You will be woken around midnight with a hot drink. Finish putting on all your warm clothing and get ready to attempt the summit. The rim of the crater at Gillman’s Point (18,635 feet), recognized as the top, is reached after a stiff climb up a very steep, loose scree slope. The first part of the ascent to the Hans Meyer cave is indirect, going around large rock outcrops. It is important to pace yourself to be ready for the steep scree slope that you have to climb in a zigzag fashion. Try to maintain a very slow but steady pace, trudging up rhythmically through the starlight. On average, this takes 6 hours from Kibo to Gillman’s Point, where you will hopefully see a fiery sunrise behind Mawenzi. Since Gillman’s Point is recognized as the top, you will receive a certificate for your achievement from the Park authorities. After a rest, if you are able, if the weather and time permit, and if your guide says it is possible, you can then continue for 2 hours along the crater rim to reach Uhuru Peak, at 19,340 feet, Uhuru is the highest point of Mount Kilimanjaro. If you reach Uhuru, you will get a gold certificate and the satisfaction of reaching the “Roof of Africa”. The descent is in some ways as difficult as the ascent and you will be tired as your make your way down the steep slope. Back at Kibo Hut, you will have a rest and something to eat. Then, take off much of your warm clothing and continue on to Horombo Hut for the night.
- Elevation: 19,340 feet! 6 hours descent to Horombo Hut
- Hiking time: 8 hours to Uhuru
Overnight Horombo Hut – Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner