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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 9 October 2007
Explore Mount Kilimanjaro is a guide detailing two trails (The Marangu route and the Machame route) to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. The two routes differ in distance, roughness of terrain, degree of ascending/descending, and the type of accommodations provided at the various stopover points. In this way, individuals can hike to Uhuru Peak at the top of the mountain while taking into consideration personal physical ability levels.

Mount Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania, is the highest point on the earth that can be reached by ordinary people and without the use of special equipment. This mountain is 5896 meters (almost four miles) at its highest point. Mount Kilimanjaro was formed between 500,000 and 750,000 years ago and contains three volcanic centers. Two of these centers are now extinct, while the third continues to be listed as dormant.

The Marangu route, though still challenging, is the least strenuous and demanding of the two trails. The guide divides this route up into four sections: from Marangu Gate to Mandara Huts; from Mandara Huts to Horombo Huts; from Horombo Huts to Kibo Hut; and from Kibo Hut to Gillman's Point/Uhura Peak. This route requires daily altitude ascents between 800 and 1195 meters per day. However, an extra day for acclimatization is included on the third day of the hike. Accommodations along this trail include permanent bunk bedded huts with solar powered electricity and toilets with running water.

The Machame route is the more strenuous and demanding of the two trails. The guide divides this route up into five sections: from Machame Gate to Machame Camp; from Machame Camp to Shira Camp; from Shira Camp to Barranco Camp; from Barranco Camp to Barafu Camp; and from Barafu Camp to Stella Point/Uhuru Peak. This route requires continuous daily altitude ascents between 780 and 1295 meters per day. It is of note that some of these sections include descending and ascending portions. Accommodations along this trail include rustic shared tents.

Explore Explore Mount Kilimanjaro outlines not only the various sections of the each of the two trails to the peak (including full color maps) but also details various long walking and high altitude hiking fundamentals. These details include what types of equipment the participant should bring to complete the walk, how long the various sections of the journey will take, and how temperature and seasonality will affect the walk. There are also helpful tips especially for novices about daily mileage, feet, weight, and the right gear.
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on 12 February 2006
We had the Cicerone and the Stedman book for all the info needed. Yet our group used every day this book for reference and info. It was easy to read, durable and had all the info we needed for the Machame route. In particular useful were the graphics and the description of the the tour stages. Recommendable!
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on 7 February 2001
From its stunning front cover to its nifty fold-out map at the back, this is a unique guide to Kilimanjaro.In a complete breakaway from traditional guidebook format, this 'Rucksack Reader'has a compact layout, robust binding and waterproof cover, all designed to survive the rigours of trekking.
But this is not merely a guide to climbing the mountain. Kili's amazing climate zones and vegetation are illustrated with good colour photographs. The book covers all aspects of preparation, including how to get fit, health issues and altitude effects. No punches are pulled in describing altitude sickness: I certainly recognised some of my own symptoms during my experiences on Kili.
However, the author gives plenty of helpful advice on acclimatisation, food and drink intake and ways of minimising the effects of altitude and maximising your chances. And, believe me, the sense of achievement when you finally set foot on the 'Roof of Africa' will stay with you as a unique experience for the rest of your life.
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on 11 November 2015
I climbed kill with this map. It's become a family heirloom! Very clear map detail. Advice is spot on. I looked at many different books and maps, and this was the best by far.
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on 9 February 2004
Is it just me, or is there something fishy going on here. I climbed Kilimanjaro last year and had the misfortune to take this book, along with a couple of others I met on the mountain. And we all thought that it was quite the most useless item of luggage we'd brought along with us. Which makes us quite suspicious as to why this book is consistently getting five-star reviews on this website. Giving the book top marks is bad enough, but when the reviewer then goes on to talk about 'superb colour photographs' and the quality of the writing you have to ask whom, precisely, these people are. Discovering that the majority of them come from Scotland (where the author presumably hails from)is, perhaps no surprise.
In short, don't buy this book. It is quite awful. The American guide and the British one with the blue cover (I'm sorry, but I can't remember their names) are far, far superior. Buy this one if you want . . . but don't say I didn't warn you.
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on 24 February 2004
Having just come back from this amazing mountain I can't help but rave about this equally amazing book! Interesting content, lots of pictures and a format and content that clear and really easy to follow.
I would seriously recommend that you buy this book rather than purchase one of the competitors substandard offerings. Who would take a traditional book up a mountain? This one has already been tested time and time again and survives every environment in this beautiful part of the world. Travel to Killy is also made easy as many flights go to its own airport!
Well done J Megarry, for a great series of books.
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on 28 March 2001
This is a great guide, and I want to try Kili even more now that I've read it. People who are positive they will never try the mountain would still enjoy a fine vicarious experience from this book. And anybody thinking of writing/publishing a trekking guide could well use it as a model. The format is great -- the coil binding makes it easy to get to things. The maps and photos are outstanding and the writing both informative and entertaining.
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on 9 March 2003
I found this book to be exactly what I needed as it gave useful informaiton not just about the mountain but in preperation and travel. I found the size and format of the book to be refreshingly clear and practical especially in an area where other 'tradional' books wouldn't survive.
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on 5 December 2002
Though I seldom write reviews of books, I felt compelled to speak out against this particular guidebook because, contrary to the other reviews here, I found it to be unhelpful, inaccurate and (despite the August 2002 publishing date) out-of-date... Suffice to say this book told me nothing that any half-decent mountain guide would not have known, but worse, much much worse, it gave little practical information whatsoever. The photos were inept, the writing dull and the overall package rather cheap and nasty. There are other guidebooks to this great mountain -- my advice: choose one of them.
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on 10 January 2004
EXPLORE MOUNT KILIMANJARO is an incredible book! It is packed full of information that is essential not only for the hiker, but also for the historian, naturalist, geologist, and even the social critic (the author concedes that though the indigenous Tanzanian porters who work the trails aren't paid much, they still make more money than most people in Tanzania; tipping generously is encouraged). And with at least one vivid color picture on every page (sometimes two or three) EXPLORE MOUNT KILIMANJARO may be the next best thing to actually being visiting this natural wonder.
What I really enjoyed the most about this book was Jacquetta Magarry's writing style, which is information-packed, candid, and yet succinct. I have never really considered a trip to Mount Kilimanjaro, but reading EXPLORE MOUNT KILIMANJARO has made me toy with the idea.
Andrew Parodi
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