Mt. Kilimanjaro questions

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Mt. Kilimanjaro questions

Postby gstroe » Thu Feb 02, 2012 11:37 pm

Hi everybody, will go on Mt. Kilimajaro this month, have a few questions please:

are gaiters needed at this time of the year?
sleeping bag, I have one rated at minus 10 C, is that enough or I need to get a better one?
sleep mat - any reason why I cannot use an inflatable pvc camping mat? been to the store and the mats are both expensive and bulky
phones - I would assume there is no cel phone coverage beyond Marangu village at best, what sattelite phones work there? do Globalstar phones work or only Iridium and maybe Thuraya?
malaria risk - is there a risk? will arrive at Kilimanjaro airport, stay two nights in Marangu before the climb and one night when back before leaving from Kilimanjaro airport

Thank you very much.

George
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Re: Mt. Kilimanjaro questions

Postby thecakeisalie » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:53 am

I've never found gaiters necessary, but to each their own. If you use them to keep out rocks, then the only time this was really an issue was on the way down through the scree. If you use them to keep out water.... well, it could rain at any time, so that's your call.

Your sleeping bag should be warm enough, but layer up regardless. A good set of thermal underwear and thick socks should be mandatory.

I'm not sure what you mean by "inflatable pvc camping mat", but if its portable, lightweight, and keeps you off the ground, then go for it. The entire purpose of a sleeping pad is to minimize heat loss into the ground during sleep; comfort is a secondary concern. Keep that in mind when choosing.

You may be surprised to learn that cell phones may work on the mountain. I wasn't able to get signal, but my guide was able to make calls as high as the Lent Group (~4690m), and I've heard that occasionally you can get signal at the summit. Cell phones all work on line of sight to the towers, so I imagine you'll have better luck if you're on the south face of the mountain (nearer to Moshi).

Yes, this is a malaria zone! You'll need to start the meds before you arrive and continue for several weeks after leaving, better get to a doctor soon! In addition you'll need a Yellow Fever vaccine, and its highly recommended to have HepA/HepB, Typhoid, etc.

Best of luck!
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Re: Mt. Kilimanjaro questions

Postby gstroe » Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:54 pm

Thank you very much indeed, that was a very good reply! was thinking at gaiters in case there is snow. Yes, I have thermals and will use them. I will take Malarone. Vaccines, I think I have practically all that exists at present except for rabies and I was considering that too but it is very expensive.

George
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Re: Mt. Kilimanjaro questions

Postby thecakeisalie » Sat Feb 04, 2012 6:05 pm

Honestly, I don't think you'll need gaiters for snow. Even if it does snow it probably will only be at the higher elevations (where you won't be for very long) and it probably won't be very deep. It tends to melt during the day anyway.

And the rabies shot is probably overkill, just try not to pick fights with local dogs in Moshi. ;)
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