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Kilimanjaro: How to Climb Safely

Posted on: December 7th, 2009 by admin

Climbing on Kilimanjaro. Photo by Jeremy Windsor

Climbing on Kilimanjaro. Photo by Jeremy Windsor

Of the 40,000 people who travel to 19,334-foot Kilimanjaro each year, half to three-quarters never reach the summit. Medical issues, including acute mountain sickness and gastro-intestinal problems, are at the root of many failed attempts.

Hoping to address these issues and thus allow more climbers to succeed on Africa’s highest peak, Dr. Jeremy Windsor and Dr. George Rodway (an AAC member from Salt Lake City) crafted an extensive guide to “Safety and Success on Kilimanjaro.” This document, posted at the UIAA website, describes the Lemosho Glades route, whose gradual ascent profile allows for better acclimatization—and thus a better chance of climbing the peak safely. The article also covers many other dangers of climbing in Tanzania, from bites to traffic accidents. Essential reading for those planning a Kili trip.

The UIAA’s medical pages are stacked with helpful articles on mountaineering topics, from portable hyperbaric chambers to water disinfection, the effects of extreme temperatures on drugs, and special concerns for women and children at altitude.

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