The Lemosho Route is an unspoilt, remote, little-used and beautiful way up to the Shira Plateau. The trail leads up to the western edge of the Shira Plateau, and the hike across the plateau is said to be one of the most stunningly beautiful hikes in Africa. In previous years, climbers were accompanied on the first day by an armed ranger, as the forests around the Lemosho Glades were rich with buffalo, elephant and other big game animals but they have mostly moved further afield and this precaution is no longer necessary.
This 9-day/8-night route starts on the western side of the mountain, and although it is a long drive to the starting point, your rewards are the possibility of seeing wildlife on the lower slopes and possibly being the only climbers. Nights are spent in high-quality 3-man alpine tents, sleeping a maximum of two people per tent (so there is space for your luggage too).
Day 1: Overnight at Keys Hotel in Moshi.
Day 2: After an early breakfast, a senior guide will do your climb briefing. You will then be driven to the Londorosi Park Gate located on the western side of Kilimanjaro (approximately 3-4 hours) where you will meet the rest of your guides and porters. After registration, drive to the trailhead at Lemosho Glades and start your trek through the rain forest. In approximately 3 to 4 hours you should reach Forest Camp at 2,650m.
Day 3: Start the climb in the morning across the remaining rain forest towards the giant moorland zone. Today is a full day trek, with an altitude gain of around 960 m. Camp at Shira Camp.
Day 4: From Shira, continue east towards Kibo, passing the junction with the circular route, then on towards the Lava Tower. Walking in height from 3,800 metres up to 4,500 metres, and then over-nighting at 3,900 metres. Overnight at Baranco Hut.
Day 5: Continue from Baranco across and up towards Karanga Valley (3,900 metres). There is a steep descent down into Karanga Valley, with a short, steep ascent out of the valley to the campsite on the other side.
Day 6: From Karanga Valley you continue to climb to Barafu, from where you will start your final ascent to the peak.
Day 7: Today you will be heading for the highest point in Africa, Uhuru Peak (5,895 metres). You will be woken around midnight to commence the 6 hour hike to Stella Point (5,750 metres), arriving around sunrise.
Day 8: A 3 to 4 hour descent through the rainforest to Mweka Gate, where a vehicle will meet you. Overnight at Keys Hotel.
Day 9: The tour ends after breakfast.