LEMOSHO ROUTE

Enjoy fewer crowds and panoramic vistas! 

HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO CLIMB THE LEMOSHO ROUTE?

The Lemosho Route is considered one of the easier routes on Kilimanjaro, as its longer itinerary allows for better acclimatization.

 

It joins the Machame Route on day three.

Climbers are sometimes nervous about how they will handle the Great Barranco Wall, but this is just a short scramble and you will be helped by your guide every step of the way. 

 

The 8 day Lemosho climb has one of the highest success rates. Rather than trying to squeeze the climb into 7 days, the extra day allows for a shorter pre-summit day, meaning that you arrive at base camp by lunch time, fuel up with food, and tuck up in your tent to rest for what will be a tough summit ascent starting at midnight.

Experienced mountaineers may opt for the more difficult 7 day ascent along the Lemosho Route.

There are no parts on the route that require any technical climbing skills. Thousands of climbers safely travel this route each year, let alone the Kilimanjaro porters carrying heavy loads.

The total Lemosho Route distance is approximately 70 kilometers from gate to gate.

Altitude Profile Lemosho Route.jpg
Kili Climate Zones (1).jpg
Blue Monkey Mt. Kilimanjaro
Blue Monkey Mt. Kilimanjaro

Wildlife on the Lemosho Route, a Blue Monkey

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Porters preparing for Kilimanjaro
Porters preparing for Kilimanjaro

Porters securing the luggage including items needed for a Lemosho Route climb.

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Glaciers on top of Mt. Kilimanjaro
Glaciers on top of Mt. Kilimanjaro

Glaciers on top of Kilimanjaro during the final push to Uhuru Peak

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Blue Monkey Mt. Kilimanjaro
Blue Monkey Mt. Kilimanjaro

Wildlife on the Lemosho Route, a Blue Monkey

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YOUR CLIMB YOUR CHOICE

We offer customized Kilimanjaro climbs which include a choice of climb only, airport pick up-drop off, one night of backpackers, budget, mid-range and 4-star accomodations before and after the climb, and many more personal preferences.

Climbers experiencing a long flight and major time change also have the option of adding extra nights in the hotel to allow their bodies to recuperate and adjust.

DETAILED ITINERARY:

LEMOSHO ROUTE

Lemosho Route Map.jpg

8 Day Lemosho Route

DAY 1 - LONDOROSSI GATE TO MTI MKUBWA CAMP

After breakfast, drive to Londorossi Gate, where you will meet your porters and complete registration formalities at the Ranger’s Office. The hike will start in the rainforest along a lovely trail until reaching Mti Mkubwa (which means big tree in Swahili) Camp (2895m), where we will spend the night.

  • Trekking distance: 6 kilometers

  • Trek time: 3 to 4 hours

  • Environment: Montane Forest

  • Elevation: From 2360 meters to 2895 meters

 

DAY 2 - MTI MKUBWA CAMP TO SHIRA ONE CAMP

We soon leave the forest behind and enter the moorland zone. The trail climbs steadily with wide views reaching the rim of the Shira Plateau. With ever decreasing vegetation along the way, Shira One Camp (3600m), your camp for the night is within sight. There is a tangible sense of wilderness, especially if afternoon mists move in.

  • Trekking distance: 9 kilometers

  • Trek time: 6 to 7 hours

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: From 2895 meters to 3600 meters

 
DAY 3 - SHIRA ONE CAMP TO SHIRA TWO CAMP

This is a fairly easy day to help acclimatize and explore the volcanic rock formations of the Shira Plateau. Shira was once Kilimanjaro's third and lowest volcanic peak, but has eroded to a high plateau since it last erupted eons ago. With the ever decreasing vegetation along the way, Shira Two Camp (3900m), with stunning views of Mt. Meru and the glaciers of Kibo comes into view.

  • Trekking distance: 8 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 5 hours

  • Environment: Moorland

  • Elevation: From 3600 meters to 3900 meters

 
DAY 4 - SHIRA TWO TO BARRANCO VALLEY CAMP, VIA LAVA TOWER 

After waking up on the beautiful Shira Plateau, the hike starts east toward Kibo and gradually ascends to Lava Tower, the highest point of the day. After lunch at Lava Tower, we continue on the trail which slowly descents toward Barranco Valley Camp (3950m). “Climb high but sleep lower” is the best way to acclimatize to high altitude. 

  • Highest point: 4600 meters (at Lava Tower)

  • Trekking distance: 12 kilometers

  • Trek time: 6 to 7 hours

  • Environment: Semi-desert

  • Elevation: From 3900 meters to 3950 meters

 
DAY 5 - BARRANCO CAMP TO KARANGA VALLEY CAMP

Today is a shorter day and starts with a steep climb, requiring an occasional hand scramble up the Barranco Wall. The ground changes into scree with only the hardiest of vegetation surviving at this altitude. Again, we will descend for the night and sleep lower in the Karanga Valley Camp (3930m).

  • Highest point: 4200 meters (top of the Barranco Wall)

  • Trekking distance: 7 kilometers

  • Trek time: About 4 hours

  • Environment: Alpine desert

  • Elevation: From 3950 meters to 3930 meters

 
DAY 6 - KARANGA VALLEY CAMP TO BARAFU HUT

This is another short day. Leaving Karanga Valley Camp the trail continues to gain altitude until reaching Barafu Hut, which marks the end of the Southern Circuit, and from where the final ascent will start in the early morning hours.

  • Trekking distance: 6 kilometers

  • Trek time: Around 3 hours

  • Environment: Alpine desert

  • Elevation: From 3930 meters to 4600 meters

 
DAY 7 - BARAFU HUT TO SUMMIT UHURU PEAK, DESCENT TO MWEKA CAMP

Today will be the most difficult day, both mentally and physically. The final ascent will start about 0100 in the morning. A slow and steady climb of 5-6 hours, the path zigzagging across the volcanic scree of the crater rim, leads to Stella Point (5752m) just in time for sunrise. From here a one hour climb, passing the stunning glaciers and ice cliffs alongside the crater rim, will lead to the summit, named Uhuru Peak (5895m). From Uhuru Peak, descending back to Barafu Camp is much shorter. After refreshing briefly at Barafu, the trail continues steadily downward, to Mweka Camp (3100m) the final campsite on the mountain before returning to Moshi the following day.

  • Highest point: 5895 meters (Uhuru Peak)

  • Trekking distance: 20 kilometers (7 kilometers ascent / 13 kilometers descent)

  • Trek time: 12 to 15 hours (6 to 8 hours ascent / 6 to 7 hours descent)

  • Environment: Alpine desert/Volcanic scree/Ice-capped summit

  • Elevation: From 4600 meters to 3100 meters

DAY 8 - DESCENT FROM MWEKA CAMP TO MWEKA GATE

After a good night’s rest, a continued descent will lead back into the lovely rain forest on the lower slopes of the Mountain, with the route winding down toward Mweka Gate (1800m). From there a short drive past coffee plantations and banana farms will take us back to Moshi.

  • Trekking distance: 8 kilometers

  • Trek time: 3 to 4 hours

  • Environment: Montane forest

  • Elevation: From 3100 meters to 1800 meters