In 1899, Halford Mackinder journeyed to the interior of East Africa, seeking the icy heights of the continent’s second highest mountain – Mount Kenya. He crossed the game-rich plains and saw an Africa that for most people today is a fantasy locked in the yellowed pages of history.
“What a beautiful mountain Kenya is, graceful, not stern, but as it seems to me with a cold feminine beauty. The head of the Teleki Valley with its ruddy cliffs, edged and lined with snow or hail, appears more beautiful in tonight’s sunset than ever before. Suddenly the sun must have sunk below the horizon, for the glow went and the whole scene chilled in a moment to an arctic landscape.”
Halford Mackinder, Geographical Journal, Vol. XV. 1900
Tropical Ice began on Mount Kenya 27 years ago – we took our name from the mountain, and wrote the official guidebook. Join Alex Fiksman on Mount Kenya and experience Africa’s yellowed pages of history, on a 100 year-old safari.
Most great mountains have suffered the invasion of thousands of human feet and their natural beauty has paid the price. We are fortunate that Kilimanjaro has long attracted the crowds, leaving Mount Kenya pristine for the discerning traveler.
In his autobiography, Eric Shipton, the 20th Century’s most accomplished Himalayan explorer, wrote:
“I was enchanted by this lovely mountain (Mount Kenya), and consumed by an aching desire to reach it…sometimes the clouds would drift away from the west to reveal the peaks already golden in the sunset glow, shreds of rose-tinted mist clinging to their sides”
That Untravelled World, 1969.
The most spectacular trekking in Africa exists on Mount Kenya: untrodden valleys and gorges, mountain lakes, prehistoric alpine vegetation, and dense equatorial rain forest rich in mammal life combine to make Mount Kenya Africa’s most important mountain. To reach the highest summit requires considerable technical skills, but we don’t feel this is necessary. The views from Point Lenana are as breathtaking as those from the highest point of the mountain.
Tropical Ice’s six-day trek across the eastern moorlands, and the Nithi Gorge, to the summit of Point Lenana (16,355 feet) takes us through the lower equatorial rain forest, over gently rising moorlands to a world of high tarns and glaciers.