Thursday, August 02, 2012

Day 5 : Karanga Camp to Barafu Camp

I had a so-so nights sleep; I managed to stay asleep until 03:00 but then couldn't get back to sleep thereafter.  We had the usual breakfast of maltabella porridge, toast and omelette.  We are still working on getting Andre to eat the maltabella porridge and although his standards as far as what is deemed to be consumable food are dropping fast it remains to be seen if he will plumb the depths of maltabella by the end of the hike.  We remain hopeful though.

Moonset over Karanga Camp early in the morning since I wasn't sleeping anyway.

Last night was quite cold but still not as cold as I was expecting and although the water outside Andre's tent did freeze, nothing else froze.  In no time at all it was time to depart on what was meant to be an easy day.  Although neither of them showed any indication of taking strain we were all pretty happy to get into Barafu Camp a few hours later.

Barafu Camp is located on the skyline top left and it is quite a steep climb up to the camp.  We were constantly amazed at the strength and endurance of the porters carrying what we would consider ridiculous loads so that we could have it really, really easy.

Barafu Camp is on the edge of a ridge so it is a very long narrow campsite and we had to walk through most of the campsite before getting to where we were going to camp for the night.  On our way up through all the tents we passed where someone had laid a donkey sized turd right in the main trail through all the tents.  One wonders about people sometimes but it is best to just keep on walking and pretend one hasn't seen it.  There is actually quite a lot of human waste along the trail, mostly out of sight, but the parks board really should be doing something to firstly discourage the practice and secondly to clean up the mess.

This is the communal long-drop which is a very, very long drop but to say that it is nauseatingly disgusting is a complete understatement.  If anyone is reading this intent on climbing Kilimanjaro, hire a private toilet; it is absolutely worth the money!

The views from Barafu Camp in an easterly direction above and a southerly direction below.

Because the walk was so short today we arrived before all our tents had been pitched so Andre and Simon climbed into their tents while I waited for mine to be finished.  I think that someone nicked my walking poles while I was waiting which is very annoying.

After a good lunch of spaghetti and vegetables we all retired  to our tents for the afternoon which I didn't really feel like but I did have a brief nap before starting to sort our everything for this evening.

Along the trail today there were loads of porters carrying 25l drums of water from below the Karanga Camp up to Barafu Camp because Barafu Camp is completely dry.  That would be a 750m vertical climb with 25l of water on one's back which is quite a trek.

In my tent  as I write this and prepare for this evenings exertions it is pleasantly warm as opposed to just outside where it is decidedly chilly.  The plan is to go to sleep at 18:30, wake up at 22:30 and start walking at 23:30 since we are still walking quite slowly even though the pace has picked up a bit as the party has downsized.  My feeling is that the chances of me getting any sleep at all between 18:30 and 22:30 is approximately zero.

I found my walking poles, they had been put into Simons tent for safekeeping and I shouldn't be so quick to assume the worst.

The statistics for the day are:
Distance : 4km
Altitude : 700m climbed camp to camp.
kcal : 1489
heartrate : 110bpm average, 150bpm maximum
walking time : 3:26 hours

Some parties don't overnight at Karanga but trek straight from Barranco Camp to Barafu Camp which is entirely doable but I was very happy to have two easy days instead of one hard day before what looks like a very hard day.

Time to go and try and get some sleep.

No comments: