Rock-climbing Class at Tumaren

What an amazingly great rock climbing class we had over the course of the past three days. Taught by the superb rock guides extraordinaire, Julian Wright and Tom Gregory from African Ascents. The class was focused on top roping instruction for our guides and assistant guides. By pioneering new roots Julian and Tom got the team to guide the rest of us like we were guests up and down rock after rock. Lots of great fun and lots of great laughs.

africanascentsclimbing africanascentsclimbingclass climbingclass karisiarockclimbing

African Ascents
African Ascents
African Ascents Class
African Ascents Class
This entry was posted in Tourism and tagged on by .

Karisia Awarded ‘Best Walking Safari in Africa’ by The Safari Awards

We have just learned that we have won Best Walking Safari in Africa from the Safari Awards.

Best Walking Safari in Africa 2017
Best Walking Safari in Africa 2017

It has always been a great privilege to receive recognition for our safaris but to be honoured with Best Walking Safari in Africa is a distinction we could only ever dream of. We are a small and humble company but it is a great feeling to know that our ethos of providing authentic, old fashioned adventure has paid off. All of our staff from our head guides to the rangers that patrol our conservation are over the moon to know that they have been part of this success. Thank you Safari Awards for this opportunity.

Karisia Walking Safaris
Karisia Walking Safaris
This entry was posted in Tourism and tagged , , on by .

Mt Kenya Walking Safari

Just back from a great trip up (and down) Mt Kenya.  With 5 rugged Londoners we embarked on our trip as ominous clouds built about the peaks.

Our route was up the Chogoria route and down the Naro Moro.  The weather fortunately stayed perfectly good and we had a super trip, everyone making it to Lanana in one piece.

Here are some pics:

Mt Kenya. Descending to Michaelson.
Mt Kenya. Descending to Michaelson.
Mt Kenya. Michaelson Camp
Mt Kenya. Michaelson Camp.
Lake Michaelson Groudsels
Lake Michaelson Groudsels
Lake Michaelson
Lake Michaelson
Climbing up from Michaelson. Mt Kenya
Climbing up from Michaelson. Mt Kenya
Climbing Mt Kenya
Climbing Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya Trekking
Mt Kenya Trekking
Mt Kenya Safari
Mt Kenya Safari
Lobelia
Lobelia
Mt Kenya Climb
Mt Kenya Climb
Mt Kenya Walking Safari
Mt Kenya Walking Safari
Mt Kenya Trek
Mt Kenya Trek
Simba Col
Simba Col
Simba Col Climb
Simba Col Climb
Enjoying the view
Enjoying the view
Up High on Mt Kenya
Up High on Mt Kenya
View from Lanana
View from Lanana
Looking at Batian
Looking at Batian
Up Lanana
Up Lanana

Lanana Peak

 

Nelion, Mt Kenya
Nelion, Mt Kenya
Austrian Hut
Austrian Hut
Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya
Mt Kenya Descent
Mt Kenya Descent
Mt. Kenya
Mt. Kenya
This entry was posted in Tourism and tagged , , , on by .

Manda Bay and the Kenyan North Coast

Where do Kenyan’s go for a holiday? We’re asked all the time.  While many international travellers have in recent years been too spooked by Kenya’s north coast, many Kenyans are returning to enjoy their vacations in their favourite haunts like we just did at Manda Bay.

Manda is mind-bogglingly good. The food, the views, the bar banter, the Colicoli fishing – It is what makes a coast vacation into an epic coast vacation.

How great it was to be back around Lamu.  I was reminded of when I first visited the busy little town in the 1970s with my parents.  With all the playboys, marginal royals and thong-wearing socialites staying away, the place has a serenity it had back in the old days. The locals we met were thrilled to see more tourists starting to return and we felt welcome in that great way we always did before.

The point of this note: Go check out Lamu again. Now!

Rufous and Bronzey Trevalley (Colicoli)
Rufous and Bronzey Trevalley (Colicoli)
Dhow off Pate Island, Kenya
Dhow off Pate Island, Kenya
Manda Bay
Manda Bay
Chilling on Wiilliam/Tanya's Dhow
Chilling on Wiilliam/Tanya’s Dhow
Dhow Jumping
Dhow Jumping
Fin-nor No. 4
Fin-nor No. 4
Soli
Soli
Me and Colicoli
Me and Colicoli
No stress here
No stress here
Sundowners on Dhow
Sundowners on Dhow
Dhow Time
Dhow Time
Cruising to Pate
Cruising to Pate
This entry was posted in Tourism on by .

Google Map: How to get to Tumaren / Karisia Walking Safaris

This is a map designed to show guests how easy it is to get to Tumaren and Karisia Walking Safaris. Click the button to the left of the Map Title. A key will slide over. Click down the list starting from the top.  The first layer goes through some likely forms of transport and timing as well as some Nairobi hotel ideas.  I also marked the Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage because it is such a great Nairobi stop for when you arrive or when you depart.

