Machame Route is one of the popular route in Mountain Kilimanjaro
According to statistics from Kilimanjaro National Park approximately 50% of trekkers use Machame Route to ascend Kilimanjaro. The route is very scenic, providing hikers with incredible views and varying landscapes
The first day trekking begins at Machame Gate (1,640 meters). Typically you will drive from the town of Moshi or Arusha to the gates, which takes approximately an hour for the former and two hours for the latter
On the way you will get to see subsitence farming and the town of Machame.
At the Gates you will meet your trekking crew, your guide, porters and cook. There will be a flurry of activity as porters assemble gear for the trek; weighing packs to ensure they don’t exceed 20kg
On day two you will rise early, pack your gear gear and prepare for the trek from Machame Camp to Shira Camp 2 (3850 meters). The trek is relatively steep as you enter the low alpine zone which is characterised by moorlands and grasslands
Shira Camp 2 sits on a plateau which provides you with the first views of Kibo in the North-West and Mount Meru in the East. Day two takes approximately 4-6hrs and covers a distance of 5km / 3miles.
Day three is a long and tough trek East off the Shira Plateau through the ‘Garden of the Senecios’, up to Lava Tower and the Shark’s Tooth rock formation at 4,600 m and then back down via the southern Circuit (see map above) to the Barranco Camp (3,900 m).
The route is approximately 11km / 7 miles in length and takes 5-7 7hrs to complete.
Although you end the day at a very similar elevation to when you started from Shira Camp, it is arguably one of the most important days on your trek as it gives you a chance to climb high and sleep low which is important for proper acclimatisation
Day four on the Machame Route bigins with a steep traverse up the Barranco Wall; a 257 meter rock face that requires basic scrambling skills to the top of the Karanga Valley. The path then follows a series of inclines and declines to karanga Camp (3,960 meters)
Trekkers on the severn day route spend the night at Karanga Camp before continuing on to Barafu on day 5. This additional day is beneficial in terms of acclimatisation.
If you are on a six day trek you will stop for lunch at Karanga Camp and then continue on along the Southern Circuit until it joins the Mweka Trail up to Barafu Camp (4,680 meters).
Day five is a short and easy day. The trail starts at Karanga Camp and joins the Mweka trail up base camp, Barafu at 4,680m.
We recommend you use the easy hiking to relax and prepare for the summit push
Day Six is summit night (and day)!
You will be awoken around 23:30 with hot tea and biscuits. Hopefully you have managed to get a few hours’ sleep; don’t worry if you haven’t as most people struggle to sleep before summit night. Do however make sure that all your kit, including waem clothes, headlamp, insulated water reserves and snacks are ready for a sharp departure at 24:00. The trek up Kibo is steep and slow. The trick is to keep your momentum moving forward, one step at a time. it takes about 6-8 hrs to reach the top of hte crater rim where you will see the sign for stella point (5,739 meters)
Day seven is the final day of trekking on the Machame Route. By now you will be exhausted and probably only thinking about a hot shower. The trek is a pleasant one through the lower rain-forested slopes and down to Mweka Gate (1.640 meters)
Although you cover 9km/ 5.5miles, the trek only takes 3-4 hours. Assuming you successfully reach stella Point or Uhuru Peak you will be presented with official certificates a green certificate for the former and a gold certicate for the latter.
It is customary to tip your trekking crew before being tranposted back to your hotel in Moshi or Arusha.