Umbwe route is known for its caves. The first night you actually sleep at the Umbwe Cave Camp with two more caves that can be visited en route the following day. Umbwe route is one of the shortest routes to the Southern Glaciers and the Western Breach. It is probably one of the most scenic, non-technical routes on Kilimanjaro. There are however higher risks involved when attempting to summit via the Western Breach / Arrow Glacier and overnight at the Arrow Glacier camp, which include:
Safety on the Western Breach – nobody can guarantee your absolute safety, as the area is unstable and rock falls may occur at any time
During a normal summit of Kilimanjaro you will sleep at Barafu camp (4 600mt) or Kibo Hut (4 650m) before attempting the summit. By sleeping at Arrow Glacier camp (4 800) the risks for severe altitude sickness are considerably higher.
Most of Umbwe route hikes are currently re-routed, to join with the Machame route from second night on the mountain. On special request we can assist with Umbwe route hikes attempting to summit using the Western Breach / Arrow Glacier path and overnight at the Arrow Glacier camp (and the Crater camp). Please note this can only be arranged through extra charges.
Umbwe 6 Days Itinerary
Day 1 Umbwe Gate – First Camp
Depart after breakfast drive to Umbwe gaate at 1600m, passing through villages with coffee and banana plantations once you have reached the entrance gate the will be a session of registration before you entering the park for your first session to accomplishing a life-long dream. The air is thick with moisture and the path is usually in a good condition.
The route initially follows a forestry track winding up through the natural rain forest. It then narrows and steepens to climb the ridge between the Lonzo and Umbwe rivers, with huge trees surrounding you. The path offers some spectacular views of deep gorges and if you are lucky, glimpses of Kilimanjaro towering above you in the distance. The camp is perched between huge trees and thick undergrowth dinner overnight.
Umbwe Gate (1600Mt) First Campsite (2940m)
Hiking time: 6-7hrs;
Day 2 First Camp – Barranco Camp
Breakfast session take place at 7:30Am after leisure breakfast leave the campsite forest starts thinning and is replaced by rockier terrain, sparser undergrowth and straggly, moss-covered trees. The path continues along a narrow, but spectacular ridge. As you gain higher altitude catch glimpses of Kilimanjaro rising majestically ahead of you – etched against the blue sky. The path flattens as you approach Barranco Valley campsite for your second night on the mountain dinner overnight.
First campsite (2940Mt) – Barranco camp (3950Mt)
Hiking time: 4-5hrs
Day 3 Barranco Camp – Arrow Glacier Camp
After breakfast you will start your hike towards Lava Tower, a famous landmark on Kilimanjaro. The path is steep and rocky, with views of Mt. Meru, Kilimanjaro’s little sister, punching her peak through the clouds. Tent camp on day three of the Umbwe route. From Lava Tower you turn towards the Western Breach, a steep climb to Arrow Glacier camp (4800Mt).
This is taxing and symptoms of altitude sickness might become noticeable. The campsite is spectacular. Vegetation has now all but disappeared, leaving only rock and scree in varying shades of brown and black. The campsite is very cold and you need to be prepared.
Barranco camp (3950m) – Lava Tower (4600Mt) – Arrow Glacier Camp (4800m)
Hiking time: 5hrs
Day 4 Arrow Gacier Camp – Crater Camp
From the Arrow Glacier camp steep scree and rocky outcrops requiring a scramble lead up the Western Breach to the crater floor (5700mt).
This day will be the toughest challenge by far. After snowfalls the route can become icy and in these conditions an ice axe or ski stick may be required.
When reaching the crater rim, you will be astonished by the view of snow and glaciers. Visible to you left is the Northern Ice fields of Kilimanjaro with the Furtwangler Glacier in front of you. Walk past this glacier to the Crater camp, situated at the crater rim. If time permits, you can climb to the Ash Pit (1.5 hour). The Ash Pit is 340mt across, 120mt deep is one of the most perfect-formed examples in the world. The campsite is very cold as snow might occur.
4 Arrow Glacier (4800m) – Crater rim (5700Mt)
Hiking time 5Hrs.
Day 5 Crater Camp – Uhuru Peak – Mweka Camp
From the rim of the crater there is 1.5hrs to reach Uhuru peak after Uhuru peak the descent will take a place via Barafu Campsite to Mweka Camp -6-8hrs to Mweka campsite.
You will rise very early in the morning, and after some early breakfast you shuffle off into the early morning darkness.
From the crater floor you will probably counter snow during rainy season all the way on your 1.5-hour ascent to Uhuru Peak.
Time spend on the summit will depend on the weather conditions and yourself.
Do not recommend a long stay on the peak before start your descent, as it will be extremely difficult to start again due to cold and fatigue.
Enjoy your accomplishment and a day to remember of your life. Group of climbers at Uhuru after successfully summiting via Umbwe route dinner overnight mweka campsite.
(Summit attempt) Crater (5700m)-Uhuru Peak (5895m)-Mweka (3100m hiking time 11-12hrs
Day 6 Mweka Camp – Mweka Gate
Your last breakfast will be save at 7:30am in clear day you have an opportunity view of Mount Kilimanjaro in the distance on your last descent via Mweka route.
Hiking time: 3hrs to Mweka Gate where you will have to sign out before the transfer to Moshi via Mweka Village Moshi/Arusha
Mweka camp (3100m) – Mweka Gate (1980m);
“End of hiking tour.”