Your trek starts in the rainforests of Lemosho Glades and heads upwards as you acclimatise on Shira Plateau. From here you will catch a glimpse of your goal, Kibo, Kilimanjaro's main ice-capped peak. You continue via the beautiful Southern Flank, Barranco Wall and Barafu Route.
Temperatures drop at night, allowing you to enjoy the crisp cool air under the star-studded African skies. During the days you'll rise higher; often looking down on a sea of clouds.
The expedition has been carefully planned to ensure that you acclimatise as much as possible to the altitude and your chances of making it to the summit are maximised. Our operations team has one of the highest success rates of trekkers reaching the summit, but don't underestimate the challenge ahead.
On the final night before the summit climb, you shall need to rise at around midnight to commence the final trek in the moonlight up the scree slopes to Stella Point. Your aim is to reach this point by dawn and continue around the rim to the highest point, Uhuru Peak. This is likely to be the toughest day that most trekkers have ever experienced, involving 1,295m of ascent, 2,145m of descent, and 12-15 hours walking.
Sun 30 Jan 2022
The big day has finally arrived. Everyone will feel a mixture of nerves and excitement as they meet up for the long-awaited flight to Tanzania. Embrace the nerves and get ready for the experience of a lifetime.
FLIGHT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT & TRANSFER TO HOTEL
Mon 31 Jan 2022
Your local Charity Challenge representative will meet you in arrivals and you will take a two-hour transfer to your hotel. The evening will include a team dinner, briefing and kit check before getting a long sleep in preparation for the start of the challenge.
LEMOSHO GATE, 1,981M, TO BIG TREE CAMP, 2,800M (APPROX. 3-5HRS)
Tue 01 Feb 2022
It’s the long-awaited challenge day!
The day starts with a two-hour transfer to Kilimanjaro National Park for registration. You will have lunch here before driving a further 40 minutes to Lemosho Gate at 1,981m. The trek begins on a little-used path called Chamber's Route, which takes you through the first layer of Kilimanjaro's eco-systems - the rainforest. The first day's walk is short but tough and you should be prepared for some steep inclines and descents before you reach the first night of camping. (B,L,D)Accommodation: CampDistance: Approx. 6km
BIG TREE CAMP TO SHIRA ONE CAMP, 3,500M (APPROX. 7-8HRS)
Wed 02 Feb 2022
Today you will enjoy a morning climb of over 600m as you emerge out of the rainforest and into the next eco-system - the moorland. After stopping for lunch at a high point, the route heads down onto the Shira Caldera, a high-altitude desert plateau. From here, the trek is relatively flat into camp and, on a clear day, offers you the first sightings of Uhuru Peak - Kilimanjaro’s dramatic summit. The evening’s camp is at Shira One (3,500m), one of Kilimanjaro’s three volcanic cones.
Distance: Approx. 8km
SHIRA ONE CAMP TO SHIRA TWO CAMP, 3,800M (APPROX. 5-6HRS)
Thurs 03 Feb 2022
After an early start, head east across the Shira Plateau to the Shira Cathedral (3,880m). Here you will have the opportunity to do an optional short climb (approx 20 minutes up and 20 minutes down) to the top of the Shira Cathedral. You will need to leave your poles at the bottom as this involves a bit of scrambling but you will be rewarded with stunning views from the top. Back on the main route, you will continue your trek across the plateu before ascending steeply to your campsite for the night: Shira Two (3,800m).
Distance: Approx. 8km
SHIRA TWO CAMP TO BARRANCO CAMP, 3,900M (APPROX. 7-10HRS)
Fri 04 Feb 2022
Today is a long day as you head out of the campsite and continue gradually uphill for approximately three hours. You will briefly leave the moorlands behind you as you head up to 4,500m to the Lava Tower where you will stop for lunch. This is an important step in the acclimatisation process and will be the first experience of trekking at very high altitude. After lunch you will begin your descent to the campsite. The route takes you through the Barranco Valley which is dotted with giant Dendrosenecios - impressive plants native to high-altitude mountain tops that can grow up to 6m tall. When you reach the next campsite you will be able to see how far you have come, with views over the expansive plains below and Mount Meru in the distance.
