Showing posts with label Tanzania. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tanzania. Show all posts

Want to Take Part in A Groundbreaking Study on Kilimanjaro This Year?

Kilimanjaro is one of the most alluring challenges for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure travelers from around the globe. Each year, thousands flock to its slopes in an effort to reach its lofty summit – the highest in Africa at 5895 meters (19,341 ft). But, many of those climbers never make it to the top, and some even experience serious health issues along the way. There are even a surprisingly high number of deaths not he mountain each and every year, usually due to complications with altitude.

This year, a the University Hospital of Gießen and Marburg in Germany is conducting a study of how our bodies react to altitude in an effort to learn about how to threat this suffering from altitude sickness. To do that, researchers are looking for 25 people to participate in a study that will take place on Kilimanjaro this September. But, the study isn't looking for just your average trekker. Instead, they would like to find mountain bikers or mountain runners who are willing to join them on the mountain and consent to being tested throughout the climb.

The Kilimanjaro Summit Challenge will take place from September 24 through October 1, and will begin with a three-day training camp prior to the start of the climb. This will allow participants to acclimatize to the altitude and for the researchers to study how the altitude is impacting their bodies.

Rainer Braehler, who is organizing the event, tells adventure sports journalist Stefan Nestler "Up to now, pursing sport seriously on a mountain like Kilimanjaro was a dream limited to just a few elite athletes,but with this study, ambitious amateur athletes can now test their limits at very high altitudes – with the reassurance of full medical supervision.”

If you think you'd be interested in joining the study, you can find all of the information you need, including price, dates, and full agenda, and how to apply by clicking here. Not only will you be going on an adventure of a lifetime, you'll also be helping science find ways to help us be more efficient at altitude. 

Cloud Walkers - A Documentary About Amputees Climbing Kilimanjaro – Seeks Funding

Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania is a bucket-list adventure for many people, and for good reason. The tallest mountain in Africa is both approachable and a great challenge, with many rewards along the way.

Recently, a team of climbers made up of amputees from San Antonio, Texas went to the mountain to try to scale it for themselves. Over the course of a year of training, and during their time on the mountain, they bonded as a group and found strength and inspiration from each other. The team made the trek to the Roof of Africa together and now their story is the subject of a new documentary called Cloud Walkers, which was filmed throughout their extraordinary journey.

But, if you know anything about filmmaking, you probably also know it takes funds to get a project off the ground and get the final product in the can so to speak. So, with that in mind, the filmmakers behind Cloud Walkers have launched an Indiegogo campaign to help make their project a reality. They hope to raise $50,000, which will mostly go to final editing, sound mixing, music licensing, and other expenses.

To get a sneak peek at what this documentary is all about, check out the video below. It gives us a taste of what this journey was about, as well as some of the amazing views and stories that were experienced along the way. To find out more, and contribute to the cause, visit the Cloud Walker's crowdfunding page.

Video: Climbing Kilimanjaro with a Drone

Want to get a great look at what it is like to climb Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest peak? Take a look at this video, which comes our way courtesy of Madison Mountaineering. It follows a group of trekkers as they go up the mountain, capturing some outstanding footage with a drone as they go. The group took the Machame Route, which is one of the most popular paths to the summit, and along the way they had some amazing views of the mountain and the surrounding landscape.

19 Facts About Mt. Kilimanjaro - The Highest Peak in Africa

As the tallest peak in Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro always draws a lot of attention from trekkers and climbers alike. Many travel to Tanzania to nab one of the Seven Summits, while others are lured by the challenge that comes along with hiking to the iconic "Roof of Africa." But no matter what reason you have for going, it is truly an adventure of a lifetime, and one that will leave a lasting impression for sure.

With that in mind, a blog called Altitude Treks has posted an article listing 19 Kilimanjaro Facts that offers some interesting insights into the mountain. Whether you've been there in the past, are planning in the future, or just want to know more about this amazing place, you're likely to learn something that you didn't know before about Kili. 

I've to the mountain twice, and have written about it many times, and I still learned a few things from the story. For instance, the article goes into detail about the various climate zones you'll pass through on the way to the summit, which total five in all. It also offers insights into the history of the mountain, including some of the earliest attempts to climb it. You'll also learn about the East African Mountain Club, which led early expeditions to the summit, and find out who the oldest and youngest summiteers are. You'll discover how the mountain got its name, why certain areas on its slopes have their own monikers, and even gain insights into the death rate on the mountain. According to the story, about 5-15 people die on Kili each year, with 2-3 of them being visitors and the rest porters. That number is relatively small when you consider thousands attempt the climb in any given year, with about 60% of those making it to the summit.

