We spend a lot of time talking to our guests about Kilimanjaro, and what it’s like to climb “the Monix way”. So we thought we should write a blog to explain how it looks and feels, and how it differs from a lot of the other offerings. The blog is more about life on the mountain, than a detailed account of the route itself.
It’s fair to say that Kilimanjaro is big business for Tanzania, and for the hundreds of operators (and thousands of resellers) who promote the mountain. The peak has to withstand the tremendous strain put on it by some 40,000 trekkers every year, all plodding towards it’s conical summit.
Almost everyone will know somebody who’s climbed Kili, and we’ve heard stories ranging from “it’s a piece of cake” to the more frequent “hardest thing I’ve done in my life”, and everything in between. As someone who’s climbed Everest, I can honestly say that the summit day on Kili is genuinely tough, and asks a lot of even the fittest of trekkers. That said, with the right mix of acclimatisation, quality rest, basic fitness, and a pinch of good luck, there is nothing that makes the peak unattainable.
There will be the purists who’ll ask if they can carry their own bag, or do it “solo” (the answer’s no, Park regulations). They might even suggest doing it with so much comfort is “cheating”. But the fact is, Kilimanjaro is a once in a lifetime trip for many people, so it should be special. It should also be enjoyable, and there is very little to be proud of by suffering for a week in a leaky tent, with an empty stomach, and an unhappy crew who aren’t properly paid or tipped. So we strive to make the whole experience comfortable, memorable and successful.
So, how do our trips shape up? And how do we achieve a consistent 100% summit success rate?
It usually starts at our client’s office, or kitchen, or a favourite pub, where we give the trip overview and what it’ll take to get the team to the mountain and back again. Information is broad stroke, and we put any immediate concerns at ease. Between the initial meeting and stepping on to the plane to Africa, we are in regular contact with the team, answering questions about kit, sending them links on which socks we recommend, and making sure their favourite drinks will be waiting for them when they step off the mountain. Then the adventure begins.