Tanzania Image Gallery

Here is an index of my Tanzania photographs, for the sake of having them all in one place. Many of these images appear elsewhere within the larger website. Each link will take you to a page in a new window containing a large image (optimized for your desktop wallpaper!) along with the caption. I hope you enjoy these photos, as they represent much time and effort and many great people and places.


Kilimanjaro Expedition I: 12-17 April, 2001

  1. Saddle Up! After three months of training and four hours' delay on the morning of Thursday, April 12, 2001, our group boarded this truck for the hour-long ride up the mountain to the Marangu Gate. The cause of the delay was that our own school truck had broken down the day before, forcing us to borrow this truck and its driver from neighboring Mawenzi Secondary School.
  2. Mandara Huts. The first night of our climb we spent at Mandara Huts. Here I pose in the doorway with Verdiana Vedasto, one of my Mathematics students. In the background is Goodwill Nambaya, who would prove to be our group's most serious casualty when he contracted a case of altitude sickness high up on the mountain. This photo (minus the sign at top) accompanied the unrelated article about my eclipse trip in the July 12, 2001 edition of The Ellsworth American.
  3. Maundi Crater. We enjoyed our first clear view of our distant goal on the second day. From here, the rim of the Maundi Crater, a small feature on the flanks of Kilimanjaro, Kibo is visible as a splash of brilliant white on the horizon. Dark Mawenzi Peak is much closer here, and hence appears larger, although it is shrouded in cloud. Shukuru Rajabu (center) requested that I take this shot of her with teachers Japhet Mpande (right) and Adam Gillespie, who is showing off an inlated condom which served briefly as an ill-fated air pressure experiment.
  4. Suma John. Suma John was, at 15 year of age, both the youngest and the smallest member of our expedition. Here her Mathematics teacher is helping her reach for a lofty goal. At this elevation of over 14,000 ft (4300 m), found that the act of simply holding up this small girl for 30 seconds left me winded.
  5. Red-Hot Poker. I snapped this, my personal favorite photo from that first trip to Kilimanjaro, as we descended through the misty moorlands to Horombo Huts on Day 3. The flower is commonly called a "red-hot poker."
  6. The Last Waterpoint. About an hour after leaving Horombo Huts on Day 4 we left the moorlands behind, and the high Alpine desert began. All water for the next 24 hours' worth of drinking and cooking must be carried from this point on. In truth, this place was little more than a marsh, and its water was not fit for drinking. We had already filled our bottles at a running stream about fifteen minutes back down the path.
  7. The Road to Gilman's. As we traversed the relatively flat Mars-scape of the high desert, we could see that the road ahead would be much harder. A close examination of this picture reveals the track leading up the flank of Kibo to Gilman's Point, which happens to be the spot at the top where the snowfields at left suddenly disappear. Many climbers turn back after reaching Gilman's at dawn, but it is not the summit.
  8. Approaching Kibo. Verdiana and Suma lead the rearguard as we approached Kibo Hut, our last waystation before attempting the summit. Mawenzi looms in the background, five miles (8 km) distant.
  9. Before the Dawn. High on the summit ridge, we took one last rest stop, sheltered from the brutal wind by an outcropping of rock. Members of this dauntless group are, from left to right, Rebecca Dawson, Verdiana Vedasto, guide Adronis Meela, Lilian Odemary (apparently but not truly passed-out), and Adam Gillespie.
  10. The Dawn. My camera batteries finally gave in to the cold just as I snapped this photo of the rising sun. Never in my life have I been so grateful to see the dawn.
  11. A Path Made of Snow. Verdiana and I have just returned from Uhuru Peak, which lies at the highest point of the ridge in the background, against the sky. The hard-frozen path was a difficult walk for anyone, but more so for young Tanzanians who had never before seen snow.
  12. Gilman's Point. Back at the relative safety of Gilman's Point and in the full morning light, we allowed ourselves to celebrate our conquest. From left to right, Verdiana, myself, Adronis, Rebecca, Adam, and Lilian.

