Kilimanjaro Expedition – Day 6

Kilimanjaro – Day 6/6: Mweka Camp (3,100 m) – Mweka Gate (1,650 m)

Route Map

(click on objectives for extended version)

Technical Box

Difficulty: easy
Duration / distance: 4 hours / 10 km
Marking: Mweka Route, unmarked
Water sources: non-permanent, see map
Minimum altitude: 1,650 m above sea level, at Mweka Gate
Maximum altitude: 3,100 meters above sea level, at Mweka Camp
Level difference: +0 m / -1,450 m
Observations: mountain forest (rain forest) area

1. Mweka Hut Camp

6:30 a.m.
Woke up at 6:15 to meet a large mosquito (I miscall it Zanzibar) and a gorgeous white-collared crow. I went out, had breakfast, took a few more pictures including the nearby humidity measuring station. Let’s say we will leave the Moorland area and cross the mountain forest to the Mweka Gate. We will go down 1,500 meters difference in level. There is also a lodge in Mweka camp, the porters’ house.

Down in the valley you can see the white fluffy sea of ​​clouds. I wonder what the weather will be like there. Another sunny day is announced, flawless, in fact, let’s say, during the whole expedition we had sunny weather, very good and stable, no precipitation, very little wind, even if at 5,000 meters altitude there were negative temperatures.

white-collared raven

Humidity station

Ranger's house

Mweka Camp

Mweka Camp

2. Jambo Bwana

8:10 a.m
Before we set off, I had the great joy of witnessing and actually participating in the song and dance performance based on the famous local song “Jambo Bwana”. The whole team danced, sang, and this moment happened in almost all the groups present in the campsite.

3. Descending through the mounatain forest (rainforest) towards Mweka Gate

8:10 a.m
Ready! Let’s go. It is so beautiful the route through the mountain forest after the dryness of the desert and alpine area. I think that in just a few hours the wonderful experience of living in Tanzania will end. We see images similar to those from the first day, the green color is the queen of the place.
8:45 a.m.
Kilimanjaro can be seen once again in a small clearing! Let’s admire and respect the wonderful Kilimanjaro! The path is wide and protected from being easily destroyed. This descent route is a busy one as several different climbing routes converge to descend to Mweka Gate.
The other colors of the flowers of trees or plants also appear: red, yellow, purple, orange, white, blue. An enchantment!
The porters pass by us at high speed, running with their weights on their backs or on their heads. On this route I also saw female porters, who I found out are allowed to carry up to 10 kg. Tourists get off in an endless queue. I joke with Azizi saying that the correct direction is the opposite, for the sake of the mountain on which I lived for 6 days, for the sake of Kilimanjaro. Ferns are numerous in this climate. Several metal vehicles (wheeled stretchers) from those seen the day before remind me that the expedition to Kilimanjaro is no joke. Impatiens kilimajari in red and yellow, parochaetus communis in purple and white are my favorite flowers found here. Towards the end of the trail, where the trail becomes flatter, we enjoy the joy of several monkeys able to jump from one branch to another.

To further strengthen the cult for keeping the natural park clean, we also meet a truck loaded with waste and non-degradable remains brought down from the mountain in garbage bags by the porters. It is increasingly obvious that there is not much left until the terminus of this last easy day of hiking. I also found toilets and a place to stop.

Rainforest

Kilimanjaro

Impatiens kilimanjari

flowers from the rainforest

ferns

flowers from the rainforest

flowers from the rainforest

flowers from the rainforest

Prochaetus comunis

road mates

ferns

Wheeled stretcher

monkeys

monkeys

flowers from the rainforest

close to the finish

flowers from the rainforest

Waste disposal

Rain Forest

4. Mweka Gate

11:10 a.m.
We arrived at Mweka Gate after 3 hours of descent, although the markings in the starting camp indicated 4. Here, before exiting the park, we pass again to a large registration office where the number and names of those who descended and of course the guide.
Those who managed to conquer Uhuru Peak, 5,895 meters above sea level, receive diplomas. Good for them! Heartiest congratulations!

Mweka Gate

Mweka Gate

5. Hakuna matata!

Not long after, the organizer came with the car that took me to Moshi, I ate the lunch also offered by the organizer, minus the Kilimanajaro beer. In the place where we stopped for lunch you could buy souvenirs, magnets, t-shirts, paintings, hats, and much more, including tanzanite jewelry, a gorgeous blue gemstone. Tanzanite is the blue-violet variant of zoisite. It was discovered in 1967 in northern Tanzania, near the city of Arusha and Mount Kilimanjaro. The route followed was Mweka Gate – Mweka – New Hope – Moshi via Lema Road. Distance 24 km, duration 1 hour. After a shower in the location where I slept the first night, I was driven by Paul, the tour organizer, to Kilimanjaro International Airport, 41 km 1 hour via A23, from where I flew to Bucharest via Amsterdam with KLM. Hakuna matata!

 

Goodbye!

Kilimanjaro! A natural wonder of the world! For me, the tourist experience of my life.

Farewell! Or come with me to Kilimanjaro!

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