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Been up Kilimanjaro?

Discussion area for peaks outside of the USA.
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Postby Kevin Baker » Sat Oct 21, 2006 6:06 pm

I don't have enough vacation time to add a safari, but we did schedule a rest day after the flight and a rest day at Mawenzi Tarn (14K') to acclimate. I am looking forward to it and will post a link to my TR here. Zara is one of the more affordable and reliable guides out there from what I have researched. There's no need to pay more than $2K for land costs.

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Postby scheelt » Sun Oct 22, 2006 12:55 pm

I went with Zara when I went in Feb of this year. They did a great job and would recommend them. I also did a route less travelled. Didn't really matter though because they all come together for the last 2-3 days on the mountian anyway (unless you do the Western BreecH, which may still be closed) An extra day prior to starting the trip is a great idea to overcome the time change (get out and see Moshi if you're up to it). I wouldn't worry about the extra day for acclimitization. The ascent rate is so slow that it won't be an issue. It'll still be nice to have an extra day on the mountain, though.

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Postby try.athlete » Mon Oct 23, 2006 1:00 pm

Kevin Baker wrote:I just booked a trip to Kili with http://www.zaratravel.com for late February. I did a lot of research and read alot of positive things about them.


I was on the Kilimanjaro trip on which several people were killed in the rockslide. We booked through Zara, and through the entire experience, they took care of everything, including caring for the porters who were injured and the families of those who were killed, even those who were not part of our group. I strongly urge everyone who is considering going to Killimanjaro to use Zara--I can't say enough good about them.
What is lost in not succeeding is no comparison to what is lost in not trying.

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Strongly encourage this peak!

Postby WickMick » Tue Nov 14, 2006 11:21 pm

Killamanjaro is one of the most memorable experiences of my life. Visiting the Continent of Africa by itself is an experience let alone climbing this vastly diverse peak. I summited via the Machame route, decended via the Marangu route. The Machame route is a direct route typically done in 5 days. The days are moderate (8-10) miles per day with moderate elevation gain each day. One regret was not spending the night in the creator on top just shy of Gillman's point. As for the cost, the airline ticket can be the greatest expense. The guide service you choose can also be an incredible cost. Don't buy into the, "you pay for what you get" mentality. Western guide services find a guide in Tanzenia and mark their charges up a few grand, pass this fee on to you and pocket the difference. If you have the fortune of finding a guide you trust in Tanzenia without employing a "guide service" in the states you will save thousands. My guide's name was Hussein Omary. He lives in Arusha Tanzania and is a NOLS certified guide. He has been guiding KJ for 10+ years and had numerous years prior to that as a porter. His email is husseinkilitrekker@hotmail.com I STRONGLY recommend his services and you will save literally thousands employing him directly. I also recommend a book entitled Kilimanjaro The Roof of Africa by Audrey Salkeld as a research tool. Good luck and happy climbing!
"The futures uncertain and the end is always near, let it roll baby roll!"

-James Douglas Morrison

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Postby Aubrey » Sun Dec 10, 2006 10:53 pm

Have to admit, I've been blown away by the responses on here. Not only are they very helpful to my wife and I, but anyone thinking about climbing Kili will appreciate them. Thank you for that. I'm definitely very appreciative ... thus, thank you to everyone that has replied to this thread.

We've also purchased a lot of books mentioned here ... and checked out links. We're still researching and all, but Zara looks like the leading contender.

I've also learned a lot. For example, we hope to bring a lot of used climbing equipment for the porters. I also thought it'd be cool to buy some stuff for them ... like brand new soccer balls. Any other ideas?

As for cost, a recent check on airfare ran $1,600 from Denver. Does that sound average? Overpriced? Cheap?

And going further on the cost thing, for those of you that've done this mountain, how much did you spend TOTAL (i.e., airfare, climb, guide/porter tips, hotel, etc.)? And did you tack on a safari? Would $8k for two people (getting there, climbing Kili and going on a safari) be reasonable, for example?

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Postby Kevin Baker » Sun Dec 10, 2006 11:31 pm

$8K for 2 people sounds pretty reasonable to me including a safari and $1600 for airfare sounds reasonable although I am sure you could find a reliable guide cheaper than Zara if you looked long enough. I went with Zara for a Feb trip and my total expenses will probably land between $4K-$4,500, and that doesn't include a safari. My airfare was $2,050 from C. Springs purchased 4 months before the trip.

