This day was by far my favorite day of hiking! Woke up to great views of the
peak and leaving Barranco camp we first
had to scramble up the 1000ft of Barranco Wall. Lots of hands needed, some great
moves and short bits of exposure. All with fabulous views of the peak in the
background! The trail climbed up, then dropped into several valleys through the
high alpine desert before a steep drop into the Karanga valley where we stopped
for lunch. This was the last stop for water and the porters had quite a bit to
carry with them up to Barafu camp. Some porters stayed the night and would head
down to the next camp the following day.
Heading up the other side of the Karanga Valley was steep and slow. The rest of
the day was completely uphill through barren areas of volcanic rock. No plants,
trees, or anything alive. We got to the rocky camp of Barafu at 15,100ft after
almost 8hrs of hiking. The tent spots were limited and there was no way stakes
were going into the ground here. We got our daily spout of rain shortly after
setting up the tents but it cleared to awesome views of the peak, Mawensi Peak (Kili's
sister peak), and the route that we would be taking.
The porters made us a quick and high carbo dinner and it was off to bed to
attempt to get some sleep before the 11pm wake up for the summit! At each meal,
less and less was getting eaten. Had some jitters and just kept hoping that the
weather would hold out. I certainly didn't expect to sleep much, besides, why
start now?! Pretty wild how everything you do at 15K ft takes a lot of effort
and really kicks your ass. Even taking a leak wears you out!
Kibo in the morning; Jill heading up Barranco Wall
Waterfall in Barranco Valley; Traversing the valleys
Home sweet Kili home; Barafu Camp and Mawensi
The Great Baboo!