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Kilimanjaro Rongai Route 11th September


I am booked on this trip and am already excited! (and a little nervous). 

Would be great to chat with anyone else who is going!





Hi Malanie

 I too am rather nrevy about the whole trip but also bloomin excited. Must admit the added bonus of the next few months filled with excuses for additional shopping sprees fills me with further joy, any excuse basically to head into any of the outdoorsy shops or trawl the internet for must have bargains.



Hi folks,

Also REALLY excited.  My Dad (Jim) and I are both signed up.  I'm 33 and he's 69 (going on 16).  How is the training going?



HI guys!

Sorry it's taken me so long to reply - I didn't know anyone had posted! 

Training is going well, stepping up a bit now as I don't want to get there and not be prepared. I'm going shopping tomorrow to start getting some kit.

Have you done anything like this before? I've walked in the Lakes a fair bit but this is definitely the biggest challenge I have taken on so far.

Whereabouts are you? I am near Marlow in Buckinghamshire (and I'm 30). I did the Gorilla trip last year and it was brilliant so I'm hoping this will be just as good.




Hi Melanie,

I'm on this trip too. I understand the feeling of nervousness. There's always the nagging feeling that I may have bitten off more than I can chew.

What size ruck sack (day sack) are you taking? I'm torn between one at 35/45 or a smaller one at 32 litres. I guess I'll have to do a trial pack. I gather our complimentary kit bag should arrive about 3 weeks before departure.

If you haven't already bought it I can recommend the little guide book by Henry Stedman. I bought mine direct from the publishers - Trailblazer Publications. They don't charge for P&P whereas places like Stamfords do.

Kepp up the training.




Morning...We bought day rucksacks from TISO, i'm not sure what the capacity is however they're probably slightly bigger than we need.  I just liked them as they were light, had space for a water reservoir and had a mesh breathable layer for your back to stop sweating if it gets too hot.

Have you buys bought a sleeping bag yet?  I have one I use for camping but it's only 3 season so will have to buy another one.  And by the looks of things...the 4-5 season ones are not cheap.




Hi All

You can hire sleeping bags, mats and the duvet jackets from Exodus for £25 per item .. i am hiring a sleeping bag as i have the same problem, mine is only 3 season and old at that so pos. down to 2 seasons these days .. going to take my own liner though for added warmth and the feeling of ownership ..

re training - getting rather worried as all i am doing is rowing at the moment .. yikes!!

re rucksack - think mine is 25/30 litres ..

what is everyone doing about charging camera batteries etc?



Hi all,

As Iona suggests I was also planning to take my 3 season bag and my insert that will make it a 4 season bag. The inserts are certainly cheaper than buying a new bag which you may never use again.

Re camera batteries, I was planning to buy a spare battery. I have a Canon Ixus 430 and whilst the Canon spare for this is about £55 you can get a Duracell one for less than £20. I think (hope) that if I keep this in a pocket to keep it warm I should have enough capacity in 2 batteries to see me through for the trip.

By the way Melanie I live just round the corner from you in Maidenhead.

Best wishers,




 I'm hiring one of their sleeping bags and a duffel jacket - just taking a rollmat. I'm going to take spare camera batteries probably as we obviously won't be able to charge them!  I also want to do a video diary (should be funny!) so will probably take spare memory cards.

Quite a few places have sales on at the moment so a good time to get base layers etc. I've got two sets, one for the summit climb (or both if it's really bad!) plus another to wear at night if it's too cold. I think the sleeping bags will be pretty good though.

My daysack is probably about 30 litres - you only need to carry what you want that day i.e sun cream, water, camera, maybe first aid kit for plasters etc? and I guess water proofs as I reckon the weather can change quickly.

One recommendation I saw was to ge a Platypus Thermal Insulator for your water pouch - I got one off the internet. It will keep your water cool from the sun but also stop it freezing which is important for summit day.  Also spare batteries for your head torch as the cold can freeze them.

If you are getting trekking poles definitely get them from ebay not from the shops. They are upwards of £35 each in stores but I got two for 11.98 on Ebay :)

I think a Buff (neck / head thing) will also be invaluable both as protection from the cold but also the sun.

Don't forget plenty of sun screen!!! I work for Johnson & Johnson so will bring a bumper supply of Compeed Blister plasters which should be enough for us all!

