International Mountain Guides Climbing and Mountaineering Expeditions

Kilimanjaro Climb and Safari

Tanzania, Africa • 19,340' • 5896m

Kilimanjaro Climb and African Safari with International Mountain Guides

IMG Kilimanjaro Climb and Safari Gear List

The equipment list is meant to help you compile your personal kit. You'll notice that the gear is essentially the same as that required for a summer ascent of Rainier without the inclusion of any technical climbing gear. Most items are required, while a few are optional. Please consider each item carefully and be sure you understand the function of each piece of equipment before you substitute or delete items from your duffle. Keep in mind that this list has been carefully compiled by Phil Ershler and Eric Simonson, the expedition organizers. Don't cut corners on the quality of your gear. Please contact us if you have any questions.

Travel Items
[  ]Duffel Bags: Two duffel bags with name tags. One of the duffle bags goes on the climb with you and will be carried by the porters (max 30 pounds). Your porter duffel bag must be big enough to carry all your gear that isnít going into your day pack. Expect for it to get wet and muddy, so a rugged duffle is good. Pack your gear in plastic bags to protect from leaks. You will store the other bag at the hotel with your clothes for travel and safari so it does not need to be as robust. Bags with wheels are nice for the airport, but the porters donít like to carry them, so donít bring two wheeled bags. Example for a suitable porter bag: Gregory Long Haul Duffel size Large (6700 cu in).
[  ]Daypack: Large daypack or bag with a shoulder strap, so you donít have to set it down while doing the duffle shuffle or handling travel documents while going through passport control and customs at the airport. It needs to be big enough to hold everything youíll need for an overnight stop.
[  ]Locks: Youíll want padlocks in Africa, but for flying out of the USA, it might be better to use plastic zip ties which can be cut by TSA staff if necessary (bring extra zip ties).
[  ]Travel Wallet: A secure travel wallet is a must for carrying your important documents including passport, extra photos, duffel inventory list, and money. We suggest that you use a travel wallet that you can hang around your neck and place inside your shirt, or around your waist tucked under your shirt or trousers.
[  ]Passport. Carry a photocopy of the first two pages and an extra photo in a separate location.

Trekking Gear
[  ]Trekking Poles: Poles come in handy for balance and easing impact to your knees. Get collapsible poles that can attach to your backpack. If you have never used trekking poles, you will like them. They are very helpful especially for the downhill.
[  ]Backpack: You need a pack big enough for your clothes, water, camera, food, etc during the day. Packs should be in the 50 liter / 3000 cu in range. Not too big, not too small.
[  ]Pack Cover: Waterproof rain cover for your pack.
[  ]Sleeping Bag: Rated to 10 degrees Fahrenheit. Synthetic is better in case of rain. You will be cold at the higher camps with anything less substantial than a 10 deg Fahrenheit rating.
[  ]Sleeping Pad: (chose either a self-inflating or closed-cell foam pad) Example: Thermarest NeoAir
[  ]Tip: Bring 5 large plastic garbage bags to pack gear inside duffels to protect gear from rain.

The key to staying warm and dry on Kilimanjaro is layering! Please bring all clothing listed.
[  ]Base Layer: One mid-weight set of synthetic long john tops and bottoms.
[  ]Base Layer: One expedition-weight set of synthetic long john tops and bottoms.
[  ]Mid Layer: Soft shell jacket or fleece jacket. Example: Outdoor Research Ferrosi Jacket.
[  ]Mid Layer: An additional mid-weight insulating layer such as another 100- or 200-weight fleece or light-weight down/synthetic insulated top. Example: Outdoor Research Radiant Hybrid Hoody
[  ]Mid Layer: One additional warm layer (wool sweater, another fleece jacket, shelled vest, etc, that can be worn in conjunction with the other layers).
[  ]Parka: REQUIRED (it gets VERY COLD on summit morning!). Down or synthetic. This should be big enough to go over other garments. Example: Outdoor Research Virtuoso Jacket (A mid-weight down or synthetic insulated parka with a hood is what you are looking for.)
[  ]Mid Layer: Warm Pants. Look for construction that provides freedom of movement and/or stretch materials. Fleece is good, soft shell type pants are even better. Wear over long johns with shell on top for cold weather. Example: Outdoor Research Cirque Pants
[  ]Outer Layer: Shell Jacket. Waterproof/breathable jacket with hood (look for Gore-Tex). Example: Outdoor Research Foray Jacket.
[  ]Outer Layer: Shell Pants. Waterproof/breathable pants (full side zips are best and Gore-Tex is perfect). Example: Outdoor Research Paladin Pants
[  ]Rain Poncho: Nice for hiking in the forest if it rains; a cheap plastic one is fine.
[  ]Hiking Clothes: Light hiking pants and / or hiking shorts - NOT cotton. Shirts for hiking on nice days (t-shirts OK, quick-drying synthetic fabric far better).
[  ]Casual Clothes: For travel and safari. A sweatshirt and/or light jacket is nice in the evening.
[  ]Bathing Suit: Some of the hotels have pools.

Clothing Accessories
[  ]Gloves and Mittens: 1) Light gloves - for hiking and around camp, 2) Mid-weight gloves - ski gloves or similar, and 3) Heavy gloves or mittens - down or synthetic insulated for summit day.
[  ]Hats: Warm wool or heavy fleece hat, sun hat and bandana.

