Kilimanjaro Winter 2009 Cybercast

Team VI

02/18/2009
Hello Everyone,

It is Wednesday morning the 18th of Feb. here in Arusha, Tanzania. The weather has begun to turn definitively towards the rainy side, and temps are cooler here- time to wrap it up for our 2008/2009 Winter season!

Cleo, Barb, Pam and Matti departed for Safari yesterday morning, beginning with a flight from Arusha to Seronera in the heart of the Serengeti National Park. From there they will work their way back to Arusha via landcruisers, visiting the famous National Parks of the Northern circuit. Baba returned home on the KLM flight last night, while Joyce and Don are continuing their adventures with stops in Zanzibar, and Paris on the way home to NYC.

Everyone did great on summit day, pulling through personal barriers, and pushing on to the top of Africa. Our descent down the mountain was slow and smooth, and we arrived at the Mweka gate Monday around 1 PM. Monday evening we enjoyed our last team meal together at The Bay Leaf, one of Arusha's finest dining establishments.

Congratulations to team 6 and to all of the climbers this season. I am happy to say that all but 4 climbers made the summit this season, out of over 60! I hope that we can make the next Winter season as successful as this one.

My personal thanks to all of you who donated gear to the porters that work so hard to make this trip run smoothly. At the Mweka gate on Monday we held a raffle, and all of the gear donated this season was distributed to the porter staff.

Last, but certainly not least, The Tanzanian guide staff deserves strong recognition for their hard work this season. August, Romly, Aloice, Brian, Abraham, and Michael. This program could not be as successful without their strength and encouragement. Viva Tanzania!

I look forward to my return next December for the 2009/10 Winter season. In a few days it will be time to return to Winter in the Northwest, Skiing, and working on the Winery.

All My Best
Eric Murphy

02/15/2009
Hey friends, it is Eric here on Kilimanjaro, Sunday the 15th of February at about 5:00pm and we just wanted to send out a quick cybercast that everyone made the summit today. It was a tough one for some folks and we had a lot of wind up but everyone did good, pushed on through and made it. We are now down at Millennium camp at 12,300 feet and we will send in a final cybercast from town.

02/14/2009
Hey folks it is Eric here on Kilimanjaro, Saturday the 14th of February, Happy Valentines everyone. We are here at high camp just under 16,000 feet and headed to bed after a little dinner. In preparation for our summit bid, we will be getting up at 11:00 and leaving for the summit at midnight and hopefully down by 10 or 11 tomorrow morning. The weather looks good right now, stay tuned for our post summit cybercast, thanks.

02/13/2009
Hey folks it is Eric on Kilimanjaro, Friday the 13th of February. We are here at camp IV Karanga, about 13,200 feet. The crew is all doing well, we have a couple of brief messages. Matti says hello to Grand Kids; TJ, Zoey and Faith, love you and see you soon. Barb says, the Alaska Kili trio sends their love to family and friends. We have a shorter day today and lots of rest and relaxation in preparation for the summit. Everyone is doing well and we hope that we can keep it that way, tomorrow we are going to move to high camp at Kosovo about 15,800 feet. Keep your fingers crossed for some good summit weather for us tomorrow night. We will definitely phone in a short message from high camp and then once we return from the summit as well and begin our descent down the mountain. Thanks for following along.

02/12/2009
Hey everyone its Eric here on Kilimanjaro, Thursday the 12th of February at about 8:00pm. We are here in Barranco camp about 12,900 feet located above the steep Umbwe Valley and below the steep Barranco and Breech walls. Everyone is doing well here, a couple of people are feeling the altitude a little bit but that is normal. We had a nice day today, about an 8 hour day a little light rain but nothing too dramatic, definitely some mist and fog. We did not see a lot of the mountain today unfortunately but we hope that it will be a little bit clearer tomorrow. Folks are doing well, everyone sends love and hugs back home to all of their friends and family watching along. Tomorrow we have a shorter day to Karanga, typically about a four or four and half hour day so folks get a little extra rest tomorrow in preparation for our move to high camp the following day. All is well here near the equator in Africa and stay tuned to our next post tomorrow.

