Stage 39: Nanyuki to Sagana
Super breakfast this morning, doubtless due in part to all those eggs brought in yesterday from the scavenger hunt. Scrambled eggs and bacon (a tour first!) plus loads of fruit, yoghurt, and our standby, porridge. I sampled all.
Once out of our great campsite at the Sportsman’s Arms, we’re straight into Nanyuki, a bustling city in the throes of morning rush hour. However, No question that the big highlight of the day was crossing the equator, just on the southern limits of Nanyuki. Photo Op of course!
Once truly out of Nanyuki, the route mostly a gentle downhill for much of the day. Great open views across a valley to the Aberdare Range in the west, which forms the easternmost wall of the East African Rift Valley. The Aberdares look beautiful in the morning light. The higher elevations approach 4,000 metres and the range reportedly contains prolific game; I’d love to be able to thoroughly explore this region, but not on this trip. Perhaps another year.
Further descending gets me to the lunch stop about 9:30 ... hardly hungry after that massive breakfast. Already, it’s noticeably warmer with the loss of elevation as well as the rising sun. I know that I’ve a couple of hundred metres to climb before the final descents of the day, so don’t dawdle. Traffic on this two-lane arterial has now increased significantly, and the road doesn’t have much if any shoulder. Actually had difficulty even in reaching for the water bottles, as it took all my focus to ride this stretch.
Passed the Nueryi/kiganjo Commonwealth War Cemetery which contains remains of WWII dead; I should have stopped and regret that I didn’t take the time.
Eventually reach the dirt turn off to the day’s camp, south of Sagano; a couple of kilometres down a twisting dirt lane and I arrive at this oasis on the Tana River: Savage Wilderness Whitewater Rafting. Beautiful lawns for camping, chalets to rent, bar and two swimming pools. Jim has already scored a chalet for the night with multiple beds; I’m in there with him, as is Alice.
A quiet afternoon for me; about 8 of the group go whitewater rafting and return a few hours later buzzing. It exceeded most if not all expectations. A massive thunderstorm threatens the camp about 5:00-5:30 but misses us; the temperatures, however, drop noticeably which is a relief to all.
Chelsea and co. prepare a fabulous dinner ... barbecued pork loin. Plenty of food for seconds! Michiel and I had already arranged ice cream cups for everyone as a surprise treat, so that tops everything off really nicely. Great idea, Michiel!
Also been thinking about the past week’s campsites; we’ve had some great ones since entering Kenya:
Friday - Moyale at the Kenya Wildlife Service site.
Saturday - Turbi ... bush camp beside the road, ~3 km south of town. OK, not great.
Sunday & Monday - Marsabit at the Catholic Pastoral Centre.
Tuesday - Laisamis ... ok, just a bush camp at periphery of soccer field.
Wednesday - Isiolo at the Rangeland Hotel; very nice.
Thursday - Nanyuki at the Sportsman’s Arms Hotel, even nicer.
Friday - Sagana at Savage Wilderness Whitewater Rafting Centre (~8 km south of Sagana); over the top nice!
We’re getting spoilt!
Tomorrow will be a bus day to get us into Nairobi. Then a rest day on Sunday before pushing on to Tanzania. Whoo-hoo!