[  ]Lightweight Shoes: Running/tennis shoes for camp, around town, safari, etc.
[  ]Mid-weight hiking/backpacking boots: You're not carrying heavy loads, but you are on the trail several hours each day. Additionally, summit morning is cold so 'wiggle room' for those toes is a good thing. Good ankle support is needed. Leather and/or synthetic upper must be well water-proofed and/or Gore-Tex, with a decent lug sole for traction over rough/slippery terrain. Purchase early and make sure they are well broken-in before the trek.
[  ]Gaiters: Keeps snow, mud, and scree out of your hiking boots. Example: Outdoor Research Crocs.
[  ]Socks: Minimum 3 complete changes of socks, in a combination that you have used and know works for you. Make sure your boots are roomy enough for the sock combination you intend to use. Tight boots will make your feet cold.

Camp Accessories
[  ]Headlamp with extra batteries.
[  ]Water Bottles: 2 1-liter, wide-mouth water bottles. Nalgene wide-mouth bottles are the standard because they are the best. Bring 3 if you know you drink a lot. Some people find they want more than 2 liters. Camelbacks or other hydration bladders work well on the approach days, but they will freeze on summit day, even if they are insulated. If you are going to bring a Camelback, you must also bring the 2 1-liter bottles for summit day. Write your name on all bottles with permanent marker for easy recognition.
[  ]Water Treatment: Iodine tablets (Potable Aqua or similar), iodine crystals (Polar Pure), or the new Chlorine Dioxide (made by Potable Aqua) for water purification.
[  ]Camera: With spare batteries, and film or memory cards. USB for sharing photos with teammates.
[  ]Pocket Knife.

Personal Accessories
[  ]Personal Snack Food: bring some extra snacks for the climb, especially for summit day, and some drink mixes if you like these to add to your water bottle. See the Kilimanjaro FAQ page for inspiration and guidance on snacks.
[  ]Wrist Watch: With alarm.
[  ]Eyewear: Bring good sunglasses. For contact lens wearers, ski goggles with light color lenses (for use at night) might be useful in windy conditions that cause blowing dust.
[  ]Vision correction: Bring extra prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses if you wear them. Lens solutions are not widely available in Africa.
[  ]Skin Care: Maximum SPF sunscreen and lip balm, (you are on the Equator!)
[  ]Hand sanitizer (Purell), small towel, insect repellant, ear plugs, several rolls of toilet paper, small first aid kit (with moleskin, tape, aspirin / ibuprofen / acetaminophen, Imodium for diarrhea, antacid, Band-Aids).
[  ]Prescription Medications: 1) Antibiotic such as Ciprofloxacin; 2) Diamox for acclimatization, 125mg tabs recommended, enough for one week; 3) Sleeping pills for jet lag (one week); 4) Malaria Chemophrophylaxis (we suggest Malarone, one tablet a day starting two days before the trip and going until one week after the trip); 5) Asthma medication, if any history.
[  ]Pee bottle: Bring an additional 1-liter wide-mouth water bottle. This keeps you from having to get out of the tent in the cold at night. Ladies this is optional, but if you will use a pee bottle you MUST be well practiced at using a female funnel (Go-girl or similar) PRIOR to arrival.
[  ]Chemical hand warmers (6)

International Mountain Guides climbers on the summit of Kilimanjaro Africa
Recommended Gear

Confused by what exactly we mean on some of the listed gear, or wondering which brands might be better? See the IMG Recommended Gear Page »

Then browse the IMG Online Gear Store for our favorite climbing and trekking gear, as well as used rental gear, logo t-shirts, and more.

If you can't find what you need in our store, IMG is proud to feature our partnership with Mountain Gear, and we recommend them for your equipment requirements. IMG climbers get 5% off when they click through here to access Mountain Gear's Online Store or call 800-829-2009 and use code: 0IMG (zeroIMG)

I will also say that IMG had one of the nicest, if not the best camp set-ups of any other group on Kili, and boy are there a lot of groups on that mountain! The porters go ahead of you and set up camp each day. When you get to camp, you have your tent, your bag a porter carried and warm water for washing up right there. Such a lovely sight! There is also a large dining tent with hot drinks and a snack right away. Then you rest for a bit until dinner. And the food. Wow. Let me just say that I ate better on Kili than I normally do at home. The food is just incredible...
~Steph D. (Kilimanjaro 2014)
(See Steph's Kilimanjaro Trip Report »)
Masai on the International Mountain Guides Kilimanjaro African Safari
From the initial contact, through the whole trip planning process, to the expedition itself, everything was highly professional and first class in every respect. It appears that you set the standard in guided mountaineering, and I thank you for making possible this once in a lifetime experience for my son and me...
~Michael B.
Tent view from the International Mountain Guides Kilimanjaro Climb
IMG exceeded all my expectations... Thank you for helping make this trip of a lifetime more wonderful than I could've imagined and for making a very challenging endeavor a safe and fun experience! I look forward to my next trip with you and have already recommended you to everyone I talk to!
~Lorien A.
Zebras on the International Mountain Guides Kilimanjaro African Safari
We've now climbed with five different IMG guides, and every one of them have been so kind, knowledgeable, helpful and simply lovely people. They are the best at what they do and put your safety first and your experience at a close second. They do everything they can to make sure the team has a great time and can get as far as possible while still getting down safely. I completely trust them and cannot say enough about how wonderful they are... They take care of and think of everything so you don't have to worry.
~Steph D. (Kilimanjaro 2014)
(See Steph's Kilimanjaro Trip Report »)
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