02/11/2009
Hey friends it is Eric here on Kilimanjaro, Wednesday the 11th of February at about 8:00pm here with team 6 on the mountain. We are at camp II, Shira camp on the Shira Plateau at about 12,400 feet and the skies are currently clear and full of stars. We had a pretty good weather day today, no rain and warm temperatures with sun shinning down on us which was nice after yesterdays rain. Our climb today was about five hours and everyone did well, we have a couple of people with some small stomach issues which will hopefully resolve here before too long but other than that everyone is doing well, having a good time. We had our first real views of the mountain today including some fresh snow up high on the uppers slopes and we just enjoyed a nice dinner together. Folks are headed to bed for a good rest and tomorrow will be our day three to Barranco camp perhaps with a side tour to Lava Tower if the group feels up to it. We hope that the weather will be good tomorrow to provide some beautiful views of the mountain, tomorrow is one of the more scenic days on this trip. So thanks for following along and until tomorrow nights cybercast stay tuned, cheers.

02/10/2009

Hello friends and family it is Eric Murphy calling in from Tanzania here on the slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro for the beginning of the 6th trip. Team number 6 is our last climb here on Kilimanjaro this season. It is the 10th of February, Tuesday at about 9:00pm, we are here at our first camp, Machame camp at just over 10,000 feet. We had about just over a six hour walk today through some rain and a little bit of mud. A little bit of a slow start this morning but everyone is doing well here in camp and we are about to head to bed. I would like to introduce the team, team # 6 is myself, Eric joined by;

Mattie
Pam
Barb
Don
Joyce
Baba
Cleo
So we are 8 total including myself.

Just a brief recap for the last couple of days; Monday, yesterday we had our orientation, our first group meeting as a team in Arusha where we had orientation and covered the trip, answered questions and went through gear checks, made sure that everyone had what they needed. We had nice dinner last night together before going to bed relatively early, some folks being tired from the travel and getting a start this morning. Tomorrow will be a little bit of a shorter start for us, we will be heading to Shira camp at about 12,400 feet and that will be about a four to five hour day and we will give a call in from Shira tomorrow night and let you know how we are doing.


Team V.

02/08/2009:

Hello friends,

It is a warm Sunday Feb. 8th here in Arusha.

Today team 5 has departed for Safari in the heart of Tanzania's finest National parks, beginning with a visit to Tarangire N.P.

A brief recap of the last two days:

We all awoke Saturday AM after a long (and needed) rest at our last camp, Mweka, just above 10,000'. Summit day, and the descent down the mountain, was long, but everyone did great! From Mweka we all walked down through the forest zone, keeping an eye out for B/W Colubus monkeys. We were able to observe some eating above in the canopy. At the Mweka gate we all enjoyed some singing and dancing followed by a little lunch, and our return to Arusha, and the long awaited shower.

Last night the team enjoyed a fine dinner together at The Bay Leaf, one of Arusha's nicest restaurants. Mike was sure to add in some good humor, (always appreciated), with Wayne and Andy not far behind. Jack coined our crew team Arrested Development, and there you have it. Another climb, lots of learning, fun, and challenge were had by all.

Team #6 will begin arriving today! Follow along for our final Kilimanjaro climb of the 2008/2009 Winter season.

Best

Eric

02/06/2009: Summit Day
Hey folks it is Eric here on Kilimanjaro, Friday the 6th of February at about 5:30PM. Just a quick check in for everyone; we are down safely from the summit and down to out last camp here in Mweka at about 10,000 feet. We are going to enjoy some dinner and a full nights rest after a long day. Hats off to todays crew who had the fast ascent and descent time this season, everyone had a great summit day and we are feeling good and we will send in one last cybercast from Arusha when we get back to town tomorrow. Cheers.

