to climb Kilimanjaro, with each member of the group charged with raising CA$10,000.
As Belinda says: “The vision of MS Climb is to raise awareness and support for Canadians living with MS, but more specifically it is to change the experience for people newly diagnosed with MS and to put a ‘new face’ on it for them so they can be confident they will lead an active life with the disease, and know that they can achieve their goals through perseverance and action. Proceeds support the MS Society of Canada which enables people affected by MS by enhancing their quality of life, providing them hope for the future through research seeking treatment and a cure, and through assistive services.”
Expeditions planned for future years include Everest Base Camp, the Great Wall of China and Canada’s very own Kilkoot Trail.
If you would like to sign up for the Kilimanjaro trek this year, or indeed any of the future MS climbs, you can visit their website at http://www.msclimb.ca/ . They also have a site that is supported by the Canadian MS Society who have details about their project at [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID].
We wish Belinda and all members of MS Climb the best of luck on Kilimanjaro – and wherever else the project takes them.
December climb for South African cancer charity
Posted by Henry at 12:37 pm, March 24th 2009.
In 2007 Candice Devlin from South Africa was diagnosed with having breast cancer. A little over a year later, and having successfully conquered the disease, Candice is now looking to scale Africa’s highest mountain this December in order to raise funds for the Moments in Time project that helps cancer sufferers.
As Candice writes, she was lucky in one sense as at least her medical insurance paid for all the treatment she required. For one reason or another others, of course, don’t have this sort of insurance and have to pay for all these expenses themselves. Which is where Candice’s chosen beneficicary, Moments in Time, come in. Their charitable trust helps cancer sufferers to pay for their oncology treatment and provides other forms of support for those who have fallen victim to cancer.
You can find out more about the Moments in Time project by visiting www.momentsintime.co.za . While to find out more about Candice’s climb, including details on how to sponsor her, visit
We do of course wish Candice every success with her climb – after conquering cancer, climbing Kilimanjaro will surely be a doddle! – and will of course let you know how she gets on.
Photographs of Kilimanjaro huts required
Posted by Henry at 2:07 pm, March 21st 2009.
An unusual request this one: one reader, a Phil Davis from Inverness in Scotland, has written in to ask if anyone could supply him with photographs of the accommodation huts on Kilimanjaro back in the 1970s. Apparently, Mr Davis climbed the mountain back then but all his photographs from his climb have gone missing. He is particularly interested in any shots readers might have of Mandara, Kibo and the now defunct Peters Huts. One imagines that Kibo Huts will not have changed that much – certainly the original building is still standing – but if anybody has shots of any of them, please do get in touch with us here and we will forward your details or photos onto Phil. Thanks.
East Africans triumph at this year’s Kilimarathon
Posted by Henry at 7:44 am, March 16th 2009.
As is usual, the annual Kilimanjaro marathon was dominated by the East Africans last week. Kenya’s Johnston Kibet won the top prize of 3 million Tanzanian shillings in 2 hours, 15 minutes, 24 seconds, pipping local boy Patrick Nyangero by just ten seconds, while another Kenyan, Julius Kilimo, was third, just one second further back.
The women’s race was a similarly East African affair, Kenyans Jane Nyambura, Sally Lagat and Leah Kusar filling the top three places.
The half marathon competition was also dominated by East Africans, with Samuel Shauri winning the men’s race in 1 hour, 3 minutes ad 46 seconds, and Kenyan Hellen Mungo winning the women’s race in 1:17.14. The disabled half-marathon was won by Maulid Juma in 1:42.14.
Comic Relief’s Kilimanjaro celebs all safe and sound
Posted by Henry at 8:27 am, March 14th 2009.
As everyone in the UK is no doubt aware – and those outside of the UK won’t care, as they won’t know who these people are – the 9 celebrities who climbed Kilimanjaro for Comic Relief are all back in the UK. Indeed, they’ve even had a reception at Number 10, as a reward fo their efforts.
