North Face Standard Route lies on the NE side of the peak and, gets early morning sun. The climbing is with alternately 5th class and easier climbing. The route starts in a rocky couloir for about 7 pitches, then traverses left into the Amphitheatre, a lower angled section at mid-height. Above this, two pitches lead to the base of Firmin’s tower, normally the crux of the climb. Steeper climbing up cracks and chimneys leads to the top of the tower. A short easy section is followed by one more hard pitch to the juncture with the West Ridge. From here easy climb will lead into Shipton’s Notch and then to the summit. The descent is mostly along the route of ascent, with a few time-saving variations.
8 Day Technical Climbing North Face Standard Route
Day 1: Nairobi – Judmeire Camp (3300m)
After pick up in Nairobi you drive to the Sirimon Park gate (2660m). From the gate, you trek up through magnificent montane forest, bamboo and giant heather zone before reaching the high altitude moorland and to your first hut (Judmeire camp) in time for lunch. Afternoon at leisure giving way for Dinner and overnight at the camp.
This is a gentle trek that takes 3 – 4 hrs gaining an elevation of 680m.
Day 2: Judmeire Camp – Shipton Camp (4236m)
Early morning start through Ontulili River up the spectacular Mackinders valley via Liki North ridge with picnic lunch en-route arriving in Shipton camp in 7 hrs. This camp is a surreal setting below the towering peaks and glacier. The resident population is of Rock Hyrax and sunbirds. Dinner and overnight at the camp.
Day 3: Shipton – Mackinder’s Camp (4200m)
For better acclimatization, you kick off your peak circuit trek stretching 2 days. Today you go anticlockwise, first through Hausberg Col at 4591m, and then pass between Oblong and Hausberg Tarns. Then you climb up to Nanyuki and Two Tarns before descending to Mackinder’s Camp on the South Western side of the peak, at about 4300 meters for dinner and overnight.
Day 4: Mackinder’s Camp – Point Lenana (4985m) – Shipton’s Camp (4236m)
You rise early and continue your trek up to Top Hut (Austrian Hut) 4800m. From this Hut, you make a final short ascent of Point Lenana, 4985m,. Point Lenana is the common trekker’s Mount Kenya ” Summit “. From this summit you then go straight down the Northwest side back to Shipton’s Camp, passing Harris Tarn.
Day 5: Full Day at Shipton’s Camp
(Hiking – about day) On your 5th day, you have the option of either taking a rest day or of climbing a short route on either Point Peter or Point Dutton. In either case, you also prepare for the climb of Batian the following morning.
Day 6: Shipton – Batian (5199m) – Shipton
Ascent of Batian by the North Face Standard Route. Starting in the early morning dark, usually between 4 and 5 am, you may climb the first couple of pitches by headlamp. The route initially follows a wide couloir which you ascend for some 7 pitches, never harder than 5.7. You’ll then descend via the same route hopefully hitting Shipton’s Camp before evening dusk for dinner and overnight.
Day 7: Shipton’ s Camp – Chogoria Bandas
After breakfast, your trek out begins and you hike down by the Scenic Chogoria Route. Your trek out begins with a climb up to Simba Col (where porters once swore they saw a lion, hence the name) then a quick descent to the halls Tarns. From here we follow the backbone of a ridge, overlooking the spectacular Gorges Valley. Losing elevation fast you leave the high moorlands and enter into the forest belt that surrounds Mount Kenya. As you approach the cabins of Meru Mount Kenya Bandas (your destination for the night) you are most likely to spot Cape buffalo, Bush Buck, and tracks of other wild animals. The Bandas are a welcome luxury!. With hot showers, a fine evening log fire, a BED!, without mentioning a cold beer.
Day 8: Bandas Lodge – Chogoria – Nairobi
After breakfast, you hike the first hour or so enjoying the bamboo forest. We often see Elephant tracks, and signs of many other wild animals. Continue further down up to the 10-kilometre mark where you’ll be picked up by a 4 by 4 wheel drive vehicle and continue the drive to Chogoria town and switch to another comfortable vehicle for transfer to your Nairobi.
Included in the price:
– Airport transfers.
– All camping equipment.
– Transfer to and from the base of the mountain.
– Full board accommodation whilst on the trek.
– 3 Meals a day ( special diet vegetarian and halal).
– Accommodations in camps/huts as per the itinerary.
– All park entrance fees to include government taxes.
– Service of an English speaking professional guide, porters and skilled cook.
– Start and finish Nairobi.
– Water -You just need bottled-water only on the first day. The rest of the days we boil or add purifying tablets then filter using MSR water filtering pump before refilling in your water bottles in the morning.
– Rescue fee.
– H.F Radio communication for backup incase or rescue.
Excluded in the price:
– Hiking equipment.
– Soft drinks.
– Accommodation before and after the trek.
– Climbing gears ( we have them for hire).
– International flights.
– Visas to Kenya.
– Items of personal nature.
– Any other extras not detailed in the above itinerary.
– No mosquito net.
NB: Proper equipment is vital to a safe and enjoyable trek.