02/05/2009
Hey friends it is Eric Murphy here on Kilimanjaro, Thursday the fifth of February at about 6:00pm here at high camp, Kosovo, just under 16,000 feet. We arrived here on our fifth day of climbing, short day, we got in around 1:30pm or so and we have been preparing for the summit. We just finished up a little spaghetti with meat sauce and some soup and we are heading to bed. We will be waking up in about five hours, to prepare, pack and get going to the summit around midnight. The team is doing well, everyone sends love and hugs back home. Jack and Andrea would like to say hello to Molly Audrey back in Alaska. Please do stay tuned for our summit report, we will phone in again tomorrow after we come down from the summit and we work our way down to our last camp on the mountain before returning to Arusha. Thanks for following along and wish us some nice weather for our summit. Cheers

02/04/2009
Hi folks it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro on Wednesday the forth, it is about 9:00pm here at our forth camp, Karranga at about 13,300 feet elevation. It is currently clear weather and clear skies on the dark but the mountain is still looming above us and we did not get any rain today which is nice. The group is doing well, we enjoyed a short day today here to our camp IV here at Karanga, about 4 ½ hours of climbing and a lot of rest, rehydration, recover, recuperation, cards, games, reading and so on here setting us up for our summit day. Dad Wayne has a special message that he would like to send out to his daughter; a special birthday message to his daughter Lindsey who turned 8 today, heri za sikukuu ya kuzaliwa and that is happy birthday in Swahili. Tomorrow we have another short day, moving to high camp and getting ourselves set up for our summit bid which will be Friday morning at 12am. We will give everyone a call tomorrow from high camp and check in again, thanks for following along.

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 yesterdays torrential downpour it was pretty nice. We have a special message going out, everyone sends their best to Samanthas first grade class and Alexandras 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.

01/30/2009
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

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 Africas 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.

01/27/2009
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.

01/26/2009
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. Thats all for now from Kilimanjaro.

01/25/2009
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.

01/24/2009
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.

01/19/2009
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.
Best!
Eric


Team III.

01/21/2009

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
Eric

01/19/2009
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.

01/18/2009
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.

01/17/2009
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 cant 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.

01/16/2009
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. Thats all from Kilimanjaro, thanks.

01/15/2009
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.

01/14/2009
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 evenings 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 nights 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.

01/13/2009

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!

Best

Eric


Team II.

01/12/2009

Hi folks, it's Eric emailing in for the last cybercast for team #2. A brief recap of the last 2 days...

We were all able to summit on 1/10 around 7:30 AM. Conditions were very cold and windy, with gusts reaching around 50-60 MPH on the crater rim, but clear with great views. We all enjoyed viewing the sunrise over Africa from Stella Point, on the crater rim, roughly 30 minutes from the Actual summit of Uhuru Peak. The team was tough, and pushed thru personal altitude records, and in difficult conditions. Mark and Chris were able to stand on the roof of Africa with their 77 year old father Kent! Justin and Terri were able to fulfill their honeymoon dream of reaching the top together, having just married this past year. Summit day was long, 18 hours by the time we descended to our last camp, Mweka at 10,000' feet, where we spent Saturday night. Our glorious chef, Hudson baked a celebration cake, and we dined in great style as usual. Monday morning we walked out the last 3 hours to the Mweka gate, elevation 6,000 feet, enjoyed some lunch, and returned to Arusha by 3 PM. We enjoyed a fine meal at Jacaranda restaurant together, celebrating one last time, a great trip. This morning (Monday) everyone departed for a 4 day Safari in the heart of Tanzania's finest game parks, beginning with Tarangire, and ending with the Serengeti, home to millions of migrating animals.

I can say for me this trip was one of the finest I have been privileged to guide in my 8 years with Alpine. Thanks for following along.

Team #3 will begin their climb in 2 days! Stay tuned.