Also you might want to see this map for more Scheduled flights to the coast and other destinations:

http://www.karisia.com/about-karisia/karisia-blog/google-map-of-kenyan-scheduled-flights/

[xyz-ihs snippet=”Google-Map-How-to-get-to-Tumaren-Karisia-Walking-Safaris”]

This entry was posted in Tourism on by .

Google Map of Kenyan Scheduled Flights

I made the following map to allow visitors to Kenya to get a feel for where some of the tourism-relevant scheduled flights will get them. In the map you will see the big operators in Kenya as well as their destinations. Note that you can see the different routes and airlines by hitting the button to the left of the Map’s title.

I hope that this can help the planning of your trip to Kenya. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

[xyz-ihs snippet=”Google-Scheduled-Flights”]

This entry was posted in Tourism and tagged , , , on by .

Elephants and Walking Safaris

 

Greetings from Tumaren. Outside the office, as I type, a small herd of Elephants are breaking Acacia branches to get at the tasty bark. They are part of the second largest population of Elephants in Kenya and they are a welcome distraction from the accounts.

Elephants in fact are one of my favorite aspects of life in Laikipia and specifically of the walks I guide. On Tumaren, our conservation area, we often have several herds around and observing these animals is typically the highlight of my walks. Elephants, as most guests already know, are complex and intelligent animals and observing them on safari can be a life affirming pleasure.

It shouldn’t be surprising that I think the best way to Elephant-watch is on foot, but it is. On foot we make our appoach always considering the wind direction. We are silent and slow and the animals are oblivious to our presence. Their behavior then is naturual and unrehearsed (even the tame animals in the game park behave differently when they are concious of a nearby vehicle or human smell).

Another life affirming aspect of walking with Elephants is the understanding of exactly where our species ranks in the wild. The African Elephant is the largest terrestrial species of animal on Earth. When you walk beside them you appreciate that fact. You feel small and it is humbling to realize how humans evolved beside such monstrous gentle giants.

The relationship, of course, has been a rocky one, especially in recent years. But all of our guests pay conservation fees that help safeguard our Eles among all the other fauna and flora and we are hugely thankful for that. Here are a few of our elephant achievements that we are quite proud of:

  • Elephants Mums are now so comfortable that they regularly give birth on Tumaren. This is now a common occurence but it never happened when we first purchased the property
  • We have rescued one orphan named Tumaren who was sent to the Sheldrick orphanage and is now part of their orphan herd at Ithumba
  • We no longer have snares in our area. The last snare we removed was many years ago
  • Through diligent patrols, our area is now no longer a safe place for poachers to operate in
  • Each year we guide a 100 mile walk to raise money for Elephant conservation efforts in Kenya

Anyway, all our trumpeting best to you and your family.

James Christian and the Elephants

Karisia Elephants
Walking with Elephants
Elephants in Laikipia

 Karisia Walking Safaris

This entry was posted in Conservation, Tourism and tagged , , , , , , on by .

The right Photographic Gear for Safari

One of the difficulties of planning your camera gear for safari is there too much to choose from. The fact that the small airplanes you might board will restrict your weight exacerbates the difficulty in choosing just the right gear.

Wilddog on Tumaren

My advice: Keep it simple. This is what I bring on our safaris.

1. A camera body that can easily:

switch to point metering
increase or decrease the ISO quickly (mine goes up to 6400)
switch to shutter or aperture priority fast
switch to manual focus

take an extra memory card (for god’s sake don’t get in a situation of having to delete images to take new ones)
take an extra battery or two – this is key, really key.

2. A Telephoto Zoom lens:

mine is a Nikon 80mm-400mm F4.5-5.6 It is not the fastest lens in the world but I can crank the ISO up on my camera so easily that I rarely have a problem with shake.

avoid bringing a huge telephoto lens unless you have a particular image in mind or you are a professional with plenty of time (most safari goers are only out for several weeks). 9 times out of 10 your better off with a telephoto zoom that can get you into the action quickly but is also easy to wield. I have seen on many occasions, visitors on safari with a 600mm lens fussing and asking the driver to back away from the animal because the vehicle is too close to the subject. This is crazy – the object of wildlife photography is not to just take the animals pupil but to tell a bit more of the story. With a zoom you can compose an image easily and if there is a high speed chase you can start wide and zoom to find the subject. Try following a cheetah making a kill with a 600mm lens – impossible unless you are very practised and you have an excellent tripod.

3. A Wide-angle Zoom

Good for landscapes, people and telling stories. Choose a zoom that has a good close focus.

3. Get a camerabag that is easy to use. I prefer the lowepro Sport 200 for walking or while I’m guiding in the car and there isn’t much extra room for my own equipment. For Car based trips I use one of the larger Lowe bags.

LowePro Sport 200
LowePro Sport 200

Something else that I like about this bag is that to its easy to take my camera out of it or to return it with out much fuss.

 Karisia Walking Safaris

This entry was posted in Tourism and tagged , , , , , on by .