All Kilimanjaro expedition dispatches

Climbers on the summit of Kilimanjaro

Summit day began at midnight, as the team awoke for a quick breakfast then left camp to begin the ascent. They dawned headlamps and climbed through the pre-dawn hours, reaching Stella Point (18,652’) just as the sun rose over the plains of Africa. In the dawn light, they climbed the remaining distance to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa at 19,341’. At the top, they savored our accomplishment and the incredible view then made their way down back to our high camp, where they had lunch, then continued down to the Mweka camp for the night.

Congratulations team!!  Well done.

Stats for Day 6:
Start: Kosovo Camp, 15,700’
Summit: Uhuru Peak, 19,341′
Finish: Mweka Camp, 10,204’
Distance: 8 miles


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

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Today the team climbed to high camp. They left Karanga camp and crossed the barren hillsides to reach Barafu camp, and continued on to the Kosovo camp, our special high camp that rarely sees any other climbers. This camp puts the team in a position above most other climbing parties so that the summit day is shorter and they can get out ahead of any potential crowds at the start. Before bed, the team talked through the summit day strategy, then went to bed early in preparation for an ‘alpine start’ tomorrow morning. Everyone’s hoping the weather will be good for summit day!

Stats for day 5:
Start: Karanga Camp, 13,335’
Finish: Kosovo Camp, 15,700’
Distance Traveled: 3.5 miles


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions

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After breakfast, the team left camp and began the ascent of the Great Barranco wall! This scramble provided a great morning workout as they topped out at 14,500’ with spectacular views of the plains below! Then they descend to the Karanga river and hiked up a short distance to Karanga camp.

Stats for day 4
Start: Barranco Camp, 13,066’
Finish: Karanga Camp, 13,335’
Distance: 3 miles

Jumping for joy on Kilimanjaro!

Who’s happy to be climbing Kilimanjaro and has two thumbs?  This guy!


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions

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Fist bump for reaching the Lava Tower on Kilimanjaro

Today the team left Shira Camp and traversed the mountain, working their way up to the base of “The Lava Tower” at approximately 14,800 ft. They made a quick ascent of the lava tower, a fun scramble up with great views from the top, then descended down to Barranco Camp. From camp, the team enjoyed a great view of the Great Barranco Wall, the challenge for tomorrow morning!

Stats for day 3
Start: Shira Camp, 12,355’
Finish: Barranco Camp, 13,066’
Distance Traveled: 6 miles


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions

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Kilimanjaro Shira Camp

Today, from the Machame camp the team started hiking up the trail through the forest and gained elevation very quickly, as the landscape changed from the lush forest to moor lands with large Senecio trees dotting the hillsides. They gained the Shira Plateau and enjoyed a great view over the valley below. Each day upon arriving at camp in the afternoon the team celebrates by dancing and singing with the staff, learning the dance and songs of the Chagga tribe! The team is doing great and are having a wonderful time on Kilimanjaro!

Stats for day 2
Start: Machame Camp, 9,927’
Finish: Shira Camp, 12,355’
Distance Traveled: 5 miles

(photo: Madison Mountaineering archives)


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions

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Starting the Kilimanjaro climb at the Machame Gate

This morning the team traveled by Land Crusier from Arusha through forests and coffee fields to the Machame trailhead, where they checked in with the Park HQ and sorted loads for the local porters, the Chagga people. They hiked through the lush rain forest and finished the day at the Machame Camp. Everyone is doing well and had a great first day on the climb of Mount Kilimanjaro!

Stats for Climb day 1
Start: Machame Entrance, 5,718’
Finish: Machame Camp, 9,927’
Distance Traveled: 6 miles

Hiking up to Machame Camp on Kilimanjaro

Hiking up to Machame Camp on Kilimanjaro

Climbing into the moor lands on Kilimanjaro

Climbing into the moorlands on Kilimanjaro


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions

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Cheetah and cubs on the Serengeti

On the third day of their safari, our Kilimanjaro climbers caught sight of the world’s fastest land animal, the cheetah, capable of hitting a top speed of up to 80 miles per hour.  The game viewing has just been spectacular.  Drew reports:

@drewmaloney A mind blowing morning here in the Serengeti. We saw a male Cheetah kill a Gazelle and now a female Cheetah with her 4 cubs walk right next to our vehicle
Cheetah and cubs with giraffes on the horizon

Cheetah and cubs with giraffes on the horizon (📷: @drewmaloney)

Giraffe grazing on the trees

Giraffe grazing on the trees (📷: @drewmaloney)

Enjoying the African Jeep Safari

The safari continues for our Kilimanjaro climbers.  This evening they rolled on into the mighty Serengeti.  Their words speak for themselves:

@drewmaloney I have been to Africa countless times and this is my first safari. I am blown away🤯 by the beauty and majesty of the amazing wildlife. Off to the Serengeti today for two nights literally sleeping amongst the lions in tents.

Viewing elephants while on safari

Viewing elephants while on safari (📸: @drewmaloney)

Beautiful safari viewing giraffes and other amazing wildlife

Beautiful safari viewing giraffes and other amazing wildlife (📸: @drewmaloney)

Lending a helping hand to fix a flat on the Serengeti

Lending a helping hand to fix a flat on the Serengeti (📸: @drewmaloney)


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates

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Loading up for the safari!

Still savoring their Kilimanjaro summit success, today our team of Drew and Jordan kicked off their Africa safari!  Leaving Arusha they were driven southwest to the Tarangire National Park for some game viewing.  Already they are enjoying some elephants and zebra frolicking.

Stay tuned for more safari updates at the team continues on to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the mighty Serengeti National Park.

Video:  Game viewing in Tarangire National Park, Tanazania

Climbers on the summit of Kilimanjaro 06:00 Aug 15, 2020
Follow the team’s progress with our real-time tracking map

After the Kilimanjaro summit, this incredibly strong team hiked all the way down and out – what a big day!  Expedition leader, Garrett Madison calls in from Arusha with all the details:

Hello this is Garrett calling in for the Kilimanjaro dispatch.  We got back from the summit late last night after reaching the top at 06:00 am on August 15th.  It was a beautiful day, we had the mountain all to ourselves.  Stunning views over the Serengeti.  Myself, Drew, and his daughter Jordan made it to the top and back down, packed up our camp and just kept going!  We got all the way out to the [Mweka] gate and back to Arusha in time for a late dinner.

Tomorrow Drew and Jordan are heading off on safari.  It should be a beautiful time on the Serengeti and Ngorongoro game parks – good game viewing.

It’s been a wonderful Kilimanjaro expedition.  He are very happy that we got to work with our crew here in Tanzania of porters, cooks, guides, … and support their livelyhood here.  They’re just a wonderful group of guys and hopefully we will get to see them again very soon!

Sunrise on the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro

Sunrise on the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro

Beautiful African Sunrise

Beautiful African Sunrise

Happy climbers summit Kilimanjaro

Happy climbers summit Kilimanjaro


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates

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