Mount Olorgesailie


Distance from Nairobi                    About 65km
Starting Point                                    Olorgesailie pre-historic site
Ending point                                      Olorgesailie pre-historic site
Walking Duration                             6 hours

Terrain Rocky trails with thorny bushes. Very hot weather.

Difficulty          Moderate

The Olorgesailie pre-historic site is famed for the high concentration of pre-historic hand axes discovered there in 1919 by British geologist John Walter Gregory, as well as during subsequent excavations by Mary and Louis Leakey in 1943, Glynn Isaac in the 1960s and Richard Potts in the 1980s and 2000s. More recent discoveries in this site include a 900,000 years old human fossil.

Route Description

Situated about 65km from Nairobi, the Olorgesailie pre-historic site got its name from the nearby 1,760m high Mount Olorgesailie. Its proximity to Nairobi makes it an ideal location for a day hike up the mountain. The hike takes 3 hours to get to the summit through dry, rocky country with scattered dryland thorny bushes providing the only cover from the hot sun. A number of dry rivers crisscross the landscape as they wind their way from the upper reaches of the mountain down to the long extinct lake at the pre-historic site. Well camouflaged Maasai manyattas and encounters with the occasional herdsmen tending to their flocks of goats and sheep provide a welcome distraction from the scorching sun. The trails disappear in the last steep section of the climb before you get to the summit. The descent then takes another 3 hours to get back to the pre-historic site.