Kilimanjaro Information
2005:  January 28 to Feb 14.
A 'quick and dirty' so we're all on the same page and don't have to save 50 different e-mails.

Basic Info

What:  Climbing trip to the top of Kilimanjaro (19,430 ft), via the Machame route, then some safari time.  This is the most scenic route, only 20% of the people take it and it takes an extra day.  80% of the people take the other route because it's easier and quicker, but they get altitude sickness and drop out more.
Dates:  January 28 to February 14, 2005
Route:  Long slow hike followed by steep hike to top.
Technical: Non-technical High Altitude walk above clouds.
Physical : Considered High stress.
What to expect:  Temperatures: 90 degF in the plains to below zero on the mountaintop.  Rain every day on the mountain.
Learn about our guide:  MEM Tours  See where they're at,  what vehicles we'll safari in, animals we *might* see since it's not migration season.


Kilimanjaro Links

Things to Consider 

Trip Members

Name   Note
Raj Badoni Home:  469-633-1219
Work:  972-371-6394
Steve Hall Home:  972-422-4081
Work:   972-952-5728
Wayne Sanaghan Work/Page:   972-344-4521
Cell:  214-783-2090
Jacek Stachurski Cell:  469-438-8668 JacekSt^
Dr.Ajay Harpavat Cell:  413-847-0309 AJHarpavat^
Lori Mitchell   lori.mitchell^
Sue Walker    


Detailed Info

It is HIGHLY recommended that you train via jogging and/or stairs.  Even though no amount of stairs at sea level can fully prepare you for 19,000 sleep deprived, time zone unbalanced, altitude sick feet, the better shape you're in when you go means the better chance of succeeding.  The climb is a non technical walk above the clouds, however, physically and mentally can be a challenge, prepare yourself  in advance is the best way to succeed!

Recommended workout/test:  Take your backpack load with 3-4 gallons water, treadmill, 3 times per week.  Prior to departure it should be easy to do:  1 hour, 3.5 rate, 15% incline, 45lbs backpack, with your mountain climbing shoes.

Equipment list:
We're working that up!  Much is provided via porters; clothes and toiletries, as well as cold weather hiking gear and a sleeping bag.  See below for tips  from someone who was there.

About $1k for the plane ticket, and $1k for everything else.

Main Approach:
There are two main routes (and several minor ones), Machame and Marangu.  The Marangu  route takes less time and is taken by about 80% of climbers.  It also has a higher failure rate.  The Machame route is less taken and, with the extra day built in, has a higher success rate.  Our route is the right most--we start from the park gate and head up to the Machame camp.


Bus info from the airport, from a guy who works in teaching children in the area.
From a guy who's there: There are a # of good ones that from b/t Nairobi and Arusha -- Varan is one (name of the company) and Akamba Bus Services. I think it costs around 20 US dollars one way Nairobi - Arusha. From the times that I have been in Tanzania and from what I have heard about friends going up Kli, Arusha is a good starting point. But either Arusha or Moshi as base camps are fine. I understand Arusha is more advanced when it comes to accommodation and the like. 

Malaria Info:
Here are two articles about malaria prophylaxis recommendations. I personally think it is a toss up between Mefloquin 250mg weekly, starting one week before arrival and MalaroneTM. This is a combination of atovaquone and proguanil and recent studies have found it a safe and effective prophylactic agent with few side affects. It is expensive and has to be taken daily. It should be started 2 days before travel and continued for at least 7 days after a period of potential exposure to malaria.    (another article: )
I would probably go with malarone. Dr. Ajay (a guy on our trip)

Kilimanjaro Questions from Jacek to a friend who was there.
1. How did you prepare for the climb, and when did your preparation start? Did your preparations include any high altitude training?
A: You mostly acclimatize during the 6-day approach to summit. Before you take off you may run 3 miles 2 X a week or something.

2. Did you organize your tour with the help of a professional expedition company or did you organize this on your own? If you went through an expedition company, which did you choose and are you happy with the choice that you made?
A: I chose Into Africa. They are recommended in Lonely Planet guide as environmentally friendly and directly benefitting the local people. All the guides and organizers in Africa are African, highly professional. Food was great (chakula nzuri). The coordinator is Chris Morris in England. I gave him heads-on. I suggest you email Chris. I paid $1215 for a 7-day trek. You may pay less from other outfitters but you'll get less. Beware of 3-4 day climbs. In 7 days you have a 95% chance of making it to the top. in 3-4 days it could be 50% with some chance of dying (12 people/yr from AMS). See FYI.

3. Are there any must have pieces of equipment you would recommend?

4. What route up Kilimanjaro did you choose? How long did it take?
A: Machame. 7-days, including down. More scenic, less busy. See FYI.

