NCA 13 – Kilimanjaro Shira Route 8 Days Climbing

Northern Circuit Adventure TanzaniaShira Route: The Shira route approaches Kilimanjaro through forest and moorland from the west, crossing the caldera of Shira volcano and exploring the rock formations of the plateau, before traversing beneath the southern icefields of Kibo. We make our final ascent by the Barafu route. The eight-day itinerary gives the maximum possible acclimatization and also gives us plenty of time to enjoy the magnificent scenery. The views of Kibo in the sharp light of morning and early evening are often stunning and the Lent Hills, close to the western flank of the summit cone, is very rarely visited. Shira is a little-used approach route with time to enjoy this unspoiled wilderness, before the convergence with other routes in the later stages of the trip. 

Shira 1

Day 1: Shira One Campsite:
After breakfast, we take a ride to Londorossi National Park Gate in order to complete the necessary registration formalities before we drive a short distance to Shira Gate (9,200 ft) where we begin our trek. We continue climbing steadily on foot through shrub forests and stands of giant heather to reach the rim of the Shira Plateau (11,000 ft). The views across the surrounding plains open up as we approach our first camp, Shira one Camp (11,600 ft). It takes about 4–5 hours to walk.


Day 2: Shira Two Campsite:
Today is an easy day to help acclimatize and to explore the grassy moorland and volcanic rock formations of the plateau. We walk to the summit of Shira Cathedral (12,300 ft), a huge buttress of rock surrounded by steep spires and pinnacles. There is a tangible sense of wilderness here, especially when the afternoon mists roll in. From our camp near Shira Hut (12,600 ft), we take in the unforgettable views of Mount Meru as she floats among the clouds. It takes about 4–5 hours to walk.

Moir Hut

Day 3: Moir Hut:
The morning walking is a steady climb away from the moorland of the Shira Plateau to reach the broad upland desert beneath the Lent Hills with expansive views in all directions. After having lunch in our camp close to Moir Hut (13,800 ft), there is an option of a more strenuous afternoon walk to reach the summit of the Lent Hills (15,400 ft). We can explore the area beneath the Northern Ice fields, a remote place rarely visited by tourists with unusual views of Kibo Peak. Few visitors get to this remote corner of Mount Kilimanjaro. It takes about 5–6 hours to walk.

Day 4: Lava Tower:
Let us enjoy a morning of gentle ascent and panoramic views, walking on lava ridges beneath the glaciers of the Western Breach. After lunch at our campsite based in Lava Tower (14,900 ft), there is a steep but spectacular afternoon walking on the rocky lower slopes of the Western Breach on Mount Kilimanjaro. This afternoon excursion is highly recommended especially for acclimatization purposes and for the superb views of hanging glaciers on both sides of the Breach. It takes about 5–6 hours to walk.

Baranco hut

Day 5: Barranco Hut:
A steep descent into the bottom of Barranco Valley (12,800 ft) leads us to the famed Barranco Wall and its steep climbing. At the top, the undulating trail crosses the flanks of Kibo Peak with superb vistas of the Southern Ice fields. The terrain is volcanic scree with pockets of vegetation in sheltered hollows and a powerful sense of the mountain wilderness. Our next campsite will be Karanga Campsite (13,100 ft), the last water point on the approach to Mount Kilimanjaro Summit. It takes about 5–7 hours to walk.

Day 6: Barafu Hut:
After morning breakfast, we all follow an easy path on compacted scree with wide views that gains altitude unrelentingly to reach Barafu Hut (14,800 ft) for lunch. There is a short acclimatization hike to the plateau at the bottom of the southeast valley (15,700 ft). The remainder of the day is spent resting in preparation for the early morning final ascent. It takes about 4–5 hours to walk.

Uhuru Peak Day 7: Uhuru Peak (Summit) – Mweka Camp:
We will start our ascent by torchlight at about 1:00 am so that we can be up on the crater rim by sunrise. The steep climb over loose volcanic scree has some well-graded Zig–Zags and a slow but steady pace will take us to Stella Point (18,800 ft), in about five or six hours. We will rest there for a short time to enjoy the sunrise over Mawenzi Peak. Those who are still feeling strong can make the two-hour round trip from here along the crater rim to Uhuru Peak (19,345 ft) passing close to the spectacular glaciers and ice cliffs that still occupy most of the summit area. The descent to Barafu Hut is surprisingly fast and after some refreshments, we continue to descend to reach our final camp, Mweka Camp (12,500 ft). It takes about 11–15 hours to walk.

Day 8: Mweka Gate – Moshi/Arusha Town:
After breakfast, proceed with a sustained descent on a well-constructed path that takes us through a lovely tropical forest alive with birdsong and boasting lush undergrowth with considerable botanical interest. Our route winds down to Mweka National Park Gate (5,400 ft) and on through coffee and banana farms to Mweka Village where you will meet your driver and he will drive to Moshi or Arusha town and drop you off at your Lodge/Hotel.

Price Includes:
All Park entry fees
Rescue fees/Hut fees
Camping fees
Pick up from the Airport
Guide/assistant guide/Porters
Overnight at the Huts/camps per the tour plan
Meals as per the above itinerary prepared by our chef
Park commission fees
Transport to and from the gate
1-night free Hotel accommodation on your arrival in Moshi/Arusha with bed & breakfast
Tent/Sleeping mats/Sleeping bags/chairs & table.

Price not includes:
International flights
Domestic flight
Fees for passports, visas, immunizations, and insurance
Tips for staff such as guides/Chefs & porters.
Expenses of personal nature (like souvenirs)
Climbing gears (We have for rent)

“Due to COVID-19 restrictions on travel around the world, it is free to postpone your travel up to 1 year after the original travel date”


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