High hopes, big dreams are happening – flight to Nairobi and two amazing climbs ahead of us. Mt Kenya will be our acclimatization climb for Mt Kilimanjaro. We will change the country between the climbs and these two mountains are totally different from each other.
Our Mt Kenya climb started from Nairobi by car to the Kenya National Park, Bandas camp. In a small village, Chogorian, we changed the car and picked up our food, camping gear and personnel who took care of our well being during the climb.
Car we got was old Kenya’s army Land Rover, best days behind about 20 years ago. Car needed repair six times during our drive and at some point they even changed the driver. Some rope was definitely needed also to keep to back door closed, but on the other hand, fumes came in.
Bumpy ride in a road thru the jungle. Saw buffalos, monkeys, heard the elephant’s noises, antelopes, parrots…, when the car again started to slow down and seemed that it will need some EA again, we jumped out at some point and walked to the Bandas camp. The day was very warm and sunny, we expect that also for the following days.
My favourite Milky Way was again just incredible. It is so dark there and we are almost in equador, no light pollution. Fascinating!
In the following morning we headed to the Lake Ellis camp, 3500 meters. Camp is located by the lake, where some were fishing. Some of us went swimming – cool but not cold they said 🙂 Luckily the warm weather continued and night was again warm.
While approaching Simba Tarn Hut (4600m), weather got rainy and finally it was snowing. Our initial camping plan was changed so that we decided to go higher. Took more time in nasty weather but on the other hand, summit climb following day would be only 345 meters.
Early and freezy morning (-3C), head lamps to help us to walk in dark at 5am, I felt sick, either mountain sickness or just ate something wrong. Moving anyways and climbing to the summit so that sun raises at the same time with us. Summiting too from us 2,5 hours and beautiful views were waiting for us. We even saw Mt Kilimanjaro (50kilomers away from us).
Decent took only 1,5 hours. We picked our stuff and start walking next 8 hours to the Moses Camp. Some snacks and heading to the following camp. We needed to move quickly since the thunderstorm was approaching us and at some point we even run a bit.
This camp was already accessible by the car and they sold there Coca Cola, warm but still Coca Cola. Bought one and went to the tent to enjoy.
Follwing day was about heading back to the Nairobi. While still in Kenya National Park, we passed equator from south to the north while walking to the north gate of the National Park.
Learning from this climb was that the weather is very cold when it hits to the minus degrees. I needed more mid layers and luckily one of our climber had extras to borrow to the Kilimanjaro climb.
Summit date: 2.2.2014
Point Leana, Mt Kenya 4985m
Operator and guide: Aventura, Samuli Mansikka
Enjoy also the picture collection of Mt Kenya and Mt Kilimanjaro 2014