I have always wanted to climb Kilimanjaro a friend of mine in Colorado suggested Ian Taylor Trekking. I had read a lot of blogs but Ian’s information was awesome. I made the call and signed up that day. The information on training and preparation was great and really paid off.
I was really impressed with the team Ian has assembled. They were so attentive to every detail and a great support to me at every stage of the climb. Our pace on the trail each day was perfect. We watched as other groups marched past us each day. I learned so much from Ian about how to properly acclimatize. It was learning how to walk again, even how to use the terrain to my favor on steep terrain. The pace of the climb really helped the team enjoy the trip and experience Kilimanjaro in the best possible way.
The first few days on the trail were nice and relaxing. We did have a long hike up to the Shira plateau on day 2. This tested us but the follow day was nice and easy moving across the Shira Plateau and because of our pace and lack of fatigue we were ready to go the next day. I loved this route and way we climbed it.
I have struggled on other altitude treks because on the pace we hiked at and not hydrating correctly. We also had less days to acclimatize. Ian approach and understanding of team and individual management really helped me each day on the climb and felt at ease every step of the way.
On the mountain I encountered amazing sunsets, people, boulder fields, snow, ice and lava formations. It was a wild and wonderful experience. My favorite day was day 5. We had amazing view of Kilimanjaro from camp. We had breakfast in the open and gazed towards the summit of Kilimanjaro 6,000 vertical feet above us. I really enjoyed the scrambling on our way up the Baranco wall. I had watched Ian’s You Tube video on this, but it was a so much fun doing it for real!The whole team were doing great as we slept in Karanga camp. I could hear a lot of people vomiting in other camps and saw lots of people being moved down the mountain. Some climbs were at this point 12,795 ft. on day 2 of their climb and continuing up to 15,255ft with us the following day and then heading to the summit. Most of the people were nowhere to be seen on summit. Ian has told us time and time again that this happens on every trip, he would see lots and lots of sick people. He was so frustrated with people looking to do 4 & 5 day trips. Our whole team were fine with some minor headaches. We would sit up and play cards, games. I had never spend a lot of time with Irish people, everyone was amazing and kept me laughing the whole trip.
We were now into the business end of the trip, with everyone feeling good after 6 days on the mountain it was time to move higher and onto the summit. The long slow walk to the crater was mentally more challenging than the physical effort for me. Once the light came up on the horizon I felt much better. Seeing the views all around me and watching the sun come up was mind blowing. It was an incredible experience.
There was a great feeling of satisfaction of reaching the summit. The team worked hard together to get there and each person embraced each other. I was quite emotional as I stood in a place of such beauty. It was a hard earned summit. I thanked Ian for all his hard work in helping me reach this summit. I sat down had my summit moment. I got emotional on return to high camp. It was a long journey back to Mweka camp but what a rewarding experience. I am so thankful to Ian and his amazing team. Climbing Kilimanjaro with you was one of the finest experiences of my life.
Macy Mcguire, Kilimanjaro 2015