Mount Meru' is the second highest mountain in Tanzania and the fifth highest in Africa. Meru is the only great isolated stratovolcano in East Africa that is still active. A massive eruption 7,800 years ago shattered Meru's upper slopes and formed an oblong 8 km/5 mi wide caldera that is open to the east. The main summit is on the caldera's western edge, perched above a dramatic and still active Ash Cone inside the caldera. Meru is just below the permanent snowline, so there are no glaciers or snowfields on its slopes. It is best to allow 4 days for climbing Meru, since it involves a large elevation gain, but you can do the trek in 3 or 5 days. There are huts available to climbers on the mountain and firewood is supplied. Your ascent involves hiking through grassland and forest on the mountain's lower slopes where you can see animals grazing. Higher, you hike and scramble along the breathtaking crater rim to the summit. Aside from being a rewarding and picturesque trek in its own right, Meru is also great acclimatization for a Kilimanjaro climb. You need advance permission from the park warden at Momella Gate before you start your ascent.