The Momella route is the only designated trail that is established to reach the summit of Mt Meru. It begins from Momella Gate on the mountain’s eastern flank and continues up the northern arm of the horseshoe crater to the summit. The journey may be completed in four days with ease (three nights). Trekkers aren’t permitted to start climbing after 3 p.m., so if you arrive by bus, you’ll almost definitely have to camp and wait until the next day to begin.
While Meru is smaller in comparison to the majestic Kilimanjaro, don’t underestimate it: due to its steepness, many people have found Mount Meru to be almost as tough to climb as Kilimanjaro. It’s also high enough that you’ll feel the effects of altitude, so don’t try to rush up if you haven’t been well acclimatized.
Where is the Momella Route?
To reach the Momella route from Arusha, take a walk or a vehicle trip to Momella Gate in Arusha National Park. The National Park’s road begins near the outskirts of Arusha in a village called Usa River, and the Park Gate is roughly 30 kilometers from the main road.
Climbing Mt Meru Using Momella Route Itinerary
The first day is a long trek from Momella Gate to Miriakamba Hut, which includes a part of the savannah and then a tropical forest. There are no unique issues because there is a good route and the ranger will accompany you. There is a shorter alternative that goes down the bottom of the valley on the left side of the mountain and saves most of the rising for the final sector before Miriakamba.
The second day begins in a tropical forest, following the same path as the first, and quickly gets steep. There are no technical issues, however, the increased altitude may cause some persons to get short-breathed.
In the vantage point known as Mgongo Wa Tembo, the forest begins to clear after about three hours and soon becomes a bushy terrain. On sand and ashes, the last steps of the route lead to Saddle Hut (3570 m). In around an hour and a half, you may reach the summit of Little Meru (3800 m) from Saddle Hut.
The last day of ascent on day 3, again on volcanic ash, takes you to Rhino Point over wooded terrain. You begin going up the ridge at Rhino Point with a few of simple ascending steps, each approximately two or three meters high, with good rock and no technical difficulties.
Green paint marks run the length of the walkway, which primarily surrounds the rocky needles on the side opposite the crater. In loose stones, such places get a little denser, and it may appear that you’ll never finish ascending that ridge. Never, however, give up. You will reach the peak in 5 to 6 hours after leaving Saddle Hut. It is marked by a Tanzanian flag, which can be seen from afar.
Difference between Mount Kilimanjaro Routes and Mount Meru’s
Unlike Mount Kilimanjaro which has more than 6 main routes, Mount Meru has only one route for ascending. This same route is used to descend the mountain while trekking on Mount Meru. Mount Kilimanjaro on the other hand has different routes for descending. Apart from the Marangu route which uses the same route to climb and descend, most of the other routes use a different route, the Mweka route to descend.
Required Gear for trekking the Momella Route on Mount Meru
No special trekking equipment is required to climb Mount Meru using the Momella Route. On the night of the summit attack, walking poles may be beneficial, and you should dress warmly for the cold. The summit ridge may be quite windy, and ice can be seen on the rocks in its highest reaches. There’s no need to be concerned because the path is readily visible. The path traverses a few rocky outcrops just after Rhino Point, but the guides are familiar with them. You will never come across them by chance, and climbing equipment is not required.