A Total Eclipse of the Sun in Zambia

  1. Lake Chala. Here I am supported by three of my friends from Peace Corps Tanzania, from left to right: Ruby Chin, Laurel Brown, and Beth Strunk. In the back stands Clay Hogen, sporting the beard which he would later shave off after a clerk in a photo store in Dar es Salaam saw a resemblance between Clay and Osama bin Laden. Clay and Laurel both accompanied me on the trip to see the eclipse in Zambia. This photo was taken by John Brecher at Lake Chala, a crater lake southeast of Mt. Kilimanjaro.
  2. Mbeya Station. Photographer John Brecher leans out of the window of our train to check out the scene at Mbeya, the last official stop in Tanzania. At left is a rather sketchy-looking character holding up a sign that says TOURIST AND TRAVELERS INFORMATION CENTER Here.
  3. The Zambezi Gorge. Downstream of Victoria Falls the Zambezi River roars through a deep gorge for over 20 miles (32 km). We spent one day rafting through the gorge.
  4. The Bridge. This huge road and rail trestle connects Zambia with Zimbabwe. Visitors can pay $75 for the chance to bungee-jump off of this 340-foot-high span. Look closely through the rainbow, and you'll see one of them here.
  5. Victoria Falls. The world-famous Victoria Falls are at their peak flow volume in June, the end of the rainy season.
  6. Meenu Pandey. This photo shows a Zambian citizen of Indian descent, medical student Meenu Pandey, posing against her family's Land Cruiser. The dense foliage of a large tree projects numerous images of the partial eclipse onto Meenu, the car, and the mat.
  7. Totality. At 3:09 PM local time on June 21, 2001 the Sun went out for three minutes.
  8. The Flip Side. After the total phase of the eclipse, the projected crescents under the tree were all reversed.

Kilimanjaro Expedition II: 14-19 January, 2002

  1. Cacti. A prime example of the wonderful diversity of flora on Kilimanjaro, these cacti live in the alpine desert at an elevation of about 14,000 ft (4300 m).
  2. Barranco Valley. View of Kibo from the Great Barranco Valley. The valley floor is a moorland environment dominated by Giant Groundsels, a unique species often referred to as "Dr. Seuss trees" by those of us with the appropriate cultural background.
  3. Barranco Wall. Climbing the 1500-ft Barranco Wall, I appreciated even more the backbreaking work of the porters who help bring clients up Mt. Kilimanjaro.
  4. Rock Plates. Above 15,000 ft (4600 m), all signs of plant life save a few lichens disappear. Here we passed a veritable junkyard of platelike rock fragments. My theory is that their origin lies in the freezing and thawing of fissured rocks higher on the slopes of Kibo. The fragments then form rockslides like the one pictured here.
  5. Barafu Campsite. Our final camp at Barafu, with a spectacular view of the ascent route up the Southwest Ridge to Stella Point, which lies to the immediate right of the hanging glaciers at the top. Our mess tent is in the foreground.
  6. Dawn at Stella Point. The sunrise at 19,000 ft (5850 m) is utterly breathtaking.
  7. Mawenzi Peak. As seen from the summit, the snow-skirted spires of Mawenzi, Kilimanjaro's secondary peak, stand out in stark relief against the morning sky.
  8. Mt. Meru. Viewed from the summit of Kilimanjaro, Mt. Meru, Tanzania's second-highest mountain at 14,800 ft (4560 m), is forty miles (65 km) away and looks deceptively small. At left is a wall of ice that forms the western edge of the southern glacier fields.
  9. Uhuru Peak. Adronis and I pose triumphantly in front of the wooden sign that marks the highest point in Africa.
  10. Matt and the Glacier. I take a brief rest in front of an ice cave in the glacier wall.
  11. Robert Anstey. After a good night's sleep in one of the Horombo Huts, Rob made a full recovery from his altitude sickness.

