The Beauty of Kilimanjaro
As one of the acclaimed seven summits, Mount Kilimanjaro has a lot to offer.
About Mount Kilimanjaro
Mount Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa, standing at 19,340 feet in Tanzania. As the tallest mountain on a continent full of adventure and wildlife, Mount Kilimanjaro has views to see and trails to explore.
Not only is Kilimanjaro the tallest mountain peak in Africa, but it is the tallest free standing mountain in the world. The mountain was formed by volcanic activity instead of the usual tectonic plate movement. Since there is no tectonic plate activity or faults in the area, Mount Kilimanjaro stands alone without a range surrounding it.
There are three volcanic cones on Kilimanjaro – Shira, Mawenzi, and Kibo – and one of them can still erupt in the future. Shira and Mawenzi are extinct but Kibo is only labeled as a dormant volcano and has the possibility to erupt in the future.
Hikers can even visit the Kibo site on top of the mountain, giving an extremely unique and adrenaline pumping activity to hiking enthusiasts. Since most mountains are formed by tectonic plates, visiting volcanoes – especially live volcanoes – is rare and hard to come by.
What Sets Mount Kilimanjaro Apart From the Rest
Each of the seven summits – tallest mountain peak on each continent – has a unique and identifying characteristic. For Mount Kilimanjaro, it’s the wildlife. The other six summits consist of lots of bear sightings and the occasional mountain goat, on Kilimanjaro, monkeys and Africa native birds you won’t find anywhere else.
Most days atop Kilimanjaro, one can see clouds as far as the eye can see. About four miles in the air, it is hard to see much else besides the vastness of white clouds. On clear days, there is a chance of seeing Tanzania below and the trails up the mountain. What’s not seen, other mountains peaking above the clouds. The peak is alone above the clouds leaving climbers with the sense of aloneness and at one with the Earth away from the world.
The Mount Kilimanjaro Climate
Located in Africa and only 205 miles from the equator, Mount Kilimanjaro is expected to be a hot hike. But Kilimanjaro brings hikers through five separate ecological zones – an unexpected twist in the African safari.
The first zone at the base, is the cultivation zone. This zone is made up of farmland and rivers and home to many of the Kilimanjaro tour guides.
After the cultivated zone is the rainforest zone. This zone is where the most animal spotting take place with monkey’s roaming the forests.
Next is the heather and moorland zone. The trail turns into a rocky and desolate path and then into a shrub and wildflower covered trail. This is where the temperatures turn extreme and extra preparation is needed.
Above the clouds is the highland desert zone. This zone is an in-depth view into the volcanic history of the mountain.
The final zone is the arctic zone, full of glaciers, freezing weather, and the most challenging part of the climb.
Why Hike Mount Kilimanjaro
Often regarded as the easiest of the seven peaks to climb, Mount Kilimanjaro is a favorite among hiking experts and novices. While it may be the easiest of the peaks, Kilimanjaro is still a reveled after and an accomplished hike to complete.
The hike to the top of Kilimanjaro is truly one of a kind and a bucket list item for many. As such a unique mountain with a multitude of climate zones within a diverse and beautiful landscape, Mount Kilimanjaro is a must for everyone.
Preparing for the hike can be challenging, especially for hobby hikers. There are a range of hiking guides and tours to that help bring hikers to the summit every year so people around the world can experience the magnificence of Mount Kilimanjaro.