Situated near the town of Moshi in northern Tanzania, Mount Kilimanjaro rises from the dry plains, through a wide belt of forest and high alpine heath to an almost bare desert and finally the snow-capped summit, Uhuru Peak, just 3 degrees south of the Equator.
One of the world’s highest free standing mountains, Mt. Kilimanjaro is composed of three extinct volcanoes: Kibo 5895 m (19340 ft), Mawenzi 5149 m (16896 ft), and Shira 3962 m (13000 ft).
The name itself is shrouded in mystery. It might mean Mountain of Light, Mountain of Greatness or Mountain of Caravans. The local people, the Wachagga, call the mountain “Kilemakyaro” meaning “Our Mountain.” The familiar snowy peak is named Kipoo (now known as Kibo or Uhuru Peak) and stands as overseer of the continent and is the “Roof of Africa”.
Kilimanjaro is one of the world’s most accessible high summits attracting visitors, young and old, from around the world. Most climbers reach the crater rim with little more than a walking stick, proper clothing and determination. Those who reach Gillman or Stella’s Point on the lip of the crater and those that reach Uhuru Peak, the actual summit, will have earned their climbing certificates and the accompanying memories.