Kilimanjaro Day 1 Lemosho Route

Kilimanjaro Day 1 on the Lemosho Route is where it all starts!!  We have filmed each day heading up Kilimanjaro to give you an idea of the terrain, challenges, gear and quality of service we offer.  Also, this footage and information should give you a better idea of what it is like each day on the mountain.  Today, your journey on Kilimanjaro, the Roof of Africa, begins!

Kilimanjaro Day 1 on the Lemosho Route

Today is all about getting onto the mountain. You will be up at 7am this morning for breakfast in the hotel.  By 8 am, everyone will have bags packed and be ready to go! The guides will be there to greet you and to assist with packing your bags into the van.  Once the bus is loaded, you will say goodbye to the comforts of the hotel and start the journey!  The drive will take approximately 3 to 4 hours to reach the Lemosho Gate, on the west side of Kilimanjaro.  Some of the drive is on main roads, however parts of the road are unfinished, dirt roads, with bumpy terrain! The Lemosho Gate is located at 2,300m/ 7,545 feet.

The Londrossi Gate on the Lemosho Route

Signing in to the National Park

Once you reach the Lemosho Gate, the team will sign in to the Kilimanjaro National Park.  Our team will then serve your first lunch on the trail!  You will be provided a three course meal at the Gate and meet all of our kitchen staff. You will be spending approximately two hours at the gate as this is also the point where all of the staff prepare their load carries and all the gear has to be weighed!  This will be your first look at the hard work done by our expert staff!

For an average group of 10 trekkers, we will have around 50 staff members.  There will be guides, assistant guides, porters, chefs, security team, tent crew and runners who bring fresh food up the mountain.  Once all of the luggage is weighed and lunch is finished, the trek begins.

The Start of the Lemosho Route

The Start of the Trail

The first night on the mountain will be at the Big Tree Camp, which sits at 2,800m/ 9,186 feet.  The hike should only take approximately three hours and is the easiest first day on any route up Kilimanjaro. This day helps you ease into the low oxygen environment and helps your body adapt well in the early stage of the climb. This is vital to being successful climbing Kilimanjaro.  The trail leads you up through the Rain Forest, and if you are lucky you will be able to see some of the wildlife that lives in this part of the mountain.  The trail leads steadily uphill on what can be slick and rocky terrain.  Because of this, you will want to make sure you are taking is slowly and making sure each step is secure.

Heading through the Rain Forest on Day 1 of the Lemosho Route

Reaching Big Tree Camp

After the approximately three hours of hiking, you will reach your destination for the night!  Big Tree Camp is located in the Rain Forest and sits at 2,800m/ 9,186 feet.  Therefore, this will be one of the warmer nights that you will spend on the mountain.  Tonight is your first night sleeping on the mountain, so it may take you a bit of extra time to get set up.  Once you arrive in camp, you will locate your tent and begin setting up for the night.  Unpack and blow up your sleeping mat and bag, get your trekking boots/clothes off and clean up for the night.  You will be served a bowl of warm water to clean up with before heading to the mess tent for dinner!

You will sleep in a tent for 7 nights on the Lemosho Route

Learning How to Handle Altitude

You do not want to make big jumps in elevation at altitude. Ideally, you do not want to gain more than 700m/ 2,300 feet in one day, if you plan on sleeping at that new height. This helps you move higher in a safe way. It helps your body adapt as best as possible to a new height and lower levels of oxygen.  Hopefully, it also allows you to do this without getting sick or having the turn around. This happens to more than you think.  Less than 60% of people who attempt the Kilimanjaro climb do not make it to the summit.  This is why we recommend taking the Lemosho Route up the mountain as it gives you the best acclimatization schedule. Follow us on Instagram.


Kilimanjaro Day 1 on the Lemosho Route has 3 hours of hiking and the distance is 6km/ 3.7 miles.

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