Gear needed for climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

As Mount Kilimanjaro is a non-technical climb, there’s no need to worry about harnesses, ropes, carabiners, ascenders and a plethora of other climbing gear. You’ll need lots of warm clothes, a good set of waterproofs, decent hiking boots and some pieces of equipment. A full list of the gear needed for climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is listed below. We ask you to consider each item carefully before deciding you don’t want to bring it. Most of the items are essential, some are marked as optional. Some of the gear can be expensive to go out and buy so we run a very reasonable equipment hire service in Moshi. Get in touch with our office if you want a list of what gear can be hired along with the costs.

Mount Kilimanjaro Gear: Feet

TREKKING BOOTSNot plastic. Sturdy, waterproof, well broken in and high enough to support ankle. Wear them on plane in case luggage goes missing
SOCKS3 thermal and some regular. Some wear a thin pair under a thick pair, rinse the thin pair at night and peg them to their pack to dry the next day
TRAINERSFor round camp
GAITERSNot required but can be useful if the forest is especially muddy

Mount Kilimanjaro Gear: Bottom Half

TREKKING TROUSERSNot cotton or jeans. Fleece lined trousers are a good choice
WATERPROOF TROUSERSA light pair that can be worn on their own or pulled over your trekking trousers is best
THERMAL UNDERWEAR1 pair of synthetic long john bottoms and 1 or 2 tops

Mount Kilimanjaro Gear: Top Half

T-SHIRTS/SHIRTSNot cotton but synthetic preferably with wicking properties
FLEECESAbsolutely essential. We recommend 2 light and 1 heavy fleece. Keeping warm on the mountain is about wearing lots of thin layers that can be pealed off as you get warm or put on as you cool down. Make sure fleeces all fit comfortably over each other
SHELL JACKETOptional if you bring enough fleeces but still useful.
WATERPROOF JACKETGore-Tex is best. Try it on over your fleeces 1st
RAIN PONCHONot essential but useful in the forest. Something cheap will suffice
DOWN JACKETWith enough fleeces and a good waterproof jacket for extra insulation on the summit night a down jacket is not needed but if you’ve got the budget it’s well worth it. 600 or 650 fill will be fine
GLOVESFleece-lined is good, mittens over a thin thermal pair is best but not essential. A thinner pair for round camp is also a good idea.
SUNHATA wide-brimmed one is best. Try and get one that covers the back of your neck to protect against sunburn
BALACLAVANot essential but protects against wind. Can be bought in Moshi
SUNGLASSESMust protect against U.V.

Mount Kilimanjaro Gear: Equiptment

Sleeping bag3-season or 2-season with liner. Closed-cell sleeping mat provided
Large bag for your gearThe porters will carry this. Not one with a frame, the porters will carry it on their heads and it makes their job harder
Day packMaking sure you’re comfortable walking long distances with it
Travel bagFor gear you don’t want on Kili. Kept safe until your return
Water bottlesThermally protected, enough for 3-4 litres
Water purifiersIodine is best but try it for taste at home first (flavoured powder helps). We boil all water on the mountain but better safe than sorry
HeadlampBring spare batteries and a spare bulb
Personal hygiene itemsTowel, toothbrush, toothpaste, wipes and alcohol-based hand disinfectant are useful. Soap & hot water is provided daily.
Roll of toilet paper
Personal medical kitAntiseptic cream, plasters, knee supports, moleskin or compeed, Ibruprofen/Aspirin/Paracetamol etc, Imodium, rehydrating powder, throat sweets and insect repellent can all come in useful
Trekking polesVery useful on the descent
CameraSpare film/memory cards/batteries. A UV filter is needed for SLRs
Plastic bagsFor wet gear
Cell phone/spare batteriesCheck with your network provider for coverage. You can get signal across a lot of the mountain but it is weak in places
Personal snack food
Reading materialFor the long evenings in camp
Wristwatch & alarm