Kilimanjaro Day 5 - Its almost summit time

Trip Start Sep 12, 2013
Trip End Oct 06, 2013

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Sunday, September 22, 2013

Rongai Route
Start Point - Third Caves Camp 3936m
End Point - School Hut 4722m
Altitude Gain - 751m
Distance - 3 miles

We woke this morning to beautiful sunshine and a great view of Kilimanjaro, we had all had a much better sleep since we had come back down to sleep low at 3900m.  It makes such a difference you get more of a constant sleep instead of the usual waking constantly and having weird vivid dreams.

Everyone is feeling good today and excited that summit night is almost upon us, today is a short walk but a steep climb, controlling your breathing is important, being short of breath all the time is annoying you keep taking deep breaths as you constantly feel like you just ain't getting enough air - which is the case since oxygen levels are getting lower by the day.
We have lunch then we are supposed to nap so that we are rested for tonight but I am not usually a napper so I just sat awake, Marc got about an hour so I just sat raging at the fact he was asleep and I wasn't haha.

We had dinner around 6pm couldn't believe it we opened the tent and outside was covered in snow, the rain had been hail stones and snow!!! The thought of our useless waterproofs we had hired popped into my head...hope to goodness it stops before we set off tonight.

So after dinner it was back to bed to sleep.  The reality of the fact we were to get up at 1030pm to summit meant there was no chance of sleep we were so nervous, all these days walking lead to this night, the more you know you need to sleep the more you cant.  Our tent was on a hill so we kept sliding down in our sleeping bags, the rain was pounding down outside, just when I might have drifted Marc started turning over disturbing me and I the same to Marc.  

It was totally freezing even though we were now wearing most of our clothes in preparation for summit night it meant we were totally uncomfortable wearing about 5 layers on top and 3 on the bottom, it was getting dark and the constriction of being in those sleeping bags made it even more fidgety, sleep was not on the cards.  This meant walking through the night with no extra sleep at all today :-((( gutted this is going to be a nightmare !!!

We had to get up at 1030 pm for tea and toast before we started the climb thankfully the snow had stopped the night was clear and calm, the guide said it was good we had snow means cloud cover and that it will be less cold....hmmm the temperatures expected of around -10 to -15C will be cold enough, I hate the cold EEEK  !!!

We had some tea and porridge before we set off not before I had more drama with the stupid hire trousers not having a belt trying to sort some make shift solution that was totally uncomfortable when I put my backpack on then of course needing the loo at the last minute and trying to tuck in 5 layers of tops into 3 layers of trousers is just a complete nightmare!!

FINALLY just after 11pm we were off..... how tough is it going to get? How cold will it be? What if I fail?

Only time will tell...........
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