Mar 08, 2015
You can experience varied climatic temperature while you climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro due to the varied Climatic zones of Mt. Kilimanjaro. The temperatures differ radically with the change in altitudes and times of the day. In the same way, rainfall on the mountain varies from dry to damp to wet.
Mount Kilimanjaro has five distinct climate zones. Notably, each zone has its own distinctive weather patterns. Listed below are the different climatic zones of Mt. Kilimanjaro which you ascent while your trail to the peak of Kilimanjaro.
This lowest elevated climatic zone, which is characterised by grasslands, cultivated land and populated human settlements. The region receives the highest rainfall annually. It is mainly used for cultivation. It is situated between the altitude range of 2,600 and 6,000 ft.
This is the climatic zone where most of the trekkers begin their ascent to summit Mt Kilimanjaro. The altitude range of this zone is 6,000 to 9,200 ft. Like the cultivated zone, this zone also receives high rainfall. However, the south and the east side of the mountain receives the maximum amount of the rain. Due to which the forest is deep here than to the north side of the mountain. Flora and fauna are diverse in this zone. But it is very hard to spot the animals. But you can spot monkeys, baboons, elephants, leopards, black rhinoceros, giraffes, buffaloes and mongooses can be spotted in this zone.
This zone beings with Heather zone and ends with the Moorland zone. The zone is characterized by heath-like vegetation and abundant wildflowers. The temperatures here are unpredictable. The temperature during daytime can rise above 100° F (40oC), however, it drops below freezing (32° F or 0° C) at night. The rainfall becomes less in this zone, but you can see clouds floating at your eye level.
The fourth zone is the Alpine Desert zone. The elevation of this zone begins at around 13,000 ft. and continues up to 16,000 ft. True to its name, this zone receives less than 200mm rainfall annually. The temperature of this zone is very harsh, dry, and windy. The air is very thin in the zone. Water is scant here. Except for some grasses and mosses variety, no other vegetation is found in this zone.
The final zone houses the Kibo and Mawenzi peaks, characterised by high altitude arctic conditions. The temperature is extreme in the zone with the hot sun during the day and freezing cold nights. The precipitation is also very low in the area. Life is very scarce in this zone as the oxygen level drops half of what they were on the lower reaches of the mountain. The zone is covered with glaciers slit covers which are rapidly depleting.