MEET OUR Mountain Guide:
Erick Peter Wadelanga

Tanzania - erick peter wadelanga standing - mountain guide erick peter wadelanga
Position: Assistant Mountain Guide
Date of Birth: 17th August 1982
Place of Birth: Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Language Spoken: English and Swahili
Number of years in the travel industry: 9 years, five years as a porter, then four years as a guide
Number of years working with Easy Travel: 1 Year

About Erick

I was born in Ilala district, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, in 1982 and lived there with my parents, two brothers, and one sister. We lived in the bustle of the city for about six years, and then my mother and I moved to the Kilombero district in Morogoro so I could study. My mother was working as a farmer. I studied at the Kiningina Primary School between 1992 and 1998 and afterward at the pre-seminary for a year. Then I went to the Kasita Seminary School in Morogoro for three years until 2003. During my holidays, I would help my mother with farming. After graduating, I continued my advanced-level education between 2004 and 2006 at the Songea Boys Secondary School in the Ruvuma region.

Then I moved again from the Ruvuma region to the Kilimanjaro region in the north of the country to get a Diploma in Philosophy. There I studied at the Kibosho Seminary from 2007 until 2009. After completing my university education, I married in Arusha and lived with my wife south of Arusha City. I have three sons, the eldest – Erick – is 12 years old; then comes Daniel, who is seven years old, and finally, Deocratius, who is five years old.

Between 2010 and 2014, I engaged in various activities to earn a living for my family, including working as a motorbike taxi -driver. Due to having more family responsibilities, I started work as a porter and continued this work until 2018. My first experience as a porter was very challenging because I was not used to carrying such heavy luggage. But with determination and hard work, I managed to complete my first trek as a porter and continued this work for the next few years, employed by various companies that allowed me to support my family.

In 2019, I attended the Mweka Wildlife College for a one-month mountain guiding course and obtained my mountain guide license. I continued to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, working as a mountain guide. I heard about Easy Travel and applied for an interview, which was successful, and I started work with them as an assistant mountain guide. Now I have one year’s experience with Easy Travel, a big company which has given me a wide range of contacts with different people. I enjoy working with everyone, especially guests eager to know about the company and our country.

Favorite Park in Tanzania

My favorite park in Tanzania is the Serengeti National Park, famous for its wildebeest migration. Serengeti is a vast park with so many different wild animals.

Favorite Route

My favorite route is the eight-day Lemosho route.

Favorite Food

My favorite food is rice with beans because the ingredients are cultivated in the area where I grew up. 

Favorite Hobby

My favorite hobby is swimming in the river because it refreshes my body, and there are so many rivers in the area where I grew up. 

Favorite TV Show

The BBC is my favorite channel because of the international news. It provides news about the world and keeps me aware of what is happening. 

Favorite Singer/band

My favorite singer is Rose Muhando, who sings Gospel songs. She tries to alert people that we are just transient in this world; therefore, we should abide by and follow God’s rules and directives.

14 Questions and answers with Erick

Most trekkers get the chance to do this climb just once in their lifetime. It is a big commitment in terms of time and expense, and for most, it is a long way from home.

The crew spends much time with the trekkers, and they provide a great experience by sharing their immense knowledge. Trekkers get to spend time with the crew from the first to the last day of the trek. Tanzanians are famous for their kindness, openness, and welcoming people.

Mount Kilimanjaro is within a national park famous for its landscape features and many wildlife species. You can also see residents of the tribe known as the ‘Chaga’ who live around the mountain’s slopes and make a living by farming and livestock grazing.

My favorite route up Kilimanjaro is the eight-day Lemosho route because it gives the trekkers the best opportunities to appreciate all the mountain attractions. These include the rich montane forest, varied landscapes, the plateau, and the three Kilimanjaro peaks known as Shira, Mawenzi, and the most famous Kibo (or Uhuru.)

