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Climbing Kilimanjaro

Even Beginners Can Experience the Thrill of Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro

Some dream of reaching the summit of the largest free standing mountain in the world, Mt. Kilimanjaro, affectionately known in the region as Mt. Kili or 'Kili'. It's not the highest mountain, but it's still a challenge. Whatever you call it, it is one of the most spectacular mountains in the world.

It's also a similarly spectacular mountain climb. There are many factors which come into play in whether your climb is a summit success or not. Any mountain climb is a success, but if your success is determined by whether you reach the summit or not, here are a few things you should consider and which might add to the possibility of success.

Factors such as being physically fit and mentally prepared are prime considerations, along with the proper equipment. Even the fittest climbers may not reach the summit, few do. But if you do not prepare yourself, it's for certain you will not.

Preparing for the challenge long before leaving home is essential. Once in Tanzania, it is important to spend a couple of nights if not more, getting acclimated to the weather, the altitude and the region. This, of course will add to your success.

Kilimanjaro is known as the roof of Africa, so it's a pretty cool thing to come back and tell your friends where you went and what you did on your vacation. Conquering this mountain is not for the faint of heart. You can do it however, if you are in shape. Take one of the easier climbs if you have any doubts. Any way to the summit is still a challenge.

An informed decision about the dangers, the challenges and the environment must be considered. A medical exam and clearance is a must. You cannot just fly to Tanzania and think you will climb this mountain. You must climb with an organized group.

There are many reputable companies which specialize and are registered for such climbs, whether to just this region or to mountain climbing in other areas as well. Do your research. Know their experience and how they are rated.

There are several routes to be considered, each with its own particular challenges. Study them and know which is right for you, discuss it with the tour company. Ask questions! Will you want a private climb or a larger group climb?

Private climbs are, of course more expensive. There is always a staff from the company who will accompany you on the climb, whether private or with a group. Among these, you might have a cook, a guide, and a Head guide.

Book well in advance and ask questions about equipment, what do you have, what do you need? Remember, what you have for one mountain climb may not be suitable for another. Check the weather, the good times and the bad times.

Confirm this with your tour operator. Consider the high altitude, have you been confronted with this before? How to overcome it is an extremely delicate matter which can make the difference between life and death.

Kilimanjaro is dangerous, make no mistake about it and it is seriously high. An experienced mountain trek company will give you all of this information. Listen to it. Don't just assume you can do it because you are physically fit. Know the risks. It can't be stressed enough; a hyped up advertising campaign by an ambitious trekking company can put you in a lot of danger, so make sure you check out all that's involved. And remember, being fit is not a sure sign of success.

Be prepared to spend anywhere from $1,000 to 4,000 depending on many factors. Be sure to ask for a detailed list of what is included. Once you decide that this challenge is for you, go for it. You only live once. I hope you reach the summit for it will be life altering. Good Luck!

by Kay L Trotman

Copyright © Kay L Trotman

Kay is an avid safari photographer. She writes many articles for herself and magazine articles. One of her favorite interests is world travel, especially on her custom designed African safaris. Kay can be reached from the Contact form at her photo and gift gallery.

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