Thursday, 22 August 2013

DAY TWELVE ~ The Long Way Back

The Backpackers was full today, so they could not accommodate us for another night. This left us having to make a decision about where to go today. The forecast for the Mara and the Rift Valley was 4 days of thunderstorms with a day off, then two more days of thunderstorms, so there was no way we were going to attempt them. Meru was an attractive alternative, as it is somewhere we would love to explore and the forecast was pretty good. However, to get there would require driving on a route that also had forecasts of heavy rain for most of the week and with the flooding already on the Thika Highway, we decided it was better to look south, where the weather was forecast to be more suitable. We thought about the self-catering lodge in Kibwezi Forrest and the Rough Guide said it was KES4,000 per night. However, when we called to enquire if it was available, we were told that it was but that the rate for non-residents is USD550 per night! We gave that a miss. We decided to head for the Kiboko Campsite but then changed our minds on the way, figuring that we would be better heading back to Tsavo East for a few nights at the Ndololo Public Campsite, so that is what we did.

Karen driving the Landrover in Tsavo East

By the time we had arrived at the Voi Gate for Tsavo East it was after 4pm, so we only had time for a short game drive before heading to the campsite to pitch our tent. At Kanderi, we were welcomed back to Tsavo East by a large Lion sleeping under a bush. It was quite far into some scrub and not worth photographing but we watched through binoculars for a short while, then headed to the campsite. The new kitchen building is a fantastic addition, allowing peace and quiet to prepare food without the attentions of the aggressive local Baboons. A few years ago, there were no problems with the Baboons here but some time in that time, some people must have stupidly thrown food to the Baboons because they have become a major nuisance; so much so that there is a caretaker employed full-time, who spends most of his day trying to keep the Baboons from destroying the site and attacking visitors.

The water supply to the toilet/shower block on the right keeps being destroyed by Baboons and Elephants.
The building on the left is a new kitchen to let campers prepare food without being attacked by Baboons.

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