An active four days to scale the slopes of Tanzania’s second highest mountain, Mount Meru. This a tiring but not technical climb that is suitable for those with minimal mountaineering experience.
Views are equal to those from Kilimanjaro and the climb doesn’t present the altitude sickness problems that Kilimanjaro does. It is also significantly cheaper!.
We begin this short tour in Arusha city, close to Kilimanjaro International Airport and lying in the shadow of Mount Meru.
After driving to the Momella Gate, we set foot on Meru at 1500m altitude. It is a gentle climb to begin as we head across open grassland, with good chances to see buffalo and warthog. The landscape soon changes to thick forest and around lunch time we come across the beautiful and renowned giant fig tree arch.
Continuing upwards, we come into view of the impressive cliffs of the Ash Cone, before reaching Miriakamba Hut (2514 m.) in the late afternoon. It takes just around five hours to reach this point and it provides a great view over the plains below.
Today is a relatively short but intense climb. It takes approximately four hours but is a steep ascent for a good part.
The initial section from Miriakamba Hut to the saddle below Little Meru is steep all of the way, once again through forest. From here the climb becomes a little more gentle, to the halfway point at Mgongo wa Tembo or Elephant Ridge. The views here are fantastic.
Passing into the moorland zone, the vegetation becomes thinner and we come across intriguing giant heather and lobelia. Through this is another relatively steep section, up to Saddle Point at 3570m. If you have the energy, there is another hike in the afternoon up to the summit of Little Meru (3850m) which takes another 1.5 hours and offers superb views.
An inspirational and tiring day - we begin at 2.30 a.m., in order to reach the summit by sunrise. It’s a steep climb to begin with as we aim for Rhino Point (3800m), and make our way along a narrow and undulating ridge to Cobra Point (4350m), a little before sunrise. Depending on the speed of the climb, we can either stay and watch the sunrise from Cobra Point or continue up for another hour and make it to Socialist Peak, the true summit at 4566m.
The views from both points are stunning as the sunrises and we watch Kilimanjaro float on the low lying clouds, the Rift Valley spread out below and Mount Meru’s own Ash Cone light up in the crater floor.
Our descent starts with an exhilarating climb down a narrow ridge between the outer and inner crater walls. This is dramatic route, sure to keep up your adrenalin levels following the morning ascent. We then continue down to Saddle Hut and Miriakamba Hut.
We continue back the way came, trekking through grasslands and forest on our return to the Momella Gate. It’s a four hike with good chances of viewing buffalo, black-and-white colobus monkey and antelope. Finally you are met by the tour vehicle and taken back to Arusha or Kilimanjaro International Airport.
Prices start from:
Prices based on couples sharing and exclude international flights.