Mt. Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

The birth of Kilimanjaro started three-quarters of a million years ago. Three cones erupted. Shira was formed first, 500,000 years ago, followed by Mawenzi, both now extinct, and collapsed caldera. Supported on their foundation, Kibo continued to rise to become the famous ice-capped peak.

This volcano formed from layers of ash and lava continued to evolve over hundreds of thousands of years as the volcano reared and slumped while ice retreated and advanced. Its last major eruption was over 150,000 years ago at the bare minimum. Two hundred years ago, the last upsurge left the spectacular Ash Pit in the Reusch Crater.

Ancient glaciers on Kilimanjaro provide an ice-core record of climate change over almost 12,000 years, including periods of extreme drought and fluctuating levels of water and ice. Once again, the ice is in retreat. Within the next decades, people climbing Mount Kilimanjaro may find the summit as bare and black as it was for 20,000 years before the Holocene Period of the last 10,000 years. Soon, the Shining Mountain may be no more than a memory of climb holidays in Africa. 

Grade: A+

REFERENCE: Google Earth

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