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Mount Kenya, Africa's second highest Mountain, stands tall at 17,058 feet (5,199 meters). Mount Kenya, an extinct volcanic Mountain that erupted over 3.1 million years ago, is located right above the equator and to the surprise of many, has snow capped peaks.

Mount Kenya includes Mount Kenya National Park, which is approximately 715 square kilometers in size. The Park, established in 1949, is home to wide variety of wildlife and plant species. Over the last 50 years, animals of all sorts have been seen, like cheetah, buffalo, gazelles. Two main Rivers, which flow from the Mountain have promoted the abundance of animals; Rivers Uaaso Nyiro and Tana, flow right into major national parks like Tsavo.

The People Of Kenya And Peaks

Mount Kenya's 3 well-known peaks are: Point Lenana ( Le-naa-na ) at 16,355 feet, Nelion ( Neh-lee-on ) at 17,021 feet and Batian ( Mbaa-tee-ahn ) at 17,058 feet. These accented sounding names are from the Maasai tribe; they were named after famous olaiboni (leaders). They olaiboni had cooperated with the colonial government during the scramble for Africa. The Maasai hold Mount Kenya sacred because they believe this is where the first Maasai couple descended with their cattle; the number of cattle is a symbol of wealth to the Maasai.

In Kenya, you will hear Mount Kenya referred to as Kirinyaga, meaning "the bright big hill" in Kikuyu language. The Kikuyu believe their god, Ngai, lived on the Mountain and after creating the Earth; he created the first humans, Gikuyu and Mumbi. The Mountain's Vegetation

Mount Kenya was formed from the explosive lava flow and the rapid cooling-heating process that followed, which accumulated the debris over a period of time. Volcanic soil has promoted the growth of a variety of vegetation types on the Mountain. The following table represents the vegetation type and approximate percent coverage.

1Forest Vegetation And Coverage In Percentage

Bamboo - 10%, Bamboo and Forest Mix - 23%, Forest - 32%, Bushy Forest - 11%, Grassland - 8.5%, Plantation - 9%
Other - 6.5%

During your climb of Mount Kenya, you have the opportunity to see most of the above vegetation

Famous Mount Kenya Climbers

The topic of famous climbers is one that has sparked good discussions. Many books out on the market often oversee the fact that tribes like the Kikuyu had been living around Mount Kenya region for centuries and therefore must have made attempts and succeeded in climbing the Mountain before any explorers. However, in this discussion we discuss the European climbers who attempted to climb and brought fame to the Kirinyaga.

In 1849, during an inland journey in Kenya, German missionary, Ludwig Krapf, sighted the beautiful Mountain. He relayed this discovery to the Geographical Society but his findings were ridiculed by the professionals as "inconceivable".

In 1883, a Scotsman, Joseph Thompson set out to the East Coast of Africa to ascertain the existence of Mount Kenya. Not only did Thompson find the Mountain but he also climbed part of it.

In 1887, with news about the presence of Mount Kenya spreading, explorer Count Samuel Teleki de Szek and Lieutenant Richard von Hohnel attempted a climb but were unfortunately unable to complete the mission because of bad weather conditions. In 1893, geologist John Gregory tried reaching the Mountain but become ill during the climb and was forced to quit. Two attempts were made in 1894 and 1896 to climb the Mountain by George Kolb; he was unsuccessful mainly because of the path he had selected to reach the summit.

In 1899, everything changed in the western history of mountain climbing. Sir Halford Mackinder set a plan to climb the Mountain with a party of around 170 people that included 5 Europeans and the rest, East African locals (porters and guides). Mackinder reached the summit of Batian, the highest point on the Mountain; this accomplishment made Mackinder famous and encouraged other climbers to take up the challenge.

During 1929, Eric Shipton and his colleagues completed many successful climbs of Mount Kenya. These individual were motivated and successful in finding new access paths to the summits. This was the first time that people had some grasp of the Mountain's geology. After World War II, there were 2 women climbers who reached the peaks; these were Ms. C Carol and U. Cameron.

  GHS80 3 Days
Summit Attempt up and down Sirimon
  GHS81 5 Days
Mount Kenya Climb Sirimon - Naromoru
  GHS82 4 Days
Sirimon - Naro Moru Crossover

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