[email protected]   |    +27 21 852 6911

Written by: AK on 9 May 2018

A photographic trip along Machame Route

Machame Photographs

Machame Route is one of the most scenic routes to the Roof of Africa. We’ll take you from the gate to the top and back on our photographic journey along the Machame Route.

Day 1: Machame Gate (1,790 m) – Machame Camp (3,010 m)

Driving towards Machame gate, your hiking boots laced up and your feelings somewhere between tired, nervous and giddy with excitement, majesty itself may give you the honour and allow you a sneak peek on what will be the constant point of fixture for the next five days.

You start walking, and it finally dawns upon you: you won’t stop for another six days. One foot in front of the other at an initially agonisingly slow pace which you will learn to appreciate after only a few hours.

The sun sets at Machame Camp at 3010 metres above sea level.

The sounds of cutlery chinking, crew members chatting in Swahili, tent zippers being undone; the smell of cucumber soup, potatoes and stew wafting through camp – you take a moment for yourself and let sink in where you are: on the way to the highest peak on the African continent.

You can see Mount Meru sitting calmingly in the distance, before the sun hides behind Kilimanjaro’s “little brother”.

Day 2: Machame Camp (3,010 m) – New Shira Camp (3,845 m)

Steep and steeper up you go, being rewarded with stunning views opening up around you.

Your gaze is forward, your goal always in mind and in view – higher and higher. Take a second, turn around and you’ll be surprised by yet another stunning view.

Photo: Arno Snellenberg

Arriving at New Shira Camp, another step – or rather: another few thousand steps – closer to your goal. But by now you know: it’s not only about getting to the top, it’s about enjoying each step of the way.

Day 3: New Shira Camp (3,845 m) – Lava Tower (4,640 m) – Barranco Camp (3,960 m)

Photo: Arno Snellenberg

“If you’re feeling fine when you reach Lava Tower, you’ll feel fine at base camp, which is a good indicator for making it to the top”, your guides will tell you about today’s leg. No pressure.

Arriving at camp each afternoon is a great achievement in itself. In the often hectic and complex world that we live in, setting one foot in front of the other is a refreshingly straight-forward task you can focus all your energy on.

Barranco Camp is probably the most beautiful camp on the mountain. The majestic Kibo on the one side and the town of Moshi on Kili’s foot slopes on the other.

Day 4: Barranco Camp (3,960 m) – Barafu Camp (4,640 m)

Barranco Wall – there is no turning back, just going forward. You realise: you’re all in this together, everyone around you has the same goal. And there are no shortcuts, for no one.

Day 5: Barafu Camp (4,640 m) – Uhuru Peak (5,895 m) – Mweka Camp (3,080 m)

Summit night can be one of the longest nights in your life. After hours and hours of walking in the dark, the rising sun is soothing and energising at the same time.

You may cry for happiness, be still in awe or simply battling not to fall asleep – you made it to the top, you made it to Uhuru Peak, the highest peak in Africa.

A long day still lies ahead of you when you arrive back at base camp. A quick nap and off you go, down the mountain via Mweka Route.

Day 6: Mweka Camp (3,080 m) – Mweka Gate (1,630 m) – Arusha

Photo: Arno Snellenberg

One last time, one last look at the mighty mountain, before the mountain forest embraces you, on your way back to the gate.

We’ll take you to the Roof of Africa and see if you can catch your breath. Let’s go!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *