You can climb Mt. Kilimanjaro with AFM, December 2018!
Kilimanjaro is a symbol of the compelling beauty of East Africa. “The Roof of Africa” is also the tallest free-standing mountain in the world, rising in breath-taking isolation from the surrounding coastal scrubland to a height of 19,341 feet. Kilimanjaro is one of the world's most accessible high summits. Most climbers reach the crater rim with little more than a walking stick, proper clothing, and determination. Anyone of good health can do this! The porters carry your gear, so you only need to get yourself and your day-pack up the mountain. But there’s so much more to Kilimanjaro than her summit. The ascent of the slopes is a virtual climatic world tour, from the tropics to the arctic.
Imagine the rush of adrenaline and envision the majestic views. Imagine your sense of accomplishment. Imagine the memories you’ll make and the stories you'll be able to tell. But imagine more. Imagine more than just crossing something off of your “bucket list.” Imagine making the climb for a bigger purpose. Imagine how your efforts will ensure that Africa is safe from the death and destruction of uncontrolled fires. How your climb will allow every firefighter in Africa to have access to needed training. How you can be a part of making sure every firefighter has Personal Protective Equipment, Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus, and safe fire vehicles. We strive to ensure every community is protected from fire. Lives will be saved and love will be shared because of your journey. YOU will make a difference in the world!
Our Challenge to You
Our ultimate challenge to you is to use your Kilimanjaro climb as an opportunity to transform lives. We want you to be one of a select group of 35 people who climb Kilimanjaro with us and commit to raise $5000 to support Africa Fire Mission. With the monies raised from our climbing crew, you’ll help us get closer to the ultimate goal of ensuring every firefighter has a set of PPE and all of Africa is safe from fire.
Trip Cost: $2800 (tax deductible to you)
Trip Cost includes the following:
- National Park Gate Fees and daily use fees
- All Ground Transportation (Includes transportation in Nairobi, from Nairobi to Moshi, and from Moshi to starting point on mountain and return to Moshi/airport)
- Camping Fees and Tents
- Certified, experienced, English-speaking guides for all routes and experienced trip leaders
- Porters, cooks, and guide fees
- Rescue Fees (required by the national park)
- All meals in Nairobi, at hotel in Moshi, and on the mountain
- 2 nights lodging in Nairobi
- 2 nights’ accommodation in Moshi bed and breakfast (twin occupancy)
- Tents, foam sleeping pads, cooking equipment, and eating utensils
Additional Costs on Your Own:
- Airfare to/from Africa
- Visas (Kenya $20 for Single Transit good for up to 3 days or $50 for Single Entry and Tanzania $100. Applications and payments for your Kenya visa must be made online prior to the date of the trip. You can pay for your Tanzania visa upon entry into the country.)
- To secure a Kenya Visa: https://kenyaembassy.com/dcservices/appforvisaonline.aspx
- For information on Tanzania Visa: http://tanzaniaembassy-us.org/?page_id=76
- Trip Insurance
- Tips for Guides/Porters (suggested amount $100 and it’s pulled together in 1 group tip)
- Personal items (souvenirs, snacks, etc.)
Bonus Trip Options
African Safari—Following your successful climb of Kilimanjaro, you can choose to stay and enjoy a safari adventure. We can provide you with some recommended safari companies for booking your bonus trip.
European City Tour
On your way to or from Africa, it’s an ideal time to add an overnight or two to enjoy the culture, history, and food of the European city of your choice. The only cost for this is your hotel, ground transportation, and meals – pretty minimal for a great European city visit.
How to Raise Money for a Cause You Love
This adventure of a lifetime trip provides you with an opportunity to fulfill a life dream and to leave a legacy.
The monies you raise will transform lives, fire departments, and communities through God's love. We’ll give you some tools and ideas. You provide the friends, work associates, relatives, and church groups who will pledge so much per successful foot climbed by you in 1000-foot increments.
The money they pledge will go to Africa Fire Mission's work to share the message of fire safety. This will provide communities the opportunity to learn about God's love through fire safety training.
