Photo: Travel: Tanzania: Kilimanjaro: Kili Day 4
Day 4 of Kili Trek
We start out from Barranco relatively early and the first part of today's hike is an unpleasant scramble up the steep slopes of a ridge. It would not have been that bad had we continued up or at least traversed horizontally. But now, we had to go down quite a bit and then, just when I think that we have arrested the loss of altitude, I spot Karanga Camp. The good news is that it is at eye level with me. The bad news is that there's a steep ravine between me and it. In other words, we have to go down a whole lot more, and then go up the steep switchbacks before we can rest. Around 1pm, we finally finds ourselves at the camp, and the girls immediately proceed to waste precious water on a personal grooming matter. Watching Lucy and Alison wash their hair turns out not to be nearly as much fun as seeing them afterwards, preening indecently content with their hairdos. Sunset comes early, as usual, and bathes the entire camp in rather dramatic shades of red. Rob runs into trouble with the park ranger for seeking Daimox Tinkle relief in close proximity to the camp site instead of availing himself of the lavatory, which is about as unsanitary as it can get without deterring even the hardiest of us from venturing inside. A brief sojourn to the ranger hut and an abject apology later, we are all inside the mess tent. (It is not known whether any money actually changed hands to grease the apology. ) Inside the tent, Rob reveals his full faux pa repertoire and gets the girls depressed by reading to them from a Kili guidebook, which seems to have been written with the goal of preserving the mountain free of hikers in mind. We then repair to our tents in spirits exhibiting a mixture of anticipation and anxiety: tomorrow is the 'D-day minus 1.'