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James Bayliss–UK

James Bayliss–UK

I did this climb as it had been a long-term bucket list item, and I ambition was to summit on my birthday in mind-January. I chose the 8-day Lemosho route, as I wanted maximum bang-for-the-buck experience. I also chose climbKili over other companies as they were the only one to respond with the answers I wanted to initial Qs I had, and were swift in all their replies. For example, other comvpnaie s just sent their newsletter or didn’t even respond to the same list of questions. Their website is good also. Tiffany, my main organising contact before the trip, is an absolutely legend, replying over weekends and at all times in day and night to things I raised. Right from the outset this was a great experience, and everyone, from the hotel-airport driver, to the hotel staff and on to the actual tour trip support crew, just made the climbing group feel so very welcome and supported and part of something amazing. The views were amazing. Hospitality was amazing, given this was on the side of a huge mountain. Watching porters scurry up and down text mountain paths in trainers, jeans and t-shirts, even at high altitude, put ‘us westerners’ into perspective with all our expensive gear. Help was available in floods. If we tourists had problems carrying our backpacks, a porter of guide would take it and carry it for us, in addition to their own bag. A daily morning wake-up call was made, with coffee or hot chocolate in your tent, and seemingly endless food was provided for meals, from popcorn to pasta, to soups, to birthday cakes (made especially for me once we had arrived in that day’s basecamp after summiting and then climbing down mountain). I would love to do it again, if it were not so expensive, but I am glad I can say I have now done it. I am still in touch with the rest of the group I climbed with, and we got on with each other very well. We had a few wet days, but nothing too bad; no torrential rain; probably Day 2 was the wettest, but that was more drizzly hanging-in-the-air type rain. The guides help maintain a good walking pace through out the walk up and down the mountain , frequently letting us stop to rest and eat. Additionally, having the ClimbKili offices located directly on site was extremely convenient, as it allowed us to simply walk down the hall to ask any last minute questions. The hotel was nice, with good grounds, including a pool and enclosed garden with tables and chairs. We were ll made to feel part of a larger team to get up and down the mountain, not people just hanging on. Conversations as rife between tourists and guides/porters, and also other climbing companies