Excitement is in the air as our last day on Kili has arrived. We meet up for the per-breakfast tea between 6:30 and 7. The camp is particularly loud this morning. The Tusker Trail crew is looking forward to heading home to their families after 9 days of hard work. Every day they would packup the tents, kitchen, fruits and vegetables, portable toilets, jugs of water and zoom by us as we were hiking. By the time we would arriv at our destination, camp was setup, hot tea was there ready to warm us up.
Before departing for our 10 km hike through the rain forest, the crew gets together and begin singing songs. It's a great way to start the morning. The guides address the team and thanks us for our cooperation throughout the climb. We can't say enough about Tusker. The guides were very knowledgeable and took great care of everyone . The cooks prepared excellent meals, and the porters got all of the equipment from camp to camp.
We are off for our final hike of the trip. The trail resembles more what we would see back home in the gatineau's. The rain forest is impressive with lush greenery and massive trees. The trail is muddy and some of the steps fairly steep. We see monkey's in the trees and stop to watch them as they jump from tree to tree.
We reach the end of the trail and are greeted by individuals selling t-shirts, soap stone bowls, patches and a variety of other nick nacks. We sign the park registry and load up in the land rovers for the short drive back to the hotel.
After 9 days, a shower feels great :-) . The camping experience was a lot of fun but it is nice to arrive to a room with a bed. The group meets up for lunch where pizza seems to be the comfort food for many of us. We have a final meeting with the Tusker guides where we receive our certificates for reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro. We say our warm goodbye's to Thobia, Urio and Stanford and thank them for everything they've done for us.
Afterwards, most head out to do some shopping and stock up on water that will be needed for the upcoming safari.
Later that evening, we get together to celebrate with champagne and recount the highlights of our adventure.
It's an end to the climb... The next 3 days brings on a whole new adventure... A safari :-)