Meru Expedition: 26-29 April, 2002

  1. Setting Out. Sporting my 40-lb (19-kg) pack, I posed for this picture in front of my rain-drenched house right before boarding the truck with the students and other teachers to head for Arusha National Park.
  2. Little Meru. The whole group poses on the top of Little Meru Peak, elevation 12,650 ft (3900 m), a side trip on the afternoon of our second day of hiking.
  3. Summit Ridge. Students Ally, Elisante, Neema, and Lucy enjoy the view from Little Meru. Behind them the ridge leading from Rhino Point to the summit of Meru is visible. The summit itself is hidden by clouds.
  4. Five Boys at Dawn. Students Pius John, Ally Abushiri, Emanuel Christopher, Lomnyack Loruvai, and Apolinary Samwel were still going strong as dawn broke.
  5. Sunrise on Meru. As seen from the top of Tanzania's second-highest mountain, the sun rises behind Mt. Kilimanjaro.
  6. Ash Cone. From the interior of Meru's giant, U-shaped crater rises the newer Ash Cone. Evidence of the volcano's most recent eruption, which took place in the late 19th century, is visible in the form of lava flows on the flanks of the cone, at lower left.
  7. Socialist Peak. Rob stands at the summit of Meru, elevation 14,800 ft (4560 m), which is marked by a metal Tanzanian flag. Also pictured are Mr. Elisa Mghamba (left), Pius John (holding the dead miniature antelope), and Lucy Kaywanga (reclining).
  8. Rhino Point. During our descent, the rearguard of our group rested at Rhino Point. Some say that the skeleton atop the pile of rocks is that of a rhinoceros, hence the name. Note that the student behind me is holding up a rather large bone.
  9. Full Moon. Back at Mandara Hut on the crater floor, the just-past-full Moon sinks toward the summit ridge as the Sun begins to bathe the cliffs with a warm, morning light.
  10. Fig Tree Arch. In the Meru rainforest grows one of the most remarkable trees I have ever seen. This giant, natural arch was formed by parasitic fig shoots growing from a host tree which died many years ago.

Ol Doinyo Lengai Expedition: 3-5 June, 2002

  1. Ol Doinyo Lengai. Tanzania's only active volcano is Ol Doinyo Lengai, whose name means "Mountain of God" in the Maasai language. Here the 9,480-ft (2900-m) conical mountain is reflected in a rivulet of Lake Natron, a large soda lake that was in the process of shrinking due to the onset of the dry season. The white stripe spilling off of the peak is ash, not snow.
  2. Rob in the Crater. Rob, a student of Geography, is in his element while exploring the bizarre lunarscape of the crater. Note the steam rising from the white cones, called "hornitos."
  3. Matt in the Crater. For my part, I was totally exhausted after ascending the steep and treacherous trail to the summit of Ol Doinyo Lengai. Note that my footprints leave a visible trail in the ash leading up to my resting spot.
  4. Julius, Ngaya, and Matt. Before descending, I posed for this shot with my best Tanzanian buddies, Julius Koola and Ngaya Munuo. Below us is the bizarre and spectacular landscape of the Great African Rift.
  5. The Descent. On a mountain as steep and devoid of handholds like trees and solid rock as Ol Doinyo Lengai is, going down can be more challenging than climbing up, and certainly more dangerous.

Mamabilly's Chicken Business in Arusha

  1. Plucking. Once a month came a day for slaughtering chicken, and neighbors of all ages would come over and help with the job of plucking the carcasses.
  2. Billy. Billy "Clinton" Sirito, age two, performs a quality-control check on one of his mama's chickens.