Best

Eric Murphy

01/10/2009
Hey Friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro Team number 2, Saturday at 11:30 am on the 10th. The team has returned from the summit, we were successful in getting everyone to the top today on a somewhat windy and cold and difficult day. The team did great, a big congratulations to everybody especially to Mark, Chris and the 77 year old father Kent, they were all able to stand on the top together, quite and accomplishment. We are currently having some lunch and we will be packing up soon and heading down to our last camp on the edge of the jungle at about 10,000 feet, Mweka camp and tomorrow, Sunday we will be returning to Arusha. Thanks for following along.

01/09/2009
Hey friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro Team # 2, high camp, Friday January 9th at about 3:00pm. We just rolled in today here at 15,400 feet at our high camp at Kosovo and this evening we will be leaving for the summit right around midnight. The group is all doing really well, we are having a great time and I anticipate that this will be another team success with everyone standing (…transmission break…)

01/08/2009
Hi friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro Team # 2, it is Thursday the 8th of January at about 8:00pm and we are happily ensconced in our tents after a nice dinner of meat balls, coconut rice and vegetables and a little bit of custard for dessert. The team is doing well, we had a nice day today, only about four hours to our forth camp Karanga located at 15,200 feet. We are looking forward to a good night sleep underneath the stars and a short day tomorrow to high camp. Stay tuned for more, thanks for following along.

01/07/2009
Hey cyber friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Tanzania, Kilimanjaro Team #2 here on day three at Barranco camp, elevation 12,900 feet on the flanks of Kilimanjaro amits the senecios and lobelias plants which are unique to this region. We had about an eight our day today, rolled in, just about an hour ago, it is 5:30 pm now everyone is doing well. Messages: Chris would like to say happy birthday to his daughter Sarah, Mark K. says hello to Katherine E. from Barranco camp, two days to the summit, hope all is well. Cos says there are two grandpas in the group and both are doing well. Nolo sends his best wishes and is doing fine even at 15,000 feet, he has been behaving himself except when he gets too close to the cliff for one more photo. All is well here, we plan to dine in an hour or so, the weather has been mixed, pretty foggy, a little light rain. Most folks choose to climb to Lava Tower and make the ascent to the top which is a high point for the day 15,200 feet. Stay tuned for more from us as we have a short day tomorrow climbing to Karanga camp, cheers.

01/06/2009
Hello cyber friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Tanzania, Kilimanjaro trip 2. We are here at Shira camp located on the Shira Plateau, it is currently 5:45PM on the 6th of January. We had a little bit of a shorter day today, the team had a nice day, we rolled in to camp around 1:30 pm or so. We have been playing cards, lounging, taking short walks around camp, staying hydrated and generally enjoying ourselves. The Nichols family is continuing to provide us with solid entertainment and we hope that will continue for the rest of the trip. Everyone is generally doing well and enjoying themselves. We send our best wishes back home to everyone following along on the cybercast. Tomorrow is going to be one of our longer days, day three, maybe eight or perhaps as much as nine hours we will see if we can make a small ascent of Lava Tower and make our way to Great Barrancco camp located at about 12,900 feet. We will check in tomorrow, thanks for following along.

01/05/2009
Hello friends it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro for Team II, it is Monday the 5th of January here in Tanzania about 6 pm. About an hour ago we arrived into our first camp, Machame camp located at about 9,900 feet, after about 5 ½ hours of walking from the Machame gate and about 4,000 feet of elevation gain. We had a little bit of rain today for lunch but over all a very nice day, a nice slow pace, the group is doing well, everyone is happy. We are getting ready to have some dinner in the group dinning tent and get a good sleep and hopefully the weather will clear a little bit for us and hopefully we will be able to see the mountain tomorrow. Everyone sends their best wishes home and a happy new year. Thanks for following along and stay tuned for more as we climb the mountain.