Has everyone applied for their Visa and had their jabs?

I just want to go now - I'm really excited!



Oh and another tip I picked out from one of Bear Grhylls books (the one on his Everest climb) is to put stuff like your batteries, gloves, socks and anything else that you want to keep warm, in the bottom of your sleeping bag at night. It keeps your batteries working and you get to put on lovely toasty socks in the morning!


I did think of hiring a sleeping bag but wasn't sure if they would be washed after every trip :-)  if we do hire them, do we have to give advanced notice?

I started making up a large box with items from the checklist last night and ticking off as I went.....still a few thiings to buy but not too much.


Yes you need to give advanced notice to hire equipment - just give them a call.

I have a sleeping bag liner so no worries about washing! Personally I think it's a great idea as it's one less thing to pack and I'm guessing they will be the right quality that we need etc.

Not long now!!


Hi Mel, Iona, Tony and not forgetting my No1 and only son Derek.   Likewise I am looking forward to the trip very much.  Sorry it has taken me so long to appear in the forum, I think derek wanted to keep you all to himself He He!!     Derek stated I was 69 going on 16 (so kind) actually the 69 is correct but more like 45 than 16.   Profile photo taken last year on a zip line trip in mexico that was fun.    I work in Nigeria and that's where I am at this moment in time.   It is actually lunch time and I am having the Nigerian equivalent of Pot Noodles (delicious I dont think).  Training going well but a little constrained by security issues.    My previous climbing was Ben nevis 4403ft when I was 19 and in Lake District my favouite part of England in 60's 70's and 80's.   I did a bonding trip to LD in 90's with Derek but that is another story maybe for Mt Kili.    If you guys (excuse me ladies) have time drop me a note into the forum.    Look forward to meeting you all face to face.  Jim





Hi Jim,

 Nice to hear from you! I'm thinking you might have some good stories for us on that mountain :)

I've just realised that two weeks today we will be getting ready to fly out - and now I'm starting to get nervous! I've been training like mad but having just re read the trip notes I'm now remembering just what we are taking on. I hope we all make it!

I think our trip must be fully booked but haven't heard from anyone else yet?



Ok I'm so not reading that!!! Of to the gym for more leg work!!

Have you got all your kit? I have a mountain of Compeed blister plasters to share around ;)

Have everything now bar some appropriate sunglasses. At the moment I shall be climbing looking like Cheryl Cole............

Have a good weekend!





Morning all...and Dad :-)

Kit bags arrived on Friday and to be honest I was a bit surprised as the looked smaller than i'd imagined.  I'm sure if we jump on them a few times then everything will fit.  Anyone else think they looked a bit on the small side?

Less than 2 weeks now........



Gud Moaning all

Kit bag small!!!   Question is will my kilt, sporan and kitchen sink fit in it?  if so that's fine.

Hope all had a nice weekend.   Here in Nigeria I am in middle of a stike by national contract staff so my resources are a bit stretched at the moment, fortunately its not painful.

Hope to speak to more of you during week.




The types of drugs I mentioned above for the daily doses suggested for Derek and myself cost a total equivalent to 15 pounds sterling.  If you want me to get for you (or anyone else who may be reading this) it will only cost you a beer when we come down from Kili!!!!

9 days to go, can't wait, flying home on Friday to complete last minute preparations and get last of my dollars.  


Will get you two beers ;)

If you could get it for me that would be brilliant!! Off to get glucose tablets / energy bars and dollars this weekend then I am set! Bar tips and meals on first and last day I can't imagine we will be spending that much?

This time in two weeks we will hopefully have made it!! Either way we will be on our way down now! Yikes:)


Good evening Mel

Took the chance in case you did want some and got 30 - 250 mg tablets this afternoon, (enough for you and one other group member).   Daily dose is 3 tablets x 5 days = 15        I am so good at maths I sometimes amaze myself (more so that my t-ick son, as I recently pointed out to him, but he has some good points He He!!!).  

How is your sponsorship going (are you doing one?).  We are just short of 2000GBP, our original target was 1500GBP (we had to revise it), and we also have pledges of over 500 GBP based on our success at a penny per foot climbed.  So if I start to flag please help me to the top.

