During your climb of Kilimanjaro generally, ‘bed tea’ is at about 6.30 – 7.00am, breakfast is between 7.30am and 8.00am, and departure from camp is at 8.30am latest. There is a snack lunch at midday, tea and biscuits around 4 pm and dinner at 7 pm. Summit morning is different; tea and biscuits at 11.30pm and start hiking at midnight or sometimes 1 am.
Most daily hikes take from 4 – 7 hours. The pace is slow and not forced at all. There is a rest at least once every hour and plenty of time to take photos, enjoy the view and chat. When you arrive at the campsite you will find the tents erected and your bags ready to collect. In the morning please have your bags packed before breakfast.
Expect a long day starting at midnight and getting all the way back down to High Camp by about 4 pm in the afternoon. The route up will be in the darkness and it will be cold and often windy. Do prepare with good warm clothing and protect your extremities and face. From Barafu Camp to the crater rim will take about 6 to 8 hours, and you will arrive with the dawn which is very special. From the rim (Stella Point) it is a further hour to the top, so expect summit time to be between 7 am and 9 am. With an hour on top for photos and enjoying the exceptional view, and feeling absolutely elated, the route down is dusty, loose and quite a strain on the knees. Take it easy and stay with one of the guides; they will split up to cover all the mini groups that naturally form for the descent.
When you get back to Barafu pack your bags for the porters to take down (you should prepare this the night before), take a rest and lunch and then drop down to High Camp which is a further two hours to the edge of the forest. Some people question this, but it is necessary to get lower because Barafu is still at 4600 metres and your body will thank you for losing altitude. It may be the last thing you want to do after having summited Kilimanjaro, but it is necessary.