Your friends and associates will be so impressed when you tell them you’re climbing Kilimanjaro, they won’t hesitate to sponsor your climb to help in Africa. Our goal is for each climber to raise $5000 or more in pledges for a total team goal of $150,000. All gifts are tax deductible.
Trip Registration Deadline
Only 35 spots are available for this trip. To secure your opportunity for this life-changing adventure, you must submit your $500 deposit by insert date here. Deposits can be made below on our Paypal donation page. Note: Your deposit is non-refundable.
Once you have made your deposit or expressed interest, we’ll give you all the information and help with clothing, hiking, safety, weather, equipment, timing, food, water, or anything else you want to know about. Our trip leaders will send you regular updates to help you prepare for the trek. Our trip leaders will help you every step of the way. Your excitement for this great adventure of a lifetime is going to build, so be sure to get your deposit in today!
Your Trip Leader:
Todd took his first trip with the Africa Fire Mission in November of 2015, where the team was able to train the Nairobi Fire Service in the use of newly-donated SCBAs. At the end of this trip, he traveled to Kilimanjaro and successfully summited via the Machame Route. An avid backpacker and rock climber, Todd also has mountaineering experience, summiting Mt. Rainier twice. Todd is excited to be named the trip leader for this climb because he loves combining his teaching experience with his love of the outdoors. When not adventuring, Todd serves as a Captain with the Fishers Fire Department, Indiana.
Trip Cancellation Policy
If you have to cancel your involvement, the total amount of money you have given up to the $2,800 (minus the $500 deposit) is fully refundable.
December 4 or 5, 2018: Depart from the U.S. airport of your choice for Nairobi, Kenya. You’re responsible to book and pay for your airfare to and from the U.S. Be sure to make your travel arrangements such that you arrive in Nairobi no later than the afternoon of December 6.
December 6, 2018: You’ll gather in Nairobi with the other climbing team members for dinner and an orientation. Ground transportation from the Kenyatta Airport will be provided. The group will spend the night at Gracehouse Resort www.gracehousersort.com
December 7, 2018: After breakfast at the hotel, the group will travel by bus to the Missions of Hope Pangani Center. Here you’ll see firsthand the Hope Partnership ministry in action, have an opportunity to meet some of the children and staff, and walk through the slum community. Plus you can visit the Missions of Hope gift shop. Lunch will be at the Pangani Center, and dinner will be at the hotel or a local restaurant.
December 8, 2018: After breakfast, the group will travel by bus from Nairobi to Moshi (approximately 6 hours). You’ll go to the Springlands Hotel for an overnight bed and breakfast.
December 9, 2018: Machame Gate (1490 m) – Machame camp (2980 m), Hiking time: 7 hours, Distance: About 18 km's - Habitat: Montane forest. Your day starts early with a briefing, followed by breakfast and a 45-minute drive from Moshi (910m) to the Machame village (1490m). The guides and porters prepare and pack the supplies and your equipment in the village. Once at camp the porters will pitch tents and prepare drinking water, and the cook will prepare dinner. Already, night temperatures can drop to freezing point at the Machame campsite.
December 10, 2018: Machame camp (2980 m) - Shira camp (3840 m), Hiking time: 6 hours. Distance: About 9 km's – Habitat: Moorland: You awake early at the Machame camp. After breakfast, you climb for an hour or so to the top of the forest and then for two more hours at a gentler gradient through the moorland zone. After a short lunch and rest, you continue up a rocky ridge onto the Shira plateau. By then you will be able to see the Western Breach with its stunning glaciers. You are now due west of Kibo, and after a short hike, you will reach the Shira campsite at 3840 m. The night at this exposed camp will even be colder than the previous night, with temperatures dropping to well below freezing.
