9 Days Kilimanjaro Lemosho Route
The Lemosho route is one of our preferred routes due to its low traffic, beautiful scenery and a high summit success rate. The Lemosho route starts off from the west, beginning with a long drive from Moshi to Londorossi Gate. From there, the first two days are spent trekking through the lush rainforest to Shira Plateau.
We recommend a minimum of 7 days to attempt this route but 8 days is preferable for better acclimatization and summit success. The Lemosho route joins the Machame route at Shira 2 Camp and then follows the same route through the southern circuit and descending at Mweka Gate.
Day 1: Arrive in Tanzania
You will be picked up at the Kilimanjaro International Airport and transferred to your hotel in Moshi town, you will meet your guide who will brief you on your upcoming trek and do an equipment check to make sure you have all the necessary mountain gear. Gear which is missing can be rented on this day. Overnight at Weru Weru River Lodge (or alternative).
Day 2: Lemosho Glades (2385m) to Big Tree Camp (2780m)
You will be picked up at your hotel at around 08:00am and transferred to the Lemosho gate located on the western side of Kilimanjaro. After the registration process you will still start our climb steadily through the forests of the Lemosho glades to reach Big Tree camp where you will be spending the night.
Distance covered: 7km / 4.3mi
Approx. time taken: 4 hours
Day 3: Big Tree Camp (2780m) to Shira 2 Camp (3900m)
Today you will cover a lot of ground as you trek across a plateau of grassy moorland and heather scattered with volcanic rock formations. We will trek through Shira 1 Camp from where there are often views of Kibo Peak floating on the clouds as we head towards our destination which is Shira 2.
We gain a reasonable amount of altitude as we head towards Shira 1 and parts of the route are fairly steep. As you proceed towards Shira 2 you will get the chance to view the Northern Ice fields from the western side of the mountain with some unusual views of Kibo. Our steady climb across the moorland of the Shira Plateau will help with acclimatization and we enjoy great panoramic views.
Distance covered: 16.5km / 10.3mi
Approx. time taken: 9 - 11 hrs
Day 4: Shira 2 Camp (3900m) to Barranco Camp (3960m)
Your trek starts with an ascent with far-reaching panoramic views, walking in to the climatic zone of the upland desert and on the lava ridges beneath the glaciers of the Western Breach. You will reach the distinct pinnacle of the Lava Tower (4640 m), our high point for the day and a great place to enjoy your lunch. In the afternoon we make a steep descent to our camp for the night, located in the base of the Great Barranco Valley (3960 m), sheltered by towering cliffs but with extensive views of the plains below.
Distance covered: 10km / 6.2mi
Approx. time taken: 7 hrs
Day 5: Barranco Camp (3960m) to Karanga Camp (3963m)
Our day starts by descending into the start of the Great Barranco, a huge ravine. We then exit steeply, up the Great Barranco Wall, which divides us from the southeastern slopes of Kibo. It’s a climb over rock, not technical but long and tiring. Passing underneath the Heim and Kersten glaciers, we head towards the Karanga valley. From here we have a steep climb up from Karanga valley to our night’s camp at Karanga camp, set at 3963m. For those feeling strong we will go for a mid-afternoon acclimatization trek up to around 4200m before descending back to camp for the night.
Distance covered: 5.5km / 3.4mi
Approx. time taken: 5 hours
Day 6: Karanga Camp (3963) to Barafu Camp (4640m)
After a good night’s rest and breakfast, we set off on our walk to Barafu camp at 4640m. The climb will take us across desolate scree slopes with no vegetation around us at all. It’s a tough steep walk made more difficult by the altitude. On arriving at camp we eat and spend the afternoon resting as we prepare for a long night and day ahead. It is important to keep hydrated and warm. We have an early dinner and then try to get some sleep as we will be getting up at between 11pm and 12pm to start the climb to the summit.
Distance covered: 3km / 1.9mi
Approx. time taken: 3 hours
Day 7: Barafu Camp (4640m) to UHURU PEAK (5895m) & down to Millennium Camp (3790m)
We start off at around midnight, and walk steeply upwards to the summit glaciers. We will be climbing scree for 4 to 5 hours but gain incredible height over a short distance. The views are spectacular. We should be on the crater rim at Stella Point (5739m) as the first rays of the sun hit us. Spectacular ice cliffs within the crater surround us and the views to jagged Mawenzi peak and beyond are breathtaking. Another hour’s walking takes us to the summit, Uhuru Peak (5895m). We begin our descent by returning to Stella Point and then descending on scree slope and track back to Barafu Camp for breakfast, before finally heading down to Millennium Camp for a long well-earned rest.
Distance covered: 13.4km / 8.3mi
Approx. time taken: 12 – 15 hours
Day 8: Trek Millennium Camp (3790m) to Mweka Gate (1630m)
A gentle trek takes us down through the rainforest to Mweka Gate, where we complete park formalities and receive certificates, which you can hang up with pride! We are then met by our vehicles and return to the hotel in Moshi, where you can treat yourself to a welcome shower (and a cold beer or two!) before our big celebration.
Overnight at the Weru Weru River Lodge (or alternative)
Distance covered: 12.1km / 7.5mi
Approx. time taken: 6 hours
Day 9: Depart Tanzania
The day is left free to wind down after the trek before your flight home. Depending on flight times you could go and explore Moshi town and grab some souvenirs before heading to the airport.
*We also welcome you spare an hour of your day to plant a tree, as part of our environmental conservation efforts in the Kilimanjaro region.
*Safari and Zanzibar add-ons are available if you wish to continue exploring Tanzania