Our Kit List for the Simien Mountains

October 30, 2015

One of the most common activities that brings people to the Simiens Mountains National Park, is to go on a trek and enjoy exploring the stunning landscape, step-by-step. 

Limalimo Lodge is a beautifully relaxing spot to either start a trek from, or spend a few days at the end of your great adventure. We’re excited that guests can begin their trek from the lodge, with a little used path linking Limalimo Lodge with Buit Ras campsite, from which trekkers can head on to Sankaber - the first campsite most treks will stay at - providing you with a glimpse of a side to the park that few other trekkers see.

When we’re heading into the mountains for a few nights, this list of items is what we tend to have tucked away in our rucksack…it’s by no means a definitive list, and different seasons call for different equipment, but we hope it will help you with your planning if embarking on your own trek in Ethiopia’s answer to the Grand Canyon.

Trekking 

  • Good, well worn-in walking boots
  • Walking socks
  • Sandals/flip-flops (it’s lovely to air your feet at the end of the day!)
  • Sun hat and/or a buff
  • Sunglasses
  • Walking poles (if you find them useful)
  • A small/medium sized rucksack which you can fit a few litres of water into and everything you want for the day
  • Clothes for trekking in – layers are great for when you get up high or the sun feels too strong. We end up wearing the same things most days (when else can you get away with it!) and lots of warm things for the evenings
  • Waterproof coat - useful for the evenings and sporadic rain showers you may have
  • Binoculars for Ibex and bird spotting!

Most trek companies will feed you three incredible meals a day. If you like to snack as you’re trekking though, pack a few nibbles that will keep your energy up, won’t melt, and can be shared with your trekking team - raisins, dried fruit, nuts and dried chick peas are some of our favourites.

Camping 

Most trek companies will provide camping equipment including tents, sleeping bags and mattresses. Be sure to check what they’re providing - nothing worse than having no tent!

  • Thermals (it can get incredibly cold at night)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Pillow
  • Sleeping mat
  • Torch/Head torch
  • Lighter - further into the mountains there aren’t always toilets at the campsites; a lighter means you can burn your toilet paper and be a responsible trekker

If you know you dislike the cold, a metal water bottle (like a Sigg), when filled with hot water and encased in a walking sock, makes for a wonderful hot water bottle! Remember to wrap it in something though. We’ve learnt from experience…those bottles get hot!

Toiletries

You’re going to get hot, dirty, sweaty and dusty…then go to sleep…and do the same the next day (it’s brilliant)! There are few opportunities to wash along the way, so you won’t need toiletries in abundance.

  • Toilet roll
  • A high factor sun-cream
  • Moisturiser and lip-balm (it’s common for skin to get very dry in the mountains)
  • Soap (for the few washing opportunities)
  • Anti-bac
  • First aid kit 

Chennek campsite has a water pump (ice cold!) and some trek companies will warm some water for you in a shallow basin either at the beginning or end of the day. For the intrepid trekkers spending a week in the mountains, you might trek from Sona to Mekarebya, passing a river along the way – it’ll be the best shower you’ll ever have!

Entertainment

Nothing makes you sleep better, than the feeling of exhaustion from a day in the mountains. Sometimes you’ll finish a day’s trek with a few hours day light to spare, so might want to take a few things to do.

  • Pack of cards
  • A good book
  • Frisbee or a ball are fun things to play with the local children
  • Camera, fully charged battery, plus a spare battery are a must 
  • Take your phone for organising things either side of your trek, but enjoy unconnected bliss for the duration of your trip

If you’re booking a stay with us, we’d love to help you plan your trek in the Simiens. Two of our founders – Shif and Meles – grew up in the area and having both set up their own tour companies, know the mountains like the back of their hand! When getting in touch about your reservation, just ask, and we can do the rest!

Download your Simien Mountain Kit List

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