Saturday, October 24, 2009

Mount Kenya with Mary Kariuki

MOUNT KENYA, alt 5,199m (Batian), is the highest mountain in Kenya, and 2nd only to Kilimanjaro for the entire African continent.

My good friend Mary "Mumbi" Kariuki of StandOut Adventures is planning to take us up to one of its 3 peaks, early 2010.

Lenana via the Sirimon Route is a non-technical trail that allows all trekkers to enjoy a magnificent view of east africa without any climbing skills. The other two routes, Naro Moru route and Chogoria Route are more suitable for climbers familiar with rock climbing, belaying and rope techniques.

Day 1 : Sirimon Park Gate to Old Moses Camp - 9km, approx. 3/4 hours hiking through the beautiful rain forest to Old Moses Camp at alt. 3,300m.
Day 2 : Shipton's Camp - 16km, approx. 7/8 hours hike through the Liki Valley via Mackinder's Valley to Shipton's Camp at alt. 4,200m where you enjoy an incredible view of the north faces of Nelion and Batian peaks.
Day 3 : Peak Circuit for Acclimatazation - 4 hours - ascending to a steep ridge through Kami Hut, Hausberg Tarn and Two Tarns Lake through some of the most spectacular sceneries. Return to Shipton's Camp.
Day 4 : Point Lenana at alt. 4,985m and back to Old Moses - 4 hours starting at 2.30am to arrive for sunrise. From here you can admire Kilimanjaro's highest peaks, Kibo and Mawenzi visible from the south, the Indian Ocean from the east and Mt. Elgon from the west. Descent back to Shipton's camp for breakfast. Old Moses for dinner.

Mary and her climbing team are native Kenyans who grew up close to Mt Kenya. All are very knowledgable about protecting the ecosystem. As with Mt Kilimanjaro, the glaciers of Mt Kenya are retreating rapidly due to climate change and low snowfall.

Mt Kenya benefits from equatorial climate. A typical day is a sunny crystal clear morning with temperatures around 25°C in low altitude and around 10°C as you slowly climb. Fog and clouds are commonly generated by mid day but at dawn, the ground surface is cooler and clouds leave the peaks uncovered. Temperature can drop down to -10°C during the night.

The mountain has two rainy seasons from late March till June and from October to December. The best climbing season is December – March and July – September.
Contact Mary for a quote at or +254 722 562449
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