Tips for Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro : What is the origin of the word Kilimanjaro? Let’s start by finding out the origin of the word Kilimanjaro. The Swahili people of the coast would call it the mountain of greatness, a derivative of two married words, Kilima-meaning mountain and Jaro-meaning caravans to justify the land of caravans seen everywhere from afar. However, the word Jaro can also mean white or shining, so generally referring to a white or a shining mountain seen from a distance.  It’s also famously described as the roof of Africa, due to its free stand tallest nature at 19341 ft.

What the best time to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro?

Kilimanjaro likes challenges! So, it gives one more than a chance to embark it, there are certainly best times to climb it, even though you can generally embark it for the most part of the year.

Experiences have shown that between January and February, and then June and September you can accomplish your life time dream of summiting the highest mountain in Africa.

This is categorically suggested given the weather dynamics during those times. March, May and November through December coincides with a wet season in contrast to the other months where it’s pretty dry.

Dry season is the best season to summit and statistics have shown a good success rate while summiting during the season for the obvious reasons of being able to do away from muddy terrains, frequent storms, extreme cold temperature as well as wet gears.

How should one prepare for climbing Mount Kilimanjaro?

A top of the mind thinking when approaching a mountain Hike would be physical training for the mountain. While it remains a very smart idea to be physically prepared, preparations for which should start 6-8 months 4-5 times a week before the trek, the mind set preparation remains to be of the utmost importance.

The Mindset preps should start with research to brief one on what to expect and gauge for you the level of challenge that will follow. This will let you build the necessary resilience while at it, during physical preps and the actual summiting.

The physical training should include a strenuous activity, a hike of similar challenge or anything that can build you to embark into a high altitude physically demanding challenge.

How paced should on be!

Well, it’s not a competition! Literally even if you are competing with a friend or are trying to break the world record, the last thing you want to do is have your heart stop in a high altitude and oxygen deprived point because you wanted to be a little rebellious! Kilimanjaro can be quite rebellious and tough too; the best way to be the bigger person in this case is take it slow! This will help you avoid altitude sickness, a worst-case scenario of which you may have to stop your adventure and land into an ED.

What is the best route to climb Mount Kilimanjaro?

Aside from your inner drive and determination to summit successfully, the route you choose can really be a game changer!

Tips for Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro
Tips for Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

There are several routes, from Marangu which is perceived as the quickest, cheapest and most comfortable (a summit for 5 days) to the popular Marangu of up to 7 days and every other route in between like Rongai route that uniquely approaches the route from the North, the Umbwe route , one that is shortest, steepest and hardest which is spared for people who are up for a challenge , trained or people originally born and raised in high altitude and acclimatization is not exactly one of their issues to deal with.

What gear do I need to climb Mount Kilimanjaro?

Brace yourself; gadgets play an important role in making sure that you have a swift hike through the mountain. The last thing you want to have is a blister before even reaching one point of the mountain trekking, because you have a new shoe syndrome!

Wear your chosen shoe before an actual summit so that you are used to it, you don’t want to wear your shoe for the first time on the day of the beginning of the challenge. Some people even suggest that you wear your shoes on the plane, in case your luggage is displaced, the one thing you have is your shoes already acclimatizing with your feet.

Alongside shoes, you also need weather proof clothes, trekking pole, rain jackets, water bottle and a really good friendly porter to be help you with the things you forgot or will be sick of and want to just get rid of without thinking of how essential they are and how soon you will need them.

High calorie snack!

Kilimanjaro is a calorie -requiring activity, calories to be able to trek and calories to maintain core body temperature. The secret is to always have an immediate and constant supply of the energy. A high calorie snack like nuts, proteins bar, dried sweet fruits and beef jerks would work best. Place them strategically accessible so that you don’t struggle during the hike.

How should I wear each day on Kilimanjaro?

The simplest and the most straight forward answer is pack in layers. The simple science of maintaining temperature is about having as many layers as possible as one whole thick layer. The layers trap air between them that acts a pretty insulator. Top layer has to be weather proof so that you don’t get wet in case it pours, as it often may do!

Layers are important also for the lower altitudes that still support mosquito survival.

Rehydration is the key!

This is another thing that you should not lightly consider; a sip of water is a boost towards the summit! Besides, hiking Mount Kilimanjaro is a strenuous activity, you will sweat and you will use water in your body to keep you paced up with the kinetic challenge. You will be surprised how water will immediately help you to push harder! A special Nalgene water bottle with a straw placed strategically for easy and quick access is what is typically advised.

Bring Medications!

You may want to see you doc before embarking into this challenge, Height sickness and altitude sickness are very common, more common to others than not!

It’s therefore important to have those pills for such conditions in the first aid kits just in case. Better safe than sorry, aint it?

Choose your Chant!

A secret to succeeding to the end of any challenge, being it mental, physical or academic is to always have something of strong importance that always gives you the energy and the reason to always keep on! Did you want to do a mountain challenge because you want to raise money? Exactly? Tell yourself you gat raise that cash! Did you want to have a full experience and attain the full pride of doing like your favorite athlete! Well, there you go! Have your mantra and keep telling it to yourself whenever you feel like you want to quit.

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