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  Alpine Ascents Kilimanjaro 2009


02/02/2009: Hey folks it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro on Monday February 2nd at about 7:45 PM. We are here at camp II on the Shira Plateau at about 12,400 feet. Everyone is doing well, we just finished up a dinner and a little desert with some fried banana and some tea. We had a nice day today, a little bit shorter than yesterday and much less rain, we did get a little bit of rain but compared to yesterday’s torrential downpour it was pretty nice. We have a special message going out, everyone sends their best to Samantha’s first grade class and Alexandra’s preschool class in Albuquerque. Tomorrow is one of our longer days, day three to Barranco camp with some of our best views in route as well, we are hoping the weather will improve a little bit. Eric would also like to say love and hugs to Mom and to Christy from Tanzania. Stay tuned for more as team five progresses up the mountain. Cheers.

02/01/2009 Hello friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro on Team #5, it is February 1st, Sunday at about 6:15 at Machame camp, just below 10,000 feet on the slopes of Kilimanjaro. Team #5 began their climb today, we are:

Eric Murphy - trip leader and guide
Jack - climber
Andrea - climber
Wayne - climber
Michael - climber
Andy - climber
Pam - climber
Lawrence - climber
A little bit smaller group for this trip, everyone is doing well right now, we are just getting relaxed and moved into our tents and soon we will be having dinner here. The weather changed a little bit for us as the porters like to say ‘Kilimanjaro changed flavor’ and that is a couple of hours of equatorial rain today, pretty torrential rain but everyone did well. It has dried out, the sun is out and we are going to enjoy a nice dinner tonight and tomorrow we will be moving to camp II on the Shira Plateau and we will phone in from there, thanks for following along.

Team IV.

Hi Folks, it is Friday 1/30 here in Arusha, Tanzania. Team number 4 returned to town yesterday after a few more hours on the trail. A brief recap.... After the summit on day 6, we packed up from high camp and descended 5K feet to make our last camp at Mweka, 10,000'. We just missed the bad weather up high as it rained that afternoon and evening, coating the upper mountain in snow. Everyone was happy we had great conditions for our summit bid. We enjoyed a great dinner at Mweka, and gorged on a celebration cake baked for us by Sostar, Kelvin, and Yona, our wonderful cook team. The last day we descended another 4,000' to the Mweka gate where we enjoyed lunch before returning to Arusha by 3 pm. Last nights dinner topped it all off, and this morning everyone departed for their 4 day, 3 night Safari in the heart of Tanzania's most famous game parks.
Today I am catching up a bit before beginning trip #5 tomorrow. Is is beginning to get rainy here, as we approach the start of the wet season.

Join us for the cybercasts for team #5 as we ascend to the roof of Africa.

Best! Eric


Team IV.

01/28/2009: SUMMIT DAY
Greetings folks it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro, it is Wednesday the 28th of January at about 1:00pm here at 15,500 feet on Africa’s highest peak. We have just returned from our summit bid, it was very successful day for the group. Everyone is doing well, we just had some lunch and we are in the process of packing up our camp so that we can move down the mountain to our last camp tonight which will be at Mweka at around 10,000 feet so that is another 5,000 feet of descent for us. A very full day for folks but again a successful one, everyone is doing well and we will give one more cybercast for this group either calling in from the last day or emailing from town tomorrow when we return to Arusha. Thanks for following along, cheers.

Hello friends, it is Eric calling from Kilimanjaro, it is Tuesday the 27th of January about 6:15PM and we are all well situation here at Kosovo our high camp at about 15,500 feet. We just finished meal with spaghetti, meat sauce and a happy birthday cake for Scott. Everyone is bedding down right about now and getting ready for the summit. We will be waking up at 11:00pm and departing at about midnight. The weather looks pretty good right now; it has definitely improved from what it was. Gary sends greetings from high camp, he is feeling very well and positioned for a summit bid tonight and in general the team is doing well and everyone send love and hugs back home. We will check in with another report after our summit climb tomorrow. Thanks for following along.

Hello there friends, it is Eric calling in from Kilimanjaro on Monday, January 26th about 9:00pm. We are here at camp IV at Karranga camp at about 13,200 feet. We had a very rainy and wet day today on Kilimanjaro, probably the most rain I have seen thus far this season. We had a short day fortunately to get here at Karranga, we enjoyed a lunch in camp and a lot of resting and leisure time this afternoon, time to get ourselves in preparation for the summit. We are hoping that the weather is going to clear and tomorrow we will be moving up to high camp at Kosovo at 15,400 feet. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather for us tomorrow and for our climb. We will be leaving for the summit around mid night tomorrow night. We have got one message from Scott, he wants Katharine to know that he is a rock star for his birthday and the summit, love to her, Holden, Ashley, from Scott. That’s all for now from Kilimanjaro.