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Kilimanjaro

Postby kiliclimber7_17_02 » Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:14 am

We did the climb in 2002. It was a fantastic trip and we booked through Frontiers and Abercrombie. The guide was Prospar Mtui who had reached summit more than 100 times. I still correspond with him via email. We were not sure how many climbers there would be but when we got to trailhead it was just my son and me. We did Machame route in 7 days. Two days to Shira, day 3 to Lava Tower and Baranco camp. Day 4 up wall and on to Karangu or something like that. Day 5 to Barafu then overnight to summit and down to Barafu then on to camp 10 miles and 5000 feet lower. Long day before final hike out of 10 more miles. We used warm ski gear which was fine. Cold on climb to summit but OK. Food was fantastic and guides really took care of us and went slowly to assure our success. I was 52 at the time and trained had for the climb including climbing 9 14ers in the two months before the trip. The overnight summit climb is tough but if the guides are motivated to get you there, you eat and stay hydrated and handle 14ers without altitude issues you can do it.

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Kilimanjaro

Postby kiliclimber7_17_02 » Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:16 am

I forget in the post I left details of cost. We took KLM from Denver to Arusha and cost was about $2200 each and the guide fee for food, guides etc was about $2100 in 2002.

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Been there done that, loved it

Postby hurdles » Mon Dec 11, 2006 2:41 pm

My wife and I climbed Kili back in early August. We had a wonderful time, went with Zara Adventures. Zara is well known and respected and does a nice job. Our guide, "Teacher" was awesome. We did the Machame Route, 7 days, 5 1/2 up and 1 1/2 down.

Pole, Pole was the words of the day nearly every day. Our guide, like others that I have read in earlier posts, decided after the first couple of days the order that climbers would take enroute to the summit, my wife and I were last....slower people in the front. We are from WI and did some climbing out in CO about 2 weeks prior to goiong and we had absolutely no problems. We did not use diamox, actually gave it to some others in our group.

The cost for each of us was about $2200 for a plane ticket from Chicago to Kilimanjaro Int. Airport. The cost of 7 days on the mountain was $1260 each. We tipped a bit more than recommended and the total for each of us was around $200/person in the group. We also did a two day safari and took a couple extra days before and one after the climb. Each extra day at the Springlands Hotel was about $55 I believe.

Of course you have to figure in the cost of any extra meals, breakfast comes with the room. You also need to have a visa and of course a passport too. It was a great trip and only enhanced more by the experience we had at a school on the outskirts of Moshi, a school run by our guide, Teacher. My wife and I have done some fund raising for the school and have joined an organization to help that specific school :lol:

If I can help, e-mail me at: pjohnson@edgerton.k12.wi.us

Paul
“The tragedy of life is not that it ends so soon, but that we wait so long to begin it.”
Richard L. Evans

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Postby mtnmaniac » Mon Dec 11, 2006 5:51 pm

REI Adventures has this trip and other similar ones. http://www.rei.com/adventures/activity/climb.html Their FAQ section answers lots of questions being asked on here. I don't know how good of a deal it is, but you can get a 1% rebate if you use their card. Is there anything this store doesn't do???

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re: questions about kili

Postby WickMick » Mon Dec 11, 2006 9:44 pm

Sounds like you are putting a lot of effort into the planning of this trip. I like your method of gathering information as to consult this blog.

In retrospect I would have loved to do what you are doing in regards to bringing soccer balls, old equipment, etc. for porters. They are appreciative of everything you can do. We live in such abundance here; Africa is a poignant reminder of this. If you have a used pair of hiking boots, socks, water bottle, old backpack, even gloves and mittens, anything is appreciated. Last August my uncle hiked the peak-they donated everything they brought that was unique to this peak. At the end of the trail when signing out they had this huge lottery. Each porter's name was placed into a jar with all the gear lined up. They would grab the first piece of gear then draw a name. Said it was like Christmas X 100 for these guys.

$1600 is about right for airfare. The guide service chosen can save you a lot of money. You ought to make some inquiries online within Arusha, Tanzania and see the prices they charge as opposed to the prices you are seeing over here. Myself, I would have saved a grand going to Hussein (my guide) directly. To address the safari, I didn't go on one. cheers!

p.s. for another topic on this blog:
For most climbers altitude isn't a problem on KJ. Proper conditioning in general can play a crucial role with how altitude affects your body. If you are at sea level for your training and can't train in altitude I recommend the herb ginko as opposed to diamox.
"The futures uncertain and the end is always near, let it roll baby roll!"

-James Douglas Morrison

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Postby Scott P » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:37 am

REI Adventures has this trip and other similar ones. http://www.rei.com/adventures/activity/climb.html Their FAQ section answers lots of questions being asked on here. I don't know how good of a deal it is, but you can get a 1% rebate if you use their card. Is there anything this store doesn't do???


As with most REI trips, it's a horrible deal. You can do the same exact trip with no differences at all for less than 1/3 what REI charges.

REI is a good place to buy gear, but not a good place to do international trips unless you are rich.

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