Why Should I Climb Mount Meru? Top 6 Reasons To Climb Mount Meru : It makes sense to include the second-highest mountain in Tanzania and the fifth-highest mountain in Africa in your schedule for Kilimanjaro trekkers without deviating too much from the original plan. From a strategic perspective, hiking Meru before climbing Kilimanjaro can be an excellent method to adapt before reaching Africa’s highest peak. With breathtaking sunrise views of Kilimanjaro from the crater’s ridge, lush jungles, tumbling waterfalls, and an array of unique animals, it’s also one of the most breathtaking treks in all of East Africa. Discover why climbing Mount Meru is an absolute must when visiting Tanzania by reading on.
HERE ARE TOP 6 REASONS TO CLIMB MOUNT MERU IN TANZANIA:
As an acclimatization aid, Kilimanjaro’s younger brother is frequently hiked before Kilimanjaro, its larger sister. The longer you allow your body to acclimate to high altitude, the lower your risk of altitude sickness—which may be extremely hazardous and even fatal—is. Because Mt. Meru’s summit (14,980 feet) is situated between Kilimanjaro’s two highest camps, it’s an excellent opportunity to extend your stay at altitude and improve the comfort of your Kilimanjaro climb. You must hike them back-to-back in order to accomplish this; begin your Kilimanjaro journey the following morning or the morning after descending Meru. A summit of Meru will not help you acclimate to Kilimanjaro if you do not summit both immediately after.
Even though this method of acclimatization can be quite beneficial, one shouldn’t subsequently try to climb Kilimanjaro in an aggressive manner. It would never be advisable to embark on such a challenging expedition; instead, always adhere to the tried-and-true strategy of “pole pole,” which translates to “slowly slowly.” On Kilimanjaro’s summit night, those who summit Meru first, then Kilimanjaro, and heed the guidance of their guides seldom have difficulties. Finally, it is important to remember that the Mount Meru trek is not to be taken lightly. Despite being shorter and at a lower height, the trek is nonetheless difficult and demanding. Moreover, it is steeper than the majority of Kilimanjaro routes. Effective training and preparation are essential for a successful hike.
Less people visit Mt. Meru than Kilimanjaro or Mt. Kenya, yet the pristine forests are full of wildlife and have not been damaged. Mount Meru is situated inside Arusha National Park, which is home to the greatest giraffe population in the world as well as antelopes, warthogs, buffaloes, zebras, elephants, and other animals on expansive grasslands. It’s likely that you will come across a lot of the huge species that make up this unique alpine habitat. For this reason, the nation mandates that hikers have an armed guide with them at all times. When you hike out of the savannas, look up to see eagles, falcons, hornbills, and cuckoos perched above you. The canopies above are also home to baboons, blue monkeys, and black-and-white colobus monkeys. Those with an acute sight can also spot reptiles and amphibians, such as green mambas and pythons, as well as frogs, chameleons, and tortoises. Mountainside nocturnal mammals also include porcupines and leopards, although they are less common. Trekking Meru is an exciting way to explore the wildlife realm, with so many vibrant and untamed creatures living on its slopes.
Because Meru is a dormant volcano, the soil is rich in nutrients and fruitful. Fruit like wild mangoes, African olives, and even figs can be found in the lower woodlands. It should come as no surprise that the nectar of wild violets, lilies, and orchids sustains a thriving butterfly population and fills the forest with a delightful scent. You will come along the well-known Arched Fig Tree on the first day, which has created a naturally occurring tunnel large enough to fit an automobile or an elephant through. Giant groundsel and lobelias akin to those on Kilimanjaro can be found in the heather zone further up the mountain.
As you near the summit, the final plant zone gives way to a rugged alpine desert with sporadic patches of grass. The ascent through the plant zones of Mount Meru is sure to excite anyone with an interest in ecology.
East Africa’s Most Beautiful Trek
There are many intriguing sights to see on the ascent, including abandoned houses and a number of waterfalls concealed in the tropical jungle. You’ll keep going uphill through lovely woodlands and glades. And as you get to Kitoto Camp, you can see the gorgeous Momella lakes in the valley below. When there are no clouds, you may be able to view Meru’s top and the sheer cliffs that form the inner crater walls higher up the mountain at Rhino Point. On the other hand, the top of the horseshoe rim offers the best views of the mountain. You’ll experience a blend of the most breathtaking and thrilling trekking in East Africa as you navigate the sheer ridgeline.
A thousand meters below the surface, the ash cone is visible when looking down into the crater. The huge expanse of Meru fills the entire eastern horizon, as it is situated 70 kilometers west of Kilimanjaro. Cloudless blue skies are available from December to February, showcasing Kilimanjaro with breathtaking clarity. The city of Arusha is located on the opposite side of the crescent, outside the verdant plains of Arusha National Park. It may be plainly seen during early morning ascents, thanks to its lights. Enjoy breathtaking views of Kilimanjaro on the descent after admiring the views of Little Meru to the north of the peak. Undoubtedly, this pristine trekking haven is among Tanzania’s best-kept secrets.
Escape the crowds.
An estimated 35–50,000 individuals attempt to climb Kilimanjaro each year; to put that into perspective, that means that every month, 170-200 new climbers begin at the mountain’s foot. Kilimanjaro is so popular that on its main routes, one may even experience “traffic jams.” In contrast to this chaotic tourist trap, Mount Meru is a serene island. It is also less commercialized and has better-maintained trail shelters because of the fewer crowds. Many hikers who have climbed both summits say that Meru is better than Kilimanjaro simply because it’s easier to avoid the throng.
You will be challenged on both mountains and pushed beyond your previous perceptions of your physical and mental capabilities. It is crucial to have a knowledgeable, nimble-witted, and committed support team when ascending thousands of meters above the ground. The only choice left is the caliber of team you wish to have with you on the mountain for a week, since having guides is a requirement on the slopes. Our guides are incredibly enthusiastic about inspiring hikers and giving them lifelong memories. With their combined 100+ summits, Wilderness First Aid qualifications, and firsthand mountain expertise, they all contribute to a fun and safe trekking atmosphere. As you fill your days with reggaeton and create lifetime friends, take pleasure in countless anecdotes about the mountain and the local cultures.
ABOUT THE TREK
Socialist Peak, the highest point of Mount Meru, is 4,980 feet high and may be reached in 3–4 days via the Momella Route. The Momella route (to the east) is currently the sole authorized route to ascend the mountain, despite earlier routes taking advantage of the northern side. Beginning at Momella Gate, the journey winds up into Meru’s sunken crater after passing through coffee farms situated on mountains. Every night, guests stay in mountain huts, first in Saddle Hut and then Miriakamba Hut, before climbing the peak and descending. All in all, it’s a more serene and cost-effective substitute for Kilimanjaro, offering breathtaking views of the crater.
There are undoubtedly more reasons to climb Meru than those we’ve mentioned above. You will undoubtedly appreciate trekking this lovely peak given the breathtaking vistas, the incredible wildlife, and our fantastic crew! We promise that you won’t regret taking this trip, whether you hike it in addition to Kilimanjaro or as a stand-alone excursion!
IN SUMMARY: WHY SHOULD I CLIMB MOUNT MERU?
For those looking to discover the splendor of Tanzania’s mountains, Mount Meru offers an enthralling and life-changing experience. From its spectacular natural beauty to its strenuous hike and plethora of species, Mount Meru has a lot to offer. A visit to Mount Meru in 2024/2025 will leave you with priceless memories and a profound appreciation for the wonders of this amazing mountain, regardless of whether you’re an experienced climber searching for a new challenge or a nature lover wanting a distinctive and less crowded experience.