The Chogoria Route offers the best combination of alpine scenery and acclimatization and takes you through the spectacular Gorges Valley and Lake Mackenzie before traversing the Point Lenana summit (4985m). The ascent to Point Lenana – near the Gregory and Lewis glaciers – passes lush forest, mountain grasslands and hidden caves before a final, unforgettable early morning start to catch a sunrise over the African equator.
Arrive this morning or in the evening in the city of Nairobi and transfer to the Hotel. Overnight at the Hotel.
After breakfast drive to the eastern slopes of Mt. Kenya Chogoria town. Arrive for lunch. morning we head to Chogoria Village where you will ascend the steep and rutted track to the Banda’s (cottages) in woodland near the Chogoria gate (9,396'/3,017m) of the Mt Kenya National Park where you will stay for two nights. Our gear will be transported by Land Rovers while we gain acclimatization with our first walk at altitude.
Today is a good opportunity to acclimatize, as you will be staying at an altitude of around3000m, as well as recover from jet lag and prepare and organize your gear for the trek ahead. There will also be opportunities to view some of the native wildlife (including elephants if you are lucky!) that live in this forest belt. The flora and fauna surrounding the Banda’s is prolific. A walk will be organized to stretch our legs and explore the area around the Banda’s.
The day starts slowly with a gentle game walk in the surrounding forest. Elephant, Buffalo, Antelope & Columbus monkey all live here as do Augur Buzzard & Verreaux's Eagle. After a late breakfast you will trek to Lake Ellis (11,480'/3,500m). Gradually the forest drops away and you enter a high moorland zone. Lake Ellis is a peaceful spot with good views of the main peaks.
The initial trek away from the lake ascends gentle moorland to attain a ridge that eventually joins the main Chogoria route at its best viewpoint. After enjoying views of Vivienne Falls and the Gorges Valley we descend to the little visited Lake Michaelson (13,120'/4,000m) and possibly the most beautiful campsite on the walk. Overhead tower the cliffs of the Temple while Tacazze Sunbirds flit amongst the giant Groundsel & Lobelia and Hyraxes hop around in the rocks.
The trek now enters the Alpine Zone - after quite a boggy start to the walk the walking surface soon becomes scree. You will climb several steep slopes to the Tooth (15,416'/4,700m), from where it is a gentle contour to Simba Tarn at 14,956'/4,4560m, which you should reach in time for a late lunch.
After a hot drink you will leave at 5.00 am for the steep ascent (2 hours) of Point Lenana (16,355'/4,985m) in time for sunrise. Although the climb is straightforward, the final section is hard work at this altitude. From the summit it is often possible to see Mt Kilimanjaro 320km away as well as the nearby climbing peaks of Mt Kenya;
Nelion and Batian which should be bathed in golden sunlight at this time of the morning. We descend back to Simba Tarn for a well earned cooked breakfast, and continue our descent via the Sirimon Route via Old Moses Camp. The walk today is long and exhausting and will challenge even the fittest of walkers. However the thrill of standing on the roof of Kenya, will be sure to make the effort worth your while.
After breakfast we head through the Sirimon Valley and down through the lush forest belt to the Park Gate where your transport will be waiting to take you back to Nairobi at around 10am. We bid farewell to guides, cooks and porters and depart to Nairobi en-route we stop for lunch and there after we proceed on to Nairobi Fairview Hotel for your overnight accommodation, a shower and perhaps celebratory drink.