01/04/2009
Hello friends, this is Eric Murphy emailing in from Arusha, Tanzania, for the 1st cybercast for team #2. Happy New Year to everyone back home. It is 4 PM here on January 4th, and we leave for the mountain in the morning. The team members are:

Mark Kieckbusch

Cosimo Sciotto

Brent Harmon

John Slosson

Theresa Hart

Justin Hart

Chris Nichols

Mark Nichlos

Kent Nichols

Eric Murphy Trip leader and guide

Everyone has arrived in good shape here to Arusha, and today we have had orientation, gear checks, a town tour. We will enjoy a nice dinner together this evening, try to catch up on sleep, and have an early departure tomorrow AM for Kilimanjaro. Our climb will begin at 5,800' at the Machame gate, after checking in with the National Park, we will hike 4,000', and about 5-6 hours to Machame camp 1 at 10,000' above sea level. We will be 7 days on the mountain, and return to Arusha. The peak of hot season is approaching, and the temperatures are quite warm here, although the rains have been light thus far. We are all looking forward to a great climb! Please follow along as we cybercast each day from the mountain.

Best,

Eric & Team


Team I. & South Dakota Team

01/02/2009
Hey there everybody this is Dave calling in on January 2nd at 7am in Tanzania and we are at the summit of Kilimanjaro with the whole group with very little wind and beautiful sun. The sun came up about half hour, 45 minutes ago and the whole group is here. We just took a bunch of photos and are having a great time. We had lots of good cheers and Congrats to RC for finishing his 7 summits. The whole team faired really well, no sickness, everyone with big smiles and quite happy to be going down and sleeping at 10,000ft tonight with some celebratory beers! So well be in touch this evening. Well talk to you soon.

01/01/2009
Hello and Happy 2009 from 15,500ft on Kilimanjaro. This is Dave Morton calling in from Team SoDak (South Dakota). It is about 7pm on January 1st, 2009 and we are just getting back into our tents at high camp after a lovely evening. Everyone made it up here this afternoon, we took some naps, played some cards and just had a wonderful dinner from our great cook, Sostenas. And after that we were treated to a good luck song and happy new year song from our whole staff and porters and we also had a freshly baked cake from our cook as well. The crew is doing well and everyone is just getting settled in for a few hours. We should be getting about 5 hours rest and then we will be up at midnight and hopefully on the trail by 1 or 1:30am along with the rest of the people up here, who weve gotten to know as well. This is the first camp weve had by ourselves since no one really camps at this spot so some people are a little below us and we are looking forward to not having too many people pass up and wake us up before midnight when we arise. And we will be looking forward to calling you tomorrow sometime and checking in with our status at the summit of Kilimanjaro. We will talk to you soon.

12/31/2008
Hey everyone out there it is 1:00 in Tanzania and this is Dave Morton calling in for Team SoDak, we just arrived here at the Karanga Camp up at 3930 m or about 12,800/12,900 feet. The crew has just all rolled in; we had a short day today after a longish day yesterday. We have a little sprinkle coming down and some clouds rolling in over these lava ridge lines. Everybody is sitting in the dinning tent just getting a cup of tea and today will have been just a half day to camp. Our crew has been wonderful throughout the trip; we are all just getting to know these guys well and starting to learn some names. We have 33 porters with us on this trip as well as few guides who will go to the summit with us, our local guides name is Julius who is from just below Kilimanjaro and was born and raised on the slopes, a good man, he has been taking care of us. We have been having a good time with world camps, we have got a lot of people in camp right because a lot of people are going to go to the summit tonight, New Years Eve, and we have been getting to know some of them as well. We have been step in step with a few groups who have now identified us as the team from South Dakota which nobody knows where that is but they do know that that is where these guys are from. Anyway we are having a good time and we send our wishes to everyone out there. Happy New Year, we should be calling back in 2009, tomorrow we will be headed up to our high camp, talk to you soon.

