Sunday, December 9, 2007

Can we save the beautiful pink Lake part 2

Nakuru was once renown as the cleanest town in Kenya, Though it may still claim this glory, its no longer the beautiful town I used to visit when I was young. Africa is becoming dirtier by the minute, negligence through sheer ignorance and blissful happy we go attitudes will be our woe quite soon. Not forgetting the global warming menace... We wake up to a beautiful Sunday morning. God lives on though we humans feign ignorance as to this fact.

Driving to lake Nakuru National Park from the town is a 5 minute affair. Service from the Kenya wildlife Service wardens at the gate is a bliss, we are now at the last frontier where the rare white rhino can be found.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Lake Nakuru National Park Excursion

Will we save our beautiful pink Lake?. Part 1

It’s been a whimsical weekend; I wake up on a glorious Saturday. I’ve the weekend off from a hectic schedule beating deadlines in the office. I feel I need a change of environment from the hectic pace that’s Nairobi city. What to do with myself?

I’ve been intending to tour Lake Nakuru National Park for a while now but my schedule has been too tight. Why not today for a day trip to the beautiful pink Lake? I hate traveling alone so I call my buddy Mwangi. Three missed calls later my boy pick up. He’s game.

Its 9.00 A.M. we drive off for Nairobi aiming to pick a digital camara to take wildlife photos while we are in Nakuru. Branching off onto Thika Road we slow down as traffic thickens. Typical of Nairobi; on a Saturday morning? Mwangi decides to branch off and join Juja road confident of beating traffic, two hours later, after a fitful slumber, I awaken to find we’ve crawled about a kilometer towards Nairobi, this road is even worse. One of this fine days Nairobi is going to halt into a grid lock, I remark. It already has, he retorts.

An hour later, we drop by my office to pick the camera. It’s already closed and my workmate have left for the day. We set off for Nakuru after lunch disappointed we won’t snap some photos but I assure Mwangi my Nokia will not let us down. One look at his face tell me he is not convinced but what to do?

We drive off for Nakuru in high spirits. This cannot be a day trip, we declare, from experience we know we cannot get to Nakuru, have any meaningful game drives and drive back to Nairobi. We have to spend the night in Nakuru. Mwangi is pleased. This means a blissful drive to view point, where one can see the awesome sheer drop that is the Great Rift Valley, a beautiful view of Mount Longonot and Lake Naivasha as you approach Naivasha town.

A pleasant surprise awaits us. The Nairobi – Nakuru from Lord Delamere’s Ranch after Naivasha Town has been commissioned. Its goodbye to pot holes. We cannot hide our glee. We only encounter a single 30 kilometer stretch diversion to Nakuru Town where road repairs are under way. Never the less, at least we are making some progress repairing our shattered infrastructure. Why can’t the road from Narok to Maasai Mara be constructed to resemble what we just left, Mwangi quips, or the Namanga…. I do not let him finish. Any mention of the Amboseli road from Namanga drives me crazy. I am not ready to listen to the woes that have befallen the access road to my beloved home to Africa’s greatest concentration of elephants; the Amboseli National Park. We get to Nakuru town at dusk. After securing our favorite accommodation we plan our moves for tomorrow when we drive to the world’s greatest concentration of flamingoes, the pink lake…

Monday, November 12, 2007

Wildebeest Migration Safari Maasai Mara

African wildlife

By explorerk.

Africa is changing at a quick pace and human encroachment into the wildlife reserves has continued to erase the traditional routes. In association with development and changes of the way of life, the image of wildlife roaming free is slowly getting erased. Fortunately, Masai Mara National reserve holds on to its charisma of an open, limitless land. It is one of the places in Africa that still prides in wildlife concentration.

Masai Mara is located in the South-western of Kenya, 290 kilometers from Nairobi. The abundance of wildlife and the remoteness of the reserve implants memories that no money can buy.

The Migration is a recent phenomenon (60’s and 70’s was the biggest boom) with about 250,000 individuals. Gradually, with time the number has risen to the current population of over 3,000,000 individuals. Add to it an estimated 1,500,000 Zebras and the result is one of the most magnificent scenes in the world. The massive display attracts hundreds of big cats as the populations provide abundant prey. The giant African crocodiles lie in wait, patiently, as the big herds come to cross the river or to drink.

It is the masai community who are not so pleased with the whole phenomenon. The wildebeests compete with their huge herds of boran cattle for the grasslands. To them, it is a big calamity especially because the wildebeests transmit diseases to their herds and poison the waters with their fetal sacs.

This world famous migration is a circle of life which, in simple terms, means that there isn’t a start or an end. Only where the herds are located at a particular time. The big determinant is the availability of pastures. The plains of Ngorongoro Conservation Area in Serengeti are a favored spot as grass abounds and the wildebeest find a safe place to graze. It is also here that over 500,000 new calves are born and many are taken by the nearby waiting Jackals or Hyenas.

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