Saturday, October 16, 2010

Wed 15th Sept - Day 2 1st Cave (2600m) - Kikelawa cave (3600m)

We left camp about 8am, its such a beautiful day - lots of sunscreen and tshirt only required. Straight away the going got quite steep and rocky, so Vincent had us going 'pole pole' - slowly slowly - the idea is that we are always going at a pace that doesn't put any strain on our breathing.
I'm keeping up much better today - yesterday I was more than happy to be at the back of the group, but today my competitive edge is back and I'm back up front with Ian and Louise
Ian and Louise

Lucas aka Mike

Sarah and Juma (August)
We've left the forest behind and are now walking up through bushy moorland - I have to keep reminding myself I'm in Africa - it looks so like Booze in Yorkshire - I keep expecting to scare up grouse or pheasants at any time! Its so quiet which is lovely, we haven't seen any of the other groups that were at the camp last night, I think we got out ahead of them so we have the place to ourselves which is wonderful.
Another thing I totally didn't expect in the middle of nowhere in the middle of Africa is mobile phone reception! yep - the guides are constantly on their mobile phones - who'd have thought?

Juma - on the phone...again!

After about 3 1/2 hours of solid uphill we get to Kikelawa caves and a big organised area (is this really Africa?? could be any campsite in Australia it so well set up!) with proper toilet huts (very impressed..) where we have lunch - today we get a hot lunch and the wonderful Nesto has cooked me fried fish and a big plate of hot chips! the others get noodle soup...I think I've got the best end of the deal here!

Lunch Kikelawa caves
By the time we arrived at lunch, my heels were a bit sore - this is the 1st real test of my boots so I'm going to have to be on to any slight rubbing or blisters. I have a look at my heels and there is some redness - no blisters yet thank goodness. I've been wearing 2 layers of socks - a thin liner pair and thick pair, so I'll take off the thick pair and see how I go this afternoon with just the thinner pair.

After lunch the trail starts of flatten out - it looks like we've done most of the uphill in the morning, now we're sort of going sideways round the flanks of Kili, which is a bit of a relief as its much easier on my heels. I think I'm going to get away without any blisters.
As the afternoon wears on the weather gradually starts to close in - the cloud rises from the plains below and by about 2 its blocked out the sun and we're walking in drifiting mist - its quite eerie and again so like Yorkshire, I didn't expect that at all.
By about 3:30, I'm really starting to get tired and am feeling a bit over the whole walking thing - so I'm very glad when the camp comes into sight
Camp 2

It looks like our porters have got here 1st and bagged the best spots - yay! I head straight to my tent - time for a quick nap before tea and popcorn! :-)

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