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The Shira Peak – Volcano Cone on Mount Kilimanjaro

Shira Peak, located on the Western side of Mt. Kilimanjaro is one of the 3 peaks on Mt. Kilimanjaro, the other 2 being Kibo (the highest) and Mawenzi Peak.

Standing at an elevation of 3,962 meters (13,000 ft), it is the smallest of the 3 peaks and just like Mawenzi Peak, it is also an extinct volcano. It hasn’t been active in over 2 million years.

Shira peak is the oldest among the 3 peaks. On the western border of the mountain is the Shira ridge which originally was a Southern and Western rim on Shira crater.

The landmark on the climb to Shira peak is the Shira plateau spanning 6,200 ha, stretching out over 13 km to the west side of Kibo. You have a chance to encounter some wildlife at the plateau.

The main points on the Shira peak are; Johnsell point (3,962m), Klute peak on Shira Ridge (3,600m), the Cone (3,840m), Shira cathedral (3,895m), Shira needle and the East Shira Hill.

Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro is an interesting adventure and making it to the summit is a fulfilling accomplishment to any travelers you climb the tallest mountain in Africa. Amazing views await you at the Shira.

How to get to Shira

To get to this peak, you will have to take the Machame route of the Kilimanjaro. It’s a challenging trek but very rewarding with spectacular view of the tropical forest below and the southern ice fields.

The area in covered by several vegetation types including the Rainforests, Arctic and the Moorland.

The first wedding to be conducted on the Kilimanjaro took place here. In the year 2014 on the 21st of September a couple took their marriage vows on the Shira camp 2, one of the camps that lead up to the peak of this mountain.

Shira Ridge

There is a ridge on the Shira Plateau. Therefore you don’t have only the Shira Plateau to choose from. The ridge stands at an altitude of about 3,600 meters above sea level.

The ridge is not very far from the Shira gate and is located in the forest zone of the Kilimanjaro Mountain.

Shira Cathedral

This is a huge mass of rock that is shared in a pyramid shape. The rock has a lot of pointed sides. The Shira cathedral stands at an altitude of about 3895 meters above sea level. It’s located on the east Shira hill steep trails.

This area is most famous for the crown eagle that inhabits this area.

Shira Needle

There are several fine minor summits to be climbed around the Shira plateau; the Shira Needle can be scaled by a scramble and provides an amazing viewpoint.

Walking on the edge of the Shira Plateau/Caldera you can catch a great view of Shira Cathedral and Shira Needle.


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