Mount Kenya | Mount Kilimanjaro | Mount Meru | Aberdares | Elgon | Rwenzori
ABERDARES MOUNTAIN RANGES
The Aberdare Ranges is located in Western Central Kenya in close proximity to Mount Kenya. Traditionally the Kikuyu tribe who resided on the Eastern slopes of the range related this two mountain closely. They believed that their God “Ngai” had his sleeping hide “ndaruwa” spread out on top of the mountain and this is where he’d rest after a hard days work from the top of Mount Kenya. Legend has it that the original name of the mountain Nyadaruwa derived from the local peoples comparing the shape of the flat mountain top to that of a cow hide spread out the way they’d spread their hides to sleep on. The Maasai tribe who resided on the Eastern side of the mountain had their own name for the range known as Oldoinyo la Satima. This to date is the name of the highest peak on the Aberdares standing at 4001m (13,120 ft.).
The Aberdare Range comprises a section of the eastern rim of the Great Rift Valley. It is a heavily forested range, with average elevation ranging from 12,000 to 13,000 feet that supports a sprawling moorland above the forest zone dotted with giant heather, tussock grass, open forest glades and rosewood. Much of the Range is contained within the Aberdare National Park. The topography is diverse with deep ravines that cut through the forested eastern and western slopes. Animals are easily observed in the park and include; the Black Rhino, leopard, baboon, black and white Colobus monkey and sykes monkey. Rarer sightings include those of lions, the golden cat and the bongo- an elusive forest antelope that lives in the bamboo forest. Animals like the eland and spotted and melanistic serval cats can be found higher up in the moorlands.
Visitors can also indulge in picnics, trout fishing in the rivers and camping in the moorlands. Bird viewing is rewarding, with over 250 species of birds in the park, including the Jackson's Francolin, sparry hawk, goshawks, eagles, sunbirds and plovers. This park’s hallmark is it’s dramatic waterfalls which include Chania falls and the giant Karuru falls among others. Hiking in the park or to the summit is uncommon but a very unique experience. It offers one of the best acclimatization opportunities to those intending to climb mount Kenya or Kilimanjaro.
3 days trek on Aberdares.
Aberdare Ranges was named after the president of the Royal Geographical Society by the explorer Joseph Thompson in 1884. The park also has the most magnificent and dramatic water falls to be found in Kenya. While traversing the moorland section of the park you get a chance to visit all this wonderful sights on foot and enjoy our packed lunch at the beautiful Queen's cave.
Day 1: NAIROBI-ABERDARE REEDBUCK CAMPSITE.
Early departure for Aberdares National Park through the park headquarter to pick a ranger and then enter the park through Treetop Gate for game viewing on the salient where wildlife is abundance with better visibility.
The park is rich with alpine flora and fauna, scenic features that include magnificent waterfalls among others en route to Kiondogoro where we spent the night at Reedbuck campsite.
Day 2: REEDBUCK-HONI RIVER CAMPSITE
After breakfast, driven to Karuru - Matubio junction to start 4-5 hours hike on the moorland track that is dotted with giant heather, tussock grass, open forest glades and rose wood to arrive at Honi river for overnight in tents. The hike offers opportunities to encounter with buffaloes, elephant and many antelopes - armed with a ranger we expect no problems with animals. Picnic lunch is served en route.
Day 3: HONI-LE SATIMA PEAK (4001M)-NAIROBI
Have breakfast and drive on a steep old track that requires a 4WD through the forest for 2 hours up the Chebuswa peak to the roadhead to embark on 2-3 hour trek to Le Satima peak (4001m). On clear day there is opportunities to observe Mt. Kenya and Mt. Kilimanjaro on the horizon and even the surrounding vicinity of Lake Naivasha, Lake Nakuru and the Daiga hills. Later descend to connect with a transfer vehicle for return journey to Nairobi. Picnic lunch is served en route.