5. Two of my primary concerns are acclimatizing to the altitude and whether it would be too cold to sleep at night. How did you deal with these two aspects?
A: See above. Don't use Diamox - you probaly don't need it and it may mess you up. I recommend glucose in tablets for the summit night. It will be below freezing nearly every night but not too terrible. The worst thing is peeing at night. But the stars are great.

Here are the pix:  Adam

Question's We've Had

Mem Tours - Main contact, Mohammed O. Shabhay 
Mohammed O. Shabhay < >
MEM Tours and Safaris Ltd 
Tel: +255 27 2750669 / 2754574 / 2754234     Cell Phone: +255 744 482791 
Fax:+ 255 27 2754788 

Hi there, Thanks for this questions I love them its make my life and your trip more easier to be arranged.

Climbing - Kilimanjaro
Stephen: 1) How many guides and porters are you including for the 5 climbers? 
MEM: We will have one Chief Guide and two assistance Guide and at least 3 porters per person but the final number of porter we will know at the day of climb (because of the wait eachporter allowed to carry only 20 KG)

Stephen: 2) How many persons per tent? What do we sleep on (mattresses cots, ...)? 
MEM: We have tent for two pax three pax and also a single tent so this we can discuss on a briefing time before you go how do you want to sleep but we can accommodate you as your wish, We also provide mattress to sleep on.

Stephen: 3) What is provided for drinking water? 
MEM: Boiling water is provided at least 4 to 5 ltrs per day per client.

Stephen: 4) What happens if someone in the group becomes ill? Will one of the guides/porters accompany that person down? 
MEM: Its depend on the elevation if is below 4000 m then a normal porter who speak good english can accompanied a client with a rescue team but above that only trainned guide will be accompanied with client and a rescue team too.

Stephan 5) Do you carry a radio for emergency contact? 
MEM: On mountain we use a Cell phone is more reliable than Radio up there.

Stephen 6) We are leaning toward a 7 day climb to allow for acclimitization.
MEM: 7 days on Machame route is one of the best program to compare with 6 days because of enough time form one point to another and also it allows you to gain and loose altitude on day to day program especially after shira camp.

Stephen 1) During the safari game viewing, will there be hiking/walking involved? How much? Is this available for those who desire to do so? 
MEM: Once you drive on National Park walking is not allowed. The only National park allowed to walk on Northern Park is Arusha National Park. Another place is within Ngorongoro Conservation Area but not in the crater only on crater highlands.

Stephen 2) What type of vehicle is used for the safari? What is the seating/viewing like for each individual? (Open top, minivan, land cruiser,
MEM: Good question because this is where the value of quality is stand for a Tour Operator. We use Toyota Land Cruiser with open roof. We have 4 sater 5 seater 6 seater and 8 seater with window seat proper converted for game drive. Also all our Jeep are Air Condition fitted with HF and VHF Radio seat bealt on each seat and Our drivers Guides are well trained is not those who point the Lion for you.

Stephen 3) Where will our gear be during the safari portion? 
MEM: We have a storage room in Moshi and Arusha we can keep them.

Stephen 4) Can we make minor changes to itinerary during the safari? 
MEM:Yes but not on changes which will raise cost such as add a day in a park or time while your permit in each park is 24 hrs only, you can play around with game drive time and area, but I trust our guides no better where to go and what you can see.

Stephen 5) What can we expect for crowds at the various parks this time of year? We may also be interested in more off the beaten path, less crowded areas. If you were to change the itinerary to accomodate this, what would you change? Would there be a price difference? Are similiar accomodations available? 
MEM: 5 days is very short program to plan a different route you need at least 8 days then we can reccomend a different program for you.

Stephen 6) Given that we have 7 in our group, would others be added? If so, how many? Does that reduce the price? 
MEM: This is a private booking we dont hook people that is our policy so they will be no additional; person on your trip.

Stephen:7) Some may be interested in a balloon ride. Do you have contacts? Would our itinerary accomodate this? 
MEM: Yes we do have contact and thios is possible on your program they will be additional of USD 400 per person for this, but will depend with availability

Stephen 8) If we camp, what restroom and bathing facilities are there? What do we sleep on (matress, cot, ...)? Are mosquito nets provided? Is there a dining tent provided? 
MEM: Any campsite which is in the park facilities are in poor condition and to take a bath some time you may need to go at the lodge and pay for taking a bath. If you camp we do provide Tents and matress and our tent have got mosquite net and dinning tent is provided too.

1) How many nights hotel in Moshi/Arusha are included? - 3 nights
2) Two in the group are vegetarian. - No problem

Now your booking mint be very late to get rooms on either of category if you choose Lodge safari, we also mint be forced to combine category B and A depend with the availability.

Please see attached file explain to you how to book with us and if your ready to come with us please fill those form and send to us as soon as possible so we can check the availability.

We will send a final program to you soon we receive the booking form.