December 11, 2018: Shira (3840 m)-Lava Tower (4630 m)-Barranco camp (3950 m), Hiking time: 7 Hrs, Distance: About 15 km's - Habitat: Semi-desert: The route now turns east into a semi-desert and rocky landscape surrounding Lava Tower, where you reach an altitude of 4630 m after about a five-hour walk. Lunch is served before ascending the rocky scree path to Lava Tower (4630 m). This is definitely the toughest day so far. It is normally around this point, where for the first time, some climbers will start to feel symptoms of breathlessness, irritability, and headaches. After lunch, you descend again by almost 680 m to the Barranco camp. After reaching the high altitude of 4600 m at Lava Tower, the true acclimatization benefit of this day becomes clear. This descent to Barranco camp takes about two hours and offers great opportunities to take some beautiful photographs of the Western Breach and Breach Wall. The camp is situated in a valley below the Breach and Great Barranco Wall, which should provide you with a memorable sunset while you wait for the preparation of your dinner and overnight at Barranco Camp site.
December 12, 2018: Barranco to Karanga Valley - Barafu camp (4550 m), Hiking time: 7 hours Distance: About 13 km's - Habitat: Alpine desert Totally exposed to the ever-present gales, the tents are pitched on a narrow, stony, and dangerous ridge. Make sure you familiarize yourself with the terrain before dark to avoid any accidents. The summit is now a further 1345 m up and you will make the final ascent the same night. Prepare your equipment, trekking poles, and warm clothing for your summit attempt. This should include the replacement of your headlamp and camera batteries and make sure you have a spare set available as well. To prevent freezing, it will be wise to carry your water in a thermal flask. You will go to bed around 1900 and get about five hours of sleep.
December 13, 2018: SUMMIT/DESCENT ATTEMPT: Barafu camp (4550 m) – Uhuru Peak (5895 m) – Mweka (3100 m), Hiking time: 8 hours to reach Uhuru Peak, 7/8 hours to descend to Mweka, Distance: About 7 km's ascent - 23 km's descent, Habitat: Stone scree and ice-capped summit. You will rise around 2330, and after some tea and biscuits, you shuffle off into the night. You will head in a northwesterly direction and ascend through heavy scree towards Stella Point on the crater rim. For many climbers, this six-hour walk to Stella point is the most mentally and physically challenging part of the route. At Stella Point (5685 m) you will stop for a short rest and be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see (weather permitting). From Stella Point you will normally encounter snow all the way on your two-hour ascent to Uhuru Peak. The time you will spend on the summit will depend on the weather conditions. Do not stop here for too long, as it will be extremely difficult to start again due to cold and fatigue. The walk back to Barafu Camp from the summit takes about three hours. Here you will have a well-earned but short rest and collect the rest of your gear before heading down to Mweka Camp (3100 m) for dinner and overnight.
December 14, 2018: Mweka camp (3100 m) - Mweka Gate (1980 m); Hiking/Descend time: 3 hours, Distance: About 15 km's Habitat: Forest After breakfast, from the Mweka Gate, you will continue down into the Mweka village, normally a muddy and long hour walk. In the Mweka village drive to Springlands Hotel and you will be served a delicious hot lunch!! You now drive back to Moshi for a long overdue hot shower with an overnight stay in the Springlands hotel. Tips are highly appreciated at the end of the trip. Tips can be given to the guide at Springlands Hotel. This is also where successful climbers receive their summit certificates. Those climbers who reached Stella Point (5685 m) are issued green certificates and those who reached Uhuru Peak (5895 m) receive gold certificates.
December 15, 2018: After an early breakfast, you’ll travel from Moshi to Nairobi, where you’ll be transported to the airport for your late-night departure back to the U.S.
December 16, 2018: Arrive back home in the U.S. Celebrate with family and friends as you share your pictures and stories.
Bonus Trip Options: African Safari—Following your successful climb of Kilimanjaro, you can choose to stay and enjoy a safari adventure. We can provide you with some recommended safari companies for booking your bonus trip.
European City Tour: On your way to or from Africa, it’s an ideal time to add an overnight or two to enjoy the culture, history, and food of the European city of your choice. The only cost for this is your hotel, ground transportation, and meals – pretty minimal for a great European city visit.
Medical information for climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro: This advice is of a general nature and evaluation is needed for each individual climber by a health professional or by the climbing guide.
High Altitude: Each climber should become knowledgeable about physiologic changes with exertion at high altitude or High Altitude Sickness, so that you not surprised by some of the potential symptoms.
