|I slept well - awoke a few times but comfortable.
It was 58 deg in the tent in the morning. I got up about 6 and started off packing
my stuff so we would be ready to go after breakfast.
It did not rain over night but about dawn it started raining & didn't truly
quit till noon. Breakfast was good - porridge, eggs, toast, sausage, bacon, tea etc. Just like at the hotel, but no omelet. Great food.
Tom taking a break
The porters passing us up
|We were on the trail by 8:30. We made
slow & steady progress. Joseph led much
of the way and he really went slow and steady - I felt too slow. Dick & Julie seemed to be having trouble -
feeling the altitude a lot. They made it but
were always at the back. The track was often
muddy but not as bad as yesterday.
|It was sure steep & just kept going. It
never relented. There were a few places of
rocks that were a bit of a scramble. We had
lunch under an overhang to get out of the rain. I stepped out to take a picture and did
not duck low enough coming back in and scraped my scalp on the rocks -a flesh wound only.
Joseph and Julie approaching lunch cave
Joseph, Dick and Julie climbing
|From that cave spot, it was another couple of hours - not as steep overall but still a
couple of rocky scrambles that were steep.
Julie, Dick and Joseph in the clouds
Finally we heard voices and soon
came on the campsite at Shira site on the Shira plateau. We were in and out of clouds and
in a brief sunny period I got an overview picture of the camp - many, many tents and
groups scattered all over a sort of meadow. We
found ours and unloaded about 2:45 Just over 6 hours to go 6km. The weather was pretty pleasant even with the
clouds up and down. After they brought out
the washing water, they said they would be back shortly for the laundry. We had been
joking earlier on the trail about the need to find a laundry but did not really expect to
get this sort of service. They deserve a nice
tip. I am now sitting in the mess tent typing this while having hot tea, ground nuts and a
biscuit. A rough life.
|Dinner was at 5:30 and was good - and plentiful.
It started with soup - I had 2 bowls. Then they brought chicken & chips and
rice with a beef stew to put over the rice. It
was like two meals but was good. We just
stayed up long enough for it to get dark and then everybody went to bed - about 7:30. This
was a big day. It was only 840 meter gain in
6 km. Just before bedtime, we were briefly able to see Kibo mountain - it came and went.
Shira Camp with mist rising