NBC’s Ann Curry on Kilimanjaro

All week long on NBC‘s the Today Show the cast and crew have been zipping off to far flung places as part of their “Ends of the Earth” special. Matt Lauer went to Half Moon Caye in Belize (that’s roughing it Matt!), Meredith Vieira went to Australia, and Al Roker hit the road to Iceland.

Ann Curry got the most adventurous assignment however, heading off to Kilimanjaro to attempt a climb on the mountain. She and her team struggled a bit however, and the news today is that they turned back at 16,000 feet, succumbing to altitude sickness and exhaustion.

They did, however, stick together as a team, and decided to go down together, despite the fact that some would have liked to have continued up. They also came to appreciate the journey even if it it didn’t include the summit.

Here’s a video of Ann looking ridiculous on Kili at the last camp on the mountain, and talking about her experiences there.

Kraig Becker

6 thoughts on “NBC’s Ann Curry on Kilimanjaro”

  1. Mt. Kilimanjaro is no easy climb or hike. The alititude is extreme in the sense the oxygen per liter of air is less than half it is at sea level. I’ve written about this climb on the three adventures to Kili. To see some wonderful photographs go to http://mountainclimbingusa.spaces.live or simply do a search for Steve Lombardi photo blog.

    Steve Lombardi

  2. Hey Steve,

    Thanks for the note and the link. Good stuff!

    I’ve been on Kili myself, and like Ann and her crew, I didn’t summit either. I felt great for most of the trip and had little to no issues with altitude, with one tiny exception. I couldn’t sleep on the mountain. Barely a wink. The higher we went, the less I got. So by the time time we reached our last day before the summit, I was completely exhausted, and elected to not go up. Still had a blast though.

    I think Kili is much harder than a lot of people expect though. I was told that if you’re in reasonably good shape (I am!) and can hike, You’ll do fine. That wasn’t the whole story, as it can be a challenging mountain, even without the altitude.

  3. Oh, reading your comments made me change my mind. My first impression was that she was just a wimpy and soft journalist that had no business trying the mountain. However, now I see that it is actually a more dificult climb than I had thought!

  4. Ben: Yeah, Kili is not as easy as some would you lead you to believe, and it was good that the team turned back. I just get a chuckle out of Ann in those mountaineering goggles at 11,000 feet with no snow in sight.

    They also had nine days on the mountain, as indicated by her comment about nine days without a shower, while my climb was five days. Given a few more days to acclimatize, I may have been able to overcome the sleep issues as well.

  5. I love to hear everyone talk about the Mt. Kilimanjaro Marangu Route being "a walk up", the coca cola route, but even though that is supposed to be the easiest route it's above 19,000 feet. I was with a group of 4, we all made it, and it was the hardest thing I've ever done in my life. I equate it running a marathon on the worst hangover you've ever had, that's how I felt the last 18 hours. Couldn't sleep, couldn't eat after 15,000 feet and I was incredibly sick to my stomach. Other then how I felt on the last leg I thought it was a great time and I want to do it again. I think knowing what to expect will be make it even better. This time I will force myself to eat even though I know I won't feel like it. I think I'm going to 12/2011 this time, we were there over xmas the first time and the weather was beautiful and clear, we were very lucky! This time my friend Peter Morales a professional photographer is again joining us, should have a great photo album for everyone. Check in with my website http://www.bikesboatsandboots.com where I'll be posting the information in the next couple of months.

  6. kili has seen more celebrities visiting on charity missions than any other mountain.

    Lemosho route is the most Scenic Climb up Mt Kilimanjaro Lemosho Route using different routes; the one that is most popular is the Mt Kilimanjaro Marangu Route Climb since it is the shortest, is easier and you get to sleep in bunker beds in the huts on the hiking trail with luxuries like beverages and beer. Marangu route up kili is the most popular and therefore the one with the highest traffic. Click here to see the Marangu Route Map

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