Climbing Kilimanjaro is Easy Travel (Not Hard)
Easy Travel Kilimanjaro

If you want to travel to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, it may appear to be a hard challenge, requiring immense strength and skill. However, for numerous individuals, this daring expedition is actually easy and more attainable compared to other high-altitude journeys or alpine ascents, owing to a multitude of compelling reasons. If you are relatively fit & you travel a lot to do frequent multi-day backpacking trips, Kilimanjaro will not be particularly hard because it’s well-marked, with well-established routes and a mostly gradual profile.  Interestingly, approximately half of our esteemed clientele possess limited to no prior backpacking experience, yet they consistently excel in conquering this majestic mountain. How is this awe-inspiring accomplishment even conceivable? The answer lies in the fact that climbing Kilimanjaro is remarkably straightforward, with a well-defined path and accessible terrain. Many aspiring adventurers are initially daunted by the prospect of ascending Kilimanjaro, fearing that it may be too gruelling or treacherous for their capabilities. However, worry not, for this enlightening article will comprehensively outline five resounding reasons why conquering this colossal peak is a relatively easy trip, a smooth and uncomplicated venture, thereby instilling in you the belief and confidence that you too can triumphantly conquer Kilimanjaro!

  1. Multiple Routes: Kilimanjaro offers routes that cater to different fitness levels and time constraints. For instance, the Marangu route is known as the “Coca-Cola” route because of its relative ease and the availability of hut accommodations.
  2. Shorter and Longer Treks: Routes vary from five-day to ten-day treks, allowing climbers to choose according to their fitness and acclimatization needs.
  3. Scenic Beauty: The varying ecosystems—from rainforest to alpine desert and finally to the arctic summit—offer stunning landscapes that motivate climbers and make the trek more enjoyable.
  4. Summit Success Rate: While reaching the summit is challenging due to the high altitude, many climbers do succeed. The success rate can be quite high, particularly on routes that allow for better acclimatization.

1. Non-Technical Ascent

Most of the tallest mountains in the world, such as Everest and Denali, feature challenging conditions like steep, rocky, or icy slopes and crevasses that necessitate technical climbing abilities and specialized equipment. Gear such as ice axes, crampons, harnesses, helmets, and ropes are crucial for navigating these terrains safely. Conversely, Mount Kilimanjaro is considered a “walk up” mountain due to its established routes to the summit that resemble hiking paths rather than technical climbing sections. Climbers will not encounter rock faces, ice falls, or glaciers to scale. Additionally, there is minimal risk of avalanches, making it a less hazardous climb compared to other high-altitude expeditions. This non-technical aspect of Kilimanjaro makes it accessible to a wide range of individuals, including those without prior mountaineering experience. Even those without previous hiking, backpacking, or camping experience can take on this mountain. Essentially, if you can walk, you can climb Kilimanjaro, which is not typically the case for other challenging expeditions that require technical skills. Notably, individuals with prosthetic legs or no legs have successfully reached the summit of Kilimanjaro.

  1. No Special Climbing Skills Needed: Unlike technical peaks that require advanced climbing skills and equipment, Kilimanjaro is a non-technical climb. This means you don’t need experience with ropes, ice axes, or crampons.
  2. Well-Established Routes: The mountain features several well-trodden paths, such as the Marangu, Machame, Lemosho, Rongai, and Northern Circuit routes. These paths are clearly marked and maintained.

2. Fully Supported

Kilimanjaro’s expeditions offer comprehensive support to climbers, easing the mental, physical, and logistical challenges involved. Expert guides lead the way, while porters take care of equipment and camp duties. All food and water needs are covered, ensuring climbers’ nutritional requirements are met. The expedition also includes sleeping tents, mess tents, tables and chairs, sleeping pads, washing stations, and portable toilets for added comfort. This level of service surpasses expectations and is not typically found on other mountains, where climbers must handle their own logistics. The Kilimanjaro expedition provides full support, allowing climbers to focus solely on the hike. This support system reduces workload, enabling clients to rest more, recover quicker, and acclimatize better.