12/30/2008
Hey there everybody it is 6:30 here on the 30th here in Tanzania and I am here with Team SD from South Dakota, these guys are all doing great. We are at the Barranco Camp which is about 12,800 feet and we have had a really misty, wet afternoon but the skies are just parting and the clouds are disappearing and the sun before it sets here in just a few minutes is giving us its last little glimmers of light. The team is doing really, today we went all the way up to 15,000 feet and everybody is feeling good, like they are in good health, some slight headaches here and there but we have been eating well and having a great time together. The team is extremely strong, everybody is happy and having a really good time. We have been greeted by our porters every afternoon with some great song and dance, Tanzania style and everybody is enjoying the masses that are here, most of them trying to summit on New Years Eve. We will be a day behind most of the teams that we are with now as we make a shorter move tomorrow, most of the teams will move up to high camp tomorrow from this camp. Looking forward to a little shorter day tomorrow, we had a nice long day today coming up over the high point, a little shorter than usual as we have a pretty strong team. Everyone is doing really well, looking forward to a nice long afternoon tomorrow with the hospitality of our great crew here. We will be in touch soon and hope to get a cybercast out in the morning. Talk to you soon, bye.

12/30/2008
Good morning friends and family it is Eric Murphy calling in from Kilimanjaro, Team I, it is Tuesday, December 30th , about 9:30 in the morning. The remainder of the team is here at Arusha Airport and we are just waiting for our flight to the Serngeti to begin day one of the safari. A quick recap; yesterday we had the last day of the trip, day seven off the mountain from Mweka camp down to the gate. It was about three hours of walking for everyone, after a very long summit day and descent down to Mweka camp at about 10,000 feet the previous day, everyone did great. We had a nice celebratory lunch at the gate with all of our staff. Last night we had a nice dinner, locally in Arusha, a few folks departed for home and we are now down to a team of nine for our four day, three night safari. Everyone is having a great trip and would like to send their greetings and happy New Year wishes home to everyone following this cybercast. This will be the last official cybercast for Team I and Team II will start on the mountain on the 5th of January. Thanks for following along and Happy New Year to everyone.

12/29/2008
Hello everyone out there this is Dave Morton calling in with the Scull Family Team from South Dakota. We are at the Machame Hut, it is a beautiful morning with views up to the top of Kilimanjaro. These guys have had sort of a whirlwind these last couple of days and are finally getting in touch, the whole team arrived two nights ago late in the evening into the town of Arusha and after a quick dinner with a lot of sleepy faces we looked through our gear, got packed up and woke up in the morning and started out on the trailhead yesterday morning. We had a nice drive and we got to see a little bit of the outlying villages of Arusha for these guys who havent been to this area of the world before and quickly arrived to the gate of the Machame route. Everyone is thoroughly enjoying being here up in the mountains in the fresh air. Of course there are lots of people as usual on this mountain but the weather has been spectacular, we didnt have any rain yesterday, this time of year there is definitely some rain in the afternoons but all these guys have brought some karma with them. Bob, RC, Josiah, Perry, Mark and Matt are a great group of guys and I am enjoying getting to know them these first twenty four hours. This morning we are headed up from 10,000 feet where we are now to about 12,300 and it should be a very enjoyable day, we have got beautiful skies and birds chirping and our porters were singing this morning as we were getting some hot water ready. So a quick breakfast this morning and we will be on our way, we will be in touch later on, thats all from Africa, talk to you soon bye.

12/28/2008
Hey folks this is Eric Murphy calling in for Kilimanjaro Team I. It is Sunday 11:00 am here in Tanzania and we have all returned back to high camp from a successful summit, everyone was able to reach the summit together as a team which is the way we like to have it. We are all reconvening here at high camp so we can have a little bit of lunch, pack camp up and begin our descent. With any luck we will be able to reach Mweka camp today at about 10,000 feet on the edge of the jungle, so that will be an additional 5,000 feet of descent from this camp and a total of 9,000 feet from the summit today and about 4,000 feet of ascent. So big day for folks, everyone is feeling very happy, if not a bit on the tired side. We will give you a call from our next camp. Thanks for following along.

