Sunset the day before the ascent from Barafu Camp at about 15,300 ft.
Above the skies, above the pollution and above whispy, rolling fields of cloud,s the heavens above a truly magic. The incredibly bright moon, unencumbered by man's airborne pollutants shines down like an astral streetlight, lighting up the mountain trail before us as we scrable up loose rocks and volcanic scree. The stars, are bright lights, often being mistaken for the head lamps of climbers much, much further up the steep scree slope leading up to Stella's Point at 18,ooo plus ft.
I take the luxury of a short stop, hoping my body wont cool down too much to leaden my muscles, I look away from the path eastward. The morning sun is waking up. Above, up in the thin air, literally on the roof af Africa, a fierce blood red and golden yellow band stretches across the entire horizon in front of me, curving slightly across the horizon. The first signs of day break after an icy cold 6 hours in minus 15 degrees.
Up here, above the kingdoms of men and clouds, we are not welcome as guests by the god peaks of Uhuru or Mawezi. We are instead tolerated as slightly amusing pests, seeking visions of grandeur by attempting to scale the shoulders of immortals. The stars as always chirp their support but its the moon, with paternal warmth that today bathes our path with clear illumination.
Above and below me, hundreds of head lamps, form a human string of moving stars, all slowly in synchronized steps moving ever closer to the night sky above.
I grip my hiking poles harder, the biting cold is getting through my gloves and try to catch up with the rest. Behind the the golden band is slowly bringing light to the cold night. The cold wind swirls around my unprotected nose. My feet are still steady, the peak is close. Nice. Just a few more steps.
Not a bad way to spend a morning...