Name ID 1159

See also

Dundas, Charles Kilimanjaro and its People
Page Number: 21
Extract Date: 1889

This first conquest of Kibo

In the following years several Missionaries and sportsmen visited various parts of the mountain, while Sir H. H. Johnston studied its flora and fauna. But not until 1887 was any serious attempt made to reach the top. In this year Count Teleki climbed to a height of 15,800 feet, and in August of the same year Dr. Hans Meyer, following the route taken by Count Teleki, attained the altitude of 18,000 feet. Here he came on an unscalable glacier wall, and was compelled to turn back. Renewing his attempt Meyer finally reached the summit in 1889 in company with Ludwig Purtscheller.

This first conquest of Kibo was the severest under-taking that has been, or is likely to be, required of anyone ascending the mountain. Meyer had then not discovered the notch in the ice wall of the crater rim, which by reason of the diminishing ice makes the ascent easier year by year. His ascent was therefore made over the Ratzel glacier which could only be scaled with ice axes. Every step required some twenty strokes of the axe, and the labour entailed for this purpose at such an altitude and whilst climbing at an angle of 35, must have been immense; added to this Meyer and his companion were in imminent danger, especially as Meyer himself had no climbing irons, and any step must inevitably have buried them down into the 3,000 feet abyss which yawns below the Western side of the glacier. A former traveller, Ehlers, who had alleged that he reached the North-western summit, reported that there was no trace of a crater. Meyer may have doubted this statement, but there could be no certainty on the point until he topped the rim and suddenly saw before him the huge crater with its frozen floor 600 feet below. It must have been a thrilling moment, and the consciousness that he and his companion stood there, the first men to behold this wonder and to reveal the secret Kilimanjaro had kept concealed through ages, must have been an inspiring thought.

Extract ID: 3137

See also

Fosbrooke, H.A. The Early Exploration of Kilimanjaro: A Bibliographical Note
Page Number: 13
Extract Date: 1889

Dr. Abbott and Mr. Ehlers

In 1889 Dr. Abbott and Mr. Ehlers made an attempt to climb Kilimanjaro, concerning which I can find no detailed documentation. Meyer (op. cit p. 133) uses their camp, which he places above the forest at 9,480 feet so their attempt must have preceded Meyers, who states that Ehlers put forward a claim which he later retracted, to have reached the summit.

Extract ID: 4556