If you're a previous Kili climber or have a trek to the mountain on your bucket list, you'll want to give this article a look. It is fairly long, but a very interesting read for those of us who love this mountain. You can check it out by clicking here

And thanks to Clare Groom for sharing the story. 


Video: Wings of Kilimanjaro 2016 Expedition

Next week, 29 climbers will set out for the "Roof of Africa" as part of the Wings of Kilimanjaro initiative. The team, which is being led by my friends over at Tusker Trail, will attempt to trek to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the tallest peak in Africa, where they will then paraglide off the mountain. But the group isn't there just to have an amazing adventure. They'll also be raising funds to support a number of projects that are improving the lives of people living in Tanzania. Those projects include installing pumps to deliver clean water, teaching local farmers to grow crops in a sustainable fashion, and improving the education of the children that live there. In the video below, you'll learn a bit more about the program, but you'll also see some amazing shots of their previous climbs up Kili, and the epic flights they've taken from the summit. It looks like a great way to see an already impressive mountain, and its all for a good cause.


Video: A Journey to the Roof of Africa - Kilimanjaro

For many adventure travelers a climb to the summit of Kilimanjaro is the ultimate dream trip, and one that I've made myself. In this video we join two Egyptian friends who set out to Tanzania to trek to the "Roof of Africa" themselves. The short documentary takes you from Kilimanjaro airport to the summit of the mountain and beyond. If this trip is in your future, you'll definitely want to watch.

Join Tusker Trail's Climb For Valor - Summit Kilimanjaro This Spring


One of the most compelling experiences for any adventure traveler is a climb to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. Standing 19,341 feet (5895 meters), Kili is the tallest mountain on that continent, and while it is a non-technical climb, the trek is a significant challenge nonetheless. Still, it is within the reach of just about anyone who is in reasonably good physical condition, and has the determination to get to the top.

Last February I was fortunate enough to make that journey myself, traveling with the amazing guides, porters, and support staff of Tusker Trail, which is – for my money – the best outfitter operating on the mountain. Every aspect of a Tusker climb is top notch, including the incredibly knowledgeable guides, excellent cooks that have been trained by the Culinary Institute of America, and the tents and other gear that are used along the way. In fact, I've never seen a company take such good care of its clients, conducting twice-daily medical checks to ensure they are healthy, strong, and capable of continuing the climb.

To say that I came aways impressed with Tusker's operation would be a vast understatement, and it was clear that they put a lot of effort into making each trek special for the travelers. But, I wasn't on just any Tusker trek. I went to Kilimanjaro to take part in the inaugural Climb for Valor, a special fundraising expedition that was conducted in support of Duskin and Stephens Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting the families of fallen U.S. Special Operations Soldiers. On last year's Valor Climb, Tusker raised more than $50,000 for the organization, with all the proceeds from the trek going to that great cause.

The first Climb For Valor was such a success that the Tusker team is doing it again, and this time you can come along. Not only will you get the chance to climb Kilimanjaro with the best outfitter there, you'll be doing so for a good cause as well.

The 2016 edition of the climb will take place April 24 - May 4, and will cost participants $4990. Additionally, the goal is to raise another $50,000 for the Duskin and Stephens Foundation, so participants in this very special climb are also requested to help raise funds to meet that goal.

When you join this trek, you'll also be joining two U.S. soldiers who were wounded in the line of duty. Those two men will be a part of the team, and you'll get to hear their stories first hand throughout the journey. I can tell you from firsthand knowledge that it is a very moving and inspirational part of the experience.

The Climb For Valor already has a number of participants joining the team, but there are still several slots available for those who are interested in climbing the tallest mountain in Africa, and helping families of fallen soldiers along the way. For more information, visit the Tusker Trail website.

Rare White Giraffe Spotted in Tanzania

Tanzania's Tarangire National Park is now home to an incredibly rare white giraffe. The one year old calf was spotted in the park recently, and has garnered lots of attention for her distinctive looks, which are made possible because she has a genetic condition called leucism that doesn't allow her skin to make a pigment, which results in the pale color.
anzania's

The giraffe – which has been named Omo after a popular local detergent – was first spotted in the park last year as a newborn. But, she was recently seen again, making local rangers very happy. Over the course of the past year she has grown significantly in size and stature, and appears to be a healthy member of the giraffe population in every way. That is a good sign for the adolescent animal, as National Geographic says that about half of all baby giraffes die within the first six months.

