MOUNT MERU EXPERIENCE
MOUNT MERU EXPERIENCE
Mt. Meru is located in the heart of Arusha National Park and it is 50 miles west of Mt. Kilimanjaro. Mount Meru is a massive volcano reaching 14,980 feet (4,565 meters). This trek serves as an ideal warm up for Mt. Kilimanjaro due to its altitude acclimatization and hiking distances. This trek is also geared towards hikers that prefer less crowds and a challenging ascent.
Because Mount Meru is located in Arusha National Park, hikers must climb with an armed ranger due to the wide range of wildlife living on the mountain. On the lower slopes of the mountain, hikers are more likely to see elephants, giraffes, and buffalo! As hikers continue their ascents, the trail follows the north rim of the volcano’s crater along a dramatic ridge line. Throughout the climb, hikers sleep in designated huts along the trail. Hikers reach the summit as the sun is rising and they will have spectacular views of Mt. Kilimanjaro and of the Mt. Meru Crater.
After an early morning breakfast in Arusha (1400m), you will be picked up from your hotel and brought to the Momella Gate in Arusha National Park. At this time, the porters will organize and pack the belongings for the hike while you and your guide register with the Tanzania National Park (TANAPA). You will then begin your ascent in Arusha National Park. The first day of hiking is similar to a walking safari; you should expect to see giraffes, zebras, antelope, buffalo, and potentially elephants near the trail. Due to the high possibility of spotting wildlife, an armed ranger, hired through the National Park, is required to hike with our team for the duration of the hike. As you continue hiking, you will pass the Ngarenanyuki River and a beautiful waterfall at the base of Mt. Meru. Upon arriving to Miriakamba Hut (2500m), your chef will prepare a hot dinner and washing water for you. Enjoy the beautiful sunset and overnight.
After breakfast, you will start ascending up the steep trail along the ridge of the saddle. You may see various wildlife along the way! The trail has views of Mt. Meru Crater and the Ash Tray. When you arrive at camp, you have the option of hiking Little Mt. Meru (3820m) with your guide to further acclimate. You will be served an early dinner, so you can receive ample rest before your midnight summit attempt. Get to sleep by 1900!
Your guide will wake you at 00:30 for tea and biscuits. You will then begin your summit attempt at 1:30am. The trail starts off on a steep grade to Rhino Point (3800m) to Cobra Point (4350m). The last hour of the hike you will scamble on a rocky ridge between the crater and inner cliffs of Meru. You will reach the summit of Meru (4565m) at sunrise with spectacular views of Mt. Meru Ash Tray and Mt. Kilimanjaro. Enjoy your views then descend to Saddle Hut for a short break. You will then continue descending to Miriakamba Hut (2500m) for dinner and overnight.
After a long rest and breakfast, we will begin our final descent to Momella gate. We will hike through forest and meadows where it is likely to spot wildlife. At the base of Mt. Meru, you will be greeted by our driver who will take you back to Arusha.