Sunday, December 31, 2006

Mount of the Buffalos

The hike up Kilima Mbogo was long, but not too steep. We started hiking at mid-day so the sun was quite intense. Kilima Mbogo is home to many antelopes, baboons, and other creatures, but is known primarily for the many buffalos that gather on its slopes. Hikers are required to travel with an armed escort for protection from the beasts as well as from potential bandits. Our guard was named Benjamin and he hiked the whole day carrying his gun without a single drop of water. Half way up the mountain we came across the tombstone of Sir William MacMillan, a wealthy settler and close friend of Teddy Roosevelt. William’s dying wish was to be buried at the top of Kilima Mbogo, but since he was a rather large man (400 lbs), his servants could only take him half way. We were the only hikers to go up Kilima Mbogo the day we went, and it was very calm and peaceful at the top. We saw lots of birds, heard a few animals rummaging around in the bush, and enjoyed spectacular views of the Athi River and surrounding farms and forests.

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