What are we trying to do?

We are a small team of adventurers setting out to achieve a World First by climbing 7 African Mountain Summits, back to back in 7 Weeks.  The mountain summits are Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Kenya, Mt Stanley & Mt Speke, Mt Meru, Mt Karisimbi and Mt Nyiragongo (active volcano).    During November and December 2017, a modest team, will for the first time, broadcast the inaugural 2017 GMC 7SummitsAfrica Expedition.

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How are we doing it?

This expedition will not only attempt to summit mountains with an combined altitude gain of 16 000m but will also showcase the added wildlife experience you can enjoy whilst climbing mountains on the continent.  All aspects of the expedition, including the attractions, will be broadcast live on a daily basis and generating incredible first of its kind content that will be shared with a global audience.  The expedition will be broadcasted live via Youtube and FacebookLive from the mountains using a smart phone and satellite data.  This will showcase the seven peaks that make up the 7SummitsAfrica product.

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When are we doing this?

The inaugural expedition will take place in November – December 2017.  Please view the itinerary for more details or subscribe to YouTube channel for notifications when we go live.

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What else are we doing?

The 7 Summits Africa Expedition 2017 includes the surrounding East African tourist and safari attractions of Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Some of the highlights – seeing the endangered Mountain Gorillas from Virunga National Park DRC;  Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, Uganda, along with other primates and incredible birdlife throughout the Albertine rift and surrounding areas. We will also visit Kenya’s Ol Pejeta Conservancy  and the rhino conservation projects they are renowned for, as well as the Top 2 tourist attractions in East Africa – The Masai Mara Reserve and Serengeti National Park. In both areas we will touch on the subject of elephant conservation and anti-poaching methods.  

“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over civilized people are beginning to find out going to the mountains is going home; that wilderness is a necessity…”


John Muir

Who’s involved

Read more about our 2017 team of adventurers here. There will also be a documentary made of the expedition and journalist Jessica Flint  joins us on our journey to Africa’s highest peaks.  The expedition will also be joined by local celebrities and politicians during our visit to each country. Cabinet Secretary, Najib Balala, Kenyan Minister of Tourism will be climbing Mt Kenya with 7 Summits Africa and Carmen Nibiriga from the EATP joining the 7SA team on Mt Kilimanjaro.  

Why are we doing this?

The exposure and reach from this expedition will highlight a new adventure tourism product that will bring new visitors to Africa to experience a regional tourism offering, competitive with the world’s most extraordinary adventure products.  More visitors to the mountains, parks and reserves will lead to improved facilities and services as well as mountain safety. In the longer term tourism and tourism numbers help to protect and conserve the habitat and wildlife of these remarkable creatures and ecosystems.  

The 2017 GMC 7SummitsAfrica Expedition and the 2018 GMC 7SummitsAfrica Pro Race as products are huge competitors to the global adventure and adventure race products.  

Goals

Strategic Economic Development
To bring together private sector investment, government and a powerful regional product as a travel destination to rival the world’s highest peaks. We recommend that every aspirational high-altitude mountaineer tests themselves with 7SummitsAfrica. For mountain adventurers – you can enjoy mountaineering options that will get you home safely to share your achievements and memories with others. For 7 Summits Africa to achieve the goal of competing with peaks from around the world, we need to create a bigger capacity and improve standards on our regional mountains. The only way to do that is to increase tourist numbers to the mountains first and to then add the cashflow boost of the annual GMC 7SummitsAfrica Pro Race
New Regional Product Development
Promote and develop hiking & mountaineering of Africa’s mountains alongside the surrounding attractions as a new product to a robust mainstream international outdoor and adventure market. To bring new people to Africa that has a sense of adventure and achievement. The product is so diverse and can be tailored from a single mountain and attraction product to a single destination to include all 7 peaks and associated wildlife attractions in a single visit or spanning over a multitude of visits to the region.
2018 GMC 7SummitsAfrica Pro Race
The 2017 Expedition is partly organised to create awareness of the 2018 Pro Event and to establish race routes and logistics for the introduction of the annual event. The race will attract professional athletes, mountaineers, trail runners and endurance athletes with an estimate of 20 only athletes for the 2018 Race where we will establish who is the best at altitude endurance and mountaineering across the East African peaks.

“Conservation and job creation through Tourism, to areas where it is needed most, is the long term goal.”


Carel Verhoef

Long term goals

New Product Development
We have a unique opportunity to promote and market this 5-country mountain experience to a robust mainstream international outdoor market. It provides an alternative option to the average mountaineer or leisure trail hiker, as well as the altitude athlete’s seeking of new challenges. Doing seven mountain summits back to back with an altitude gain of 16 000m over a 7 week period is difficult and should push the best of the best out there to their limits. All the mountains are lower than 6000m, which creates a tough but manageable product.
New markets for East Africa
The international and local outdoor, adventure market is vast and growing as mainstream adventurers seek new horizons to discover and conquer. The GMC 7SummitsAfrica appeals as an accessible adventure that can be done as an entire journey like the Camino de Santiago or in stages, making it affordable and time accessible. Elite international mountaineering and trail running athletes will be attracted annually for the High Peak Endurance Race in a bid to be the best in their field.
Conservation
We will be visiting 6 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. We need to increase capacity for more climbers on Africa’s mountains. This will bring pivotal revenue to such areas and in turn will help protect the areas alongside wildlife. The income through park fees and tourist visitors brings the cost of conservation down. One of the best ways of contributing to conservation in Africa is to visit its parks and reserves, specially the ones that are marginalised and off the beaten track. The GMC 7SummitsAfrica product includes world renowned vulnerable areas such as Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and the Rwenzori National Parks in Uganda. We touch on subjects and highlight the plight for Rhino Conservation when visiting Porini Rhino Camp in the Ol Pejata Conservancy in the Kenyan Highlands and we touch on elephant conservation when visiting the Masai Mara National Reserve and the Serengeti National Park
Safety and capacity improvement
Throughout the region, safety support and guide skills are essential to increase safety on the mountains. Improved medical aerial evacuation is vitally important and one of our long term goals is to ensure there is regular, consistent aerial evacuation support regionally. Communication, equipment and infrastructure all plays part in a successful mountaineering product regionally and the only way we can improve on these is though growth in tourist number.