• Overview
  • 9 Days Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Booking

Overview

Do this if you are a serious climber and are used to sleeping at high altitudes. It is tough to sleep at base camp and crater camp is not that far from the summit.  

Crater Camp is a unique place. At 18,865 feet above sea level, it is the highest campsite on Mount Kilimanjaro. It is located just 475 feet below the summit. We offer the opportunity to stay at Crater Camp on the Lemosho and Northern Circuit Trails. This option will add one day to the standard itineraries making them the 9 Lemosho Crater Trail and 10 days Northern Crater Trail.

We leave for the summit during daylight hours and stay at Crater Camp after the summit for better acclimatization. On all other Kilimanjaro Trails, only the guides and climbers summit while the rest of the mountain crew remains at high camp (Barafu camp). Using Crater Camp requires significantly more effort on our part as the entire mountain crew, along with all of the expedition equipment, has to ascend 4,000 feet higher than they normally would. Therefore, there is considerable added cost to do a Crater Camp Trail ($150/person).

From Crater Camp, one can take an optional one hour hike to Reusch Crater, or simply explore the areas around Furtwangler Glacier. Reusch Crater is a magnificent sight. It is almost perfectly circular and the ash pit measures 400 feet (120 m) deep and 1,300 feet (400 m) wide. This is rarely seen by climbers. 

We understand the attraction of staying at Crater Camp. However, the drawback of sleeping at this high altitude is that it is pretty dangerous. Serious AMS can develop if adequate altitude acclimatization has not been achieved.

Due to safety concerns for clients and staff, the 9 Lemosho Crater Trail and 10 day Northern Crater Trail are done only by special request and are subject to approval by Baraka Trails team.

Day 1: Londorossi Gate To Mti Mkubwa

We depart Moshi for Londorossi Gate, which takes about 4 hours, where you will complete entry formalities. Then drive to the Lemosho trailhead. Upon arrival at trailhead, we begin hiking through undisturbed forest which winds to the first camp site.

Elevation: 7,742 ft to 9,498 ft
Distance: 6 km/4 miles
Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Rain Forest 

Day 2: Mti Mkubwa To Shira 1 Camp

We continue on the trail leading out of the rain forest and into a savannah of tall grasses, heather and volcanic rock draped with lichen beards. As we ascend through the lush rolling hills and cross several streams, we reach the Shira Ridge before dropping gently down to Shira 1 Camp. Here we catch our first glimpse of Kibo across the plateau. 

Elevation: 9,498 ft to 11,500 ft
Distance: 8 km/5 miles
Hiking Time 5-6 hours
Habitat: Health

Day 3: Shira 1 Camp To Moir Hut

We explore the Shira Plateau for a full day. It is a gentle walk east on moorland meadows towards Shira 2 Camp. Then we divert from the main trail to Moir Hut, a little used site on the base of Lent Hills. A variety of walks are available on Lent Hills making this an excellent acclimatization opportunity. Shira Plateau is one of the highest plateaus on earth.

Elevation: 11,500 ft to 13,800 ft
Distance: 11 km/7 miles
Hiking Time: 5-7 hours
Habitat: Heath 

Day 4: Moir Hut To Lava Tower

We begin the day climbing up a ridge and then head southeast towards the Lava Tower – a 300 ft tall volcanic rock formation. We descend down to Barranco Camp through the strange but beautiful Senecio Forest to an altitude of 13,000 ft. Although you begin and end the day at the same elevation, the time spent at higher altitude is very beneficial for acclimatization.

Elevation: 13,800 ft to 15,190 ft
Distance: 7 km/4 miles
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Alpine Desert

Lava Tower to Barranco Camp
Elevation: 15,190 ft to 13,044 ft
Distance: 3 km/2 miles
Hiking Time: 2-3 hours
Habitat: Alpine Desert

Day 5: Barranco Camp To Karanga Camp

We begin the day by descending into a ravine to the base of the Great Barranco Wall. Then we climb the non-technical but steep, nearly 900 ft cliff. From the top of the Barranco Wall we cross a series of hills and valleys until we descend sharply into Karanga Valley. One more steep climb up leads us to Karanga Camp. This is a shorter day meant for acclimatization.

