Allow me to begin by saying, Mount Kenya Experience offers you the opportunity to reclaim your life in a way that you never have before.
Afew days ago together with my colleagues we set out to summit upto point lenana through the Naro Moru route, considered the toughest of them all when you summit mount Kenya.
On Monday, We started our journey to Naro Moru river lodge at about 11AM at 1300hrs we snaked in at the lodge and received a warm welcome with a glass of fresh juice ushered to the rooms and had our brief at 3pm. we converged late in the evening for gear scrutineering just to make sure everyone had the right thing to go up the mountain. (Boots, Wind breakers, raincoat jackets high energy snacks and water bottles) we went to bed early ready for the climb.
Tuesday morning as we converged for breakfast, we were again briefed on what to where and what to carry in our day pack bags.(water snacks and rain coat) this was a light trekk of about 9KM to the met station from the KWS gate. we did 3050Metres above sea level. at 3pm we were at the met station after a 3 hours trekk. later in the evening around 5pm, the guide advised we have a short hike to gain and loos altitude. we spent the night in the mountain log cabins.
On Wednesday; we begun our hike to Teleki Valley at 0745 hours. At Teleki Valley there is a spectacular view of the main peaks, this was one abit harder, we did a whooping 6 hours before finally coming to rest at Mackinders camp at altitudes of 4100metres above sea level. Challenges begun setting in here; headaches, active stomachs and nausea. we had our early dinner of PASTA and retired to bed ready for a 2AM hike.
On Thursday at 0230hours,in the dead of the night, a pre dawn start in a bid to summit successfully which we did. Before we got to the summit we did rest at Austrian hut, am told here is the make or break point, you chicken out here, thats it. but surely why come all this far just to give up barely 2KM to the peak? FINALLY, at 0651HRS , we where at the top; 4985 metres above sea level. Since at the peak the cold was an bearable we quickly did photos for the memories and started descending to our base camp before proceeding back to the lodge. at 1530HRS we were at the lodge, Exhausted but EXTREMELY GRATEFUL for an awesome climb.
On this particular trip, I learnt valuable lessons. Other than being a healthy physical exercise that creates wonderful memories, Mountaineering, provides opportunity to slow down and disconnect and teaches us important truths about life.
LESSONS FROM MOUNT KENYA EXPERIENCE
Many have gone before. Every step we took, I find myself grateful for those who have gone before and have smoothed the trail for me.This will remind you that in life, we all stand on the hard work of those who have walked before us.
Many will come after. When up the mountain you realize you aint not he last of humans to trekk up. You’re so sure many more will come after you this leaves you with a sense of obligation to those who will come after—to leave the trail, the mountain, and the earth in better condition than you found it.
Sometimes quiet is the best noise. stillness and calm of an empty trail. Just your footsteps and heart beat!
You can travel farther and accomplish more than you think. Uphill trails only leave two choices: reach the top or turn around. Reaching the top only requires the perseverance to keep putting one foot in front of the other. When life gets tough, try to remember all we can do is put one foot in front of the other and just keep moving.
Healthy fuel is important. Hiking spurs intentionality in the food and drink you will choose to consume. Eat a healthy breakfast. bring water(lots of it), thoughtful snacks, and a light lunch if necessary. Choose healthy fuel so your body will function properly during the hike. Plus, there’s something that just doesn’t feel right about eating artificial foods while being present in the natural world. hehehe there’s something that happened up there while I was on energy drink- NEVER AGAIN!
Pack light. The weight of physical possessions is clearly felt when they are piled on your back. Wise travelers carry only what is needed for the journey. May it be true of me while packing—and in living.
Choose your steps carefully. While hiking, each step is clearly chosen. focus intently where the next foot is going to land—sometimes even calculating 2-3 steps in advance. This intentionality helps me avoid unnecessary harm. And I hope the decisions I make with my life’s direction will be made with the same precision and care.
Age is only a number. I’ve seen hikers under the age of 13 and I’ve seen hikers over the age of 70- One is coming to summit again in August this year( YOU ARE WELCOME TO JOIN US). I am learning more and more that age only represents the number of years you have been alive. It does not serve as a litmus test for opportunity. Those who decide early in life to care for their bodies and not allow age to limit their potential will not be handicapped by it.
If you can climb a mountain, you can do anything. While not technically true, the mantra still goes through my head constantly. Reaching the top of a mountain (any mountain) is an impressive physical, mental, and emotional accomplishment. And it is motivating. It reminds me I can accomplish important things with my life if I dream big and put in the work.
We had some issues with altitude but with the spirits of the clamp have been absolutely rock steady. We’ve been a great team. On to the next one!