by Chris Walker Bush
January 20, 2016

Not everybody is quite ready to tackle the five to seven day experience that is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.

Others, perhaps in preparation for their assault on Africa's highest peak, want to ease into things with a more manageable climb.

Whatever your reasons for wanting to climb Tanzania's second highest mountain, Shadows of Africa have been sending clients up to the peak of Mt. Meru for the better part of a decade.

We'd be delighted to help you bring your Mt. Meru experience to life.

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About Mt. Meru

Standing at 4,562 metres (14,968 feet) high, Mt. Meru is Tanzania's second highest mountain after Kilimanjaro and the ninth or tenth tallest mountain in Africa.

An active stratavolcano, Meru has not erupted since 1910 and today stands silent vigil over the safari capital of Tanzania, Arusha.

Mt. Meru is a popular climbing destination for those who cannot commit the 5-7 days needed to climb Kilimanjaro, and offers spectacular views of Arusha National Park, Arusha proper, and Kilimanjaro itself.

Fun Fact: Some believe that Mt. Meru is the mountain where Noah's Ark came to rest after the Biblical flood ended!

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Climbing Mount Meru

While climbing Mount Meru is a less intense climb than that of Mount Kilimanjaro, it would be foolish to underestimate the mountain.

The three day trek is a challenging one, and Meru's height is enough that altitude sickness can come into play. Arusha's sometimes fickle weather can also hinder climbing with heavy rain.

As the mountain lies within the boundaries of Arusha National Park, you'll not only be accompanied by a guide and porters, but also an armed ranger.

That being said, climbing Mt. Meru is still an immensely rewarding activity. On a clear day, the views from atop Mt. Meru are truly amazing.

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Sample Mt. Meru Climbing Itinerary

Mount Meru is typically approached as a three day hike.

Day 1: Momela Gate (1, 500m) to Miriakamba Hut (2,500m)

A day of scenic hiking is on the menu, as you'll trek through the forested lower reaches of Mount Meru on your way to Miriakamba Hut to overnight.

Along the way you can expect to pass a number of beautiful waterfalls and see a variety of wildlife.

Hiking Time: 4 - 5 hours

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Day 2: Miriakamba Hut (2,500m) to Saddle Hut (3,570m)

The climb gets considerably steeper today, as you'll spend 2-3 hours ascending to Saddle Hut, arriving in time for lunch.

Your afternoon can be spent a number of ways. You could hike to the Little Meru summit to aid in your acclimatization, walk an additional two hours to Rhino Point for an impressive view of Mount Kilimanjaro, or visit a local Masai village.

You'll then overnight at Saddle Hut.

Hiking Time: 2-3 hours plus optional hikes

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Day 3: Rhino Point (3,800m) to Meru Summit, Socialist Peak (4,566m)

It's an early start today, as the forest gives way to alpine desert for the final leg of your journey.

You'll take in the sunrise from Rhino Point (3,800m) before continuing on to Meru Summit, Socialist Peak.

After you've taken in the view and taken the obligatory photos, it's time to descend to Momela Gate for your transfer to Arusha or Moshi.

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