Potential symptoms of climbing at altitude may include the following. Seek advice for each of these:
- Shortness of breath or fatigue
- Excess gassiness (belching or flatus; seek advice if severe.)
- Vomiting (Seek advice immediately.)
- Confusion/hallucinations (Seek advice immediately.)
- Staggering gait (Seek advice immediately.)
- Coughing up blood or gurgling breath (Seek advice immediately.)
Malaria prescription: See your family physician or a travel medicine doctor to receive a prescription.
Diamox (acetazolamide): can help to reduce or prevent the symptoms of High Altitude Sickness, but it cannot prevent High Altitude Sickness in all individuals. Nevertheless, we advise that each climber take as a minimum dose Diamox 125 mg twice daily unless the climber’s physician specifically advises against this or the climber has an allergic reaction to this. There are varying suggestions regarding when to start taking Diamox, but we suggest starting at least by the day of departure from the hotel in Moshi, Tanzania. We also suggest continuing the Diamox until our return to the hotel in Moshi.
Each climber should personally bring the following and adhere to packaging instructions:
- Sunscreen (preferably greater than 50 SPF) — Have this readily available in your day pack while hiking.
- Lip balm with SPF — Have this readily available in your day pack while hiking.
- Carry these medicines for possible use as needed in your day pack:
- Acid-reducer (such as omeprazole 20 mg, TUMS, Pepcid) — enough for 5 days.
- Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) 200 mg —at least 30 pills (2 pills 3 times per day for 5 days).
- Acetaminophen (Tylenol) 500 mg —at least 30 pills (2 pills 3 times per day for 5 days).
- Bismuth subsalicylate (PeptoBismol) —at least 30 pills (2 pills 3 times per day for 5 days). This can potentially help for diarrhea or upset stomach symptoms.
- Loperamide (Imodium) 2 mg (approximately 12 pills) — for diarrhea.
- Ciprofloxacin (Cipro) 500 mg.
- DRINK WATER FREQUENTLY AND IN ABUNDANCE. We recommend 2-3 liters while hiking and 1 liter with each meal.
- Each climber should cut his or her toenails VERY SHORT a few days before starting the climb. The descent will place a lot of pressure on the tips of the toes.
Immunizations: Please talk with your family physician or a travel medicine doctor to determine which immunizations you need prior to the trip. Here are the immunizations recommended by the CDC (https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/).
Make sure you are up-to-date on routine vaccines before every trip. These vaccines include the following:
- Measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine
- Diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine
- Varicella (chickenpox) vaccine
- Polio vaccine
- Yearly flu shot
- These immunizations are also recommended for our trip:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Meningitis (Meningococcal disease)
- Yellow fever; you must have yellow fever card to enter Tanzania.
+ Packing List
As you prepare for your climb, keep in mind that it may work well for you to buy certain items, borrow some things from a friend or to even rent some needed items from Zara Tours, based on your budget and personal preference.
Large duffel bag/backpack (porters carry)
- The pack that the porters carry is limited to 15 kg (33 pounds).
- Overweight or extra luggage will require an extra porter at $5/day.
- Store electronics in sealed water-proof bags (double sealed if possible).
- Wrap clothing in plastic bags or dry sack.
- If you already have a backpack or a duffle bag, then you can use either one for your large pack that the porters carry. The maximum weight for this bag/backpack is 33 lbs. (15 kg). If you’re planning to buy something for the trip, a waterproof duffle bag is your best option, as it’ll be easier for you to use and it’s also a little lighter than a backpack which will allow you to pack more items and still stay within the weight limits. A cheaper option is to use any kind of duffle bag and to rent a garbage bag cover from Zara for a few dollars. FYI: The porters will carry whatever pack/bag you bring on their head/shoulders and won’t carry a backpack using the straps.
- Zara rents heavy grade “trash bags” to cover your pack for $5 if you don’t have a waterproof bag/backpack.
