Saturday, March 20, 2010

My first nature walk.

So I went for my first nature walk on Sunday. Apparently going up Mount Kenya is just too much money for one volunteer Muzungu and I'll have to wait until some folks around here want to go with to share the cost... In the meantime I went for a walk to a little mountain, called Kalima in Kimeru and the one we went to is called Kalima Karima. This is a little bluff I've noticed each time I'm on the road to Meru and I was pleased to climb it and get a different perspective. We passed through many farms to get to this Kalima and it is in an area called Thigaa within the Chogoria Location. It was a nice change from riding around in the Land Rover as we followed a well worn path up and down the valleys and across small rivers that the residents use for their daily commute.My guide/friend, Gitonga knows a lot about local plants and which ones are used for various illnesses. This outing was nice but I was a little disappointed by the lack of indigenous plants. In fact the trees on top of Kalima are all Blue Gum trees imported from Australia. Apparently nothing else ever grew there. We hope to venture to other areas where more local vegetation can be found aside from the Mountain and surrounding forest. I asked if there are traditional relationships with the forest here. Apparently outside the medicinal value of certain plants there are no other sacred purposes. Here you'll find pictures of Chogoria from the Kalima, Mount Kenya or at least the base, the road to Meru with quarries on the side, and a nice place to live.

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