Kilimanjaro (Rongai Route) vs Inca Trail (Dead Womans Pass)

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Kilimanjaro (Rongai Route) vs Inca Trail (Dead Womans Pass)

Postby benhoughton » Sun Aug 03, 2014 3:04 am

Hi all,

I'm considering booking up for Kilimanjaro's Rongai route due to the 'slow ascension'. I did the Inca Trail last year and the day of Dead Womans Pass was incredibly difficult for me, having to stop multiple times on the steep ascent part (literally, take 20 steps, stop, drink water, go again).

I'm aware that Kili is higher but I was hoping a slower ascent translates to a less steep ascent and that the Inca Trail difficulty won't resurface. Of course, on the IT I didn't use any medication and that will be remedied this time! The steep ascent on Dead Womans Pass was the only part of the trail that caused any hint of a problem for me.

Has anyone done both and be able to compare the two for me?
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Re: Kilimanjaro (Rongai Route) vs Inca Trail (Dead Womans Pa

Postby thecakeisalie » Wed Aug 06, 2014 6:12 pm

This is a good news/bad news answer:

The bad news is that there is no way around a steep ascent, no matter what route you take. I started on the Lemosho route, but then took the little traveled northern circuit around which runs into the Rongai route, which eventually meets up with the Marangu route. All roads lead up, so eventually you'll hit summit day (or night, in most cases), and as you trudge and plod your way to the top you will most likely be questioning your sanity and cursing the idea that anyone would willingly do something so difficult on their vacation. Then you'll reach the top and forget about all of that pain!

The good news is that the pace you described on your Inca trail climb is EXACTLY what it is supposed to be like. And while Kili is indeed higher, and therefore requires more time to acclimate properly, it is roughly a similar hike in the sense that you're traveling uphill at a snail's pace, panting and wheezing all the way, for about 8 hours. You might find it harder than the Inca Trail, I certainly did. And in the moment it will almost definitely feel worse (sorry to be blunt, but no need to sugar coat what lies in store). But can you do it? Absolutely. Slowly, slowly, like most things worth doing. :)

Cheers and happy hiking.
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Re: Kilimanjaro (Rongai Route) vs Inca Trail (Dead Womans Pa

Postby benhoughton » Thu Aug 07, 2014 5:39 am

awesome, thanks for the reply! I appreciate the non sugar coated part :)

It was the sharp steepness of DWP on Inca Trail that was tough, the pace etc was fine and ascending throughout was generally fine. Looks like I better start getting my kit in order!
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