The Lemosho Route, at 71 kilometers, starts from the west side of Mount Kilimanjaro at the Londorossi gate, which is about a 3 to 4 hours’ drive from Moshi. Previously, there were only two routes along Mount Kilimanjaro, and these were the Marangu (Coca-Cola) and Machame routes (whiskey route), but as the tourism industry flourished, the park authorities came up with the idea of introducing more routes to reduce crowding on the two original routes. This has greatly reduced crowding and made hiking to the summit more pleasant, and the new routes, including Lemosho, are better organized and offer proper acclimatization for the hikers.
The Lemosho Route is usually considered as the most beautiful of all the Mount Kilimanjaro climbing trails. The route crosses the entire Shira Plateau from west to east in a nice, hike that is relatively flat. The are low crowds along the Lemosho route until the trail joins the Machame route as you approach the Lava Tower.
Access to the Lemosho Route starts with a drive from Moshi to the Londorossi Gate in approximately 3 to 4 hours on the west side of the mountain. The Lemosho Trail starts from the west side base of the mountain and passes through the lush forest zone, crossing the Shira Plateau (which was once one of the three peaks on Mount Kilimanjaro before it collapsed). We then hike to the Moir Hut for accommodation, continuing our hike to the Lava Tower before hiking low to the Barranco Valley after circling the southern circuit to Karanga and then to Barafu camp which is at a higher altitude. The summit hike starts from Barafu camp in the early hours, and after getting to Uhuru Peak, we follow the Mweka trail while descending the mountain.
How hard is the Lemosho Route?
Lemosho’s route is a longer one with more elevation changes compared to the other routes, making it a more challenging one compared to the rest. The elevation profile of Lemosho gains and loses altitude throughout the hike, which requires more energy to complete. The up-and-down movement is extremely important because it follows the climb high and sleep low strategy, which helps the body get used to the low levels of oxygen, also known as acclimatization. Even though the route profile is considered hard, the summit success rate is between 90 and 95%.
What is the cost of the Mount Kilimanjaro route using Lemosho?
The cost of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro using the Lemosho Route varies depending on several factors, including the tour operator used, the number of days to be spent on the hike, and the number of people in the group. Note that the fee also includes park entrance fees, food, accommodations, and staff facilitation (including tips), and note that these keep on increasing or decreasing depending on the season, which is why there is no consistent cost for using the Lemosho Route. An estimation of the cost, however, is between $2879 and $4099.
How many days for the Lemosho Route?
The Lemosho Route can be hiked in 6 to 9 days, depending on what the client wants. We, however, do not have the 6-day Lemosho hike because it is extremely dangerous and hikers will not be able to get to the summit. The 7-day and 8-day Lemosho Route itinerary is the one that is recommended, especially 8 days because the Lemosho Route was designed for physically fit people, and the 8-day offers an extremely good acclimatization profile, and your chances of reaching the summit are about 90%.
The most popular itinerary that follows Lemosho is the 8 days Lemosho Route, Mount Kilimanjaro climbing program.
If you are looking at a high chance of reaching the summit, Lemosho is a better option; however, note that it is more strenuous as compared to the Machame and Marangu routes. Some sections of the route are steeper and more demanding than others, and at one point, the Lemosho Route merges with the Machame route, which might cause a bit of traffic. And because of its remote nature and length, the Lemosho Route is a good choice for hikers taking up the 7- or 8-day itinerary.