Elevation: 13,044 ft to 13,106 ft
Distance: 5 km/3 miles
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Alpine Desert

Day 6: Karanga Camp To Barafu Camp

We leave Karanga and hit the junction which connects with the Mweka Trail. We continue up to the rocky section to Barafu Hut. At this point, you have completed the Southern Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. Here we make camp, rest and enjoy an early dinner to prepare for the summit day. The two peaks of Mawenzi and Kibo are viewable from this position.

Elevation: 13,106 ft to 15,331 ft
Distance: 4 km/2 miles
Hiking Time: 4-5 hours
Habitat: Alpine Desert 

Day 7: Barafu Camp To Uhuru Peak

During normal morning hours, we begin our push to the summit. This is the most mentally and physically challenging portion of the trek. We ascend for several hours at a slow but steady pace while taking frequent, but short, breaks. The trail turns into heavy scree as we make the steep climb to the crater rim. At Stella Point (18,900 ft), we see the summit sign in the distance. We continue the around the crater rim until finally we arrive at Uhuru Peak- the highest point on Mount Kilimanjaro and the continent of Africa.

We then descend a short distance to Crater Camp, where the rest of the staff will join us to set up camp. There is an option to hike to Reutsch Crater and the ash pit, or simply explore the areas around Furtwangler Glacier. Sleeping at this high altitude can be dangerous. Serious AMS can develop if adequate altitude acclimatization has not been achieved so the guides will monitor you very closely.

Elevation: 15,331 ft to 19,341 ft
Distance: 5 km/3 miles
Hiking Time: 7-8 hours
Habitat: Arctic

Uhuru Peak to Crater Camp
Elevation: 19,341 ft to 18,865 ft
Distance: 1 km/.6 miles
Hiking Time: 0.5-1 hours
Habitat: Artic

Day 8: Crater Camp To Mweka Camp

From Crater Camp, we now make our descent continuing straight down to the Mweka Hut camp site, stopping at Barafu for lunch. The trail is very rocky and can be quite hard on the knees; trekking poles are helpful. Mweka Camp is situated in the upper forest and mist or rain can be expected in the late afternoon. Later in the evening, we enjoy our last dinner on the mountain and a well-earned sleep.

Elevation: 18,865 ft to 10,065 ft 
Distance: 12 km/7 miles
Hiking Time: 4-6 hours
Habitat: Artic

Day 9: Mweka Camp To Mweka Gate 

On our last day, we continue the descent to Mweka Gate and collect the summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. From the gate, we continue another hour to Mweka Village. A vehicle will meet us at Mweka Village to drive us back to the hotel in Moshi.

Elevation: 10,065 ft to 5,380 ft
Distance: 10 km/6 miles
Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
Habitat: Rain Forest

Departure

After a much needed nights rest, we will bid you goodbye. If you have arranged airport transfers with us or a safari / Zanzibar trip, we will collect you in the morning for your onward journey.

Package Include

  • Private pick up and drop off at Kilimanjaro international airport.
  • Accommodations, 1 night before and 1 night after the trek. Sharing rooms (Hotel is Bed & Breakfast basis) 
  • Park fees, camping fees
  • Rescue fees $20/climber
  • 18% VAT on tour fees & services
  • 4 Season big sleeping mountain tents (sharing for 2 people)
  • Double layered Sleeping Mats
  • Forest fee $10/person
  • Transportation to & from the mountain gate
  • Professional mountain guides, cooks and porters
  • 3 meals daily while on the mountain
  • Filtered water throughout the trek
  • Fair wages for the mountain crew as approved by the Kilimanjaro National Park Authority (KINAPA), Kilimanjaro Association of Tour Operators (KIATO)
  • Portable toilets and toilets tents (optional).
  • Hot Water For Wash everyday at any time at the camp

Not Included

  • International and local Flights plus VISA
  • Items of a personal nature (gears can be rented)
  • Personal Tent $50 (Optional)
  • Personal hotel room $70

All tips not per client but per group. All our guides and porters are always satisfied with what you have not beyond your limit.

Spend the night in Crater Camp
High summit success rates (over 90%)
High guide to client ratio , Private toilet tents & nutritionist-planned meals, Additional acclimatization day on Kilimanjaro