At one point, we had discussed amongst ourselves what our favorite part of the trip was, what the highlights were. For me, I think I enjoyed the Barranco Wall more than anything else, although the highlight was definitely the summit. It was certainly more spectacular and meaningful. A couple of the hikes were nice also.
If I were to do something like this again, I would bring the larger duffle bag. Other people (e.g. the guide) brought things of that size, and it would have made packing much easier. I would bring more bags (particularly big bags to put most of the stuff inside, rather than individual bags). I would still bring individual bags, but I would label them as to what was in them. This makes it easier to repack in the morning.
I would bring my fleece sox (for sleeping), a parka (for going around camp), and a pillow (it is light).
I should also bring a collection of pens, markers, and other small school-type supplies (as well as candy) to give to local children.
They told us to bring our own toilet paper, but I ended up using none of it. The public facilities on the mountain required one to use oneís own toilet paper, but we had our own toilets in which toilet paper were supplied. So we only needed to use our own toilet paper if we had to go on the trail between camps. In my case, this amounted to only pee, which for us guys didnít require toilet paper, although I imagine it would have been more useful for women.
Similarly, they suggested that we bring our own water filtration / sanitation systems. Again, these were not needed on the mountain. We were provided boiled water at camp. The only time we would have needed the filtration systems would have been if we ran short of water between camps and needed to get some from a local source. This would have been a really strange occurrence and never happened. On the other hand, the filter ended up being useful at the hotels, where the tap water was not considered potable (at least in reasonable quantities), and where bottled water cost real money. In this case, we ended up filtering the tap water and using it for some of the meals.
Looking back at the climb, Iím tempted to say that Mount Rainier was harder. Kili was higher and longer, and some of the folks had a hard time, but I thought that Rainier required more effort from me. When I did Rainier, I wrote that it had been the hardest thing that I had ever done. I didnít get that sense from this trip. This is also reflected in the numbers. Here, 15 out of 16 of us made it to the summit. On Rainier, fewer than Ĺ of us summated. Of course, a big reason for this is that Rainier didnít give nearly as much time for acclimatization, there were no porters, and it was more technical (ropes, crampons, ice-axes).
We also debated whether it would have been better going up under the new moon in the dark (which we did), or under a full moon where one could presumably see where one was going. Personally, I would have liked the full moon and the ability to see the mountain while we were climbing the final stretch. Others, however, said that they preferred the new moon, as they thought they would have found looking at what was ahead too dauntingói.e. that it was easier not seeing the full route but just the next 50 feet..