How Hard is Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

How Hard is Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

So how hard is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro? Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest point in Africa. The roof of Africa as it is called stands at 19,341 feet. Despite being the highest free standing mountain in the world, it’s just a “walk up.” There is no technical climbing required. The secret however is in the preparation.

To climb Mount Kilimanjaro is a challenge and if you’re new to trekking, camping, living outdoors, or high altitude then you may find it tough. The specific challenges are mainly due to the altitude, your attitude and fitness but with the correct preparation and a good guide team, then the vast majority of people will successfully summit.

Most hill walkers and trekkers are fit enough to climb Kilimanjaro, but it must be approached in the correct manner. You must have a good guide and support team to ensure that you have the correct equipment, are well rested, fed and guided.

This ensures that by the time you reach the high camp, from where you’ll launch your summit bid, you’ll be in good health, well acclimatized to the lower levels of oxygen in the air, hydrated and full of energy.

In general, if you can easily walk 6 – 7 hours a day over undulating ground, for several days in a row at home, then you should be in good stead to tackle Kilimanjaro.

Factors that will Determine How Hard Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro Will Be

The number of Days

Climbing mount Kilimanjaro can take anywhere from 5 to 10 days depending on the route and how many days you want to spend each route days can be extended.

Short route for 5 days are very difficult as they have less than 40% summit success rate while longer routes from 8 days have a 90% summit success rate.

The Route

There are 6 Mount Kilimanjaro climbing route. Each route has its own different landscape, advantages and disadvantages.

How Hard is Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

While route like umbwe route are left for experienced mountain climbers some route are much easier for normal tourist to climb up mt Kilimanjaro


Acclimatization is the process or result of becoming accustomed to a new climate or new conditions. Each route has different in acclimatization days. The Marangu route in its 5 days and machame route 6 days have no acclimatization day.

All other routes have an extra day for acclimatizing in order to increase your chance of summiting

The Weather

Weather is a very important factor which can make your trek more difficult or less difficult. A good weather summer time it is less difficult to climb Mount Kilimanjaro but during the rainy season it is more difficult to climb mount Kilimanjaro and it can also be deadly if you are wet up mount Kilimanjaro


How well prepared are you for your Kilimanjaro trek that another important question. You should be well prepared before Mount Kilimanjaro climb.

Fitness Level

It’s important to climb mount Kilimanjaro during the times when you are most fit in terms of health, You should also be physically fit in order to climb mount Kilimanjaro. How to train for Mount Kilimanjaro full details

Tour Operator or Agency

Many people have been asking how it relates to difficulty right. Yes it is a factor some operate use less porter and only the guide with no assistant guide well this means you will first have a larger luggage to carry,

Two, if your guide misses out on the symptoms of mountain sickness and does not give you an extra day for acclimatizing you will get acute mountain sickness. That may be the end your trek since you will have to descent and exit the mount

Trekking Straight Up

Mount Kilimanjaro is difficult to climb because it takes you straight up to high altitudes in a very short period of time so your body does not get enough time to acclimatize.

You can choose longer routes and more days to for acclimatization this will improve your chances of summit success.

Its very Cold

How Hard is Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

Yes cold contributes in difficultly, People who climb Mount Kilimanjaro during winter have lower summit success rate than people who trek Mount Kilimanjaro during summer time.

It can get very cold on top of Mount Kilimanjaro so you should have the right clothes. See clothes for Mount Kilimanjaro

Many Ups and Downs

Trekking mount Kilimanjaro has many ups and down, many hills, ridges, valley and even the baranco wall. The trek is not always about going up the mountain at some points your will be descend. Many camps are at low points in order to follow the golden rule of acclimatization which is walk high sleep low.

Summit Success Rate

Another factor we use to determine how hard is it to climb mount Kilimanjaro is the summit success rate with an average of 52% it is fairly hard to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.

Did you carry oxygen?

Oxygen is important and makes your Kilimanjaro climb a bit easier because it is used in a higher elevation on the mountain to give your muscles a bit more energy during the climb also to reduce risk of mountain sickness.

Therefore is very crucial having oxygen available to treat climbers who have developed moderate or severe mountain sickness for the Emergency purpose. Without it your Kilimanjaro Climb gets harder.

The pace of your group

This important thing to know is pace of you are climbing up the mountain. Slow pace makes your Kilimanjaro climb easier than running up the mountain.

How Hard is Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

This is very important and most guides will manage the pace of the group and balance of maintaining lowest heart rates which is essential to a successful Climb a good pace on Mountain.

The luggage you carry

Climbing up Mount Kilimanjaro with Luggage can be extremely difficult. You need a minimum of 4 porter. They also should carry a maximum of 20 kg

Whilst clients or climbers may need to have at most 10 kg of their luggage going up, during the higher altitude you will not carry anything.

The food you eat

Having a good dish is very important. You should not suffer from diarrhea or stomach ache as it can make your climb extremely hard.

We will offer you soup, breads, salads, rice, pastas, potatoes, fried chicken, meat/beef, green vegetables, fruit with custard, coffee, tea and chocolate.

The number of people in the group,

The number of people in a group can also make your climb a bit harder or bit easier. Maximum of 10 people per group is the best so as you can get the one on one support you need with your guide and assistant guide.

The ultimate determinant of how hard climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is will be your attitude. With the right attitude, you will conquer the roof of Africa with ease. Without the right attitude, your climb is doomed to fail.