Senin, 04 Januari 2016

Trekking to The Rooftop of Kenya

When Kilimanjaro is very touristic and full of people during this holiday season, why not try to see another rooftop of Africa called Mount Kenya, the second highest peak in the continent?
There we go to celebrate end of 2015! We refer to me, the hiking mates (Yukiko, Yukie, Takako, Peter, Erika, and Masa), our guide William, and all crew who were very supportive during 5 days expedition.

Day 1
Trekking from Sirimon entrance after lunch took three hours to reach Judmaier camp in 3,300 meters above sea level. It was our first acclimatization point.
Judmaier Camp
Day 2
Full day walking up to the Likii North Valley (3,990 meters a.s.l) was surprisingly fun and surrounded by amazing view. The camp was below subsidiary peak of Teleki and Sendeyo. It was long night ever! I was freezing and tried to look out the tent at 4 a.m when I witnessed the grass and fly sheet of the tent were covered by ice flakes. 
Camp in the Middle of Valley

Day 3
We moved to Shipton Valley (4,300 meters a.s.l). Trekking up and down hill passed Mackinders Valley. We followed water stream and walked above Shipton Cave. William, Yukiko, and I observed the cave for a bit while another mates crossed over hill to the next camp. We also saw hyrax played around the rocks. From this point, we could see three peaks of Mt. Kenya (Batian, Nelion, and Lenana)
Approaching the Peak
Day 4   
That was the day when we started early. Year has changed into 2016! We woke up early at 2.30 a.m and climbed up half an hour later. Summit to Point Lenana (4,985 meters a.s.l) as we planned to see first sunrise of the year. We struggled of sandy path, low temperature, and oxygen suppression due to altitude. Peter thought that he won't make it to the peak so he asked turning point instead of proceed the summit. That was the time when our guide, William calmly explained that everything would be alright. He has 30 years experience in climbing Mt. Kenya!
"Tu ende, pole-pole" (Let's go, slowly!) he asked everyone to move until finally, we all made it!
Point Lenana (3,985 meters a.s.l)

View from The Rooftop of Kenya

I would say, that was my first experience trekking in such a challenging path! We stayed in the peak less than one hour. As sun rose up, we climbed down through Naromoru trek via ferrata which was installed along the cliff. Last night of camp, we stayed in Met Station (3,000 meters a.s.l). That was night of celebration with all crew who made bonfire so we had warm conversation. Some of us were drinking while most of crew were busily chewing mogoka. This is typical of social activity of Kenyan instead of drinking. 
I asked Masa who has ever climbed Kilimanjaro about how the difference of both experiences. He eagerly said that Mt. Kenya has beautiful and vary landscape. Trekking Kilimanjaro is personal achievement because it is the highest peak. But for challenge and attractive view, Masa emphasized that Mt. Kenya owns it better.  

Day 5
All the team packed everything to proceed departure to Nairobi. We spent two hours by foot to reach main gate of Naromoru  from last camp. This trek passed by rain forest. The vegetation that I have seen reminded me to Indonesia. 
Hiking Mates
2016 has just begun, I hope it will be a good starting of another adventure !
For strength that God gave, for the great time with hiking mates and all crew, for this story, I sincerely delivered thousand: 
"Thank you!"
"Asante sana!"
"Arigatou gozaimashta!"
"Terima kasih!"

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