Lemosho Southern Circuit
9 days - with Crater Camp
This 9-day option gives hikers a little extra time to rest and acclimatize and therefore a higher chance of reaching the summit.
Cost: $3075 per person
*Additional (per group) fee of $600 for groups of 1-2
Day 1: Arusha - Londorossi Gate - Forest Camp (9,281 ft/2829 m)
Drive from hotel in Arusha to Londorossi Gate (about 3 hours). Here we will check in and weigh all of the bags carried by the porters. Then, we will drive to Lemosho trailhead to start the hike after lunch. Today's hike will bring us through the forest while enjoying the sounds of birds and the sight of monkeys. The hike takes about 3-4 hours to Forest Camp.
Day 2: Forest Camp - Shira 1 (11,499 ft/3505 m)
Depart from Forest Camp after breakfast. We will continue through the forest for a few hours, then we will reach the heather/moorland zone. A long hike of 6-7 hours today means that we will stop for a picnic lunch along the way. Today's hike will take us high and then into a plateau where we will sleep at Shira 1 Camp. If weather is clear, we may get our first views of the peak as we approach camp today.
Day 3: Shira 1 - Moir Hut (13,665 ft/4165 m)
As we depart Shira 1 Camp today, we will continue to hike through the Shira plateau, meaning the first half of our hike will be on flat ground. After a picnic lunch, the second half of our hike will include a gradual upward climb. We will see some unique high-altitude plants along the trail today. After hiking about 7 hours, we will arrive at Moir Hut Camp. If weather and energy permit, we may do a short, evening hike to practice "climb high, sleep low".
Day 4: Moir Hut - Lava Tower (15,213 ft/4637 m) - Barranco (13,045 ft/3976 m)
Today's hike will include many ups and downs through several ridges and will join the Machame route near Lava Tower. After 3-4 hours, we will stop for lunch at Lava Tower Camp. After lunch, we will descend (2-3 hours) to Barranco valley where we will sleep tonight.
Day 5: Barranco - Karanga (13,232 ft/4033 m)
Just after breakfast, we will start by climbing Barranco wall. The wall will require some scrambling and use of hands.
After the wall, we will descend to Karanga Camp for lunch and will stay there overnight. Today's hike will be 3-4 hours. If weather permits, we may do an evening hike in the area.
Day 6: Karanga - Barafu (15,331 ft/4673 m)
After eating breakfast at Karanga, we will hike along a gradual ascent for 3-4 hours. We will arrive at Barafu Camp around lunchtime. Here we will eat lunch, then relax and rest for our summit hike tomorrow.
While many hikers will wake up at midnight to start their ascent to the summit, we will sleep overnight at Barafu Camp and begin our ascent tomorrow morning.*
Day 7: Barafu - Uhuru Peak (19,341 ft/5895 m) - Crater Camp (18,802 ft/5731 m)
Summit Day! Wake up early in the morning for breakfast. After breakfast, we will start the long ascent to Uhuru Peak (the summit). The first leg of the ascent uses switchbacks to minimize the steepness of the trail. Along this path, we will stop for a lunch break before reaching Stella's Point (about 6 hours). After this point, the trail to the summit becomes much more gradual and about one hour later we will reach the summit at Uhuru Peak. After celebrating and taking photographs at the peak, we will head down to Crater Camp where we will overnight (30 min).
Depending on your level of energy and the weather conditions, you may choose to explore the ash pit and glaciers.
Day 8: Crater Camp - Barafu - Mweka Camp (10,066 ft/3068 m)
After an exciting summit yesterday, we will have breakfast at Crater Camp before starting our long descent today. After breakfast, we will descend to Barafu Camp (about 3 hours) where we will eat lunch. We will continue our long descent (4-5 hours) via the Mweka descent route to Mweka Camp where we will sleep tonight.
Day 9: Mweka Camp - Mweka Gate - Arusha
We will wake up in the morning for breakfast and a celebration of our summit success with our team. After our celebration, we will descend to Mweka Gate through the forest (3-4 hours). There we will have a final lunch together and you will receive a certificate for a successful summit. After lunch, we will get back into a vehicle and return you to your hotel in Arusha, where a hot shower will be waiting for you!
*One of the biggest obstacles to a successful summit is a lack of sleep and energy. For this reason, we think it is in your best interest to get a good night's rest before your summit attempt. Leaving for summit in the morning also means that the trail and the peak will be less crowded, giving you as much time as you want to enjoy the view from the summit and to take pictures. However, if you would prefer a midnight ascent, we are happy to arrange that for you instead.