March 4 – Bon Appetit on Kilimanjaro

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It’s the 4th of March and we’re reporting to you from the Karenga Camp at just under 13,000 feet (3962 meters) on Kilimanjaro. Our acclimatization plan has been to traverse the most beautiful parts of this mountain beneath the glaciers and walking up and down the valleys that were formed by the volcanic action over the years here creating the dry and desolate but also very beautiful landscape.

BAI tents beneath KilimanjaroOur goal is then to acclimatize by hiking high each day up to over 14,000 feet (4267 meters), but always sleeping between 12,000 and 13,000 feet. Our bodies are forced to adapt when they become inactive and we go to bed at night and certainly the vigorous breathing we do as we hike these trails each day add to our acclimatization as well. We will have 3 nights, more than 72 hours at these elevations before finally tomorrow afternoon we get to our high camp where we will go for the summit of Kilimanjaro and that is at 15,700 feet (4785 meters).

I’ve talked about Hodson our cook, one of our staff members and the guys that help him out but I probably haven’t said much about the type of food that Hodson cooks. You may be wondering about that as we are up here in the wilderness of course but we’ve enjoyed his style and his flare for good food.

AngieI remember back in Arusha when Angie and Doug Rea and I were spending some time together in the hotel before the rest of the group arrived. Angie made it clear to me one morning when we were having breakfast, she said ‘I’m an Alberta farm girl and I like eggs’. I suppose at that time she probably thought we were enjoying the last of our fresh eggs at breakfast at the hotel. Actually Hodson and his crew fix some wonderful omelettes and fried eggs for us every morning, along with home fries and great porridge and as always here in the Kilimanjaro region a lot of great fruit and vegetables, sliced fruit for breakfast every morning.

But I have to tell you a good story about lunch today. We had a fairly long walk today; we got in to lunch which is also our camp at here Karenga at about 2:00pm. John loves his fried chicken.And as always is the case when you have been out for a few days, John started reminiscing about home, daydreaming a bit. He was talking about how he would like to have a half a chicken, french fries and coleslaw from Swiss Chalet. We also drifted into our memories of what great food we have sometimes back at home. But we walked into camp a few moments later and walked into the dining tent and you wouldn’t believe it but that’s exactly what Hodson had prepared, chicken, french fries and coleslaw in addition he had some great grilled-cheese sandwiches.

So we are satisfied now after a big lunch, there are clouds rolling about so we can’t see the glaciers above or the forest below right now. We are relaxing getting ready to spend a bit of time organizing our gear before we move to high camp tomorrow.