Getting to Kilimanjaro and Day 1: Machame campsite
I have taken excerpts out of my diary from the trip, hope you enjoy!
We woke up in a sauna this morning (what they call a hotel room) and started to get ready for our journey. After some egg white yolks (yes the yolks are white, not yellow, don’t ask me why?) for breakfast and a cold shower we were ready to go. Everybody was excited but didn’t exactly know what to expect but before we knew it we were packed into a 1940s bus that was falling apart and we were on our way to Kilimanjaro park gate. On the way we stopped at a general store for some last minute sweet and energy drink back-ups but instead of buying the required food I was sweet talked by a man selling Kili floppy hats. Because I was a Joburger and knew of Bafana Bafana I managed to talk him down to $7 which actually was quite cheap and I didn’t know it then but the hat became quite handy! The next two hours were spent doing formalities at the park gate. After that we met our guide, William and the other people in our group: Dave, a Canadian tree-planter, Anouk, a CNN journalist and her boyfriend Barack.
We spent the next 4-5 hours walking through the rainforest. Some steep hills and others not so much. It wasn’t hugely tiring but a good start to the journey. The forest reminded me of Avatar with its huge fern trees and giant Yellow woods mixed between tumbling waterfalls hidden between the thick bush.
When we arrived at the camp, we were greeted by the porters and a delicious bowl of popcorn followed by a three-course dinner in candlelight which was just what we needed at the time. Kilimanjaro keeps hiding behind the clouds and we haven’t seen her in the clear yet. It’s been great so far. Tomorrow is the steep climb.
The next few photos are the view from the plane at dusk.