Hope you are having a wonderful holiday season! I’m writing to you a few weeks after my return from Tanzania. I started off in Africa as part of a Tusker Kilimanjaro climb with the “Munro Group” of eight, all of whom successfully summited on November 28th, 2010. This note is to express my sincere gratitude and heartfelt appreciation of your company’s dedicated and inspiring guides and porters, without whom, I for one, would not have summited successfully…or for that matter, descended safely.
Let me take a moment to expand…though having taken all the necessary precautions and being relatively fit, I ended up developing high altitude pulmonary edema and was subsequently evacuated during the night after we summited. Not only was I extremely impressed by the tireless commitment to safety shown throughout the climb by Frances, Genes and Liberath, our guides, but I was especially impressed by Frances’ gracious and encouraging leadership at times of challenge, Liberath’s confidence in leading the actual evacuation itself and the caring, dedicated attitude of the porters who carried me down the mountain on a stretcher in the middle of the night. Admittedly, I was drifting in and out for most of the way down, but I distinctly remember someone consistently asking if I was okay, adjusting my sleeping bag and the rope that secured me and even wiping my face to ensure my comfort. In addition, I witnessed their teamwork, routinely switching positions to ensure no one person was tiring from a given position during the descent.
The incredible care shown to me with little regard for their own state – even though I know they had been up for about 20 hours by that time and likely exhausted – is unforgettable. Even though I recovered 100% once off the mountain and went on to safari and then to Zanzibar, my time on Kilimanjaro with Tusker will remain the fondest highlight of my time in Tanzania…because of your guides and porters.
I commend you on fostering a company of such high standards and investing in such great people. The entire experience from the preparation to the start of the climb to its finish and beyond was consistently beyond my expectations. I had a trip of a lifetime and have been sharing my exhilarating Tusker experience with all who I know. Thank you to you and your team!
Best wishes for a happy, healthy and successful New Year.