Friday, July 4, 2014

Kilimanjaro Recap - Day 1 & 2

Ok, ok…. I know I have been back for more then a week now and pictures are long overdue.
So here you are. Broken down into 2 day portions so as to not overwhelm.

Day 1
Started our hike on Andi's birthday. So we celebrated with King Kong Muffin Cupcakes. Really muffins with semi frosting. But a celebration none the less.
This was our transportation to the hiking point and our driver Immanuel.
All of our porters putting all the gear into 40 lb bags that they each can carry. There are rules you know.
Our day 1 lunch time company while we check in with the National Park.
One view as we drove up.
As far as our driver could make it. 
This is Andi. And it is go time. Apparently we are really doing this hiking a mountain thing.
Once we got off the road, this is what the trail looked like. Stinking steep. 
The trail the first 2 days was definitely well maintained. Partially because it was easy for the National Park folks to get to and partially because it was in the rainforest. Easier to move dirt and sticks then boulders.
And this is how the porters carried our stuff. I had to keep reminding myself that they were getting paid to do this.
And we shall call him skunk monkey and he shall be our skunk monkey.
His actual name is Black and White Colobus Monkey and there were also Blue Mon
This was our camp. The cooking tent to the left, our tent in the far back, our 2 guides tent, and our eating tent. All 9 of the porters slept in the cooking and the eating tents.
We were wrong when we thought we were backpacking. Apparently even climbing a mountain you need to have afternoon tea with popcorn and biscuits! Only neither Andi or I like tea or coffee. But of course they brought us hot chocolate! I felt like a 1900's british explorer with this set up only they weren't carrying up a piano for me. I think I have watched too much TV. But I guess they did carry a toilet!
Can you believe they even carried a toilet up the whole mountain just for us? Still baffling. 
Our little tent with out sleeping bags on the outside and our day packs and gear in the middle. 
2.5 hours of climbing the first day to get us to 7,742 ft. where we slept at Mti Mkubwa (which means "Big Tree").
Day 2
Thank goodness for Andi's camera that does panorama. This is the view when we left the rainforest and climbed into Moorland.

We rested for a second down at that little camp with the blue tent. And there were bees in the toilet. Risky business if I do say so myself.
James and Visent our guides. And somehow always in the exact place I wanted to take a picture of. I think it was a conspiracy. 
Day 2! Still doing this hiking thing.

Our first views of the little mountain we were climbing. At this point we weren't even officially on the mountain yet. And it still looked so far away! Oh well, still only finished with day 2 I guess.

And the white necked raven. Also a very official name. The buddies followed us every where. Kinda vulture like if you ask me.

Crazy beautiful green stuff in the water. That is the official name of it. "Green Stuff."
The "Green Stuff" and the mountain.
These feet were made for walking. 
Me, my tent, and that little mountain.
5 hours of climbing up pretty steep the second day to get us to11,500 ft where we slept at Shira Camp 1