Have you been hiking at Ngare Ndare Forest in the North Rift?
Ngare Ndare is a lush indigenous forest at the foothills of Mt. Kenya which is a vital corridor that links the Famous Lewa Wildlife Conservancy to Mt. Kenya which elephants have been using for ages. The forest is home to a variety of wildlife and birds. It is the only indigenous forest in Kenya with an expanding canopy walk, and some of the ancient African Olive and Red Cedar trees within it that are thought to be around 200 years old. All the big 5 live here and are frequently seen as they make their way from Lewa Wildlife Conservancy towards the Mount Kenya forest.
The drive from Nairobi is around 3-4 hours. You can stay in Laikipia, Nyeri or Nanyuki over night to enjoy more time in the forest.
Kenya is one of the 7 African countries which lie on both sides of the equator. The equator line practically cuts through Nanyuki in Laikipia County. You should stop and try the equator marker experiment and understand the Coriolis effect. Ngare Ndare Forest is like an hour’s drive away.
When you reach the forest you are given a tour guide/armed ranger for your visit. The armed ranger will brief you about the place and all the safety precautions to be taken and then start your walk to see the waterfalls. The Ngare Ndare waterfalls are about 3.5km from your start point but they can be accessible by a 4 by 4 wheel drive car at a nearer distance.
The hike takes you through the forest and through some rocks and a small river before you finally come to the waterfalls. You can swim there and enjoy yourselves. On the way back you will visit the canopy walk. It takes around 1 hour.
The canopy walk is 40 feet high and it extends to about 450 metres long. If you are lucky enough you can be able to spot elephants and buffaloes at the river drinking water or just passing by. There are a number of beautiful birds too that can be spotted from the canopy walk. At the end of the canopy walk there is a small wild swing where you can sit and rest for a while before you head back.