Meaning of Name

mt-kenya-mountain-climbing-safari-shiptons-hutAnother strange fact is that the word Kenya that denotes this beautiful country actually derives its roots from the name Mount Kenya. The origin and meaning of the word Kenya is unknown. It is thought, however, to derive from the words Kininyaga in Kikuyu, Kirenyaa in Embu, and Kiinyaa in Kamba, all of which mean “god’s resting place.” The names of Mount Kenya’s three major peaks—Batian, Nelion, and Lenana—honor Maasai chiefs. Several tribes remain in the region. For instance, the Gikuyu tribe, who call the mountain “Gods throne”, and build their huts facing its slopes. The kikuyu people, who live on the southern and western sides of Mount Kenya, firmly believe that their God (Ngai) lived on the mountain peak when he came down from the heavens.

 There are six gates into Mount Kenya National Park. In order to gain entry, visitors must pay an entry fee. Only cash is accepted. Payments can be made at the 3 main gates, which are well signposted and easily accessible by car.

Once inside the park, lakes, glaciers, peaks, mineral springs and forests abound. Naturally, walking and hiking are popular ways to explore this diverse and rugged landscape. Whilst only experienced climbers with equipment can reach the peaks of Batian and Nelion, Lenana is accessible by non-climbers on foot. Roughly 15,000 visitors scale Point Lelana annually, whilst only 200 reach Nelion and Batian.

 There are a number of walking routes culminating at Point Lenana. The view from this lookout point is considered among the best views in Kenya and is not to be missed. Unique spires, ridges and cliffs border a handful of trails, captivating hikers with their scale and beauty

 

mt-kenya-mountain-climbing-safari-shiptons-hut

Once inside the park, lakes, glaciers, peaks, mineral springs and forests abound. Naturally, walking and hiking are popular ways to explore this diverse and rugged landscape. Whilst only experienced climbers with equipment can reach the peaks of Batian and Nelion, Lenana is accessible by non-climbers on foot. Roughly 15,000 visitors scale Point Lelana annually, whilst only 200 reach Nelion and Batian.

 There are a number of walking routes culminating at Point Lenana. The view from this lookout point is considered among the best views in Kenya and is not to be missed. Unique spires, ridges and cliffs border a handful of trails, captivating hikers with their scale and beauty

Once inside the park, lakes, glaciers, peaks, mineral springs and forests abound. Naturally, walking and hiking are popular ways to explore this diverse and rugged landscape. Whilst only experienced climbers with equipment can reach the peaks of Batian and Nelion, Lenana is accessible by non-climbers on foot. Roughly 15,000 visitors scale Point Lelana annually, whilst only 200 reach Nelion and Batian.

 There are a number of walking routes culminating at Point Lenana. The view from this lookout point is considered among the best views in Kenya and is not to be missed. Unique spires, ridges and cliffs border a handful of trails, captivating hikers with their scale and beauty

mt-kenya-mountain-climbing-safari-shiptons-hut

The most frequented routes are Chogoria, Naro Moru and Sirimon, which all feature staffed gates. The Chogoria route is considered the most striking. It takes walkers from the small town of Chogoria to the Peaks Circuit Path and on to Point Lenana. Passing through areas of forest and moorland, the route takes in stunning views across the Giant’s Billiards Table region

The Naro Moru route is the quickest way to reach Point Lenana. This rapid ascent, though not particularly picturesque, ensures that those unable to linger in the park at least get to visit its most popular lookout point

The Sirimon route is popular due to the steady rate of ascent. In fact, many climbers choose to ascend using the Sirimon route, and then descend using either the Naro Moru or Chorogia routes

Mount Kenya also boasts several ice routes, with the Diamond Couloir and Ice Window routes especially well known. The Diamond Couloir, which was once available year round, is now only climbable during hard winters. It goes without saying that ice routes should only be attempted by practised climbers

When is the best time to visit Mount Kenya?

Mount Kenya National Park is open all year round, so it’s possible to organize a trip for any month of the year. However, hiking Mount Kenya is certainly more difficult in the rainy seasons of March to June and October to December. As such, the best times to visit and hike Mount Kenya are the dry seasons between January and February, and July – September.

Given its equatorial location, Kenya is generally quite hot. However, due to its elevation, Mount Kenya has permanent snow at its summit, and so is cold all throughout the year. Indeed, temperatures in the night can reach lows of 14 degrees Fahrenheit (-10 degrees Celsius). Typically, early mornings on the mountain bring sunny, dry weather, with clouds often forming by noon.

There is a range of accommodation options available inside Mount Kenya National Park. From luxurious lodges to tumbledown huts, all budgets and tastes are catered for. Costlier hotels are located on the mountain’s lower slopes. Most offer a range of events and activities that can be booked upon arrival.

Camping is another option that is permitted throughout the park, though the use of huts is encouraged in order to conserve the environment. Huts can be reserved at any of the park’s 3 main entrances. For those who do choose to camp, hut facilities, such as kitchens and bathrooms are available at no extra cost

Vegetation and Wildlife

 Mount Kenya has different fauna from Elephants, Bongo Antelope, Cape buffalo to rock Hyrax and a variety of birds. About 340 species of birds can be seen here. The floral is also very wide from the mountain forest, bamboo, heather to tussock grass and the everlasting flowers. In addition to that, any tree that is above seventeen thousand feet on this mountain is filled by moss.

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