Tanzania Safari Booked!!!

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Jul 21st, 2005, 10:24 AM
  #1
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Tanzania Safari Booked!!!

Okay, you all have to tell me that the itinerary is perfect, agreed?

I came across an interesting message in my e-mail last night, linking me to this website:

http://www.kilimanjaromarathon.com/

Have a look at the link. See that trio of guys running...well, I look just like them plus about 60 pounds.

The best thing is that there is a half marathon option, so even if I remain the fat American that I am, without much training I will still be able to enjoy the half marathon option. Of course, however, I hope to get in shape and only be 35 pounds more than those runners pictured!

So, I take that e-mail as fate or at least dumb luck, but I will be participating in the Kiliminjaro Marathon or Half Marathon. It is not run up the mountain but rather in the foothills, with tremendous views of Kiliminjaro for most of the race.

Final itinerary, booked with Nick at Africa Travel Resource (www.africatravelresource.com)

Feb 25th - Arrive Kiliminjaro, 9:20PM. 1 night at Kia Lodge.

Feb 26th - Run/Walk/Crawl Kiliminjaro Marathon or Half Marathon. 1 night at Moivaro Coffee Lodge

Feb 27th - Manyara Tree Camp (CCAfrica). This will be a fitting reward for the marathon! 2 nights.

March 01st - Ngorongoro Serena (but hopefully I will be able to afford to upgrade to the Crater Lodge at a later time). 2 nights

March 03rd - Olduvai Camp. 1 night.

March 04th - handover to Nomad guide/vehicle. 2 nights at Masek Camp.

March 06th - Piaya Camp. 2 nights.

March 08th - Mbuze Mawe. 2 nights. I confirmed that this will still be with the Nomad guide.

March 10th - Emerson & Green. 1 night.

March 11th - Matemwe Bungalows. 3 nights. Hopefully I will be able to afford to upgrade to the Palms Zanzibar at a later time.

March 14th - Return to Dar Es Salaam for overnight flight to Amsterdam.

March 15th - Return directly home or spend a couple nights in Amsterdam. Probably return directly home. Why would I want to go from the warmth of Zanzibar to Amsterdam in March?

And that is it! It has been a whirlwind last week and I have been completely fixated on Tanzania during that time.

SUMMARY

Arusha (2)
Lake Manyara (2)
Ngorongoro Crater (2)
Serengeti (7)
Zanzibar (4)

Thank you all for your help, and please remember that the above is the perfect itinerary and is not subject to second-guessing!
Roccco is offline  
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Jul 21st, 2005, 10:36 AM
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Nice itinerary Roccco!

I think you are crazy to even THINK about running at that altitude so soon after arriving though...especially jetlagged! It's very ambitious.
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Jul 21st, 2005, 10:37 AM
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I'm jealous! ;-)
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:07 AM
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Great itinerary, Rocco

I don't think the run takes place at that high of an altitude, correct? It says 800-1100m if I'm reading it right. Although still very ambitious a day after 20-30 hours of flying!
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:16 AM
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Thanks everyone.

I actually did pretty well running the Vina Del Mar Marathon in Chile a day after arriving in December 2002. Yes, it was a slightly shorter flight, but we arrived early in the day and our hotel did not let us in for another 4 hours, so we were basically wandering the streets of Vina Del Mar for half the day. Yet, I survived that marathon just fine, although it was obviously at sea level.

The altitude will be a factor, but only a small one. Providing the temperatures do not get too warm and there are no headwinds, I will be able to complete the marathon (as long as I train).

I do not care if I am dead last, providing I finish. It would be nice to be able to beat at least one hapless other runner though!

I think I was about 117th out of 121 runners in Chile, but I had very little training and, trust me, I was the fattest runner.

Wow...I cannot believe I am going to East Africa! How did this all come about, anyway? Whatever...I am going to Tanzania!!!
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:22 AM
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In searching for my Chile Marathon results (couldn't find them), I did stumble across a trip report for that Chile trip that I wrote for Epinions, in case anybody is interested...when reading you just have to remember that I was trying to TOP Southern Africa (Singita, Matetsi, Victoria Falls Hotel, Table Bay Hotel and Mt. Nelson) with Chile, of all places!

http://www.epinions.com/content_90244484740

I think this was all in the back of my mind when I was actually considering Argentina instead of Tanzania.

The final results were:

1. Tanzania
2. India
and a distant 3. Argentina

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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:26 AM
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Rocco, I am so excited for you.

I ran the Kili Marathon in 1999, but at that time it was sponsored by Pepsi. And they pulled out the day before the event, but we ran anyway.

It was a group of about 60 Kenyans & Tanzanians and maybe 20 wazungu. And the Kenyan and TZ runners will all finish in about 2:30, naturally.

Lots of local kids will run along with you. Also, men on bikes may tail you wanting to give you a lift for money.

We finished in the stadium. I thought I was too exhausted to run the final lap, but one of the Japanese runners who had finished earlier ran the last lap with me. I will never forget that gesture of kindness.

The altitude was not a factor, however you will be running along the shoulder of the road so it can get dusty and dirty. Also, even though it was a cloudy day I got very sunburned, so wear the sunscreen.

It will be a fabulous memory. Enjoy!
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:31 AM
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Actually, I found the results...I was 133rd out of 135 finishers, but there were 14 others who Did Not Finish (DNF). 10% is a pretty high number for a marathon to not finish, especially on a flat sea level course, but the headwinds were ugly.

