A beautiful morning greeted the team as they prepared for their penultimate ascent of the world’s highest freestanding mountain.
The team enjoyed spectacular views of both Kibo and Mt. Meru as they trekked to an altitude of 4,640m through the dry and barren Karanga Valley towards Barafu (high camp) where they would spend the day recovering and acclimatising.
The steep pathway through an increasinlgy inhospitable landscape proved quite challenging and the temperature dropped rapidly despite a hot sun beating down as the team climbed higher.
The team reached Barafu Camp by mid morning; Barafu is Swahili for ‘ice’ and this camp sits on a narrow ridge which is totally exposed to a cold, biting wind.
The rest of the day was spent resting, eating and preparing for the long night ahead; bags were packed, head torches checked and water bottles filled, wrapped in socks and placed in sleeping bags to prevent freezing.
Expedition guide Rolfe Oostra, who has to date climbed to the summit of Kilimanjaro 58 times, briefed an excited but anxious team and reminded them all why they were undertaking this challenge.
After dinner the team crawled into their sleeping bags and set their alarms for 11.30pm in an attempt to get some sleep before, what would undoubtedly be for some team members, the toughest mental challenge of their lives…