The Machame route is also called the "Whiskey Route", even though this is a very difficult route, it is viewed by many Kili guides as the most enjoyable route. Despite this high difficulty level, the success rate of this route is very high, possibly because climbers have more time to acclimatize if they take the Barafu Route to the summit. An extra acclimatization day can be taken in the Karanga Valley. Also, this route gives you the option of taking the Western Breach to the summit.
It is not hard to see why most of the climbers prefer this route as it is beginning on the South-Western side of Mt. Kili, climbers pass through some of the mountain’s finest features, including the cloud forest of Kili’s southern slopes, the dry and dusty Shira Plateau and the lovely Senecio clad Barranco Campsite. In order to reach the actual summit, you have a choice of two paths: most people head for the lengthy, long-winded climb up the Barafu trail, with the Rebmann Glacier edging into your field of vision on your left as dawn breaks behind Mawenzi behind you. Alternatively, the more adventurous can go on the Western Breach Route, departing from the regular trail at Lava Tower on the western side of Kibo before heading up to chilly Arrow Glacier Campsite, then pressing on from there to the crater floor, gaining access to the crater at a point near the Furtwangler Glacier. Many climbers will spend a night here at the Crater Campsite, before pushing on up the crater’s southern rim to Uhuru Peak. To descend you come down via the Mweka Route, a steep but very pretty encompassing inhospitably dry mountain desert and lush lowland forest in a matter of a few hours.
Difficulties of this route:
Even though the Machame Route is widely estimated to be harder than the Marangu Route, the proportion of climbers who reach the summit using this route is marginally but significantly higher. Whether this is evidence that this route allows people to acclimatize more or whether is simply an indication that it is used by more experienced and hardened climber, we are looking forward to finding out.