The Machame route on Kilimanjaro is a seven day camping route which allows for excellent acclimatisation and particularly diverse scenery. It has been called the Whiskey route in the past and nowadays about 35% of all climbers on the mountain use it.
In a matter of days you will climb Kilimanjaro from the equator up to an Arctic zone, moving through grasslands, tropical rainforest, alpine meadows, moorlands and high desert to snow and ice. Each day on this route presents quite a distinct ecosystem to experience, which is one reason it is so popular. The other reason is that the seven day programme begins on the south west side of the mountain and traverses around to the south east side, enabling you to sleep at the same altitude for three consecutive nights which significantly aids altitude acclimatisation. This means that our summit success rate on this route is quite high at around 85%.
We only run seven day trips on Kilimanjaro which is the recommended minimum number of days by all the international mountain associations such as the UIAA (International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation), plus our own assessment of mountain safety. The Machame route could be done in six days by missing out Karanga Valley and going straight to Barafu, but experience tells us that this leads to increased sickness and a much lower summit success rate.
From the start you will be speaking with experienced people who have climbed Kilimanjaro many times, including Gavin Bate who has been leading groups on the mountain regularly since 1994 and is always on hand for advice. We can give you an honest appraisal of the climb, about training for the mountain and what clothing and equipment you will need to buy or rent.