Western Breach

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Arrow Glacier Route

Western Breach, Kilimanjaro

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My right hand (the one on the left!) points to the Arrow Glacier.

Starting off up the Western Breach from the Lava Tower campsite. A day time start is only suitable for those planning to camp in the crater.

Half way up

Looking towards the Furtwangler Glacier and top of Western Breach

Western Breach of Kilimanjaro by the Arrow Glacier
Route closed due to rockfall danger. 
Grade C/D  Fully porter supported 
This is the toughest of the three popular routes to the summit. The steep screes with poor paths are interspersed with rocky steps which require hands to be used and care to be taken not to dislodge rocks on those below. On rare occasions, under icy conditions, it may be necessary to either cut steps or wear crampons. The crater rim is reached at about 5700m and the summit is still about 1 kilometer away in a straight line but 3 kilometers via Stella Point. First the crater must be traversed passing the remnants of the Furtwangler Glacier then the rim regained by Stella Point before the final section to the summit.

For safety reasons guides avoid descending the Western Breach and the Barafu then Mweka Route is used for descent. Porters carry clients equipment from the Arrow Glacier campsite or from the Lava Tower to the Mweka Hut to await the descending group.

Strong and acclimatised groups may make the ascent comfortably leaving the Lava Tower campsite (4600m) at around midnight. Others may consider establishing a higher camp (ca 4800m) by the ruins of the Arrow Glaciar Hut. The Arrow Glacier has receded considerably and is no longer a feature on the ascent.

The route is easily accessed from the Shira, Lemosho, Machame and Umbwe Routes.

View of the Breach Wall

Approaching the Furtwangler Glacier
Uhuru Point in background

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ALW 13/09/04