An unforgettable experience
My adult son and I just completed an 8-day Excel trek on the TK Rongai Route. We couldn't be more pleased with our experience. In preparation for the trek, David responded quickly and plainly to all questions; and as the start date neared he sent a series of messages covering everything we needed to know. We arrived at Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO) at 8:30 PM and after quickly passing through Customs we immediately spotted our placard-holding driver who drove us about an hour to the Outpost Lodge in Arusha. We had opted for standard lodging and were pleasantly surprised to find a lovely gated enclave of cottages nestled among tropical foliage with comfortable mosquito-netted beds, western-style bathrooms, free WiFi, a very moderately priced restaurant with a broad international menu, and very friendly staff.
Since we had a free day before our climb, David had arranged a walking tour of Arusha for the next morning at a very reasonable price. We enjoyed it very much.
The night before the start of the climb, Kevn, our principal guide, met us at the lodge, ensured that all our gear was adequate, and provided the few rental items (mittens, gaiters, etc.) that we had told David that we would need.
Kevn and Richard (our assistant guide) offered just the right combination of urging and restraint to ensure that had a successful summit. They frequently examined and questioned us to ensure that we were in good condition and that we weren't hiding any ill effects of the altitude. The supporting team was excellent.
We will never forget the unfailing good spirit and politeness of the trekking support team. My son and I each carried only a day pack containing what we needed for the day – mainly water, energy bars, and rain gear. After we left camp each morning, the team would break camp, pack everything up, and haul it to the next camp site. After about an hour on the trail, the porters would begin to pass us carrying large back packs as well as loads balanced on their heads. As they passed, they would encourage us, who were hiking far more slowly with much lesser loads. Probably the most pleasantly surprising thing was the variety and quality of the food provided. The things that the cook (Po) prepared using only a small camp stove were amazing.
After the trek we spend anther night at the lodge and then were driven back to the airport by TK. Everything arranged or provided by Team Kilimanjaro throughout the trip met or exceeded our expectations. Well done!