It was 126 kms from Lava Rock camp to Marsabit. That was Sunday a week ago and Andy still talks about the ride that day. Sounds like he had a sense of humour failure on the way up the mountain to Marsabit and the Chicho Guest house. The main picture is of Mount Marsabit from the guest house.
But he made it and a couple of hours later sent me a message to say ‘just had a hot shower and am back and cheerful’.
One of the Trip Advisor reviews of Chicho’s says it all. The hotel is in a great location in town and has everything you need — a comfortable bed, hot water, good internet, breakfast, and very helpful staff! If I’m ever in Marsabit again, I’ll be back!
I don’t think a rest day in Marsabit offered many interesting distractions and I don’t remember Andy saying anything about wanting to go back…at least not on a bicycle!
From Marsabit there were two bush camps and 3 days of riding to Nanyuki. More hills! This time it got them out of the Rift Valley into a greener and more pleasant land just 200 kms north of Nairobi.
There was also the distraction of crossing the equator with a party to celebrate. It was fun…a fancy dress gender swapping party. Andy had bought a skirt… Perhaps mercifully, he also broke his phone this week and has had no way of taking photos. The mind nevertheless boggles…
Nanyuki to Sagana was easy enough. Here is Andy’s description of their accommodations.
I’m sitting in a camp site, about 110 km from Nairobi, fairly pretty, fairly old, fairly yesterday! My “room” is a dorm with three double bucks and a single bed (for the leader?) hot water taps in color only (that means there is none) the dorm floor is well short of a real sweep and scrub. Oh well, it’s for one night only, and one less tent erection and repackaging. And all this for only 8 USD! I’m a lucky man.
He’s clearly recovered his sense of humour.
The road into Nairobi sounded scary: narrow, no shoulder, rough, lots of traffic, big trucks. If you lose your concentration you could fall off the edge…as one rider did. However, Andy said he was feeling great, strong, healthy, and definitely fitter.
The reward in Nairobi, as least for those who avoid camping when they can, was the Southern Sun Mayfair Hotel. I stayed there some years ago. It’s a older hotel, comfortable, big gardens, colonial feel…definitely a place to recover in after a tough…I was about to say five days. But they arrived in Nairobi on day 58 and for the life of me I can’t think of more than a few days of this trip that have been anything other than an exercise in survival.
Today, Sunday, is a rest day before two days riding and the border crossing into Tanzania to reach Arusha. This is the official half way point and a 4 day rest. It should also mark the start of some easier riding. The mountains are largely to the north. Tanzania, Zambia and Botswana are relatively flat and relatively greener too.
I fly out tomorrow night to meet Andy in Arusha. My suitcase is packed; waterbottles, gloves, 8 tyre tubes, more shorts and T shirts, more USD, and new shoes. (If they don’t fit I’ll bring them home with me.)
We have a night in Arusha and then, with two of his friends, we’re going up to Ngorongoro Crater for 2 nights. It’s going to be wonderful.