12/27/2008
Hey friends, it is Eric Murphy calling in for Kilimanjaro Team I. We send our greetings to you from high camp here at Kosovo elevation15,500 feet. It is the 27th of December about 4:00pm here on Saturday. We arrived here into high camp today about 2:00 or slightly after this afternoon and in another hour or so we will be having dinner and then preparing for summit and going to bed. Tonight we will be waking up at about 11:00 pm and departing for the summit around midnight. Everyone is doing well and sends their best wishes back home and we will definitely give another call in tomorrow on summit day once we all return to high camp, stay tuned for more.

12/24/2008
Greetings friends, this is Eric Murphy calling in from Tanzania, Kilimanjaro trip #1.  It is Friday the 26th of December about 1:30pm.  Today is our fourth day on the mountain and we are situated comfortably here at Karanga Camp, located just above the Karanga River on the slopes of Kilimanjaro at about 13,250 feet.  The group all arrived here today, this afternoon, after a shorter day from Baranco Camp, about three and a half to four hours of climbing.  Everyone is doing well, some folks are feeling the altitude a little bit, but overall, we are all strong and doing well and are just about to sit down for a hot lunch in the dining tent, after which we will have some time to stretch, and relax, hydrate and play some cards, and generally enjoy ourselves here at Karanga Camp. 

Yesterday the 25th, was one of our longer days, we were about 8 hours on the trail moving from Shira Camp to Baranco Camp, which was our Camp for the third night, where we had a Christmas Dinner, followed by a Christmas cake, and a little bit of non-alcoholic champagne to celebrate.  The group had a long day, a few struggled a bit with the altitude, but in the end everyone did well, rested well and we are well situated to continue on tomorrow to high camp.  Thanks for following along, we hope that everyone back in the States and elsewhere is having a great holiday, stay tuned for more.

12/24/2008
Good afternoon friends and family, this is Eric Murphy calling in for Kilimanjaro team 1, on December 24th at about 2:30 here Tanzania time.  We have arrived at our second camp at the Shira Plateau at about 12,700 feet after about four and a half hours of walking today amidst a rain and hail storm.  We were fortunate enough to be able to duck into our dining tent  for lunch out of the weather, where we all huddled, including the African staff while it was hailing and we had a hot lunch.  Everyone is doing well here and we send our best wishes love and Merry Christmas home to everyone.  Please stay tuned for more.

12/24/2008
Good morning friends this is Eric Murphy calling in for the first Sat phone cybercast of the Kilimanjaro season.  It is the morning of December 24, 2008 at about 6:30, and we are perched comfortably at our first camp, the Machame Camp, located just below 10,000 feet on the edge of the Moorlands, here on Kilimanjaro.  We started yesterday with our climb, about 5 hours of walking and about 4,000 feet of elevation gain, and everyone is having a great time.  Today we will be moving up to Camp II, Shira Camp on the Shira Plateau, about 12,700 feet and we will give you guys a ring from that camp when we get in.  Everyone here would like to send their best to friends and family back home and a very Merry Christmas for all.  Stay tuned for more.

12/21/2008
Greetings family and friends,

This is Eric Murphy emailing in from Arusha, Tanzania for the 1st Cybercast of the 2008/2009 Winter season.  it is Sunday evening here on the equator, and the days are dry and very warm.

I arrived here on Wednesday the 17th to begin preparations for the season.
The climbers for the 1st trip have been arriving over the last two days, and on Tuesday morning we will depart for the Machame gate, our entrance to Kilimanjaro National park.  This will be the 1st of 7 days on Kili, as we ascend gradually allowing for time to properly acclimatize.

Team 1 is made up of the following members:

Lori Harris
Rubi Kaur
Christina Thomson
Miriam Lederer
Gabi McColgan
Brienna Watters
Chris Scribner
Thy Do
David Hock
Matt Hock
Ashley Hock

We invite you to follow along with our climb, as we will be calling in cybercasts often from the mountain.

Asante Sana

Eric

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