Friday, December 30, 2011

The Mwalimu Nyerere/Mt. Kilimanjaro Charity Climb 2011 (post 3 of 15)

Friday 16 September 2011
I woke up at 4:25 AM and was out of the hotel at 05:05 AM. I walked with my backpack and a heavy load of my mountain gear packed in one of those large polythene shopping bags that scare taxi drivers away.

I was told I should have been at Lamadi at 07:30 AM. I was there before six and met the same two characters who promised to arrange a ride for me through the Serengeti but instead made me loose two days at Lamadi before I opted for a flight from Mwanza to the Kilimanjaro International Airport.

By 10:00 AM I had decided there was no chance I would be traveling by car to Arusha today and I hopped on a bus to Mwanza.

Next: I'm in Moshi

The Mwalimu Nyerere/Mt. Kilimanjaro Charity Climb 2011 (post 3 of 15)

Friday 16 September 2011
I woke up at 4:25 AM and was out of the hotel at 05:05 AM. I walked with my backpack and a heavy load of my mountain gear packed in one of those large polythene shopping bags that scare taxi drivers away.

I was told I should have been at Lamadi at 07:30 AM. I was there before six and met the same two characters who promised to arrange a ride for me through the Serengeti but instead made me loose two days at Lamadi before I opted for a flight from Mwanza to the Kilimanjaro International Airport.

By 10:00 AM I had decided there was no chance I would be traveling by car to Arusha today and I hopped on a bus to Mwanza.

Next: I'm in Moshi

The Mwalimu Nyerere/Mt. Kilimanjaro Charity Climb 2011 (post 3 of 15)

Friday 16 September 2011
I woke up at 4:25 AM and was out of the hotel at 05:05 AM. I walked with my backpack and a heavy load of my mountain gear packed in one of those large polythene shopping bags that scare taxi drivers away.

I was told I should have been at Lamadi at 07:30 AM. I was there before six and met the same two characters who promised to arrange a ride for me through the Serengeti but instead made me loose two days at Lamadi before I opted for a flight from Mwanza to the Kilimanjaro International Airport.

By 10:00 AM I had decided there was no chance I would be traveling by car to Arusha today and I hopped on a bus to Mwanza.

Next: I'm in Moshi

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Alex Nyirenda remembered

It is the third death anniversary today of Brig. Alex Gwebe Nyirenda.

I pay special tribute to this illustrious Tanzanian who at the eve of Tanzania's independence climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro and placed the Uhuru Torch at the peak of Mt. Kilimanjaro on 9 December 1961.
Uhuru Peak at the top left point of the photograph, as seen from Crater Camp
A few years ago, when I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro for the second time, I began to toy with the idea of climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro on the 50th independence anniversary. It is Nyirenda's climb at the eve of independence 50 years ago that has inspired hundreds of Tanzanians this month - including his children Alex Foti Gwebe Nyirenda, and Tima Gwebe Nyirenda - to retrace his steps and commemorate independence on Africa's highest peak.

I will report on this historic climb on this blog soon.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Mwalimu Nyerere/Mt. Kilimanjaro Charity Climb 2011 (post 3 of 15)

This is a continuation of the posts from my September 2011 climb of Mt.Kilimanjaro.

Friday 16 September 2011
I woke up at 0425hrs and was out of the hotel at 0505hrs. I walked to the bus stop with my backpack and a heavy load of my Kilimanjaro gear stashed in one of those large polythene bags that scare taxi drivers away from me.

I was told I should be at Lamadi before 0730hrs to hitch a ride across the Serengeti National Park, an attempt that has ended in failure in the past. I arrived before six and met the same two characters who made me hang around Lamadi for two days. By ten in the morning I drew on my past experience and decided there would be no travel to Arusha today through the Serengeti and took a bus to Mwanza.

Next: Jaffar Amin says he's in

Related posts:
http://blogkili.blogspot.com/2011/10/the-mwalimu-nyereremt-kilimanjaro.html
http://blogkili.blogspot.com/2012/01/the-mwalimu-nyereremt-kilimanjaro_4.html

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb: day 7

The exotic flowers of Mt. Kilimanjaro appear in various shapes and colours.
At Mweka Camp I added this specimen to my collection of photos of Kilimanjaro's flowers although I am yet to identify its name.

