Climbing Kilimanjaro when you're over 50
People of all ages tackle Mt Kilimanjaro and have a successful climb! That said, here are a handful things to consider if you're an older hiker, like the strain on one's knees coming down, having to hike in the dark, and the sort of insurance you need.
Sometimes older folks have an advantage on Kilimanjaro: they have learned perseverance and to believe in themselves!
1. Are you fit enough to climb a mountain?
Altitude gain on Kilimanjaro
Hours of hiking each day
2. Are you able to hike in the dark?
3. Should you do a training trek first?
4. Can your knees handle the long descent?
We highly, highly recommend that you pack a quality pair of adjustable trekking poles for your Kilimanjaro climb.
5. Are you healthy enough?
Push your body hard every day for at least a week. Sleep in a tent for over a week, often in the extreme cold. Walk in extremely cold weather, and perhaps some rain. Eat food that's different from what you're used to at home.
6. Are you choosing the right route?
We recommend that older climbers give themselves at least eight days for a Kilimanjaro climb – nine days is even better.
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7. Have you looked into medical insurance?
Kilimanjaro tour operators won't take you on a climb without medical insurance covering you for a climb up to 6,000 m above sea level.