Mount Kenya, Chogoria Route


Summary

Distance from Nairobi        About 210km
Starting Point                       Chogoria Park Gate
Ending point                          Point Lenana
Walking Duration                4 - 5 days


Terrain Dirt road to Road Head, followed by a narrow trail through the alpine zone to Mintos Hut, then rocky steep climb with loose gravel in some sections before reaching the summit.
Mt Kenya is the ultimate hiking and climbing destination in Kenya. It is the highest mountain in Kenya and the second highest in Africa at 5199m above sea level (asl), and features ice-capped peaks, outlandish glacial valleys, an array of crystal-clear glacial lakes (Tarns), and a myriad of other attractions.

Out of the three popular routes for climbing Mt Kenya, the Chogoria Route is without question the most scenic and rewarding for hikers interested in sightseeing as well as summiting. The Chogoria route is on the east side of the mountain while Naro Moru and Sirimon routes are on the west and north sides of the mountain respectively.

Route Description
Most visitors spend the first day travelling either on foot or by vehicle from Chogoria town to the Chogoria Park Gate at 2950m asl. This journey is 29km long and goes over a motorable dirt road that passes through fertile farmlands before getting into a tropical forest, followed by a bamboo zone. Most people choose to spend their first night at the Kenya Wildlife Service campsite at the Park Gate, or at Meru Mt Kenya Lodge a few hundred meters from the Park Gate.

The second day typically entails hiking 7km further up to the Road head at 3300m asl. Camping next to the Nithi River at this place helps with acclimatization. Since it only takes 2hrs to get here, that leaves you with plenty of time to explore the surroundings. One of the attractions here is the Nithi waterfalls, approximately 100ft high, accessible by crossing the river and following the trail to the left for about 300m. Other attraction are Lake Ellis at 3500m asl and about 3km to the right of the road head, and Mugi Hill next to the Lake. If you climb to the top of Mugi Hill, you’ll get a bird’s eye view of the neighboring flat-topped Giant’s Billiard table.


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