As this route is long, this helps the trekkers get well-acclimatized, as the ascent is more gradual than ‘abrupt’ compared with some other routes. Lemosho has various valleys and ascents, ups and downs, which means that the trekkers can climb high and sleep at a lower elevation on some days. This helps acclimatization. The Lemosho route is also characterized by a clear, natural demarcation zone between the montane forest (tropical rainforest) and the heath and moorland zones. The route also offers magnificent views of the Great Rift Valley and Mount Meru.

Easy Travel is the best choice for trekkers to climb Mount Kilimanjaro because it is a big Tanzanian company with good facilities. The company has excellent, well-trained workers who are experienced, who look after their trekkers and respond quickly to any emergency.

The company puts the safety of the trekkers and the crew as the Number One priority.

My favorite month of the year is the dry-season month of August. Visibility is good, allowing you to see the snow on the glaciers clearly above 3000m of altitude. As the weather is generally good, there is a better chance of reaching the summit.

My favorite part of Kilimanjaro is the montane forest, or tropical rainforest zone, because it is the mountain’s richest and most precious zone. It is the zone that receives much more rainfall than the other zones. That means the area is often wet, humid, and sometimes muddy. About 96% of the water on Kilimanjaro originates from this zone, so it is sometimes known as the ‘lifebelt’ for the people living around the mountain and those beyond. It ensures there is a stable water supply for irrigation and household use. Its thick forests encircle the whole mountain, and the trees prevent soil erosion and flood damage. The zone acts as a windbreaker, moderates the temperature, prevent drought, and improves soil quality.

Lastly, this zone is a good habitat for most wild animals and bird species found on Mount Kilimanjaro. Animals include monkeys, jackals, klipspringer, eland, and even buffalo.
Some things people do not expect to encounter on Mount Kilimanjaro are the permanent snow and glaciers in a region near the equator and less than 300km from the tropical coast. Kilimanjaro’s permanent snows defy its tropical location! Of course, the snow level has sadly diminished greatly due to the effects of global warming.
I love the culture in Tanzania, but most of all, the culture of the Maasai tribe. It is one of the tribes which still practice traditional customs. For example, the Maasai in Ngorongoro lives together with wild animals without harming each other. They don’t eat wild animals, only the cattle that they rear. The Hadzabe tribe is also interesting because they live in the forest and depend on hunting, roots, and honey for survival.

Jambo’ which means ‘hello,’ is used for greetings.

Mambo Vipi? which means ‘how is everything?’

Mambo Poa is a reply to the above question, which means ‘things are good.’

Our guests will be surprised to learn just how much I know about Tanzanian history and geography, for example, the size of the country, when we got independence, from which European nation, the country’s population, the country’s capital city and commercial city, population percentages in terms of different faiths, government status (whether it is democratic or not), the official languages, our national parks and other national attractions such as beaches, security and the Tanzanian citizens themselves – an open and kind people!

Most Kilimanjaro crew members – about 75% – come from the northern region of Tanzania. I am one of the remaining 25% who comes from elsewhere, in my case, from the coastal region.

I advise anyone who wants to plan a climb on Mount Kilimanjaro to stay positive. They should create a positive mindset, believing they can reach the top. You should not be scared or worried and listen to your guide.

Having the right gear and equipment is also very important.

I have climbed Mount Kilimanjaro several times, as I cannot count or remember how many times I have climbed. Though I can say I have climbed through all the routes, and I started as a porter. From the start of my profession to now, I can say that my experience has improved because I have learned my things, I understand the mountain better, and my confidence has become greater.

The main challenges of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro include altitude mountain sickness, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. Climbers need to familiarize themselves with these risks before they start.

My advice to hikers on preventing altitude sickness is to ascend slowly so their bodies will acclimate slowly. This is the best option. Drink plenty of cold fluid, especially water, to cool the body. Eat enough carbohydrate-laden food and plenty of sugar, such as chocolate bars.

I faced challenges when some trekkers were fearful and worried about hiking at high altitudes. Along with the rest of the crew, I am responsible for reassuring and motivating the trekkers to keep climbing. They must trust the guides and listen to their advice to reach the top.

Trekkers must share any important information with the crew and guides, especially about their medical history and any health problems they are experiencing. Before the climb, any medical conditions and medications must be discussed with the crew.


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