6 Days Umbwe Route via Barafu Camp

The Umbwe Route is steeper and shorter than the Machame Route. Once at the Barranco Hut you continue on with the other Machame hikers. The descent is down the Mweka trail.

Since it is a very short and direct route, it is not recommended for people with little altitude experience.

Day 1: Umbwe Gate, Hike to Umbwe Cave Camp

  • Elevation: 1660m/5450ft to 2850m/9350ft
  • Distance: 11km/7mi
  • Hiking Time: 5-6 hours
  • Habitat: Montane Forest
  • Meals: LD
  • Budget Lodging: Umbwe Cave Camp

Drive from Moshi to the Umbwe Gate (about 1 hour). Commence the climb through the rain forest with packed lunch on route.

Day 2: Umbwe Cave Camp to Barranco Camp

  • Elevation: 2850m/9350ft to 4000m/13,000ft
  • Distance: 6km/4mi
  • Walking Time: 4-5 hours
  • Habitat: Semi-desert
  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Barranco Camp

After breakfast, we leave the glades of the forest and follow an ascending path on the open moorland to Barranco Camp.

Day 3: Hike Barranco Camp to Karanga Camp

  • Elevation: 4000m/13,000ft to 4050m/13,250ft
  • Distance: 5km/3mi
  • Hiking Time: 34 hours
  • Habitat: Alpine Desert
  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Karanga Camp

After breakfast, we leave Barranco and continue on a steep ridge up the Barranco Wall to the Karanga Valley and the junction which connects with the Mweka Trail.

Day 4: Hike Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp

  • Elevation: 4050m/13,250ft to 4700m/15,350ft
  • Distance: 4km/2mi
  • Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
  • Habitat: Alpine Desert
  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Barafu Camp

We continue up to the Barafu Camp. You have completed the South Circuit, which offers views of the summit from many different angles. Here we make camp, rest, enjoy dinner, and prepare for the summit day.

Day 5: Hike Barafu Camp to Summit, down to Mweka Camp

  • Elevation: 4700m/15,350ft to 5895m/19,340ft
  • Down to 3090m/10,150ft
  • Distance: 5km/3mi up / 13km/8mi down
  • Hiking Time: 5-7 hours up / 5-6 hours down
  • Habitat: Stone scree and ice-capped summit
  • Meals: BLD
  • Budget Lodging: Mweka Camp

Very early in the morning (midnight to 2 am), we continue our way to the summit between the Rebmann and Ratzel glaciers. You head in a northwesterly direction and ascend through heavy scree towards Stella Point on the crater rim. This is the most mentally and physically challenging portion of the trek. At Stella Point you will stop for a short rest and will be rewarded with the most magnificent sunrise you are ever likely to see. Faster hikers may view the sunrise from the summit.

From Stella Point, you may encounter snow all the way on your 1-hour ascent to the summit. Once at Uhuru Peak you have reached the highest point on Mount Kilimanjaro and the continent of Africa!

From the summit we begin our descent by continuing straight down to the Mweka Camp, stopping at Barafu for lunch. You may want gaiters and trekking poles for the loose gravel going down. We arrive at Mweka Camp and enjoy our last evening on the mountain.

Day 6: Hike Mweka Camp to Mweka Gate, drive to Arusha or Moshi

  • Elevation: 3090m/10,150ft to 1680m/5500ft
  • Distance: 10km/6mi
  • Hiking Time: 3-4 hours
  • Habitat: Forest
  • Meals: B

After breakfast we continue the descent down to the Mweka Park Gate to receive your summit certificates. At lower elevations, it can be wet and muddy. Gaiters and trekking poles will help. Shorts and t-shirts will probably be plenty to wear (keep rain gear and warmer clothing handy).

Beyond Africa Safaris vehicle will meet you at Mweka gate to drive you back to your hotel

Contact us if you need more details regarding this itinerary.
We will get back to you as soon as possible.
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