Winter comes to Kilimanjaro; Hello folks it is Eric calling in from Kilimanjaro on Sunday, January 25th at about 8pm. We are all at Barranco camp, at the end of day three, elevation about 12,900 feet. Today we had some winter time on Kilimanjaro, we were experiencing about 3-4 hours of some pretty extreme hail, turned the mountain white and for a little while it stayed that way and it looked like winter here. Everyone is doing well today, we had a rather long day, about 7 ½ hours and we just finished dinner, pasta and meatballs with some vegetables on the side and some sweet pancakes for dessert. Tomorrow we are looking forward to a shorter day to camp IV at Karranga. Gabriella would like to say hakuna matata to all of her friends and family and to tell Miles that she misses him very much and she wishes that you could see the beautiful skies with here. All is well here at the highest mountain on Africa and stay tuned for more.

Hello friends, it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro Saturday January 24th 8:45PM. We are currently just finishing our second day of climbing we are here at Shira camp, located on the Shira Plateau at 12,400 feet. We had a shorter day today, about five hours or so with a nice lunch break. Yesterday we had a little bit of a longer day, closer to six hours. All said we have climbed just over six thousand feet in the last couple of days, the team is doing well and everyone is feeling well and enjoying the climb. We had a little bit of rain today but nothing too dramatic. Hopefully we will have some clear skies tomorrow for day three, one of our longer days with some beautiful views of the mountain and getting up to the 14,000 foot level and possible as high as 15,000 feet if we continue up to Lava Tower. Everyone sends their best wishes home to friends and family and folks following along on the cybercast and please do stay tuned for more.

Hi folks. Team #4 has arrived here in Arusha, Tanzania. We are:

Jeanie Fisher
David Fisher
Jason Fuller
Gabriel Lawson
Vicki Peckham
Hoyt Sutphin
Casey Flowe
Gary Kelson
Hillary Burton
Scott Gibson
Eric Murphy - Trip Leader and Guide

We spent most of today, Thursday 1/22 going over orientation, gear checks, and other necessary logistics to prepare for the mountain. We are currently waiting on a few late bags, after enjoying a nice dinner together as a team. Hopefully the bags will show soon and we can finish preparations. Tomorrow morning we will depart at 8:30 AM for the Machame gate, located in the forest zone at 5,800' on the Southern slopes of Kilimanjaro. From here we will sign in with the national park, and begin our hike of 4,000 vertical feet, and approx. 11 kilometers, arriving at Machame camp after 5-6 hours. Jeanie and David have a special theme for their climb. They are hoping to raise $10,000.00 for donation to the Salvation Army, to help those less fortunate. (Salvation Army Columbus Ohio). Please follow along as team #4 cybercasts each day from the mountain.

Team III.


Hi folks,

We made our return to Arusha yesterday (Tuesday), after a 5 hour hike down from Millenium camp located at 12,000 feet. The team enjoyed lunch at the Mweka gate, and we returned just in time to miss a large rainstorm. Last nights celebration dinner completed the climb portion of the trip, and this morning the team departed for Safari, beginning with Tarangire NP, home to the largest concentration of elephants on earth! This team worked very hard to make the trip a fantastic experience for all.

My thanks go out to everyone. Our Tanzanian staff also deserves praises for all of their hard work, they are truly amazing, hard working people. All my best from Equatorial Africa!

Asante Sana

Hi friends and family, it is Eric calling in from Kilimanjaro, Monday the 19th of January at about 1:00pm. We are all safely back at high camp here at Kosovo about 15,400 feet after a very successful summit day. 13 out of 14 climbers were able to make the summit and we had in general very nice weather conditions. We just finished some lunch here and we are in the process of packing up so that we can head down to our last camp tonight which will probably be Millennium at about 12,000 feet and tomorrow we will make our way out to the gate and Mweka Gate that is and back to Arusha by 3:00 pm or so where folks will get a chance to shower, clean up. We will have a dinner together and then the next morning people will be leaving on safari while other folks are showing up for the next Kilimanjaro climb. We will send in one more cybercast from town. Thanks for following along and thanks for your wishes for success for the team, cheers.

Hi friends it is Eric on Kilimanjaro on Sunday at about 6:00pm, Team 3 has made it to high camp at about 15,500 feet. We just finished our dinner and we are going to bed early, we are setting ourselves up with a little bit of rest before we get up at 11:00pm and make our way to the summit. The weather is good right now and everyone is doing well. Jessica would like to send big hugs and kisses, the knee is doing good and I am feeling strong. Rest assured we are in great hands, much love, Jess. Chuck and Janice send their love and best wishes to their family friends and grandchildren. We will give a phone in after our summit tomorrow before we start our descent down the mountain, keep your fingers crossed for everyone to reach the top. Thanks for following along.