Moshi Technical Secondary School and Moshi Town

  1. Matt at Home. Photo of me sitting on the front stoop of my three-bedroom house at the school.
  2. House #2. Another view of my home of two years.
  3. School Gate. This is the main entrance to Moshi Technical Secondary School, right on the highway connecting Moshi with the larger town of Arusha, 50 miles (80 km) to the West.
  4. At the Duka. Across the highway from the main gate is a series of general-goods shops, or maduka in Swahili. The most well-stocked of these was the Pascal Shop, where I would often go to buy bread, rice, spaghetti, detergent, beer, etc. The young man behind the security grille, Issa, is a fixture of the day shift there, although he is not the owner.
  5. Morning Assembly. Every school day at Moshi Tech begins at 7 AM with the students lining up by class for assembly in the quadrangle. The students are required to wear uniforms, and the school's few girls stand at the front of the lines, which is why this photo shows only boys! Note that the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro peeks out through the haze above the trees.
  6. Form IV-6 Class. This is a class photo, including most of the 41 students and their Mathematics teacher, of the Form IV, Stream 6 Electrical Engineering Class at Moshi Tech in October 2002, shortly before their graduation.
  7. Form IV-5 Class. This is a class photo, including the 21 students and their Mathematics teacher, of the Form IV, Stream 5 Mechanical Engineering Class at Moshi Tech in October 2002, shortly before their graduation.
  8. Form V. This is a class photo of the boys of Form V at Moshi Tech, taken in October 2002. Mt. Kilimanjaro stands out in the background.
  9. Physics Lab. Part of the Form V Advanced Physics class performs an experiment on rolling inertia using simple equipment in the school's decrepit Physics Laboratory.
  10. Patriots' Fan? Physics student George Maselle showed up to lab without the proper uniform, but I forgave him since his sweatshirt showed support of my father's favorite (American) football team. Of course, George picked up this shirt in one of the numerous used-clothes markets in Tanzania that peddle imports from around the globe, and had no idea what the shirt's logo represents.
  11. Exam Time. The 160 Form IV students sit together in the Assembly Hall to write their practice "Pre-National" Mathematics Examination in preparation for their all-important National Examinations, which were given in November 2002.
  12. Computer Lab. Students Ally Abushiri (seated) and Emanuel Alfayo help me to show off the mousepads donated to Moshi Tech by the Ellsworth High School Alumni Association.
  13. School Timetable. Secondmaster James Daffa, Junior Academic Master Emanuel Mkiramweni, and Senior Academic Master Joseph Futa stand in front of the big tag-board in the Academic Office which serves as the master class schedule for all 900 students and 70 teachers at the school.
  14. Milling Maize. This man's name is Peter, and he performs a number of maintenance duties around the school compound. When he is not trimming shrubs, he may be found here, running the milling machine to turn maize harvested by the students from the school's fields into flour for the students' meals.
  15. School Kitchen. Preparing daily meals for 900 boarding students is no trivial task. This is one of two smoke-filled kitchens at the students' dining facilities, where cooks labor over huge vats heated by wood fires. Here the cooks are making ugali, Tanzania's staple dish, a stiff porridge made from maize flour. Ugali and beans form the bulk of the students' diet at most schools in Tanzania.
  16. Lunchtime. The job of serving the food in the dining halls falls to the students themselves. Each student brings his or her own bowl into the dining hall, where members of the classes on weekly mess duty will fill them. Once all of the bowls are full, the rest of the students are allowed back inside to take their meals. Most students then proceed to take their meals elsewhere.
  17. Baobab. In the middle of the school fields, near the boys' dormitories, stands a decent-sized specimen of a Baobab, that ubiquitous tree of Southern Africa about which the local tribes say "God planted them upside-down." If you look carefully, you'll notice that I am standing in the tree for scale.
  18. Moshi Town. View of Moshi Town from the roof of the Hotel Newcastle.
  19. Bus Stand. An army of vendors approaches an intercity bus stopping in Moshi most likely on its way to Dar Es Salaam on the coast. The white cars in the foreground are all taxicabs.
  20. Main Market. Moshi's central market boasts everything from fresh fruits and vegetables to hardware and audio CDs. I always enjoyed the shopping experience there, especially compared to Walmart Supercenters here in the States!
  21. Safari Supermarket. When I had an urge for some more distinctly Western foods, I could always go into the Safari Supermarket adjacent to the Main Market. This store is operated by Shabbir Hussein, pictured here, and his wife. Extremely hard workers who are dedicated to their business, they always welcomed me warmly. Shabbir would often make trips to Dubai in the Middle East to place orders, leaving his wife to mind the shop.
  22. Theodore Massawi. Upon first moving into my house, I needed a great many items to make the place livable, including cushions for my sofa and two chairs. I found a good deal on the cushions and made an interesting friend upon visiting the shop of Theodore Massawi (seated).
  23. Daladala. The primary mode of local transportation in Tanzania is the daladala, usually a barely operational Toyota minivan. The standard response to the question of how many people a daladala can hold is "two more." This particular bus sports a RE-ELECT POVICH DISTRICT ATTORNEY bumper sticker brought to Tanzania by my father.