But Omo isn't completely out of the woods just yet. In addition to the natural threats to her life, officials at the park fear that she could become a target of poachers. To combat this threat they have employed highly trained tracking dogs and remotely piloted drones to patrol the region. Their hope is to spot any nefarious activity long before poachers could ever get close to the white giraffe.

Tarangire is a popular safari destination amongst visitors to Tanzania. That means that some lucky travelers will get a chance to spot Omo in her natural habitat. That would be an amazing sight indeed, and on par with the rare white lions that were recently spotted in South Africa as well.

Video: Male Lion Proves Why He is the 'King of the Jungle'

Shot in the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania, this video is a stark reminder of why the male lion is often referred to as the "King of the Jungle." The video shows a pride of female lions who had recently taken down a buffalo. The fresh kill attracted a swarm of hyenas and jackals to the feast, to the point that those scavengers were overwhelming the big cats. That is until the "big boy" show up. When a large male lion appears on the scene, he sends the intruders running with quite a display of ferocity.

Warning: the clip may be a bit hard to watch for some, but it is an impressive display of what happens in the animal kingdom.

Video: Climbing Kilimanjaro with 12-Year Old Lilliana Libecki

Today's dose of inspiration comes our way courtesy of Goal Zero and 12-year old Lilliana Libecki, daughter of professional climber Mike Libecki. In this video, the father-daughter team travels to Africa – Lilli's seventh continent – to climb Kilimanjaro together. Afterwards, they also lend a hand to a local orphanage, helping to install solar panels and lights to improve the conditions there. The entire project was Lilli's idea, from climbing the mountain to assisting at the orphanage, proving once again what we can accomplish when we set out minds to something. The 6+ minute video also provides some excellent shots of Kili itself, and shows prospective climbers what it is like to go up that iconic peak.

The 2015 Kilimanjaro Stage Run is Underway in Tanzania


Some people travel to Africa to climb Kilimanjaro, others go to run around it. 

The 2015 edition of the Kilimanjaro Stage Run is underway in Tanzania today, as trail runners from across the globe arrived there this weekend, and have now set out on a unique endurance event that takes place annually in the shadow of Africa's highest mountain. 

The 10-day trip includes 8 days on the trail, during which time the runners travel on foot, completely circumnavigating Kili's base. Today, they'll cover 31 km (19.2 miles) over rough terrain, while also gaining 1798 meters (5898 ft) of elevation in the process. The following week will mark similar distances, and rises and falls in elevation as well. In all, they'll run 260 km (161 miles) over the course of the event as they make their way completely around the mountain. 

The Kilimanjaro Stage Run is the brainchild of Tanzanian distance runner Simon Mtuy. It is now in its fourth year, and plan are already in place for it to take place once again in 2016. Simon has designed the route to showcase the mountain, as it also passes through numerous villages of the Chagga people, which have lived on the slopes of Kili for generations. 

You can follow along with the event on Facebook and Twitter. The team will be posting updates on their adventure over the course of the next week, sharing their experiences from the trail. It should be quite the excursion for these runners to say the least. 

While climbing Kilimanjaro is one of the best experiences I've ever had, this looks like it would be a great alternative for those who don't want to take on the altitude of going to the summit. Running 260 km through the African landscape would be an amazing challenge, and it is accessible to just about anyone who is is reasonably good shape. This run is on my bucket list for the future. I'd love to work it into my schedule at some point. 

Find out more at TanzaniaTrailRunning.com

Video: Kilimanjaro Revealed - Been There

I may be on my way to Jackson Hole for the Outdoor Blogger Summit and SHIFT Festival today, but I wanted to share the final Kilimanjaro video from Tusker Trail. This clip gives you an overview of the whole climb, while revealing how the mountain stays with you long after you have left. Kili is a special place, and a true adventure destination. Once you've stood on its summit, you'll feel a kinship with the place, and those who have climbed it, that lasts forever. Take from me, I've been there twice, and have strong connection with the mountain that is hard to explain.

If you've missed any of the Tusker videos, you can view them all on the Kilimanjaro Revealed Vimeo page. All are worth a look!

Kilimanjaro - Been There from Tusker on Vimeo.