Day pack (you carry) You’ll want to plan on packing the following items in your day pack:
- 2-3 liters of water (possibly up to 4 liters on summit night/day)
- Rain jacket and maybe rain pants
- Waterproof rain cover for day pack or dry-sack inside your pack
- Light jacket and/or another layer of clothing for your top half
- Toilet paper, wet wipes, and plastic Ziploc bag to haul away your refuse
- Medicines (as needed)
- Hand sanitizer
- Lightweight gloves
- Hat and wool hat
- Bandana or handkerchief
- Save room for your daily lunch.
- Optional items: snacks/candy, camera/batteries, umbrella, binoculars
- Add any other items you may need during the day, since you may not see your porters until the end of the day.
- Your inner layer should be wicking — no cotton. Your next layer should be insulating and warm, and your top layer should be waterproof but breathable.
- You will need clothes for hiking during the day, lounging in the evening, and for sleeping. Layers are important as temperatures vary greatly. Kilimanjaro may be near the equator, but it gets cold up there! Note: July is one of the coldest months on the mountain.
- Shorts, for first and last day only
- Pants, for hiking and for lounging in the evenings
- Short-sleeved or T-shirts
- Long-sleeved shirts, for hiking and for lounging in the evenings
- Long underwear
- Fleece jacket or wool sweater
- Fleece pants
- Down jacket or ski parka (for temperatures well below freezing plus wind)
- Rain jacket, needed in hot rainforest and cold snow
- Rain pants, needed in hot rainforest and cold snow
- Sport bras for women
Cold weather accessories
- Mittens and/or gloves (waterproof, one thin pair, one thick pair that can be layered)
- Wool hat
- Balaclava or neck gaitor
- Be sure to break in your shoes before the hike!
- Trekking shoes for hiking during the day, preferably warm, waterproof, and with ankle-support—not too light and not too heavy. A boot with Vibram soles is recommended.
- Hiking socks for warmer conditions
- Wool socks for colder conditions
- Sleeping bag (rated in the range of 18 degrees to -10 degrees F. is recommended)
- Water bottles and/or Camelback (2-4 liters of capacity)
- We’ll fill our water bottles in Nairobi and bring along extra bottles of water from MOHI’s Hope Springs for the ride to Tanzania and for the first day of the hike. Bottled water is also available at the Springlands Hotel for an additional cost. Your guides will boil water for you along the route.
- To prevent water from freezing on summit day, keep your water source inside your jacket. For Camelbacks, blow air back into the bladder after each sip and drink often.
- Gatorade or other drink mix helps with taste and minerals
- Sun hat with brim
- Ski or trekking poles
- Extra batteries (for headlamp/flashlight and camera as cold weather shortens their life)
- Electricity adapter
- Plastic bags
- Energy bars, hard candy, snacks, and comfort foods
- Plastic bags and zip-lock bags for waterproofing
- Toilet paper (and baggie to carry used paper while on trail)
- Small washcloth, small towel (The porters provide a small basin of hot water each morning and some evenings to wash with.)
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Handi-wipes (moist towelettes for cleaning)
- Hand sanitizer
- 2-3 handkerchiefs and/or Kleenex
- Sunscreen (You’ll want to use it even if looks cloudy or like you don’t need it!)
- Glasses, contacts, solution (Take contacts out each night to prevent blurred vision.)
- Yellow fever certificate
- Medical insurance
- Vaccination records
- Make copies of passport, airline tickets/schedule, and travelers’ checks numbers.
- Leave a copy with someone at home and put a copy in a separate place in your luggage. It’s also a good idea to take a picture of your passport with your phone.
- Medicines/prescriptions (including malaria and high-altitude meds)
- Camera, film, tripod
- Notebook, journal, pencil, and pen
- Umbrella, particularly useful in the rainy season; can be rented from Zara for about $5.
- Hand and foot warmers (chemical activated)
- Insect repellant with DEET
- Tennis shoes or sandals for lounging in the evening
- Pocket knife
- Sewing kit
- Playing cards, games, books, Frisbee, football
- Salt, pepper, and spices for bland food
- Alarm clock
Here’s a short, instructional video on how to pack and dress for Kilimanjaro: (https://youtu.be/VCoiCFBceAU)