Kilimanjaro! Just the name conjures up all sorts of emotions. Most everyone has heard of Kilimanjaro but relative few have conquered it. The world is full of two kinds of people – those who have stood on its summit and those that have not. Are you ready to become one of the privileged individuals to have reached the “roof of Africa”? If so, you have come to the right spot, just settle down and read about one of the greatest adventures in the world that is attainable by almost anyone. It is the highest “walk able” mountain in the world. It is magnificent and climbing it is truly a spectacular undertaking.
Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and is also one of the world’s highest free standing mountains with its bulk looming 4800 m above an undulating plain that averages around 1000 m above sea level. The mountain measures about 60 km across and 40 km wide.
It is made up of three volcanic cones, Kibo 5,895 m (19,341 ft), Mawenzi 5,149 m (16,890 ft), and Shira 3,962 m (13,000 ft). All of which are inactive volcanoes in NE Tanzania. They are classified as start to volcano or composite volcanoes. There is no known record of eruption in all of history. There are about 20 other nearby volcanoes, the best known of which is Mount Meru.
Kilimanjaro’s Uhuru Peak on the Kibo volcano at 5,895 m (19,341 ft) is the highest point in Africa and one of the Seven Summits (seven highest points in the seven continents). Kibo is a 1.5 mile wide crater.
Kilimanjaro was first ascended in 1889 by Hans Meyer, Ludwig Purtscheller, and Yohanas Kinyala Lauwo.
There is much confusion surrounding the name Kilimanjaro. European explorers had adopted it by 1860 and reported it as a Swahili name. It may come from Kilima (Swahili for “hill”) and Njaro (ancient Swahili for “white” or “shining”) although there are other theories and other names translated from various dialects of Tanzanian and Maasai people are “Small Hill”, “Caravan Hill” and “Mountain of Water”, none of which can be confirmed as the original source.
Possibly the best thing about Kilimanjaro is the ability for the average man to experience the beauty of this natural monumental structure. Various routes are available for climbers ranging from novice to the highly experienced.