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Mike, Randy and Shelly reached the 19,341 foot summit of Kilimanjaro with guide Yusuf and assistant guide Muhammad at 8AM after seven and a half hours of climbing on a clear, cold night. “What a night, what a day,” Randy said. “Amazing,” Shelly added. “Wow,” said Mike. Yusuf said it wasn’t too cold (“comfortable”), compared to other ascents. He estimated the summit temp at minus-7 degrees. “It was challenging,” Yusuf said. Bob turned back above 17,000 feet with altitude sickness and was accompanied down to Kibo Hut by Yusu...
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Day 5 on the mountain saw us hike across the moonscape, that is the saddle between Mawenzi and Kibo Hut. It was about five miles and took us four hours. We reached this high camp at 15,400 feet at 1 p.m. The rest of this day is devoted to rest and waiting to head out toward the summit at midnight. Mike passed his personal high (Mount Rainier) on our move up to Kibo Hut. The walk continued a good discussion on Islam and Christianity. “He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.” — Psalm 62:6
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Team ascending toward Mawenzi. Day 4 on the mountain saw us ascend another 2,000 vertical feet from our third camp to Mawenzi Tarn Hut at 14,100 feet. This camp, my favorite on Kilimanjaro, is below Mawenzi- one of Kili’s three summits. There is a pond near the campsite, which has been in the clouds most of the day. Elaine and Bob passed their previous personal highs (both around 12,200 feet), as we ascended toward the jagged ridgeline of Mawenzi. Everyone is doing well in the increasingly thinning air.
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Day 3 was short and sweet as far as trekking. We ascended only about 600 vertical feet in our four-mile hike from Second Cave to Kikelelwa at 12,100 feet. The walk took less than three hours and we beat a torrential rain storm that soaked our camp and left us in the clouds and a fog for the afternoon. Another Christian climber, Nathaniel, who hails from Wyoming but currently is working in Russia, has joined our fellowship. He is trekking Kilimanjaro solo and was happy to spend time with us, and us with him.
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Day 2 on the mountain saw us ascend from Simba Camp to Second Cave, a hike up 2,650 vertical feet that took about three hours. For Randy, it marked a personal high as we climbed up to 11,500 feet. It was sunny and hot with clear views behind us out over the plains of Kenya. Along the way we discussed Christianity and Islam with our guide Yusuf. We spent the afternoon and evening in fellowship together as the day's heat cooled and the temperature dove to freezing.
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7 p.m. local We hiked about three hours up through the Rongai Forest from the gate (or trailhead) to Simba Camp, an ascent of about 1,000 vertical feet to 8,850 feet. Our guide, Yusuf, brought 22 other assistants, cook staff and porters, which is common for our size trekking group. It was warm and sunny during our afternoon walk, during which we saw monkeys. An elephant was heard near our camp as we prepared for dinner. A national park staff member who is a friend of Yusuf's arrived with a semi-automatic weapon, which he carries in case of animal attacks. Yusuf told us he is a Christian ...
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“Worship can be powerful,” Shelly told the guides and porters attending our Kilimanjaro Chapter evangelism training at Pastor Winford Mosha's Lutheran church in Marangu. She pointed to 2 Chronicles 20 and the story of how King Jehoshaphat “appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him” in order to defeat opposing armies. “There is power in worship,” Shelly said. Shelly was concluding our teaching with a short section on music. It was one of the tools we were encouraging our brothers in Christ to use as outreach on the mountain. Dawson Chonjo, one...
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We landed safely and without incident this evening at Kilimanjaro International Airport, located between Arusha and Moshi, Tanzania. Dear friend Yusuf, who again will be our guide on the mountain, was waiting for us and accompanied us on our 45-minute ride to the hotel in Moshi. Our arrival capped about 28 hours of travel from the Eastern and Central U.S. As we sat outside in the warm 80-degree evening, reflecting on how God brought us here, Shelly led the group in singing Great Is Thy Faithfulness. I then told them the HIStory of Climbing For Christ and the part this place played in it. In...
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The team is all together — all six of us! — and on a plane from New York City to Amsterdam. After that (on Tuesday), a flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport. We'll check back in on Tuesday. See you then.
Michael starts this Evangelic Expedition in motion today, traveling from his home in Fargo, N.D. to New York City. The rest of the team will meet him there on Monday. Everyone is excited about the trip ahead. It has been months in the making. Of course, God had this day waiting before time began. The goals of Mission: Kilimanjaro 2011 include: Teaching in evangelism to the guides and porters who are part of the Kilimanjaro Chapter. We will provide encouragement and instruction on Wednesday, March 9. We are building on what was started during Mission: Kilimanjaro 2010. Hopefully God...
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Dates: March 7-23, 2011 Purpose: To continue working with Kilimanjaro Chapter members. Climb Kilimanjaro via the Rongai Route, which provides views into Kenya and offers the best campsite on the mountain (Mawenzi Tarn Hut). Visit Project 1:27 Malawi orphans and minister to children there. Also, hiking on Mulanje Massif. Cost: $5,430, includes airfare (roundtrip from JFK for North American team members); Tanzania visa, Kilimanjaro climb and tips, hotel, transfers and meals; and Malawi expenses. Payment schedule: $500 deposit – due after being accepted to mission team. ...
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Kilimanjaro, as seen from Moshi, Tanzania. (Photo by Shawn Dowd) Location: Eastern Africa, bordering the Indian Ocean, between Kenya and Mozambique. Area: 945,000 square kilometers (slightly larger than twice the size of California). Terrain: Plains along the coast; central plateau; highlands in the north and south. Highest point: Kilimanjaro (5895 meters). Population: 40,213,160. Life expectancy: 51.45 years. (Lowering due to HIV/AIDS epidemic. Note: There are an estimated 1 million AIDS orphans in Tanzania; only South Africa, Uganda, Nigeria and Zimbabwe have more in Africa.) Ethnic...
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