Hey folks it is Eric Murphy calling from Kilimanjaro for Team three, it is Saturday, January 17th, we are here at camp IV, Karanga which means (…transmission garbled…) at about 13,200 feet and we arrived here today after a shorter day today about four hours of walking and that left folks a good chunk of the afternoon to relax, play cards, hydrate, take pictures, take a nap and generally enjoy ourselves. This is our last real down time before we move to high camp tomorrow and our summit push. So good day for all and folks are feeling very strong, a couple of folks still battling with the altitude but we are taking it one day at a day and hopefully those folks will be feeling better tomorrow. Tomorrow we will be moving up to high camp and leaving for the summit around midnight tomorrow. We have one message and that is from Hahn to her son, Hi Logan it is mommy, I miss you so much and I can’t wait to hold you, one day I hope that you will stand at the Uhuru Peak too, Uhuru Peak is the true summit of Kilimanjaro. Thanks for following along, stay tuned for more as we work our way to the summit.

Hey friends, it is Eric calling from Kilimanjaro Team #3, Friday January 16th at about 9:00pm we are currently ensconced in our tents after a nice dinner and Happy Birthday and cake to Roseanne, who celebrated her birthday today. Everyone did well, we are having a few folks feeling the altitude for sure, camp at Barranco is 12,900 feet but we reached the high point of 14,400 feet to a little over 15,000 today for those folks chose the additional climb up to and scramble to Lava Tower. We had a little bit of rain today but otherwise the weather is good and we are looking forward to a short day tomorrow to recover from both a long day today and to set ourselves up for the summit. We have a couple of personal messages; Steve and Steve want to say hi to Beth, Sarah and Hunter and to all of their family and friends, we are doing great and Steve says hey to all of his brothers back home. Lisa wants to wish her brother Jeff a happy birthday and hey to family and friends, having a blast. That’s all from Kilimanjaro, thanks.

Hey friends, it is Eric Murphy up here on Kilimanjaro, Team # 3, Tuesday, January 15th and it is about 10:30 or so in the evening. We finished a nice day, a little bit short this afternoon on our second day to Shira camp here at 12,400 feet. We were pretty quick today, everyone is feeling really well, we had a nice dinner of beef stroganoff and fried bananas for desert. Most folks are asleep right now, tomorrow is one of our long days so I am going to head to bed as well. Tomorrow we will make our way to Barranco camp at about 12,900 feet and about an 8 hour day. We will catch up with you from there. Thanks.

Hello friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Tanzania for Kilimanjaro Team # 3, Wednesday the 14th of January at about 9:20PM, we just finished up our first evening’s dinner on the route. We are here at Machame camp, just below 10,000 feet. We were hiking for about five hours today starting at the Machame Gate at about 5,800 feet. We had a great day, good group, having lots of fun, everybody is doing well and we are looking forward to a good night’s sleep, especially the folks that are a little jet lagged from travel. Tomorrow we will be continuing on up to Shira camp on the Shira Plateau for our camp II, we will be phoning in from there, stay tuned for more. Thanks for following along.


Hi friends,

It's Eric Murphy emailing in for the 1st cybercast for Team #3 on Kilimanjaro. It is 11 PM here in Arusha Tanzania, on Tuesday January 13.

The team is:

Nancy Stenske
Charles Bickes
Janice Stroud Bickes
Hahn Hguyen
Brooke Fell
Lawrence Henshaw
Danielle Kolko
Steve Phillip May
Stephen D May
Roseanne Olmstead
Lisa Vanderbloomer
Jessica Rock
Abby Ellin
Robert Werner
Eric Murphy - trip leader and guide

Most folks arrived here to Arusha on Monday 1/12, some a day or two earlier. We had a few late baggage arrivals, but were able to get through all the logistics today. We enjoyed a nice dinner together at the Flame Tree this evening, and we will leave for the mountain in the morning. Tomorrow's climb will start at the Machame gate located at 5,800' on the slopes of KIlimanjaro. Here we will sign in with the park, meet our Tanzanian staff of porters, cooks, camp crew, and guides, and begin walking. We will ascend 4,000' to Machame camp located just below 10,000' on the edge of the heather and moorlands zones. Our climb should take around 5 hours, climbing through a forest of giant fern and camphor trees. Temperatures can be very warm and muggy, or chilly if it is raining. Please follow along as we cybercast from each camp during the climb!








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