Ras Dashen is a mountain in Ethiopia’s Simien Mountains National Park. It is the highest peak of the Simien Mountains and one of the highest peaks of Africa. The mountain is also known as Ras Dashen El’el, meaning “The Peak of God.”
The trek to Ras Dashen can take up to ten days, and it is considered a Class 4 hike. The trail begins at the village of Sodo, which lies at an elevation of 11,000 feet above sea level. From there, hikers must travel 5 miles through dense forest before reaching the summit at an elevation of 12,000 feet.
In order for hikers to reach the top safely, they must stay on marked paths and avoid walking alone in areas with no trails or signs left by previous hikers. During their journey, they will pass through several rivers that flow from glaciers at different altitudes; some are small streams while others are large enough for boats to travel through them without getting stuck or capsized. Although SummitClimb does not offer Ras Dashen hiking but it runs many trips like Ama Dablam, Cho Oyu, Lobuche and Everest climb.
While there are many ways to hike up Ras Dashen (you can even follow a lighted trail), we recommend taking the approach from Addis Ababa with an overnight stay at the Ras Dashen Lodge. This will give you a chance to explore the area around Lake Lambagola and see some of its most interesting sights (like Lake Bada) and afterward, heading back down to Addis Ababa for a night of rest before heading back out again.
The best seasons for hiking on Ras Dashen are spring and autumn. Spring is generally best because there are fewer bugs than later in summer or early fall when they’re most prevalent—but if you’re hoping more time spent outdoors will help you adjust to your new life in Ethiopia without getting sick too much beforehand then autumn.
Hikers should plan on taking plenty of water with them because some rivers have no source nearby and must be crossed using makeshift bridges constructed by locals who know how difficult it can be for inexperienced trekkers.