Here are the best months for climbing Kilimanjaro. Traditionally, the weather on Mount Kilimanjaro is fairly predictable. Kilimanjaro has dry seasons and rainy seasons. Some months have more sun, some months have to more cloud cover and other months are colder than others higher on the mountain. Out of the 40+ times Ian has climbed Kilimanjaro, he has gone during a range of months. He has even climbed in rainy season, however would not advise it.
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What are the Best Months for Climbing Kilimanjaro
Climbing Kilimanjaro in January is traditionally a great month to climb. It is warmer with less rain and cloud, however, there are more people on the mountain. January is one of the best months for climbing Kilimanjaro.
We highly recommend picking January as your month to head to Tanzania. Remember bad weather can hit at any time on the mountain and storms can roll in from the Indian ocean.
By far one of the best months to climb Kilimanjaro. You can climb right up until the end of the month. February on Kilimanjaro is warmer with less cloud and better weather conditions than most other months. With warm weather, comes dusty dry camps and trails, and being prepared for this dry dust is important. If the winds picks up you will have clothes full of dust and possibly a lung full too.
I recommend bring a regular buff that you can wear during the day in warmer conditions. We have had groups caught in the tail end of a cyclone in February and high wind on the summit night, so always be prepared for variable weather.
If you are thinking of climbing Kilimanjaro after mid March, think again. It can rain and snow every day on the mountain. Cloud covers Kilimanjaro in March and the mountain might not even be seen from the valley the whole month.
Climbing Kilimanjaro in March will definitely be more challenging with slippy rocks and wet clothing that is hard to dry out if the sun does not come out. Mountain views will be limited and snow higher up above Barafu, high camp 4,650m/ 15,255 feet, is a real possibility. There will be less people on the mountain.
Climb Kilimanjaro in April only if you are willing to brave wet conditions on the mountain. Climbing Kilimanjaro in April can give you some amazing views if the clouds clear. With rain on the cards each and every day, not only do you risk thunder and lightning, but you risk getting wet and not drying out for the whole trip.
April is right in the middle of rainy season of Kilimanjaro (mid March through May) and even though it can rain on any given day of the year on Kilimanjaro, April might test your limits of comfort. April will have less people climbing the mountain, with poor views, wet rock and not very interesting scenery on and off the mountain.
Over the past few years May has been a little dryer than normal, but traditionally May is one of the wetter months for climbing Kilimanjaro. We have had a mixed bag climbing Kilimanjaro in May and over the past number of years have decided against sending groups to climb Kilimanjaro in early May. We do run Kilimanjaro tours at the end of May. If you don’t mind the rain and want less people around on your climb this could be a month for you.
Rainy season can drift over into early June from time to time. June can be a little colder higher on the mountain, above 5,000m/16,400 feet. If you are considering climbing Kilimanjaro in June you will traditionally have dryer conditions, more people but not as much as other months like February, August and September.
It can be freezing or below freezing from your second night on the mountain, depending on what route you climb up Kilimanjaro. We recommend the Lemosho route over 8 days. READ MORE.
If you are considering climbing in June you should have great views of the mountain and get to see some amazing sunrises and sunset. Shira Camp 2, Barranco Camp and Karanga Camp can have stunning sunsets. We like climbing Kilimanjaro in June, you will have less people than July and August.
You will find more people climbing Kilimanjaro in July for a wide range of reasons. Schools are off and people climb during this period as it suits their vacation plans. July is a great month to climb Kilimanjaro.
Yes, you will find more people on the mountain due to the better conditions you will find. The weather can be colder higher up, however the colder temps usually have great mountain views, less rain in the rain forest and all around good mountain climbing conditions.
Another one of our favorite months to climb Kilimanjaro. We really only climb on the Lemosho route over 8 days so there will be less people at the start of the trail. Once you meet up with the Machame route, on day 3, their day 2, you will encounter more people. READ MORE ABOUT THE BEST ROUTE FOR CLIMBING KILIMANJARO.
August can be dry and dusty on the trails so if the wind picks up you would need to use a light buff to keep dust from your face. Love this month to climb Kilimanjaro, great weather and usually less cloud impeding the mountain views.
August is traditionally one of the warmer months on the mountain. It can be a litter colder on the western side of the mountain, but not enough to stop you from experiencing the Shira Plateau and Volcano.
Another of our favorite months to climb Kilimanjaro. You should see great weather warmer higher up above 5,000m/ 17,000 feet. There can be less or more people on the mountain in September but pick more days on your acclimatization program (8 days) and you will let others race ahead and probably not make it to the summit.
The summit success rate is very low for climbing Kilimanjaro as only 50-60% of people make it to the summit each year. September is one of the busier times to climb Kilimanjaro, but great weather, dryer conditions and excellent mountain views make this a great month to climb.
October is also a good month to climb Kilimanjaro. It is warmer higher up. October can have more cloud cover towards the end of the month, keeping the sun off you, but impeding mountain views. It is more likely to have clear sky’s in the morning, the clouds can roll in early in the day and views of the mountain can be none existent.
The early part of October is a better time to climb. Traditionally October is one of the better months to climb Kilimanjaro and weather is usually quite stable.
Climbing Kilimanjaro in November can be challenging with more rain. November can be a mini rainy season and we do avoid climbing Kilimanjaro in November. Less stable weather patterns can hit the mountain in November. Therefore, you can experience rain every day for a short period of the day.
Poor mountain views, less visibility and more snow higher up can all impact your trip. Pictures higher up if it is clear and snowy will rival any mountain scene. However, remember that snow can happen in any month higher on the mountain above 5,000m/ 16,400 feet.
There is potential for climbing Kilimanjaro in December. More and more people are climbing Kilimanjaro at the beginning of December and over the Christmas period into early January.
We do have 3 climbs each December to suit Christmas vacations climbing Kilimanjaro. We also think this is a good period of weather on the mountain. It can vary from year to year and less stable than the good old reliable months which we have listed.
The Best Months for Climbing Kilimanjaro with Ian Taylor Trekking
What are the 7 best months to climb Kilimanjaro? In our opinion January, February, June, July, August, September and October are the best months to climb Kilimanjaro.
What are the 4 best months to climb Kilimanjaro? In our opinion February, July August and September are the 4 best months for climbing Kilimanjaro.
What are the 3 best months to climb Kilimanjaro? In our opinion February, July and August are the 3 best months for making the ascent of Kilimanjaro.
Don’t Underestimate Kilimanjaro
There are other things you need to consider outside of weather when you thinking of climbing Kilimanjaro. Two of the most important things you need to think about are coming physically prepared for the climb and making sure you have enough time and days on the mountain to give yourself a realistic chance at making the summit.
The More Time the Better on Kilimanjaro
The amount of time you spend on Kilimanjaro will make or break your trip. The more time you spend on Kilimanjaro, the more expensive it will be. However, if you want to enjoy your experience climbing Kilimanjaro, be safer on the mountain and have a better chance of being successful, then you need to take 8 days on the mountain.
We highly recommend the Lemosho Route, as it is the most scenic, with less people and also has an excellent emergency evacuation route. CONTACT US and find out more about our service, training programs and why we have 95% success rate on our 8 day climbs up Kilimanjaro.