By Maya Pabari, Age 13 (Braeburn Gitanga)
Driving to the slopes of Mount Kenya, the excitement and adrenalin exploded in my head. I had always wanted to climb the mountain, and now I was standing at the start: Sirimon Gate. After a brief, and organising our kit, we started the 3 hour hike to the first camp. Starting slowly, we had to acclimatise to the altitude, while walking up a road surrounded by beautiful, towering trees. Just when we started getting tired, we reached Old Moses. Welcomed with hot chocolate and popcorn, we were so happy and eager for the next day to arrive.
Starting off at eight in the morning we walked through the magnificent landscapes. Seeing the snow on the peaks nearby encouraged us to keep going. After a long ascent we reached a breath-taking viewpoint and had lunch and a bit later we started coming down. Shortly after, we reached a river to fill our water bottles and carried on. Around 4 hours of ups and downs, we arrived at the second camp; Shiptons. The night at Shiptons was incredibly cold but the peaks that were right on top of us, made us happy to have come.
This was the start of our attempt to make it to the summit. Walking up was very hard and it was very steep but the breaks in-between helped a lot. Finally, we had reached the lake which was clear and crystal blue. We were above the clouds – I felt so accomplished. The peak, Lenana, was right in front of us; with snow around it. It was so beautiful. After a long lunch, we started our descent. The path was really steep and slippery so we were sliding down on our bottoms. It was a lot of fun! At night, we celebrated with popcorn and cookies. This was an amazing experience!
Waking up to an early start, we were walking down by 8 in the morning. We saw many Giant Lobelias and other fascinating plants. It was mostly downhill, but there were a few uphills as well. The longest uphill was up to the viewpoint. We had already gone through this path but still, every turn was new to us. Singing and telling stories, we carried on for 5 hours when we arrived at old Moses. We were going home the next day.
Ready to go home and tell our parents, we were so excited! When walking down the road we were almost running. The downhill was steep and there were no up hills. When we arrived back at Sirimon gate, we were welcomed and congratulated with pizza while sorting out our bags. The buses had started, and we drove back to Nairobi with Mount Kenya always next to us…