Or 'twende' as the local guides would say!
Firstly, I can't believe we missed a student's birthday yesterday! To be fair, he said that he had forgotten it too! We've sung 'Happy birthday' and I've promised to get him a cake when we get down from Kili!
So we are at 'Big Tree camp' or Mti Mkubwa camp in Swahili at 2650m or 9082ft. We had the shortest ever 7k walk from the Lomosho Gate - which was actually only 5k - a nice gentle start to our adventure!
This was welcome as we'd had an early start and a long journey to get to Kili. We'd stopped at a supermarket for the boys to pick up snacks and sweets for the journeys. The registration process was painful. We had to provide passports (again) and fill in a register and then show show the passports again... it took over an hour and a half!
Lunch was provided - our tour operators had been informed that I had a nut allergy however the chocolate bar provided was a Snickers. I swapped mine for a small banana and ate half a Twix from my stash.
We were told that it was 7k to the first camp so we set off 'pole pole' (slowly slowly). It was fairly hilly, but nothing too strenuous. Porters were rushing past us carrying supplies. The boys did brilliantly. We saw monkeys amid the lush vegetation as we plodded along on our way.
Arriving in camp the guides were keen to help set up our tents - which was actually more hassle than doing it alone as they tried to force the wrong clips together! Then there were hot drinks and peanuts (!) in the mess tent - I reminded them again that I can't eat nuts and fetched the second half of my Twix, meanwhile some ginger biscuits appeared for me in the mess tent.
Supper was excellent - more 'roast' potatoes than we could eat and a flavoursome beef stew followed a soup. After a few broken nights at our previous camp site I am exhausted. Currently hoping that the camp quietens down so we can all get some sleep!
Mti Mkubwa camp 2650m