The 9, who include Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles, a couple of members each from Take That and Girls Aloud, singer Alesha, and TV presenters Fern Cotton, Ben Shepard and Denise Van Outen, all successfully made it to the top, though one or two needed the help of an injection of dexamethasone. Nevertheless, as anybody who’s climbed the mountain before will agree, this was a fantastic achievement and all are to be congratulated.
I was on the mountain myself last week (which is why we’re a bit late with this news) and there seemed to be a lot of sneering from other trekkers about the support team that the celebrities had. Which is a bit of a shame really, because as anybody who has climbed Kili will know, it doesn’t matter how much of a back-up team you have – it’s still a bloody hard mountain to climb; and anyone who successfully does so has my respect, and deserves all the plaudits that come their way.
I believe the documentary on their climb went out last night on British TV. Hopefully it gave a fair balance of what it’s like to climb Africa’s highest mountain – and also provided a massive boost to the fundraising efforts of Comic Relief.
We’re on the mountain again!
Posted by Henry at 6:18 pm, March 5th 2009.
Just to inform you that we are off on the mountain again from today, 6th March, until the 12th March. For this reason we will not be able to answer your emails until the 13th.
I hope you will bear with us during this time, and we promise to answer all your correspondence as soon as we get a chance. We will also bring you all the latest news from Africa’s greatest Mountain, including the latest reports on the Comic Relief Celebrity climb. (Latest reports: all made it safely to Karanga Campsite. Alesha was the first to fall over, and Gary Barlow is still having trouble with his back.)
Thanks for your patience over the coming seven days.
Enjoy your week,
Henry Stedman and the Climb Mount Kilimanjaro team
The 2009 Kilimarathon
Posted by Henry at 6:54 am, February 26th 2009.
The Kilimanjaro marathon is here once more. This Sunday, 1 March, runners from all over the world will be racing round the 26-mile course in the shadow of Kilimanjaro.
As you may well know, however, the actual marathon is only part of the whole competition, for many of the runners taking part in Sunday’s race will also be taking part in the Kiliman competition. This begins a couple of weeks before when competitors climb Kilimanjaro, before taking part in a round-Kilimanjaro bike race (for safety reasons the climb of Kilimanjaro is the only event that is not actually a race, it of course being unwise to try to climb Africa’s highest mountain as quickly as possible). The person who makages to scale Kilimanjaro, then completes the bike ride and marathon in the fastest time, will be crowned Kiliman 2009!
The marathon itself begins at the stadium in Moshi before heading up to the Kilimanjaro village of Mweka, before turning round and heading down back towards the town. A half marathon has also been organised for those who don’t fancy the whole course.
More details about the event, as well as previous year’s results, can be found at [ADDRESS NO LONGER VALID].
We wish all the competitors the best of luck in what is surely one of the planet’s toughest competitions.
Gary Barlow in back spasm shocker!
Posted by Henry at 6:32 am, February 25th 2009.
One of the celebrities who will be climbing Kilimanjaro for the UK charity day Comic Relief, pop star Gary Barlow of former boy band Take That, has put his back out and may have to withdraw from the trek.
Mr Barlow, who along with eight other British celebrities was due to fly out to Tanzania this Friday, has been seeing a specialist for what has been described as a ‘minor injury’.
A spokesman, however, has said that there is no cause for concern and the singer should be available for the trek after all.
Fire damage on Kilimanjaro – an update
Posted by Henry at 4:43 pm, February 23rd 2009.
Earlier this month I finally managed to see for myself the damage caused by the latest fire to hit Kilimanjaro. The fire, which blazed for a couple of days on the mountain last October, effected a huge swathe of the heath and moorland zone on the Marangu Route, beginning soon after you leave the forest and continuing until about two thirds of the way to the Horombo Huts. As a result, a large portion of the second day’s walking on this route is now conducted along a trail
Nobody is quite sure how the blaze started, though the usual suspects have been identified: honey collectors (who smoke out the bees from their hives in order to collect the honey), a discarded cigarette, and KINAPA themselves (the park authority), who may undertake this kind of ‘arson’ in order to regenerate the vegetation.
