Muscat: Eleven Omanis, including mechanical engineers, educational consultants, students, and computer programmers, recently set aside their professional obligations for a few days and decided to get the adrenaline pumping by trying to scale Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa.
Although the ascent started with eleven in total, with four of the group belonging to the same family, only nine could reach the summit. The group chose the ‘Machame’ route to get to the top and the climb took them five and a half days and the descent took over a day.
For Mohammed Al Ismaily, one of the adrenaline junkies who made it to the summit, it was the prospect of climbing the great mountain, which made him do it.
“In all honesty, my inspiration was the opportunity to do it; it’s an experience I believe a lot more people should go for. I’m only saying that after I’ve reached sea level, my thoughts of going up were more like, ‘Why am I putting myself through this?’ It was tough, tiring and extremely cold at night, but reaching the summit really changed how I felt about it all.”
“The thing I should’ve prepared myself better for was the cold, we started from 50 degrees Celsius and ended with -20 degrees Celsius (at the summit) in a matter of days and I wasn’t mentally prepared for that.”
Their biggest challenge was the last day of the hike, which included a tough climb, and around 18 hours of walking trying to climb the mountain with an elevation of 5,895 metres.
Out of the 11 climbers, the youngest person was Said Nasser Al Ismaily (15), and the oldest was Said Issa Al Ismaily (64). “It was an extremely diverse range and we had people in their 20s, 30s, and 50s. For us it was like a nice family trip,” Mohammed Al Ismaily said.