Mount Kilimanjaro

Photos from the Top of the Highest Peak in Africa

Mount Kilimanjaro, often referred to as the Roof of Africa, is the highest summit point on the African Continent and part of the Seven Summits.

The Seven Summits refer to each of the highest peaks on each continent which make up the seven. The seven summits challenge is comprised of:

  • Kilimanjaro in Africa,
  • Vinson Massif in Antartica,
  • Aconcagua in South America,
  • Denali in North America,
  • Mont Blanc or disputed Elbrus in Europe,
  • Carstensz Pyramid (Puncak Jaya) or the disputed Kosciuszko in Oceania,
  • Everest in Asia

Formed as a result of volcanic activity, it lays dormant close to the southern border of Kenya and within the northern end of Tanzania near the small township of Moshi.

The mountain is part of Mount Kilimanjaro National Park and thus, is protected land. There is wildlife within the park borders.

The mountain summit is a full 5,895m (16,001ft) above sea level and as such it is also the tallest free standing mountain in the world due to the sheer rise in altitude of 4,877m from its base close to Moshi township to its summit, Uhuru Peak.

It has 3 volcano cones sitting atop, Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira however it is now an extinct volcano.

There is growing global concern about the mountain due to the receding glaciers. The mountain hasnt had fresh snowfall and ice formation in a number of years. The scientists speculate that within the next 30 years from today, there will be no snow or ice left on the mountain.

The first recorded ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro was in 1889 by German Hans Meyer and Austrian Ludwig Purtscheller.

There are seven routes that can be used to ascend the mountain:

  • The Machame Route – which is known as the most scenic, albeit steeper route
  • The Rongai Route – which is the easiest however least scenic route of all camping routes
  • The Marangu Route – which is also known as the “Coca Cola” route since it has hut accommodation and is the most popular with climbers thus, tending to be the busiest route
  • The Lemosho Route
  • The Mweka Route
  • The Shira Route
  • The Umbwe Route

I have been fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of the majestic glaciers that sit alongside the summit ridge and will forever have those etched in my mind.