Hiking Boots: Leather or nylon/ leather combination. These should be comfortable and waterproof (if your feet are wet high on the mountain, you will get cold and it could interfere with your climb). They should offer good ankle support, as the terrain can be quite rough. Boots must have a good sole.
Lightweight Running Shoes / Sandals: Lightweight shoes and / or outdoor sandals (E.g. Teva, Chaco, etc.) For use as casual footwear at base camp and in lodges at night and during travel.
Socks: Wool or synthetic. Various combinations work for different people. Some prefer to wear just one pair of socks in their boots, while others wear two - a combination of a light liner sock and a heavy wool or synthetic sock. Bring at least three complete changes.
Gaiters: Knee high. Make sure they fit all the way over your hiking boots, and have a good buckle or tie down under the boot to stop them from creeping up at the heel when walking in soft snow.
T-shirt and Lightweight Long Sleeve Shirt: The approach hike can be very hot, and so it's important to have these cooler layers. The long sleeve shirt should be a light color and should provide adequate sun protection.
Long Underwear Bottoms and Tops: This will be your base layer and should be lightweight polyester, polypropylene, or similar synthetic. Shirts should have long sleeves, and we recommend a high neck top with a zipper to allow some ventilation. You will likely sleep in these, and you will wear them on summit day under your warmer layers for extra warmth.
2nd Layer (Top): This layer is a good addition for when you need extra warmth and it is not cold enough to require your regular, heavier layer. Can be expedition-weight long underwear top, 100-weight power stretch, very lightweight fleece, Schoeller, or a lightweight wind shirt (e.g., Marmot DriClime).
3rd Layer (Top): This will be your action layer and the layer that you spend the most time in. Schoeller, nylon, or heavier fleece (200 or 300 weight) required. Seek out soft jackets that are light, comfortable, durable, quick drying, and provide some protection from wind and water. Lightly insulated is okay but not required. Arcteryx, Moonstone, Marmot, Mammut, and many other companies make soft shell jackets that work well for this layer.
Fleece Pants: Fleece pants are functional for climbing and/or wearing around higher camps in the evenings. Depending on personal preferences, you may have anything from a 100 to 200 weight. Optional.
Insulated Jacket: Down or synthetic. It is cold on the summit of Kilimanjaro and at the high camps, so this is a very essential piece of your wardrobe. The following features are recommended: integral adjustable hood that does not restrict your vision (hood is not required), Gore-Tex or equivalent storm proof outer fabric, and sufficient insulation. A good example is the Marmot Sub-Zero down Jacket. The Patagonia DAS Parka is a good example of a sufficient synthetic jacket.
Shell Layer ~ Upper (Raincoat): This will be your outermost layer and it needs to be waterproof, breathable, and durable. Two or three-ply Gore-Tex or other waterproof breathable materials are required. Your parka needs to have a hood and should be sized to fit over your clothes. Lightweight and compressible layers are ideal but don't sacrifice too much weight for durability. Models like the Arcteryx Beta and Gamma Jackets, Marmot Alpinist and Precip, and Patagonia Stretch Armstrong are top of the line.
Shell Layer - Lower (Rain Pants): Full-length side zips are recommended. Make sure they fit over all of your layers when fully dressed and allow for a full range of movement. Materials should be Gore-Tex or other similar waterproof and breathable fabrics. Examples include Marmot Cirrus and Minima pants, Arcteryx Alpha SV bibs and Beta AR Pants, Patagonia Stretch Element and Microburst pants.
Sun Hat: A baseball cap serves well. Wide brim soft hat also works well. Bring one or two bandannas to protect the back of your neck and face. The sun can be extremely strong.
Warm Hat: Wool or synthetic. Synthetic is less itchy than wool and dries faster. Should be tightly woven, extend over the ears, and be snug enough not to fly off in strong wind.
Balaclava: A lightweight balaclava is highly recommended. Can be fleece, capilene, silk, or polypropylene.
Fleece Gloves: You will wear these around camp and as a base layer under your outer gloves.