The swathe of charred heather and blackened shrubbery on this route now matches a similar scene of devestation on the other side of the mountain on the rongai Route, where once again on the second afternoon of that awlk, if you are taking the Mawenzi Tarn side-trip, much of the vegetation on that day is still blackened by a fire that took place about 18 months ago.
Climbing Kilimanjaro – in Danish
Posted by Henry at 6:14 am, February 14th 2009.
Just before our recent trek up the mountain (Rongai Route, seven days, with nine out of ten trekkers making it to Uhuru; the tenth, and youngest, a 19-year-old from the UK, had to retire after 4 days with suspected appendicitis – further evidence that the older you are, often the more chance you have of making it to the summit!), we received an interesting email from Martin Fehr. Martin, from Denmark, who climbed Africa’s highest mountain a while ago now, and has a couple of recommendations for us to put in the new edition of the book.
Rather than wait for the third edition to be published (September ths year), I thought I’d share Martin’s thoughts with you here.The two main recommendations Martin makes are as follows:
* Advise people to bring “entertainment” for the trip. Many nights we regretted that we didn’t bring books and magazines. We were lucky to have brought cards, and my portable speakers we of joy every single night – especially the night before the final climb, where we arrived at Barafu hut quite early in the afternoon and needed to waste time somehow.
* Don’t be afraid to recommend climbing the mountain in end-April. Our porters were so happy to have work in low-season, we didn’t get a lot of rain, and there were absolutely no climbers on the mountain besides us, which made our climb exceptionally great! Plus the top of the mountain was all covered in snow – a challenge, but soooo beautiful (it was great to be able to “sleigh” down the mountain as well)
While we do encourage people to bring entertainment for the trip already, the second point he makes is an interesting one, particularly as most agencies discourage climbing in the wet season and many even close their offices at this time. But as Martin rightly points out, you may get lucky with the weather – and the porters will certainly appreciate the work at this time of the year.
Martin has written about his experiences on Kili online. The only trouble is, it’s all in Danish, though as Martin says, there are some pretty pictures to look at. The URL is:
If anybody else has any other recommendations about climbing the mountain that they think are worth putting into the next edition, please do not hesitate to send them in!
Enjoy your weekend everybody,
We’re all on the mountain!
Posted by Henry at 5:38 am, February 5th 2009.
Please note that Henry and the team will be on the mountain from the 6th to 12th February. We will thus be unable to answer any correspondence during this time. However, please be assured that we will – Tanzania’s internet connection willing – endeavour to answer all your emails as soon as we return.
Thanks for your patience – and have a good week
A Climb for British Soldiers
Posted by Henry at 10:04 am, February 4th 2009.
At the end of July this year Claire Cruddas, from Surrey in England, will be climbing Kilimanjaro on behalf of the Army Benevolent Fund. The climb is a lengthy 8 days – thereby giving her the best possible chance by giving herself time to acclimatise – and will be on the popular Machame Route.
The UK charity she is climbing for is commonly known as the “Soldiers’ Charity”, and helps both servicemen and former servicemen in times of need. This help can take many forms, from providing wheelchairs and stairlits to those injured in the line of duty, to providing holidays to full-time carers of former soldiers. You can find out more about the charity by logging on to www.armybenfund.org/index2.html
If you want to sponsor Claire’s climb for this worthy cause, please get in touch with us here at Climb Mount Kilimanjaro and we’l put you in touch with Claire.
We wish Claire the best of luck in her endeavours!
Celebs on Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 1:07 pm, January 29th 2009.
