ACSCS 01 15 Kenya Cultural Safaris
(Mt. Climbing, Walking, Caving, Game Viewing, Trekking, Beach safari, Whitewater rafting, Bungee jumping, Sailing etc.)
Arrive at Jomo Kenyatta International airport early morning. Load and board vehicles, drive the two and a half hours to the White Water Rafting base camp at Sagana River Base. After lunch risk assessment meeting and safety discussion regarding the whole expedition.
Sagana River Base
Situated just 95km from Nairobi along the main Nairobi – Nanyuki road, Savage Camp is debatably the finest campsite in East Africa and despite being so near Nairobi, it’s secluded and secure.
It is the base for the majority of our activities including:
White water rafting, Kayaking, Bungee jumping, Caving, Rock climbing, Trekking etc.
Sagana – Day spent rafting, surfing and waterfall jumping on the Tana River. Return to camp at about 1430 hrs for a late lunch. After lunch meeting ref Mt Kenya and sorting kit for the mountain and the desert which follows immediately afterwards.
A very early start for Chogoria where we meet up with our guides and porters for the mountain. Today will probably be a long hard day traversing the rain and bamboo forest to reach the Mt Kenya Nat Park gate on the Chogoria route at 10,000 ft. At times getting the vehicles up to the gate is impossible which means a long tough walk. Camp at Park Gate.
Mount Kenya. Leave the gate by 0830 at the latest, walking up to roadhead camp and beyond into the Gorges Valley. The usual route follows the northern ridge, but we will break new ground and try and reach Lake Michaelson today. Unlikely.
Mt Kenya – the advantage of being IN the valley is that we have water all the way to the Temple at 14,000ft. On reaching Lake Michaelson we have a tricky scramble up broken rock and a short rock climb to surmount the waterfall cliff before making our way around and up to the temple plateaux at Mintos tarns. Rest and acclimatise.
Mt Kenya. Up and strike camp at 0230. Hopefully leave at 0330 for walk to and up the steep face of Simba Col at 15,500 ft. A short rest, dump our kit and then start up the final scree to the summit of Pt Lenana at around 16350 ft! Very cold but the sunrise and view looking down on the clouds some 8,000ft below make it all worth while. Slide down the Lewis Glacier when ready then make your way back to Simba Col to collect our gear and steadily make our way down a long scree slope, up a smaller one to Kami hut at 14,635 ft. Replenish fluid and rest, you have achieved amazing things today – well done!
Mt Kenya. A leisurely start compared to yesterday, we try and leave no later than 0830 for the long walk down and off the mountain following the Sirimon route down the Mackinder Valley. Take your time, you have all day to reach Park Gate. Once in camp introduce yourself to some soap and clean clothes – all your kit will be in the bus waiting for you. Apart from the odd days walking in the desert you have done all the REALLY hard work.
We leave fairly early to complete the six or seven hour drive to Samburu National Park. Notice how the topography and flora changes with each mile during the day until we arrive in the arid game park. We collect two armed Askaris who will watch over us and our camp on the banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River. Set up camp and safety briefing.
Samburu. Daybreak game drive, back in camp by 1030 hours for a late breakfast. Middle of the day swim in the springs of Buffalo Springs. Late afternoon game drive.
Samburu. Daybreak game drive then strike camp after breakfast and drive to Ol Doinyo Ololokwe, a convenient stop and rough camp under the distinctive mountain. We are now on our way into the Koroli desert via the Ndoto mountains to Lake Turkana, or the Jade Sea as the original Lake Rudolf was known.
Drive North via Laisamis to Ngurunit in the Ndoto. The topography changes dramatically, it is now hot and very arid. The oasis of Ngurunit is waterfed and welcoming.
Ngurunit. Explore the local area and enjoy the natural waterslide rocks.
Early start for the drive to Loiyangalani, an oasis on the eastern shore of Lake Turkana, just north of von Höhnel Bay and South Island.
Loiyangalani. Explore local area and Mt Kulal.
Drive south and explore Teleki’s volcano if possible. The daytime temperatures and shortage of water play a big part in what we do.
Leave in the cool early morning for our drive South to Maralal via South Horr and Baragoi. Wild camp outside Maralal.
Continue south to Baringo or Nakuru for an overnight stop. The countryside has changed greatly over the last two days.
Drive to Sagana where we have a day to sort out our kit, get some washing done and enjoy a bit of relative civilisation.
Sagana. You have the opportunity to enjoy rafting the main rapids of the Tana again or take the bungy jump or maybe just rest!
We make an early start driving via Nairobi then the Mombasa road to the Chyulu Hills where we camp near the amazing lava tube caves. Explore the local area.
Chyulu Hills. Take the tight squeeze into the lava tube caves and find Leviathan, a 65km tube cave, also walk in these wonderful young (750,000 year old!)ridge volcanic hills. We will look at the patches of cloud forest and how they function. Keep a sharp eye out for wildlife and stay in your group, we have encountered buffalo, elephant and lion as well as numerous antelope at close range.
Strike camp after breakfast and retrace our steps back to the tar of the Nairobi-Mombasa road. We turn right or South East for a few kilometres then turn back in towards the Chyulu foothills at a town called Machinery and drive the 20kms track to Kikunduku Primary School. We set up camp on the edge of the “sports” ground and after lunch walk cross country to Nzouni School. We inspect our tree nursery and the progress on the Nursery classroom we are building and then return to Kikunduku.
We leave after assembly making one stop at Utithi Secondary School to check work on the well we are helping to dig, then on down the Mombasa Road and north up the coast to Kilifi Creek where we camp near the beach.
Kilifi. You have the creek to swim in, the coastline to explore or rent a dhow to go fishing on the reef for a few hours.
The lucky keen sailors will have the chance to sail with Mark Savage on his off shore yacht.
Today we leave no later than 0800 for the long drive up country to Nairobi. It will be a long dull day but has to be done. We stay tonight at the Parkside Hotel.
Nairobi. Visit the closed market in the old airship hanger to top up on your trinkets and then on to Haria Bros. To buy the presents for Mums and family. Enjoy Nairobi before our last meal together in Kenya then on to the airport for our flight home. Kwaheri!