Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano is situated in one of the beautiful places of North Tanzania, near Lake Natron where hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos fly every year. Ol Doinyo Lengai is unique among active volcanoes in the East Africa and unique in the world which produces natrocarbonatite lava or “cold lava”. It has a dark-brown or black color in liquid state and a fluidity as water. This temperature is much lower than other lavas but, however, not so cool because it is approximately 510-600°C. In a hundred years Lengai has erupted about 15 times, the last time was in 2013. Fortunately, eruptions happen without victims because the volcano has relatively small size and it is situated rather far from nearest Maasai villages.
Our driver will pick you up at your hotel in the morning and drive you to Lake Natron. The drive is fairly long and you will reach Lengai Safari Lodge some time after lunch. At the same time, the scenery on the way is picturesque and you will have an opportunity to see the local people, including Maasai tribesmen, as well as some African wildlife. After your check-in a guide will take you on a walking tour to Ngare Sero waterfall. The trail runs through a gorge and you will sometimes need to ford the stream, so we recommend that you wear sandals or the like to avoid constantly having to take your shoes off. A drive to the lakeshore, where you get a chance to capture its great scenery on camera takes place before you return to the Lodge for dinner and some rest.
At 1:00 a.m. driver takes you to the foot of Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano for the start of your climb. The footing on the slopes of the volcano can be treacherous, especially in the dark, so follow your guide without overtaking him. The trek is strenuous and takes between 7 and 12 hours depending on your fitness and resultant pace. The gradient is steep, so it is best to make a short stop with every 100 m or so of altitude gained in order to get acclimatized.
It is best to make a break for breakfast on the way to the top in order to regain some strength for the remainder of the climb. At the edge of the crater you will have reached the altitude of 2,960 m. Here, you can actually hear the lava flow inside the Mountain of God crater.
The descent is easier and you may be tempted to move faster. This is, however, the time when most injuries happen, so mind your step! It is also advisable to change your fleece for a sun hat after dawn in order to avoid heatstroke.
Our driver will be awaiting you as you return to the foot of the mountain with cold drinks, ready to drive you back to the town of Arusha.