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Off to the Rainforest
Arusha - Wednesday, August 21, 2002
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Hello Mountain Zoners, this is Vern Tejas with Alpine Ascents' Team.... it means 'pulling together' in Swahili and that's what we're doing. All the team members have arrived safely in Arusha, which is our jump-off city here in Tanzania.

Not only did all the memmbers, but all their bags arrived as well, and we're very happy that we're off to a good start. Tomorrow, bright and early, we get up, have a breakfast and then drive in the wonderful cars they have here, Land Cruisers, four-wheel drive vehicles, up to the base of the mountain where we jump out at the Machame Gate and that's where our expedition starts.

"We have about an eight hour day of hiking tomorrow and we gain 4,000 feet so please say your prayers for us..."
We give all our big bags to our porters and all the litle bags we put on our backs. And then we hike through the tropical rainforest for four or five hours. It should be exciting. Last time there was a bit of mud there so hopefully this time it'll all be dried out. Slim chance.

We have about an eight hour day of hiking tomorrow and we gain 4,000 feet so please say your prayers for us and keep your fingers crossed. We'll report in tomorrow night.

Vern Tejas, Alpine Ascents International Guide and MountainZone.com Correspondent