Tonight is my last sleep in Nigeria this trip.  Have a good night.

Look forward to seeing and the rest of the group on 12th.   



HI Mel

     yes getting on  website is harder than the training lol but hope i have done enough i run about 30 to 40 miles per week and weight train as well but from what i have heard from others who have done the trip including a copper who runs 4 marathons a year it is not your fitness but the reaction to altitude which will deem whether or not you succeed.ps without putting you under pressure aforesaid copper was 300m from summit but had to be brought back down before he got there!Hence do you not find it really annoying when people say "Moyles did it so it must be easy" So glad you there to push us on because the stick i will get from lads at work if i do not complete will be intolerable lol.


Oh yes very annoying when people say if he can do it it must be easy! I also get ' well it's just a walk really isn't it?'. Another one ' well you aren't actually climbing the full 19.000 feet are you as you don't start at sea level....'. Have they done it?!? These mountains must be very busy for all the people who must be climbing them every other week - based on the wealth of 'advice' I have been given ;)

Ignore the lot of them - that's what I say. We're the ones doing it!  

I've been reading more today and I really don't think we should worry too much about who could do it and who couldn't. Everyone's different and as you say it's not the fitness it's the altitude, and who knows how that is going to affect us?

Latest tips I've got today from actual people who have done it (online blogs etc) is to drink LOTS of water - about 3 litres a day. Also energy bars and glucose tablets as we will find it difficult to eat at altitude (particularly if we are feeling sick.....although that's much like a hangover to me;) ). I've bought some energy 'gel' as it's supposed to be easier to get down than solids.

And yes I will be pushing us on!! Just don't push me off or shout at me too much when I get on your nerves! One week today!!! 




It will be beers all round after we've all made it to the top!

Bought my last few things today - 2 water bottles (had a panic that I wouldn't be carrying enough water....now have 3.5 litres......wee much?!) and got my dollars.

It's my birthday tomorrow and I'm even going to go training in the morning!!

I talk a good story but this time next week will probably be looking a little pale ;).

I read a few people's blogs of the trek yesterday which didn't help but I've decided they didn't have the expertise and support that we are going to have with Exodus - I genuinely believe that's what's going to make the difference for us.

Final top tip from me - going on what I've read.....throw one extra layer in your kit bag! Doesn't seem to matter how many layers we have on summit night...we'll still be freezing!!


Mel x 



Hi Gang 

Got home safely from Nigeria yesterday.  Tomorrow I will start collecting last minute items.

Mel Happy Birthday today, is it 21 again????    Glad to hear that the beers are stillon!!!

Have a good day hope your training today goes well.



yikes .. one week and counting ..

you are all starting to make me worry re the whole fitness thing .. i have simply been rowing and running ... also totally agree re how on earth am i going to fit it all into the kit bag so definitely wearing & carrying all the heavy & bulky stuff .. i will be very easy to spot at the airport that's for sure!!!

geting visa on Monday and having read the drug tips above I am also chasing my GP for a prescription so fingers crossed ..

i am soooo looking forward to sharing a beer (in celebration hopefully) of our successful efforts with you all ..




 Don't worry Iona, I am quite sure that your rowing and running will be sufficient. At the end of the day it's the altitude we will struggle with so your fitness is probably there. Are you rowing on the river or in the gym? I tried out for my local rowing club yesterday so if you row on the water I'll be very interested to talk to you about it all!

So I have stuffed myself silly today. I had 2 birthday cakes plus birthday cupcakes, and went out for lunch. Hence I may not even make it past Day 1 now :). Still if the worst comes to the worst and we run out of food...I've got plenty of meat on me now to keep you all going! Though you'll have to catch me first!  

Just need to organise my bag this week then I am set. 

Man I'm starting to get nervous!

See you in a week!




Happy belated birthday Mel...

Only 5 days to go............. I didn't train much last week as I was moving at the weekend and had quite a bit to do but between Friday, Sat and Sunday I climbed the 61 steps to the flat a total of 57 times so my legs feel well and truely exercised.

Dad and I popped into Tiso yesterday and got the last few bits and pieces we needed and will be doing a final audit tomorrow night.  We've raised over £2000 now and should hit £2,500 by Friday if my friends remember to switch on their computers and donate...

Really looking forward to meeting everyone.


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