7 Days Machame Route – Kilimanjaro Climb

Tanzania

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25

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Overview

The seven-day Machame variation is the ideal schedule for this route. On the 7 day Machame route, the trek from Barranco to Barafu is split up into two days, allowing for a short day just prior to the summit attempt. This is important because summit day begins very early, around midnight, so climbers are deprived going into the toughest day on the mountain. By having a short day beforehand, climbers can be better rested. The 7 days Machame route is highly recommended and is one of the most popular options on Mt Kilimanjaro.

Included/Excluded

  • Quality, waterproof, four-season private mountain sleeping tents
  • All Park fees Airport transfers Rescue fees
  • Guides, Porters, cook salaries and park fees
  • Large portions of fresh, healthy nutritious food
  • Emergency oxygen
  • All meals while on the Mountain
  • Clean, purified drinking water
  • Accommodation in tents and hotels as indicated in the itinerary
  • Camping equipment – tents, sleeping mattress and camping furniture
  • Portable toilet and toilet tent
  • Flights
  • Visa fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Alcoholic and soft drinks
  • Tips Personal spending monies for souvenirs etc.

Tour Plan

DAY 1

Machame Gate (1,800m/5,905ft) to Machame Camp (3,000m/9,840ft)

At 8:30am, leave Moshi for Machame Gate, where you will meet the Emawoi Travel porters, guides, and cooks that will spend the next seven days trekking with you to Uhuru Peak, the roof of Africa. The drive through coffee farms and villages to Machame Gate takes about 1.5 hours. Once you arrive, wait at the gate while Summit Odyssey registers your climb and the porters and guides make final preparations.

Your first day’s destination is Machame Camp. Each day, porters and cooks will walk ahead to set up the camp in time for your arrival. On the first day, hike through the moss-covered trees of Kilimanjaro’s cloud forest. The forest will thin at the end of the hike and vegetation will change to include heathers, tall grasses and wildflowers. If the weather is clear, view the surrounding area and your ultimate destination, Kibo Peak.

DAY 2

Machame Camp (3,000m/9,840ft) to Shira 2 Camp (3,840m/12,600ft)

Although considered to be the easiest day on the Machame Route, today’s trek includes several uphill sections. Carry plenty of drinking water, as the exposed hike can be hot on a clear day. There are several viewpoints from which you can see the plains and forests below and Kibo and Mawenzi peaks above.

As you gain altitude, notice the change in vegetation. The trees diminish in size, giving way to Kilimanjaro’s famous high altitude plants, Scenecio kilimanjari and Lobelia deckenii. After eating lunch, climb the Shira Plateau, created when Kibo’s lava flows filled the Shira crater. Continue to Shira Camp, where you will relax for the rest of the day. Kibo lies to the west and Mount Meru to the east.

DAY 3

Shira 2 Camp (3,840m/12,600ft) to Barranco Camp (3,950m/12,960ft)

Although this up and down day ends with an elevation gain of only 110 meters, by early afternoon you will have climbed 690 meters to a height of 4,530 meters before beginning your descent to Barranco Camp. This day is crucial for acclimatization.

After breakfast, hike east on the Shira Plateau before reaching the junction for the Shira and Lemosho Routes. Continue on through the barren landscape before stopping for lunch. Shortly after lunch, reach the highest point of the day before descending quickly to Barranco Camp. Faster hikers can take a detour via Lava Tower, a 300-foot lava formation jutting out of the mountainside.

Barranco Camp, set among stands of Senecio kilimanjari, is considered to be the most scenic campsite on the Machame Route.

DAY 4

Barranco Camp(3,976m/ 13,044ft) - Karanga Camp(3,995m/ 13,106ft)

After early morning breakfast, it is now time to conquer the Great Barranco Wall! Although it may look intimating at first glance, hikers state that this Class 2 hike is usually much easier than they anticipated. At the top of the Wall, you will have a view of Heim Glacier and will be above the clouds. The trail then winds up and down in the Karanga Valley. This is an ideal hiking day for acclimatisation.

DAY 5

Karanga Camp(3,995m/ 13,106ft) - Barafu Camp(4,673m/ 15,331ft)

After morning breakfast, you will leave Karanga Camp. The trail intersects with the Mweka Route, which is the trail used to descend on the final two days. As you continue hiking for an hour, you will reach Barafu Hut. The word “barafu” in Swahili means “ice” and this camp is located on a rocky, exposed ridge. Tents will be exposed to wind and rocks so it is important for hikers to familiarize themselves with the campsite before dark. An early dinner will be served so hikers can rest before attempting the summit the same night. Your guide will brief you in detail on how to prepare for summit night. Get to sleep by 19:00

DAY 6

Barafu Camp(4,673m/ 15,331ft) - Uhuru Peak(5,895m/ 19,341ft) - Mweka Camp(3,068m/ 10,065ft)

Around midnight, begin the final ascent to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa. For the next six hours, hike by the light of your headlamp. The ascent to the crater rim is the most challenging part of the entire trek. The trail is very steep until you reach the crater rim at Stella Point.

The hike from Stella Point to Uhuru Peak is a gradual climb and, as far as hikes go, not very difficult. The altitude, however, makes the hike long and tiring. The crater rim hike takes approximately one hour. Upon reaching Uhuru, take photos of your guide and group at the peak before beginning the descent to Mweka Camp. On the way down from Uhuru, enjoy views of the mountain, crater, clouds and glaciers.

At Barafu Camp, eat breakfast and take a short break. You still have another three to five hours to go before reaching Mweka Camp.

DAY 7

Mweka Camp (3,068m/ 10,065ft) - Mweka gate (1,640m/ 5,380ft)

After breakfast, finish the trek with a descent to Mweka Gate. Your last hike on Kilimanjaro is a beautiful one, passing through Kilimanjaro’s cloud forest. Watch your step during the descent, as the trail can be slippery. vehicles will be waiting at the lower station of Mweka Gate to take you back to Moshi. You will be able to buy t-shirts and sodas at the gate.

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