Video: Kilimanjaro Revealed - The Summit

The next installment of Tusker Trail's excellent seven-part video series on Kilimanjaro takes us to the summit of that mountain – the tallest in Africa. As you'll see in the clip, the summit provides awesome views of the surrounding countryside, but it is anything but a sure bet that you'll reach the top. While the climb is not a technical one, it is still very challenging due to the high altitude. A surprisingly high number of trekkers don't make it, even ones that are in excellent shape and have experience at altitude. The route that is taken has a lot to do with that success rate, and Tusker's clients have a better chance of summiting than most others. If you've ever dreamed of climbing Kili, this video will help you to understand the challenges.

Kilimanjaro - The Summit from Tusker on Vimeo.

Video: Kilimanjaro Revealed - The Journey

We continue our video journey up Mt. Kilimanjaro today with the amazing team from Tusker Trail. This is the next clip in a series of videos the company has produced to help introduce the mountain to those who may want to trek to its snowcapped peak. In this video we get a sense of what it is like to be hiking on Kilimanjaro, and catch a glimpse of the five different climate zones you pass through on the way to the top. Part of the challenge of a Kili climb is dealing with each of those environments along the way, as well as the thinning air from the increased altitude.

Kilimanjaro - The Journey from Tusker on Vimeo.

Video: Kilimanjaro Revealed - The Challenge

We continue our 7-part video series on Kilimanjaro from Tusker Trail today with a look at the challenges climbers face when going up the mountain. Kill is not a technical climb at all, but its high altitude (5895 m/19,341 ft) still makes it a true challenge for sure. This video shows what it is like to ascend the tallest peak in Africa with scenes of numerous climbers heading up. Eagle-eyed viewers might even catch a glimpse of yours truly approaching the summit at one point. 

Video: Kilimanjaro Revealed - The Highest Solitary Peak

We continue our seven-part video series from Tusker Trail on climbing Kilimanjaro today by taking a look at the mountain itself, and the beginning of the trek to its summit. At 5895 meters (19,341 ft) in height, Kili is the tallest free-standing mountain in the world. That makes for quite an imposing sight when you're approaching it from the African plains. This clip, narrated by Nat Geo's Will Lyman, serves as an intro to the climb, and what trekkers can expect on their way up.

Kilimanjaro - The Highest Solitary Peak from Tusker on Vimeo.

Video: Kilimanjaro Revealed - Guides, Chefs, and Safety with Tusker Trail

Back in February of this year I had the distinct pleasure of climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania with the Tusker Trail, the leading guide service on the mountain. While I was there, the company was in the process of creating a series of videos about the experience. Now, almost 8 months later, those videos are complete. Over the next few days I'll be sharing those clips with you, as they not only provide insight into what sets Tusker apart from the crowd, they'll give you a sense of what it is like to climb the tallest mountain in Africa as well.

In this video, narrated by National Geographic's Will Lyman, we get an introduction to Tusker, their guides, chefs, and approach to safety. You'll also start to get some glimpses of life on the mountain too.

Kilimanjaro - Guides & Chefs from Tusker on Vimeo.

Video: The Kilimanjaro Experience

Thinking about climbing Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa? Than have a look at this video, which not only serves as a good introduction to the mountain, but also provides some excellent insights into what to expect on the trek as well. It features some fantastic shots of Kili, and the surrounding landscapes, while showing what to expect with your days on the climb. The video was put together by an outfitter named Kilimanjaro Experience, but it does a good job of sharing the Kili adventure no matter who you climb with. This is a trek that should be on every adventurer's bucket list, and this video will show you why.

Kilimanjaro-Experience from Biggestleaf Media on Vimeo.

Video: Clouds Over Kilimanjaro

Whether you're looking up, or looking down, the views from Kilimanjaro are always spectacular. Case in point, this brief – but oh so sweet – timelapse of clouds passing before the mountain. It was shot from Moir Camp by friends at Tusker Trail, who for my money are the absolute best guides on Kili. The one-minute clip doesn't wow you with the fantastic views from the summit, but instead gives you a sense of what it is like to look up toward the peak as you make your approach. It is a beautiful sight, and one that every adventure traveler should experience. 

Clouds Racing over Kilimanjaro from Tusker Trail on Vimeo.

Video: Exploring Africa in a Kayak

This video is the first in a new series from the U.S. National Whitewater Center which will focus on the very human need to explore the world around us and uncover the unknown. In this first chapter professional paddlers Cooper Lambla and Tyler Allen travel to Africa to paddle some of the wild rivers there. There journey took them across Zambia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda, producing this wonderful six-minute clip of the adventure. It is a whitewater excursion like no other, in places where much of the landscape remains largely untamed and unexplored.  

EXPLORE. Chapter One from USNWC on Vimeo.