I did the same route about two years ago. It was an amazing experience and for reasonable fitness very do able. I took the diamox from about day 3 when the headaches just started. There is no one day that is too hard - yes there are parts where you are challenged but it's ok. There are many parts where you can amble along and enjoy the experience. Sumit day was HARD but it's just one day and so glad it's in the dark or i don't think you'd ever set off. Your guide will get you there if he is as good as mine was. Take plenty of wet wipes just enjoy. The descent is tough on the knees (more so than the climb).
My advice is as they say poli poli - and it really is true. We thought we coould have gone faster in parts but the guide wouldn't let us - how right he was - slow will get you there.
If you are off reasonable fitness you will do it (i didn't train at all) - The Lemosho is good for the time lengthe - helping the sickness. But you can't judge what your body will do and i'd say that is the only determining factor.
They laughed at us as we smoked cigs and drank whisky but we were determined to enjoy and we did!
Good luck and hope my few words are off a little comfort. Just keep going and it is something you'll never forget.
It's only really cold for the last half so wrap up well and if you're like us you'll eat some fabulous food and have an amazing time.
Thanks Carole for all the information and your words of encouragement. We were tempted to do the Rongai route but thought that the Lemosho would give us a better chance of success.
What time of year did you do your climb? I have read various reports as to how cold it will be but they all seem to differ. Obviously no two years are the same but there does seem to be quite a difference in what people say the night time temperatures will be!
We are slowly building up our training, but as you say no one knows who will or will not be affected by AS, and you can't train for that. I suppose it is all part and parcel of the adventure that awaits us! roll on August.
No worries - i still like re-living the experience. i went in September and being a sun lover climbed in shorts and vest top through the rainforst and onto the plains ( about 3 days). i think it was two nights before sleeping in clothing (4 season sleeping bag - no liner).But was comfortable. Took salopettes for evening and cheap ankle ugg boots (easy to slip on and off and comfy). By the time we got to the lava tower it was very cold. but again sleeping in clothes ensured that it was ok. We took thermarest self inflating matress - an absolute godsend for sleeping purposes.
Very usefull was the night time wee bag, along with small waste bag for tissue (who wants to go outside!!). took a bit of practise and not very dignified but quite a few people did it and emptied in the morning.
Good luck and if you think of anything else feel free to contact.
From what I have read they recommend that your drink at least 3 to 4 litres of water a day which apparently helps to alleviate the symptoms of altitude sickness. Obviously drinking this amount of fluid results in it having to go somewhere. Can I ask what the female members of your trip did regarding going to the toilet during the day? Obviously there might not be places to hide behind all the time which certainly seems to be the case the higher up you get. The thought of having not only to negotiate several layers of clothing together with no where to hide certainly doesn't fill me with much joy. I have found however the ideal solution for nightime toilet needs http://www.purpleturtle.co.uk/acatalog/Travel_John_and_Pocketoilet.html These seem to be the answer, especially when we are higher up and it is freezing outside. Anything that negates the need to go out to the communal toilet is good in my book. I thought I must ask as it never seems to come up in any posting forums but I'm sure I'm not the only one who has wondered about these things.
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