October 9 – A Once in a Lifetime Experience

Cami & Brittany reach the summit of Kilimanjaro.

Hi, this is Cami and it's Saturday October 9th in the evening and I’m calling from Arusha.  I thought I would give a little more detail about our ascent to Uruhu peak.  We rose from our tents Thursday night around 11:30pm and our camp was buzzing around with preparations.  We were thrilled to see clear skies, the night before the climbers had snow and clouds and many did not make it to the peak.  Those that did had no views.

Enjoying lunch on the trailHodson made some food for us before leaving which was great.  We started hiking around 1:15am .  It took us about 4 hours to reach Stella point which is a 3,300 ft (1005m) ascent of tiny switchbacks through volcanic scree.  Brittany and I burst into tears when we reached that point; it was a very difficult climb due to the altitude.

It took us another hour and 20 minutes to reach Uhuru peak which is 19,340 ft (5894m) which was a gradual ascent around the crater rim to reach the peak.  We had amazing views of Kibo glacier to our left and Kibo crater to our right, we couldn’t have asked for better weather.

High-camp on KiliAfter pictures and hugs we began our descent soon after 7am , it took us about 2 hours to make it back to high camp.  We basically skied down the scree with our trekking poles.  We then descended to our Millennium camp for a total descent of 6,600 ft (2011m) on Friday.  Today we descended 6,900 ft (2103m) through the moorland and rainforest and our African team sang us the Kilimanjaro song and we tried to dance.  It was very difficult to say goodbye to those who have cared so much for us.

We are now clean in our hotel in Arusha and we begin our safari tomorrow.  For those who wonder Brittany is the 19 year old daughter of one of my dearest friends that I grew up with and I have been planning this trip for a year and Brittany ’s mom didn’t want me to be alone.  She thought it would be a once in life time experience for Brittany and it has definitely been that for both of us we are having a great time and we’ll let you know about our safari as we go.

Cami & Brittany's climbing team