This was the last day of the climb and before we left Mweka Camp for Mweka Gate I thought it was a good time to take a few mementos of the climb. Before the photo was taken I asked: "Can I hold her?" And I think Deo said: "Yes, but don't get too comfortable!"
Before leaving Mweka Camp, from left to right: the author of this blog, Aneth Tillya, and Deogratias Semiono. They both reached the summit. I managed to reach Stella Point.
So just to be on the safe side, I held Aneth as high as possible.

At Mweka Gate we were received by the District Commissioner and officials from Zara Tanzania Adventures, including Zara's proprietor, Zainab Ansell.
After a few speeches and the award of climbers' certificates, the entire group of climbers, dubbed the Kiboko Team by Cloud TV's Anthony Nugaz (in black jacket), posed for a group photo.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb: day 3

When climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro through the Lemosho route the views of Mt. Kilimanjaro change by the day.
At Barranco camp the image of Kibo would be unrecognizable to the familiar view of Mt. Kilimanjaro from Moshi where, weather permitting, both Kibo and Mawenzi peaks are visible.


One of the expedition members, who everyone called Mpemba (native of Pemba), flashed a thumbs-up sign in the comfort of his tent. The national flag was a reminder that we were climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro to mark 50 years of Tanzania's independence.

Post related to this one:
http://madarakanyerere.blogspot.com/2012/06/weather-on-mt-kilimanjaro.html

Sunday, December 4, 2011

The start of the Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb 2011

Early in the morning we assembled for a photo session at Springlands Hotel before embarking on our first day of the Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb organized jointly by the Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB) and Zara Tanzania Adventures.
Zainab Ansell, third from left, Zara's proprietor, and her sister Remmy Adam, fourth from left, joined staff and some of the climbers to see off the group of twenty-plus climbers that I was leading on this historic climb to mark 50 years of Tanzania's independence.
When we stopped briefly in downtown Moshi, the German film crew of Benjamin Leers, right, and Maurice Hüsni, second from right, joined Aneth Tillya, second from left, and another unidentified climber for a photograph.
The four made a photogenic quartet and attracted the attention of others who took several additional photos.
After we registered our names at the Londrossi Gate of the Kilimanjaro National Park we began the 25 minute drive to the edge of the rain forest where the 4-5 hour trek to the first camp, Mti Mkubwa (Big Tree), begins.

Because of the wet road condition, the minibus dropped us some distance before we reached the drop-off point and we were asked to wait to be picked up by an off road truck described by one American climber as "a truck with attitude", a menacing truck that can tackle the worst road conditions. Others decided to begin the walk before the truck's arrival.
The road conditions were so bad that even "the truck with attitude" had to stop some distance before reaching the end of the road and the beginning of the foot path. It would be at least an entire hour of walking before we reached the normal drop-off point.
Some of the porters began to walk ahead of us. My fourth Mt. Kilimanjaro climb, the first time I had attempted to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro twice in a year, was underway.

The Mt. Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb

We have just completed registration at Londrossi Gate for the Mt. Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb, 4 - 10 December.
The temperature at Londrossi is 27° Celcius.

Londrossi Gate is used by climbers using the Lemosho route.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

The Mt. Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb kicks off

A reporter from Star TV, below right, interviews Majira newspaper's managing editor, Imma Mbuguni, minutes before the commencement of the Mt. Kilimanjaro UhuruClimb.
The climb has been organized jointly by Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB) and Zara Tanzania Adventures.

I have been honoured by TTB as the leader of this climb to mark 50 years of the independence of Tanzania mainland.

We plan to be at the summit on the anniversary, 9th December.

Related post:
http://blogkili.blogspot.com/2012/05/the-weather-today_29.html

An interview prior to climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro

In the afternoon Benjamin Leers and co-filmmaker Maurice Housni decided they should begin to interview me for the documentary, The Teacher's Country.

They join me to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, beginning tomorrow, to mark 50 years of Tanzania's independence.
They chose a scenic spot among the rice fields close to Springlands Hotel. As they set up their equipment and carried out a sound check, a noisy bird attracted their attention.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Benjamin and Maurice arrive in Moshi for Kilimanjaro anniversary climb

The filmmakers, Benjamin Leers anMaurice Hüsni, arrived in Moshi from Dar es Salaam today and in the evening they spent time in an Internet cafe' near the Buffalo Hotel in downtown Moshi to link up by videophone with their relatives in Germany.
In two days we embark with them on the Kilimanjaro Uhuru Climb organized by Tanzania Tourist Board and Zara Tanzania Adventures to mark 50 years of Tanzania's independence. Benjamin and Maurice will also shoot part of their film documentary in which I will also answer questions on how Tanzania has evolved during its 50 years of nationhood.