Distance: Approx. 10km
BARRANCO WALL REST DAY
Sat 05 Feb 2022
Today is an acclimatisation day at the Barranco Wall. You can relax today around camp, where we have erected an eruv. Here you will camp and have dinner at 3,900m. The camp at Barranco is one of the most spectacular on Kilimanjaro, with views of Mount Meru and the valleys below. (B,L,D)
BARRANCO CAMP TO KARANGA CAMP, 3,900M (APPROX. 4-6HRS)
Sun 06 Feb 2022
Pack your poles into your daypack and summon up all your energy for this morning’s climb up the Barranco Wall. Conquering this 300m high wall is often one of the highlights for trekkers but requires scrambling at times and some time spent on more exposed edges. You may need to depart earlier as this section can become crowded with porters also trying to negotiate the route with their heavy loads, but take the time to catch your breath and marvel at their strength and endurance. Once at the top, you will take an undulating path into the Karanga Valley before a final steep ascent to the campsite. There is an optional but recommended afternoon trek (approx. 1-2hrs) to the scree slopes towards the southern ice fields, which helps with acclimatisation.
Distance: Approx. 7km
KARANGA CAMP TO BARAFU CAMP, 4,600M (APPROX. 4-5HRS)
Mon 07 Feb 2022
After a large, energy-filled breakfast, the trek to Barafu Ridge Camp (4,600m) begins – a tough walk made all the more difficult by the altitude. The route begins with a strenuous climb of approximately three hours back into the alpine desert eco-system. You will then trek along a flat, rocky plateau before making the final steep climb into camp. Take the afternoon to either rest or join a short acclimatisation walk to a higher point. Dinner will be early tonight and will include a full briefing before you get some much-needed sleep ahead of the midnight summit departure.
Distance: Approx. 6km
SUMMIT DAY: BARAFU CAMP TO UHURU POINT, 5,895M TO MILLENIUM CAMP (APPROX. 12-15HRS)
Tue 08 Feb 2022
Beginning the summit walk at midnight, the route to Stella Point (5,750m) is a tough, steady climb over rocky and sometimes uneven ground. Be prepared for the mental challenge as temperatures plummet due to the wind chill. You will aim to reach Stella Point just after dawn, buoyed by the natural energy and warmth of the rising sun.
After a short rest, it’s one final push to Uhuru Point, and the roof of Africa at 5,895m. Whilst this section is fairly flat with smaller undualtions, the altitude and fatigue will make it a challenging final stretch. Once there, celebrate your accomplishment with your fellow challenge participants, and take the time to admire the surrounding glacier, before beginning your descent. Knees will be feeling weary and weak as you make your way carefully back down the scree slopes to Barafu Camp. After a short rest and a much-needed lunch break, you will continue down further to Millennium camp at 3,750m, where you can celebrate over dinner before getting a well-deserved early night. (B,L,D)
Distance: Approx. 13km
MILLENIUM CAMP TO MWEKA GATE THROUGH KIDIA (APPROX. 5-7HRS)
Wed 09 Feb 2022
Whilst the summit day may be behind you, your challenge is not yet complete. Leaving the beautiful moorland campsite, you begin the long, tiresome walk back into the rainforest and down to the plantations at Mweka Gate. Knees may struggle as the descent is steep in places and the path can become slippery and uneven through the rainforest. After approximately seven hours, the long-awaited finish line will come into sight and the celebrations can really begin.Following a delicious lunch and a two-hour drive back to your hotel, you can enjoy a hot shower and rest before you receive your medal and certificate over a celebratory dinner.
DEPART TANZANIA TO UK
Thur 10 Feb 2022
Depending on flight times, there may be an opportunity to visit a local arts market to pick up souvenirs. You may also want to venture out of the hotel to try one of the local restaurants for lunch (not included). Then it will be time to wave goodbye to Tanzania, having completed an incredible challenge and forged some lasting friendships along the way. Feeling elated, the flight home is a great time to reflect on the achievement, swap details with your inspiring teammates and plan your next Charity Challenge.
If you are organising your own flights, you can depart from 0930hrs.
Fri 11 Feb 2022
Saying goodbye will not be easy, but the memories you’ve made will stay with you forever.
N.B. The itinerary is there as a guide and may change due to unusual weather patterns, wildlife movements, the strength of the group, and so on. We will do our very best to keep to the set itinerary; however we cannot be held responsible for any last-minute changes that might occur. In all such circumstances, your expedition leader will have the final say. Should you suffer from vertigo, it is worth considering that on most mountain treks there will be occasional exposure to sheer drops. You should therefore discuss the particular itinerary of your choice with a member of our team.