Gloves: Should be waterproof, dexterous, durable, and appropriately insulated. Choose gloves with a fleece liner and a Gore-Tex or equivalent shell. Most of your climbing time on summit day will be spent in your fleece gloves, these heavier gloves, or both, depending on how cold it is. There are many modular systems for gloves out there that allow liners to be inter-changed. Models like the Black Diamond Ice and Verglas glove, Patagonia Stretch-Element and Work gloves, and models by Outdoor Research are recommended.
Trekking Pants / Shorts: Synthetic recommended.
Day Pack: Large, 1500 to 2000 cubic inches. This should be big enough to hold plenty of extra Clothes, snacks, water, camera, etc.
Trekking Poles: Even if you don't normally use trekking poles, these aid your balance tremendously at altitude and when fatigued. Leki and Black Diamond make sturdy models.
Glacier Glasses: With side shields. Make sure they are 100% UVA/UVB to protect from snow blindness. Lens should be dark enough to withstand intense reflection from the snow. If you wear contacts it is recommended that you bring a pair of prescription glacier glasses as a backup.
Snow/ Ski Goggles (optional): For use in stormy weather. If you wear prescription glasses, Make sure they fit under these goggles.
Water Bottles: Two quart-sized, durable bottles required. Nalgene bottles work well. A Camelbak hydration pack can be used for the trek, but the hose could freeze at altitude even With an insulation tube, so you must have at least two quart sized bottles as well.
Sleeping Bag: Down or synthetic. Rated to 15F if you are a normal sleeper and 0F if you are a cold sleeper. Down is not particularly recommended for Kilimanjaro, but if you do bring a down bag, you should bring along an extra-large garbage bag with which you can line your sleeping bag stuff sack and use for storage in the tent. This can be rented in Tanzania.
Sleeping Pad: Full-length closed cell or lightweight Thermarest. This can be rented in Tanzania.
Headlamp: Models such as the Petzl MYO 5, which has a dual light source for reading, are recommended. Bring spare batteries and parts. This can be rented in Tanzania.
Passport and other documents & copies: Please keep a copy of all your important documents. Store in a separate place from the originals. This includes passport, visa, credit cards, and airline tickets.
Passport Pouch/ Money Pouch or Belt: For carrying your passport and money under your clothes and away from pickpockets!
8-10 Large Black Garbage Bags: These come in extremely useful while on the mountain for various reasons ~ to keep your belongings dry while the porters carry them from camp to camp, and also to line the tent floor in rainy weather.
Medium to Large Duffel Bag: For carrying your equipment and clothing. Durable coated nylon is best. Seal all items in waterproof plastic bags for the trek.
Suitcase or Extra Duffel Bag, lockable: To leave in the hotel in Arusha or Machame for your travel clothes and surplus gear ~ to leave behind while you are climbing.
Sunscreen: With a protection factor of at least 20, or higher if you have fair skin. Remember that the glare from any snow we encounter up high will increase your chances of getting burned.
Lip Protection: With a protection factor of at least 16. SPF of 20 is better if you have fair skin.
Make sure everything liquid is in containers that do not leak or break.
Stuff Sacks: Bring three or four of varying sizes and colors to help keep your gear organized. Can be lined with plastic bags to keep gear dry during the trek.
Personal Entertainment: Music, books, cards, diary, etc. Keep weight in mind, and Remember, it is often possible to swap book and CDs with other team members.
Water Purification: On the climb we use a Katadyn Expedition water filters for all drinking water. At hotels and lodges, you can purchase bottled water (in some cases it will be provided to you).However, some people like to have to have their own system as a back-up (like iodine tablets or liquid) for use in hotel rooms for the brushing of their teeth, etc.).
Camera - With an extra battery. SLR cameras can be difficult to operate in cold temperatures and are not recommended unless you have had previous experience in similar circumstances. Small autofocus cameras that can be carried in an outside camera case are best. If you want to use your camera on the climb, it will be most convenient if you can access it without taking off your pack.
Cash (for tips and Coca-Colas at high camp): We will offer advice for guidelines on tipping on arrival.