I actually had the ambulance pushing me for half the race, as I was dead last until near the end of the race! It was only in the last couple miles that I passed the other two runners.

Finishing time was a very slow 5:18:23, not bad for a 240 pound American with very little training!

Here is my marathon review of this race:

http://marathonguide.com/races/raced...IDD=1735041205
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:52 AM
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sandi
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Roccco -

Marathon - nah.

East Africa, finally. Rah, rah!

It's about time. Itinerary looks great. And enough "fru-fru" so STD will tolerate you a bit longer! But now we have to put up with you for another seven months! LOL!
 
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:54 AM
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Sandi,

At least you will all be rid of me for the better part of one of those months when I am in Zambia & South Africa in September!

Ttrust me, even if I did not train one iota, I am still masochistic enough to do the marathon!
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:59 AM
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Sandi,

If I arrived a day early, do you think I would be better off with Serena's Mountain Village?

I probably do need that full day to recuperate but I was trying to avoid 3 nights in Arusha, but for an African marathon in the foothills of Kiliminjaro, 3 nights in Arusha would be a small price to pay.

Best lodging for Arusha, convenient to Moshi where the marathon starts and finishes???

Thanks.
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Jul 21st, 2005, 12:11 PM
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That's a great trip -- you're going to be blown away by the Serengeti. Hopefully, you'll become as addicted to East Africa as you are to Zambia so we can benefit from your research on Tanz and Kenya.

The migration is, in my opinion, not only the most amazing spectacle in Africa, but the world. Bring lots of memory for your camera.

Michael
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Jul 21st, 2005, 12:19 PM
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Rocco,

Serena Mountain Village? Look at the number of rooms...

I've been there two times, and it has more the charm of a hotel than a lodge.

Mitch
 
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Jul 21st, 2005, 12:35 PM
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Rocco

If you want to stay at altitude close to Moshi before your run then look at the Protea Machame.

To rest the hurting muscles, the spa baths at Ngurdoto will be nice!
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Jul 21st, 2005, 12:41 PM
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And for a more personal experience, staying with Elizabeth and Laszlo at the scenic Makoa-farm near Moshi will be an excellent intro to Tanzania.

You will also sleep at a bit of altitude.
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Jul 21st, 2005, 01:22 PM
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Wow--congrats! As a (prettly lackadaisical) runner, I've checked out the Kili marathon web site myself. How exciting for you. And your itinerary looks great. I'm green with envy.
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Jul 21st, 2005, 01:33 PM
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Someplace where your wife can "hang" while you're knocking yourself out. Besides the spa (and pool) at Ngurduto... the Chalet accommodations are big. With a bedroom and a living room and a TV. Remember, this is a trip for two!
 
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Jul 21st, 2005, 05:31 PM
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Queenie,

Congrats on your Kiliminjaro Marathon in '99!

I will definitely be one of the last, if not THE last finishers, but I will finish. Trust me, I have had to talk my way out of disqualification for my turtle-like pace in the past, and this will be no exception!


Michael,

Thanks for the input. I will definitely bring plenty of memory for my camera, and hopefully some awesome new lens along.

I blame this on Travel Africa for their latest issue featuring Tanzania on the cover. I have been looking at that magazine for the last couple months...first the power of advertising led me to add Chongwe River Camp, which is featured in a full page ad on the inside cover, to my Zambian itinerary, and now it has led me to Tanzania! What a sucker!


Mitch and Climbhighsleeplow,

I will be trying to find the most comfortable accomodations for a 3 night stay in or near Arusha. The first night will be Friday night, arriving at 9:20PM. The next day will just be to chill out and walk around a bit...even if I walk three or four miles I will be much better off for it the next day for the marathon.

The only time I really struggled in a marathon was my very first marathon despite being the best trained for it out of my three marathons...I had zero activity the day before, but for the other two marathons I had half the training but prepared better in the final 48 hours and was much better off for it.

Kia Lodge would be okay for the first night, but I really prefer to go somewhere and just be able to relax at the same place for all 3 nights, with the final night being after I run the marathon.


Leely,

Nice to see another "lackadasical" runner. I am not as kind to appoint myself lackadasical, but instead I admit to being a flake that does not like to train!

If I get to more than 35 miles per week at the peak of my training, it will be a small miracle. I just need to be 225 pounds or under for this marathon, and really be in a position to start training once I return from Zambia & South Africa in late September. And, whatever the case may be, I can do 13.1 miles (half marathon) in my sleep when I am in the very worst condition, but the goal will be the full marathon.

Of course I don't want to be a big blob next to these 120 pound Kenyan and Tanzanian runners, so I will make an honest effort to get in some sort of shape by then!


Sandi,

I have briefly looked at Ngurduto and it looks okay, but isn't there a Ritz Carlton or Four Seasons in Moshi or Arusha?
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Jul 21st, 2005, 11:06 PM
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Hey Rocco
Congrats, I found ATR great to deal with. We will be there in January - starting off at on the 1st at Moivaro Coffee Lodge and will also do a night at Olduvai and Ngorongoro Serena so will let you know what we think before you leave.
That marathon will make this a trip one taht will be very difficult for anyone to emulate. All the best.
Sarvo
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Jul 22nd, 2005, 05:15 AM
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sandi
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Roccco -

'fraid not!
 
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