Let see what we can do for you. Before I go in details I want to tell you it will be very good if you can use a tour operator to arrange all of your needs such as transfers from Nairobi to Arusha and also accommodations because you can get a better deal and that's where a Tour operator manage to sell his package. For Example if you take a shuttle bus from Nairobi to Arusha private you will pay USD 30 but most of tour operator may sell to you for USD 20 per person.

Okay back to your program I want to recommend some changes please see below with the reason of changes.

30-Jan Sunday: Arrive in Arusha; 5 people - New Mount Meru Hotel
31-Jan Monday: Visit Arusha - Game drive and Walking - Aishi Protea Hotel in Machame Village
1-Feb Tuesday: Start Kili climb; 5 people, 7 days via Machame - I will highly recommend to stay on this program
7-Feb Monday: Finish Kili climb; 2 more people join in Arusha - New Mount Meru Hotel
8-Feb Tuesday: Start Safari; 7 people, 5 days Arusha to Lake Manyara stay at Lake Manyara Hotel / Twiga Camp
9-Feb Wednesday - Lake Manyara - Serengeti - Stay at Seronera Wildlife Lodge
10 - Feb Thursday - Serengeti full day - Sunrise and Sunset game view ( Balloon Safari can be done this day)
11-Feb Serengeti sunset - Drive to Ngorongoro stay at Ngorongoro Wild life Lodge/ Simba Campsite
12-Feb Saturday: Finish Safari - New Mount Meru Hotel
13-Feb Sunday: Leave Arusha

Jacek- visit Arusha or Tarangire NP independently (what are the park fees?)
MEM - Park Fees are USD 25 per person + Ranger fee during walking is USD 20 per group

Jacek - do the Kili trek in 6 days instead of 7 (can we adjust the length while on the trek?)
MEM - You may do that but the dis advantage is you will be charged a little bit more because we will have to send another food supply with extra porter and 6 days is not what I recommend.

Jacek - arranged our Arusha accommodations independently
MEM - If you can arrange Arusha accommodations Independently then we will charge you less of USD 60 per person for all nights which are in your program.

Jacek - add transportation to/from Nairobi
MEM - We have include this on our rate.

Jacek - opt for camping/lodge accommodations on the safari
MEM - That all is already mention above.

Jacek - opt for a hot-air balloon tour over Serengeti (is there a minimum number of people required for this? could this be somehow efficiently fit into our 5-day safari package if only 2-3 people would choose this option? please, give us a few price variants, if possible)
MEM - Yes is efficient Balloon Safari they do receive bookings from different operator so they didn't fix a minimum number as far as I know and to do this they will be a extra Charges from Balloon USD 400 per person.

Jacek - Between Arusha and Tarangire NP, which park would you recommend considering that we will visit Serengeti/Ngorongoro later on?
MEM - Arusha National Park is the right option for you.

Jacek - During the one-day trips to Tarangire or Arusha NP, would it possible to hike around or we would be offered only a drive-through?
MEM - Only Arusha National Park is the park that you can do both Game drive and Walking Safari.

Jacek - What will be the number of the support personnel going up Kili with us?
MEM - Each client will have about 3 Porters and in a group we will have 1 Chief Guide + 2 Assistance guide.

Jacek - What kind of food will we be getting exactly? (Would you maybe already have a menu example?)
MEM - Breakfast:- Fruits of the season, Eggs, Sausage, butter,Jam, corn flakes, Milk,coffee,Drink chocolate,Milo,Bread, Pancake LUNCH: we all park light lunch Piece of chicken, Boiled egg, Sausage, cheese sandwich, fruit,Chocolate Bar, Dinner: Soup ( Vegetable,Chicken,Mushrooms) Spaghetti,Rice,Potatoes provide with beef,chicken and vegetable. Fruits tea coffee.

Jacek - Do the open roof Toyota Land Cruisers on safaris have any middle-seating, or all seven of us would have window seats?
MEM - We guarantee window seat for 7 passengers and is open roof.
Jacek - Could there be any "hidden charges"?
MEM - No hidden charges more than your personal expenditure and Tips.

Jacek - Regarding camping/showers during the 5-day safari:
MEM - We know is possible but to be a reliable tour organizer you should not operate on probabilities. So what I can believe on is the shower on Lodges not the one on campsite. What I can say is don't depend on that.

My recommendation:
In group of 7 if you will be divided that some they will do camping and some lodge this has to be clear to you. That we will have additional passenger during the safari who is a cook and also we will have extra load which will be food and camp facilities.

So in other word we will have to splint a group in two use a different type of Car which will be 4 seater window passenger and this will add a cost of USD 250 divided by 7 = USD 35 extra for each.This will allow each of you to enjoy the trip more and have more space.

But if you will all stay in Lodges then we have no problem but also, as you delay to confirm the booking then you mint facing a problem with the rooms. Those Lodge mention above is three star to four Star. If we will have to changes because of room availability then the price mint change too depend with which lodge we will get.

So the price is effectively subjected to room availability.