As just everybody (at least in the UK) already knows, a bunch of celebrities are due to climb Kilimanjaro next month. Wading through the bulletins on various websites, it’s difficult to pin down who is actually taking part in the charity trek, which is being organised in aid of Comic Relief. However, the same names do seem to be cropping up. They include Radio 1’s Chris Moyles, singers such as Take That’s Gary Barlow, Girls Aloud’s Cheryl Cole, Alesha Dixon, Ronan Keating and Kimberley Walsh, presenters Fearne Cotton and Denise Van Outen, and, errr, a journalist from The Sun called Gordon Smart.
You can check on how Chris Moyles’ preparations for the climb are going by listening to his breakfast show, where it is frequently mentioned (a number of his studio bods are climbing with him, apparently, and much of the morning banter is taking up with descriptions of their inoculations, climbing equipment etc).
No doubt those of you in the UK reading this will be hearing plenty more about the success (or otherwise) of their trek in every newspaper, website and TV station throughout the land.
Suffice to say we wish them luck and hope they all make it to the top – and come back safely too!
Climb in aid of breast cancer
Posted by Henry at 12:24 pm, January 19th 2009.
Two women from Britain are about to embark on the adventure of their lives in aid of Breast Cancer Care UK.
Friends Hannah Birch and Lynsay Kilbane will be climbing God’s Greatest Mountain on our Unique Rongai Route in all-pink outfits – pink being the colour ofthe charity. Their trek will begin on 20th February, meaning that they will, hopefullyl arrive around five-and-a-half days later at the top of Kilimanjaro.
Their reason for choosing to climb for Breast Cancer is obvious: breast cancer is a tragic disease and causes over 12,000 deaths in the UK every year. As they write on their webpage, the disease “affects so many women and their families and by doing this we aim to help them. This is an amazing cause and its something we have a possibility of getting when we’re older. Breast Cancer Care rely on the kindness of people and the donations they make so please sponsor us now!”
In order to find out more about their climb or to sponsor them, just visit their webpage at www.justgiving.co.uk/kilimanjarointhepink
We do of course wish the girls every success with their climb – and will let you know how they get on next month.
Climbing for the breakfast club
Posted by Henry at 11:44 am, January 17th 2009.
Next week Majka Serafini, based in the UK but of Polish extraction, will be climbing to the roof of Africa to help raise funds for the hungry and needy school children of Tanzania.
Majka’s climb was prompted by some horrifying statistics published by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) that showed that a child dies from hunger every few seconds, even though there is supposed to be enough food in the world for everyone…
Surprisingly, for such a beautiful, friendly and peaceful nation, Tanzania is among the countries that suffers the most from child malnutrition. Indeed, in the developing world as a whole, over 400 million children suffer chronic hunger, 59 million go to school hungry and many others are currently not receiving any form of assistance.
As Majka says, “It only costs 7GBP pence or 11US cents a day to feed a child, so no contribution is too small to make a big difference in the lives of hungry children”.
You can help Majka raise money for her cause by visiting her justgiving webpage in support of Breakfast Club of Tanzania: http://www.justgiving.com/majkaserafini
We of course wish Majka every success in her endeavours on the mountain, and will let you know how she gets on in due course.
Two men sharing an awful lot on Kilimanjaro
Posted by Henry at 2:19 pm, January 5th 2009.
Last week I received an email from a Mike Mullaney that caught my eye. Mike climbed Kilimanjaro in February 2007 with his friend Ken Page. What makes their achievement unique, however, is that Ken was walking with one of Mike’s kidneys, which he had donated to Ken back in 2003.
Mike was writing to ask if they were the first recipient/donor pair to make it to the summit. To be honest, I have no idea. I have certainly never heard of such a feat before, though it wouldn’t surprise me if there had in fact been other similar ‘couplings’ before.
To read more about their climb you can visit their weblog at http://kili-summit-2007.blogspot.com/
While if you know of any other climbers who have swopped organs and climbed together to the highest point in Africa, do let us know!