Kilimanjaro Rongai 5p
is the best non-technical five night private trek on the Rongai Trail
, which starts its ascent from the western side of Mount Kilimanjaro
in the northeast region of Tanzania
Night 1 : Moorland
Night 2 : Kikelewa Cave
Night 3 : Mawenzi Tarn
Night 4 : Kibo Hut
Night 5 : Horombo Hut
The trail starts out on the north-east of the mountain, an area which experiences a good deal less rainfall, which makes it particularly interesting during shoulder season periods.
The first three days are spend gradually rising through moorland to the scenic camp at Mawenzi Tarn. From there the trail crosses open landscapes of The Saddle to summit from Kibo Hut and then descent the Marangu Trail.
The elevation at Mawenzi Tarn is good for altitude acclimatisation, which leads to a summit success rate of 88%, the best of any of the shorter five and six night routes.
We used to find that the summit success rate on this trek was significantly lower than on the longer routes, but this differential has been significantly reduced since the introduction of ALTOX Personal Oxygen Systems. It seems that trekkers on this route benefit more from the use of these systems, especially on that more challenging summit approach.
We can operate this trek for private groups of any size, departing for the mountain on any day, subject to availability, but recommend starting out Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday to avoid coinciding with the weekend traffic.
We tend to recommend it mostly to trekkers who are less than totally confident about their fitness and ability to cope with sleeping out on the mountain. For these people the advantages gained by staying out longer on the mountain in terms of altitude acclimatisation become offset by the accumulating fatigue. We have found over the years that this five night version delivers the best summit success rate for this group.
The trail is also suitable for those who cannot deploy either the time or money towards doing a longer route.
The main downside is that the summit approach from Kibo is slightly more difficult than that from Barafu and that you are likely to encounter a significant amount of traffic, especially on the last couple of nights when the route is shared with the Marangu Trail.
Some people say that the Rongai Route is less scenic than the longer routes, although you could easily argue that it is simply different.Trek basicsWho can trekDegree of difficultyAltitude sicknessRoute selectionTrip planningTrek specificationsPrice and availabilityPreparation before departurePre-trek briefingPost-trek feedbackMountain factfile