There are six established routes to climb Mount Kilimanjaro – Marangu, Machame, Lemosho, Shira, Rongai and Umbwe. The Marangu, Machame, and Umbwe routes all approach from the south of the mountain. The Lemosho and Shira routes approach from the west. The Rongai route approaches from the north. All routes except Marangu and Rongai descend via Mwerka.
Rongai Route on Mount Kilimanjaro
Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro via The Rongai Route
Less crowded because of its remote location the route offers trekkers a unique wilderness experience where it is possible to see large wildlife like antelope, elephant and buffalo. As there is typically less moisture on this side of the mountain you are less likely to encounter rain and have more unclouded views of the peak. While it is flatter, it does not give the climb high sleep low option and therefore recommended to select more days for acclimatization.
The Rongai route is one of the easier routes up Kilimanjaro. Rongai is the only route to approach Kilimanjaro from the north and the descent is via the Marangu Route.Summit night from Kibo Hut is steep and follows the same path taken by the Marangu route which passes Gilman’s Point to Uhuru Peak.
There are several variations; the one described is a longer route taking in Mawenzi Tarn.
Duration: 5 or 6 days
Scenery: Very good
Starting from the northeastern side of the mountain near the Kenyan border, the Rongai Route rises above the Amboseli plains and approach the summit of Kilimanjaro west of the Mawenzi peak. It is an unfrequented route and is also the easiest camping approach to Uhuru Peak. The descent normally uses the Marangu Route.
There are two variations to this route. You can choose to attempt the summit via Mawenzi Tarn Hut or via School Hut which is also referred to as the Outward Bound Hut. The former is longer and more popular. Prior acclimatization is recommended in order to attempt the latter successfully.