When my husband-to-be asked what I wanted to do for our honeymoon, I was stumped. Im a expedition editor. Id traveled all over the world. Wed met in the Galapagos. How do you top that? Do you even try?
We both enjoy adventure and the outdoors, and we wanted a once-in-a-lifetime trip that they are able to leave us with a feeling of attainment , not just a tan.
Then one darknes it smacked me: Well climb a mountain! What better lane to start a matrimony than by scaling a high flower together? How symbolic. I delayed and included, What mountain can we clamber without a lot of training or tethers?
There are plenty of mountains where you can do that in the U.S .; Colorado alone is filled with them. But this was our honeymoon, and we wanted to get off, far gone, to a estate without cell work. All the best way of Tanzania.
Mt. Kilimanjaro, the tallest and most recognizable mountain in Africa, fit the bill. It takes hikers through five different ecosystems from rainforest to alpine desert to arctic snowcap and climbing 19,340 feet to the top is one of the most empowering adventures you can experience without serious training.
About 35,000 people begin the climb per year. How numerous contact the summit is an elusive statistic.
We hooked up with the adventure roam company Intrepid, because it has a wide variety of appointments for different clambers and a good track record for going people to the top.
Kili ascents take anywhere from five to nine days, depending on your street and how much day you want to go for acclimate to the altitude. All sightseers must register at the base and clamber with a licensed guidebook. And at a cost of several thousand dollars, this isnt something you do on a caprice. “Thats one” for the container list.
I researched the climbing before we left, but there are things I know now that I wish Id known before I got there. They would have built the ascent easier, more delightful and less uncomfortable.
1. Kilimanjaro is hard work. The literature describes it as a walking, but merely because you don’t requirement special paraphernalium doesn’t signify its easy. Sides of the path are exceedingly immerse and feel like they go on forever. “Theres” slice filled with 2-foot-high stones that feel like a StairMaster on tier 27.
2. Nothing on the mountain will kill you . Except lack of oxygen, which is why you need to acclimate to the altitude. But I wish Id known we were safe during our first night in an -Aframe hut at the Mandara camp. There is an animal that shrieks at night and sounds like it could weeping you from appendage to limb. Its a harmless tree hyrax no bigger than a cat but I promise it will retain you from going up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night.
9. You can be in the best chassis of your life and fail to reach the summit. Altitude sickness is an equal opportunity bully. You may be able to run marathons, but the vomiting, nausea and sometimes hallucinations can knock you out long before you reach 19,000 paws. My spouse and I are youngish and in good shape. I pass almost every day and he goes rock climbing twice a week. Still, altitude sickness was not our friend. We had to bail at 16,000 hoofs with headaches and nausea worse than any hangover. My partner guessed “hes seen” fish flopping on boulders in the alpine desert. We had to go down or gamble serious illness.
Would knowing these tips-off have somehow changed that? Maybe. Would I do the climbing again, knowing we wouldnt make it to the exceedingly, extremely top? Absolutely.