Drifting Through Nachu

Although I hike often, it’s not as frequent as other people. There’s someone I met last year who had done 14 hikes in that year alone! I usually don’t exceed twice a month because I need time to recover physically and mentally. February 2021, however, was a different story. I challenged myself and did 3 weekends in a row- Kefri, Tigoni, and Nachu, all with Let’s Drift.

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Trekking Through Tigoni

Sunday, 21st Feb, 2020. I wake up early in the AM, way before I intended to and sleep evades me completely. So much for trying to have enough rest before a hike. Still, I remained in bed until the alarm rang and then began preparing to leave for Tigoni.

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Drifting Through Nderi

I didn’t go for any hikes in January because apart from financial pressures, the sun was too much. I’d be indoors and sweating seriously. But after a month of being mostly indoors, it was time for a much-needed break. So I joined fellow hikers in my current fave hiking group- Let’s Drift- for a day out in the forest.

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Some of My Favourite Underrated Kenyan Travel Sites

What’s good about Kenya, travelwise? You probably know of our pristine coastal beaches and famous savannahs rich in wildlife. However, there’s more that this country has to offer apart from safaris and beach tours. Since 2016 I’ve had the pleasure of hiking and camping in some amazing yet underrated places. Do yourself a favour and visit these locations if you live in, or next time you’re in Kenya.

Kinangop Highlands

If you’re looking for a serene time away from noisy life, Kinangop is the place. Especially the rural side of the highlands. You get to enjoy uninterrupted panoramic views, encounters with herders grazing their livestock, fresh air, and the best part: the stunning night sky. There’s no night pollution and the stars appear to be closer to earth- a treat for stargazers. You can also visit the Friends of Kinangop Plateau’s land that has been set aside as a reserve for the endemic and globally endangered Sharpe’s Longclaw bird.

Sharpe's Longclaw conservation area in Kinangop..
Looking for the Sharpe’s Longclaw.

Olorgesailie & Magadi

The Olorgesailie prehistoric site is renowned as the “factory of stone tools” and the only place in the world with the largest number. In addition, the area hosts the highest number of migratory bird species in Kenya. The latter might come as a surprise as the area is arid and doesn’t seem to support much life at first glance.

Campsite at Olorgesailie Museum, Kenya.
A section of our campsite at the Museum.

Magadi’s main attraction is the flamingos that feed along the shores of Lake Magadi. They love such alkaline lakes which provide them with algae, their main source of food. Other waterfowl you’re likely to see include Yellow-billed Storks, African Spoonbills and Great White Pelicans. Again, if you’re in search of solitude, consider staying at the Olorgesailie Museum. It’s isolated (thus quiet), has no electricity and no light pollution- perfect for seeing the stars.

Tourists at Lake Magadi, Kenya.
Little humans in a huge landscape.

Gatamaiyu River Trails

Away from harsh, arid landscapes, you can chill as you walk along Gatamaiyu River in Githunguri, Kiambu County. For lovers of waterfalls, this is the ideal location. The river has several of them along its course, both large and small. Gatamaiyu forest is an IBA (Important Bird Area) that is home to a wide variety of forest highland birds, including the Abbot’s starling whose habitat is swiftly shrinking.

Waterfall in Githunguri, Kenya.
Views for days.

One of the easiest ways to enjoy hiking through Gatamaiyu is to join a group, like I did with Let’s Drift. We stopped at 3 waterfalls and some daring souls swam in all of them. Even though it rained at the start and the end of the hike, we had a great time.

Author at waterfall.
Chilling at waterfall #2.

Eburu Forest

Located on Mt. Eburu (which you can see from Kinangop Highlands), this forest is a conservation area for the endangered Mountain Bongo. So elusive is it that it’s only seen by setting up camera traps. The only people who’ve seen it with their own eyes are the indigenous forest-dwelling people. One thing you can see though, is Lake Naivasha against the background of Mt. Longonot.

Hikers in Eburu Forest, Kenya.
Impressive forest vegetation.

Hiking here hike is fairly easy since the trail is well maintained and the inclines are gentle. Deep into the forest, the only sound you can hear is of chicada insects and forest birds. An entirely different, enchanting world. If you’re feeling daring, take a dip at the natural sauna (hot springs) formed by geothermal activity. It’s refreshing for tired muscles after a long hike.

Hot springs in Eburu Forest, Kenya.
The steaming hot springs.

These are but a few of the underrated places in Kenya you can visit to have a different experience. The country is vast and has so much to see. Have you heard of or been to any of these?

Drifting Through Tigoni

Have you ever hiked through tea farms? I had quite the experience in December.

Hello people, how is 2021 so far? After saying good riddance to the previous year, we’re all hoping this one brings some sanity with it. On New Year’s eve I even had to check the calendar to confirm it wasn’t 32/ 12 /20 or 1/ 13/ 20! That was one crazy year. Today’s post though focuses on my hike with Let’s Drift to Tigoni in December.

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Happy Birthday to Me & Goodbye 2020!

2020. What a year it’s been. I don’t think there’s another one in recent history that’s affected human life like this. When I first heard of Covid in January, I thought it would be regional like H1N1, and would be over in a few months. Who knew that Coronavirus had world domination plans instead? I’m sure many people can’t wait to say ‘good riddance’ to 2020. Anyway, this is how the year went for me…

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Drifting Through Githunguri

It seems like this last part of 2020 has decided to repay for the relatively easy time I had from Jan- August. Yes, there were some challenges but nothing overwhelming. From September, though, things started going downhill. Hiking is one thing that’s helped ease the pressure and keep me sane. Especially my most recent hike.

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Drifting Through Kabete

Hey peeps, how is Corona taking you? For those of us whose coping mechanism for tough times is being outside, you can only imagine how it’s been. Birding at home offered me a bit of sanity but after 6 months of doing the same thing, I was itching for a change. And that’s how I ended up on a hike in September.

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Experiencing the Death of an Elephant and Escaping a Raging Buffalo

Hello people! Today we do it a bit different. Until now, all the posts on here have been by me. But today I’m honoured to have a fellow nature lover (Victoria) grace this page with one of her most memorable wild experiences. Read on and enjoy!

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Birding At Home

I can’t believe the last trip I took was in March. Apart from the fun & new experiences, I love to travel because it gives a break from the humdrum of life. It’s good for my mental health as well. Quarantine has been a challenge since even the weekly bird walks were cancelled until further notice. I find myself not leaving the estate sometimes for two weeks. I don’t go for walks around the hood because thugs sometimes attack people. Add to that the unrelenting cold weather and it’s not been easy keeping sane. Thankfully I still have birdwatching left.

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