  1. Guided Treks: Climbers are required to go with licensed guides and porters, who assist with navigation, carrying gear, setting up camps, and preparing meals. This support allows climbers to focus on the hike itself.
  2. Camp Facilities: Depending on the route, accommodations can range from basic huts (Marangu route) to tent camps. These are set up and managed by the trekking companies, adding to the overall ease of the experience.

3. Moderate Day Hikes

The typical day hike on our Kilimanjaro routes consists of manageable hiking times, short distances, and moderate elevation gains. Each day’s itinerary may vary, but typically involves four to six hours of walking on well-kept trails. The guide maintains a slow pace that should be easy for all hikers to keep up with. Rest breaks are scheduled approximately once every hour for participants to sit, hydrate, and enjoy snacks. Unlike other high-altitude treks that may include steep and demanding ascents, Kilimanjaro’s routes are designed to allow the body to gradually adjust to the altitude, resulting in high success rates for 8 and 9-day climbs. Most days are relatively easy or moderate in difficulty, except for summit day. Despite this, daily hikes are more like leisurely walks on the mountain rather than intense workouts, making it feasible for hikers with a reasonable level of fitness to make it to the top. The challenging summit day is saved for the very end of the climb, giving participants plenty of time to recuperate during the journey.

  1. Acclimatization: While altitude sickness is a concern, the gradual ascent and rest days incorporated into longer routes (like Lemosho and Northern Circuit) provide good acclimatization opportunities. This lowers the risk of acute mountain sickness for many climbers.
  2. Health Precautions: Guides are trained to monitor climbers for signs of altitude sickness, and most expeditions carry supplemental oxygen and medical supplies. Emergency evacuation plans are also in place, adding a layer of safety.

4. Favorable Weather

Weather conditions on Kilimanjaro are generally quite moderate and easier to anticipate compared to other high-altitude settings. For the most part, climbers can expect pleasant days that only require a base layer and a light jacket for comfort. Although temperatures can plummet near the peak, extreme weather situations are rare on this mountain, with occurrences like heavy snowfall, lightning, or strong winds being highly unusual. Throughout our lengthy period of operation, only a small number of climbs have been canceled due to weather-related concerns. Therefore, the likelihood of adverse weather affecting your summit attempt on Kilimanjaro is nearly nonexistent. In stark contrast, other popular peaks such as Mount Rainier experience a 50% failure rate for commercial climbs, largely due to unpredictable weather. Mount Washington, known for its harsh conditions, has been dubbed as having the “worst weather in the world.” When climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, climbers can almost always expect a fair chance at reaching the summit..

5. Easy Exit

Mount Kilimanjaro offers routes that allow for a quick and easy descent in case of emergencies or if you simply want to get off the mountain. Descending from the top to the bottom can be done in about 10 hours at a normal walking pace. In addition, there are options for evacuation by vehicle or helicopter if needed, adding an extra layer of convenience and safety. Unlike more remote mountains like those in the Himalayas, where quick descent and rescue efforts can be complicated and time-consuming, Kilimanjaro provides climbers with the comfort of being able to return to civilization promptly for any reason. The presence of experienced guides and park rangers ensures that assistance is readily available in case of emergencies, and the proximity of medical facilities and rescue services at the base of the mountain allows for swift treatment if necessary. Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is easy due to its non-technical nature, daily moderate hikes, favourable weather conditions, and accessible exit options. By focusing on the practical aspects that make Kilimanjaro an achievable goal, even for those with limited outdoor experience, it becomes clear that conquering this Seven Summit is within reach.

  1. Walking Trails: The ascent primarily involves trekking on well-defined trails. The most common routes consist of dirt paths, rocky steps, and some scree slopes, making it essentially a long, high-altitude hike rather than a climb.
  2. Gradual Ascent: Most routes are designed to gradually ascend the mountain, which helps climbers acclimatize and reduces the physical demands on the body. The typical daily altitude gain is manageable for hikers in good health.

It is also easy to customize your travel itinerary if you want to combine your Kilimanjaro trek with a safari, or Zanzibar beach getaway.


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