How I Got Started

Why Machame?

Slow altitude gains, acclimatisation route of choice

One day longer on trek, climbing a natural, rather than man made path, the Machame Route is a more demanding but much quieter and scenic route up the mountain. Overnights are spent camping in tents which are carried and pitched by the accompanying porters. Highlights of this route are the Shira Plateau, Barranco wall and the Karanga Valley reaching the summit via Stella Point.

Because this route is more taxing it is recommended that trekkers should be physically fit and with the additional day on trek to assist with acclimatization there is a good chance of reaching the summit. 

Itinerary code: STT K2 or STT K2+1
Level: Intermediate 
Nights: Camping in a tent
Duration: 8 Days / 7 Nights (6 Days on trek) / 9 Days/ 8 Nights (7 Days on trek)

Day 2 - Machame Gate to Machame Camp

Time (average): 5-7 hours
Altitude gained:1200 metres (3940 feet)
Terrain:rough path with many tree roots; very slippery and muddy when we
Summary:a straightforward first day, unless wet underfoot, on a path enclosed by rainforest

Day 3 - Machame Camp to Shira Camp

Time (average):5-7 hours

Altitude gained: 850 metres (2790 feet)

Terrain: path mostly good with only one real scramble - the rocky ridge leading to Shira plateau

Summary:steady climb leads to splendid campsite on Shira plateau

Day 4 - Shira Camp to Barranco Camp

Time (average):5-6 hours

Altitude gained: rising 680 metres (2230 feet) above Shira before steep descent to camp (100 metres/ 330 feet net gain)

Terrain:fairly rough path, some scree, some steep sections

Summary:through rocky semi-desert with dramatic views of the Lava Tower and Breach Wall

Day 5 - Barranco Camp to Barafu Camp

Time (average):7-8 hours

Altitude gained: rises 380 metres (1250 feet) over the Barranco Wall, then falls and rises to Barafu (650 m/ 2130 ft net gain)

Terrain:after a steep, exposed climb up the Barranco Wall (some scrambling), gradients ease

Summary:a taxing day, to be followed by an even tougher night, but with good views.

Day 6a - Barafu Camp to Summit

Time (average): 6-10 hours (including rest/lunch stop)

Altitude lost: 1195/1295 metres (3920/4250 feet) to Stella Point/ Uhuru peak

Terrain: a steep, rough ascent on lose scree and rocks to the crater rim; more gradual thereafter

Summary:the most strenuous stage of a strenuous route, normally attempted between midnight and dawn

Day 6b - Summit to Mweka Camp

Time (average):7-8 hours

Altitude lost: 2795 metres (9170 feet)

Terrain: gradual descent around crater rim, then steep, lose scree followed by rough path

Summary:many people find the descent hard on the knees and feet: don't underestimate this stage

Day 7- Mweka Camp to Moshi

Time (average):3-4 hours

Altitude lost: 2550 metres (8370 feet)

Terrain:mainly through the forest

Summary:Short descent to Mweka gate

Extra day for Acclimatization

Day 5 Karanga Camp(4200m) - Acclimatization day

After breakfast, you leave Barranco and continue on a steep ridge passing the Barranco Wall, to the Karanga Valley Campsite. This additional day will further assist the process of Acclimatisation.