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Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2011 10:03 pm
by Tamerlin

Photographed in Mount Kilimanjaro National Park, Tanzania, near the summit.

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 9:57 am
by cadyak
double post

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 9:58 am
by cadyak
Beautiful Man..Keep them coming. Im glad you carried that big ole camera all the way up there.

Hope the trip is going well....Write stuff down so you can give a report too.

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 11:35 am
by Tamerlin
I'm back... I did write a journal while I was out, though I got a bit behind in the last few days of the trip. I will be writing lots about the trip in my blog though :)

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 11:54 am
by cadyak
Just perused your blog.. Very Nice.
You need to get tied into Facebook so I can share it with many potential fans.
Looking forward to your tales

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 12:02 pm
by Tamerlin
I guess I still need to add a FB link to my site... but it does automatically post blog updates to FB already, and I have a company page there: ... 1708467867

More fans would certainly be welcome, I need all the marketing I can get!

Thanks :)

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 10:20 pm
by zelph

At what elevation are you?

Did you have to wait many days for a shot like that?

Where did you hang your hammock, down in the valley?

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 11:14 pm
by ConnieD
Tamerlin, blog We’ll be hiking to the summit of Kilimanjaro via the Rongai route, which is going to be a tough trip any way you slice it. We’ll be going from 6397 feet to 19,340 feet, so altitude and cold will be significant issues in addition to the physical demands of the hike itself.

:shock: Any 10,000' mountain is a big deal!

Were you okay at altitude?? Did you have a basecamp, at altitude, to adjust??

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Fri Mar 04, 2011 3:42 am
by Tamerlin
ConnieD wrote:Were you okay at altitude?? Did you have a basecamp, at altitude, to adjust??

We hiked with 3000 feet of elevation gain each day until summit day. That day we gained 2000. The camp that night was at around 15,500 feet. So we had *some* acclimation time, but the route we were on is normally scheduled to be a day longer than we had, so we had a bit less acclimation time than was ideal. I was actually fine until close to Gilman's Point when I ran out of water and started feeling the altitude sickness setting in. (Drinking water made it go away, but that stopped working when I ran out of water to drink.)

Zelph, we were lucky with the weather. When we started the hike down at lower elevations, we had a lot of cloud cover that kept the days moderate rather than the usual searing 95 degrees, and a sleet and rainstorm when crossing the saddle from Mawenzi Tarn (right at Mawenzi's base) to Kibu Hut camp. The sky cleared that afternoon while we were resting up for the summit day, and when we lined up on the trail at midnight, the full moon was out and we could see Kibo in all her glory. It was quite a sight!

So FYI, Mt. Kilimanjaro has 3 major volcanoes, and Mawenzi is the middle one, I can't think of the name of the oldest, and Kibo is the newest and biggest of the lot. Kibo is where the summit it. Gilman's Point is I think the lowest point on the summit, and Uhuru Point is the highest at 19,300 feet.

I want to do the ascent again by a different route; I'd like to get a bit more acclimatization time so that I can again avoid taking altitude sickness pills, and I'd also like to take a trip to the crater, plus have some extra time to work the large format camera. :)

Re: Sunrise Over Mawenzi

Posted: Fri Mar 04, 2011 10:46 am
by ConnieD
I love your photographs.

I would say you did really well.

I never heard of "altitude sickness pills". I suspect they were only to help with nausea.

Here is what we did for "big mountains". The way we mountainclimbers prepared, was to drink plenty of fluids days before the ascent. Then, "hike" in "the approach". Then, establish a "base camp". Then, climb the mountain in 3,000' increments. The "summit day" was a shorter altitude change from "high camp" often climbing much less than 2,000'.

There is no guarantee that a person will adjust. That is part of "the problem" with "big mountain" mountainclimbing. It is impossible to know in advance.

Even if you had no problem on every other "big mountain" you climbed, there is no guarantee about the next time.

There are some "safeguards" like watching the people near you for onset of symptoms. Not only observe, for staggering, etc. talk a little: if their speech becomes irrelevant, or incoherent, that is a symptom.

Do not wait for a symptom to "clear up".

In my opinion, with the exception of pulmonary edema and death, the worst symptom is "euphoria" which can start at the beginning.

People have been known to skip or dance right off a precipice.

On the first sign of a symptom of altitude sickness, we were trained to immediately "collapse on our feet" going straight down while we "straight-arm" our ice axe in the snow, and, tie-off our rope on the head of the ice axe.

Next, if we could stand or walk, two strong young men roped up, with the afflicted person in the middle, and, assisted the person off the mountain. Either that, or the entire trip was cancelled, returning to lower altitude.

If the symptoms are not too advanced, returning to lower altitude is "the cure".

Camp 7 has some very lightweight ice axes available. (These are not certified for cutting ice-steps, or belaying.)

The only other primary caution is that a "big mountain" "makes" the weather.

Therefore, the "local weather" can change right now.

Never climb in a "cloud cap".

It looks just like the description.