Leaving the last school camp and ending the walk – 14km
Day 4: Kidia to Mbahe Village July 9
This section is the most open of our trek, as we encounter several superb viewpoints down over Moshi, and also up toward the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, which emerges as we approach Mbahe Village and Simon Mtuy’s family farm. Despite the longer distance walked, the trails are gentler and you have time to savor your last day in your mountain paradise. The Mtuy farm consists of 15 acres of land on which Simon Mtuy’s ancestors raised cattle and today is used as a small ecologically sustainable farm with eight semi-detached guest rooms.
I’m staying here tonight then headed to join the OAT crew tomorrow…. where I should be able to access the world…. or at least the internet via wifi or phone.
And now for Reality:
Out the village, down the road. In my mind I am hearing “over hill, over dale , I have hit the slippery trail “.
Today my guide says this is an easy walk. What may be easy for 34 is not so for someone several decades older. We increase the altitude as we go. Gradual slopes are not that bad; steep is another matter. But the country side is beautiful as we greet children on their way to school, parents working in the fields and travelers along the road.
Leaving the village road we strike off cross country. He says no worry, only about 4-5 valleys to cross. I count. It is more like 6-7 depending on whether you believe that a full scramble up is required prior to the next slide down. There is either a stream or small river at the base of each valley. All but one can be forded by balancing on the rocks. The other is wade worthy. The water is icy cold as it is glacier run off from Kilimanjaro.
None of the birds came close enough to make it worth taking out the camera. Sunbirds, weavers, and ravens, abounded. But the highlight were the blue monkeys.Since I didn’t have more than a 24-105 lens, it is not like you can see them extremely well….
Arriving at Mhabe Farm about 1500 it was a total of seven hours and ~16 km given that we took a couple of longer but easier routes.