East Africa Day 3 – Aberdares

The day started at 06:15 with a more sizeable breakfast than the day before; and this time it was included in the price of the tour. By 07:30 we were on our way to the Somak lounge which again was only 15 minutes away in rush hour traffic. At this point it seemed everything was 15 minutes away from the Nairobi Serena Hotel.

African Curios Shop

Along the way from Nairobi to Aberdares we saw a convict chain gang being put to work to dig away at an embankment on the roadside. This was the first time I’d seen something like that, previously I thought it was the territory of American movies, not real life. It was a long drive to Aberdares, but we did have a 25 minute stop just outside Karantina at an African Curios shop. This stop was primarily for stretching your legs but some of the group took the opportunity to buy souvenirs. Before that there had been a stop with an officer carrying a rifle where the driver was questioned about vehicle condition and frequency of travel down that road. Apparently these armed stops are just a survey about widening the road. They obviously take their road planning very seriously. We were back on the road by 10:50, and into the Aberdares Country Club by 12:00. It was quite a winding path to find the rooms, and they were quite basic but sufficient for a one night stay.

Me and some Giraffes

Lunch was served at 12:45 and once again there was no drink included with the meal – so much for all inclusive. I’d have expected to have paid for subsequent drinks, but not the first. Previous trips I’d been on included one drink per meal, so it would have been nice to have been forewarned. The food was quite a reasonable selection and the desserts were even better. Afterwards I went for a quick swim before the 16:00 nature walk. Around the swimming pool there were male and female peacocks wandering around and occasionally drinking from the pool as well.

Common Warthog (Phacochoerus africanus)

The nature walk went quite a distance from the country club, but this was it’s advantage. Although we’d seen warthogs wandering around,that was it in terms of mammals. In going further away we did see a few more birds and we got our first sighting of a large mammal as we saw a herd of zebra. In amongst the zebra were large warthogs, but also a solitary impala. We saw these all run a little – I’m not sure though if this was because they knew we were watching them.

The path eventually led to a large clearing where we could see a few impala in the distance, but more importantly we could get close to giraffes. This was a small family of them which included some young. We spent quite some time photographing these, and got back to the club for just after 18:00.

Plains Zebra (Equus quagga) running away

The evening meal ran from 19:30 to 21:30, and the meal actually did take that long. The first course, was a Thai beef salad, followed by a potato and leek soup. For the main course I chose Moroccan Chicken which came with basic vegetables and two roast potatoes.

For dessert I had an apple tart which obviously contained apple, but also contained raisins and some sort of puff pastry.

One of the nice things about being out in the wild is that you can hear so many different animals calling and you get a better view of the stars in the night sky.

Aberdare Country Club at Night

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