Side-trip to Dar Es Salaam

  1. The Holiday Hotel. View from the roof of the Holiday Hotel, a favorite place to stay for Peace Corps Volunteers on our inevitable visits to Tanzania's capital city. The rooms are dirt cheap, and the common areas are spacious. Best of all, there is a built-in wakeup call when the nearby mosques broadcast the Call to Prayer from loudspeakers on the minarets at 4:30 AM.
  2. Matt's Long Hair. In a mirror at the Holiday, I contemplate chopping off my long red locks, which had been growing for my entire two years in Africa.
  3. At the Beach. South of Dar, the coastline of the Indian Ocean sports a number of beautiful beaches, of which Kipepeo is one of the best. Here my whiteness is emphasized by the contrast with the beautiful complexions of my friends, cousins Christina Mushi, Ngaya A. Munuo, and Vida Edith. Note that my hair is now short.

Friends and Neighbors

  1. Bibi. Mrs. Tabitha Munuo, born 1911(?), is a fixture of the neighborhood. The matriarch of the Munuo family who live in the house across the street from mine, most afternoons she would sit in front of the house in her white plastic chair. I always called her "Bibi," which means "Grandmother," and I would greet her in her tribal language, the Machame dialect of Chagga, as she taught me to do.
  2. Anael Munuo. Mr. Anael Munuo retired from teaching at Moshi Tech a few years ago. Now he drives his Toyota pickup for a living, and certainly makes better money this way. The load of grass pictured here, however, is for his own cows.
  3. Flora Munuo. Mrs. Flora Munuo manages a busy household, including cows and goats, when she has time outside of fulfilling her duties as Head of the English Department at the school.
  4. Kibosho Graduation. Mrs. Agnes Njau, a teacher of English at Moshi Tech, poses with nieces Lightness (left) and Suzy (far right) and daughters Maggie and Julieth. The occasion is the graduation day at Kibosho Girls' Secondary School.
  5. Stir-Fry. Sophia Koola lends a hand in my kitchen. We were cooking a sweet-and-sour stir fry for a small dinner party.
  6. Dinner Party. Julius and Sophia Koola sit down to dinner at my house with Ngaya, Josiah, and Thomas Munuo.
  7. Deo and Haika. An attractive brother-and-sister pair, Deo and Haika Kimaryo sat for this one photo in their house at the school. Two of the five children of Moshi Tech's former Headmaster, they all were orphaned in June, 2002 when their mother passed away after a long illness.
  8. My Replacement. To prevent a vacuum from forming in the wake of my departure from Moshi Tech, I requested that a new Peace Corps Volunteer be sent to take my place. Here my replacement, Stefan Gary, stands with Headmaster Isaac Malisa in the roundabout near the entrance to the school.
  9. At the Headmaster's House. Mrs. Helen Malisa reads a storybook to her nephew, Markos age 9, and her daughters, Truda, age 11, and Atu, age 7. Mrs. Malisa is a biology teacher at Moshi Tech.
  10. Parting Gift. Before I was to depart Moshi, the faculty of the school threw me a farewell dinner party. Mr. Isaac Malisa, the Headmaster, presents me with a gift while Secondmaster James Daffa looks on.

