We set out on a cold morning at 5.00 am for our journey from Chogoria town heading to The Mt Kenya Chogoria gate.The town was deserted considering that they don’t operate on a 24 hour work-time. I had been challenged to join my cousins in climbing the famous Mt.Kenya. Mt Kenya is the highest mountain in Kenya and is widely known for being a hideout place for the maumau during the colonial period.
The drive from Chogoria town to the mt.kenya gate was long but worth it. The terrain was rough but we managed to see the famous Mugumo tree along the way and it’s height was woowing. Guided by our guide, we cleared up at the Chogoria gate and our long awaited climb started.
PS:The Chogoria route is the most challenging route while climbing the mountain thus people are advised to use the Narumoru route which is quite safe.
Walking through the mt kenya Forest was breathtaking. The breeze and shade provided by the trees was calming; we could hear the birds chirping happily and I couldn’t help but think of how grateful I was to be there. We passed by a couple of clear streams and we could see trout fishes swimming in them. Wait…did I mention that the water tastes way better than the bottled water that am used to drinking?
40minutes later,the weather was no longer cool and welcoming. We were getting higher the mountain and my body was sweating. I consumed more water than I had for the past three days.”uko juu Kuna baridi”-it’s cold up there -our guide always encouraged us. I won’t lie that I didn’t consider quiting the climb multiple times.
Just like our guide assured us,the higher we went,the cooler it became.About an hour later, we made it to the moorland vegetation and the climb became more interesting. The views were becoming awesome and worthwhile.
[Lake Elise in the back view]
Lake Elise was our first stop and it really was chilly. The water was ice-cold thus people aren’t allowed to swim in it. We set our tents for the night but since it was only around 3pm,we opted to visit the historic mt kenya Caves. (You need really warm clothing for this since the weather is quite chilly).
The caves are located near the nithi falls which are breathtaking. The terrain is slippery and in most cases the area receives hailstones which I must admit is quite an awesome experience. We also enjoyed trout fishing at lake Elise later in the evening; which we had for supper.
PS:The Mt Kenya route is highly recommended for adventurous people.
•Hikers are also advised on being physically fit before using the Chogoria route.