Kilimanjaro at Dusk

  1. Mt. Kilimanjaro. A fifteen-minute walk South from my house would bring me outside of the school compound and up a small, bare hill. From this spot I could enjoy an awe-inspiring view of Mt. Kilimanjaro towering over the surrounding landscape.
  2. A Cloud Over the Mountain. As I watched, this gigantic cloud grew upwards from behind Mt. Kilimanjaro to reach across the sky. The setting Sun provided low-angle light enough to bring out the incredibly rich textures and produce the colors pictured here. Frustrated with my camera's inability to frame this huge apparition properly, in the end I opted to tilt the view 45 degrees.
  3. Sunset. The Sun sets to the left of Mt. Meru on the western horizon.

Safari: 19-23 June, 2002

  1. Landrover. My sister, Abby, and I sit on the roof of our safari vehicle, a Landrover provided by Roy Safaris, Ltd. and piloted by our very competent and companionable driver, Moses.
  2. Ngorongoro Crater. The floor of Ngorongoro Crater is one of the most magnificent wildlife refuges in the world, and in June, right after the rains have ceased, it reveals itself to be a paradise of wildflowers as well.
  3. Flamingos. The soda lakes in the Ngorongoro are a haven for flamingos.
  4. Lioness and Cub. A lioness and a nearly-grown cub relax in the grass.
  5. Serval Cat. Serval Cats like this one are most commonly found on the East African Savannah.
  6. My Mother. This is my mother, Judith Povich. She is standing next to an Aloe Vera plant and underneath an Acacia tree.
  7. Kopjes of the Serengeti. The Serengeti Plains are famous for a number of reasons, chief among them vast herds of wildebeeste and zebra, of which only the most minute representation is shown here. Another signature of the Serengeti are landscapes marked by kopjes, extrusions of igneous rock protruding from the otherwise table-flat terrain.
  8. Giraffes. This is one of my favorite pictures, and giraffes are one of my favorite African mammals. I am convinced that their peculiar, undulating gait inspired the computer graphics designers responsible for Jurassic Park.
  9. Antelope. This big-bodied antelope is called a Topi. The species is distinguished by their dark coloring on their legs and faces.
  10. Water Buffalo. Despite their rather ungainly appearance, the water buffalo is one of the most dangerous species of large mammal found in Africa.
  11. Elephant Encounter. We literally drove into the middle of this family of elephants. There were about thirty of the animals altogether, including calves. This was a bit nerve-wracking, as a few of these massive mammals got a little too close for comfort!
  12. Lion. This lion was too accustomed to SUVs to bother getting up when we drew close.
  13. The Photographer. This is my father, Michael Povich.
  14. Lizard. My father was able to get in close to this colorful gecko as it was sunning itself on a rock near the Serengeti National Park Entrance.

Photographer's Notes

The majority of these photographs were shot using my Olympus Superzoom (38-70 mm) 700 XB camera, purchased in Arusha, Tanzania. Other than those shots in which I appear, all of the photos taken with this camera were taken by me. The mountain climbing expeditions were all shot on Fuji 35-mm ASA-200 color negative film. The images from Moshi Tech (including those of my friends and neighbors), Arusha, and Dar es Salaam were captured using Kodak 35-mm ASA-200 color slide film.

The Safari photographs taken using Kodak 35-mm ASA-200 color slide film with an Olympus OM 1 camera. Most shots were taken by my father, Michael, but some were taken by me. Which are which remains a matter of some confusion, because we traded cameras so many times during that trip!

All of these images were digitized using a Minolta slide/negative scanner and then cleaned up and processed using Adobe Photoshop 7.0.


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Last updated: Monday, June 9, 2003
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