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Places I have been to – Ruma National Park (Homabay)

Last year December I went for a drive with the family to visit relatives and friend in Nyanza got an opportunity to visit Ruma National Park it’s located at the Lambwe Valley. Legend has it that the Name Ruma came from a wizard Gor Mahia who lived around the park. Having googled about the park I discovered about the Roan Antelope and was curious to find out why they were only found in this park within Kenya.

After initially getting lost plenty of road works were going on at that time it was quite a challenge getting there we finally managed to find the junction leading to the park after a short drive in the country road we made it to the park entrance at around 9am.

Found a helpful group of Rangers who shared animal sightings and suggested areas to find more. The first 30mins there was no animal in sight the vegetation was rather dense I was nearly giving up

I finally got to see my first animal a Rothschild giraffe drinking water from then on it was giraffe after giraffe after giraffe (by know I have a soft spot for Giraffes, Zebras and Lions).

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I met two rangers on patrol who directed me towards the parks Runway where I could see the Roan Antelopes I followed there instructions got myself to the runway. I drove down the runway nothing back up again nothing only a pair of Crowned Cranes soaking in the sun.  As I was head out of the runway I finally saw several Topi’s on my  rear view mirror brakes nini nini reverse chap chap shot a couple of images while doing that a group of Roan Antelopes decided to come out and play whoaaaahh!!!

The Roan Antelope is a beautiful animal tell me this face is not beautiful…

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I tried to move closer but that only seemed to send them into the thicket nearby after the last one had disappeared into the bush we decided to leave the Park was on a mission to drive to Kisii town for lunch and get some rest in Nakuru.

Have an nice week and take care!!!!

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Places I have been to – Kakamega Forest

I took my family on a road trip last December after an overnight stay in Nakuru we set off on to the Nakuru – Eldoret highway without a destination in mind upon reaching the turn off to Nandi we decided to go to Kapsabet just coz we could I guess.

The road was also being worked on so patches of it were bad and others good that’s makes for a fun road trip eh? Made it to Kakamega for lunch and decided to proceed to Kisumu as we drove down Riat Hills the car started making funny noises from the back wheel made a stop in Kondele at had the bearing fixed. At around 5pm decided to go back to Kakamega and find a place to stay overnight after several calls from my Kakamega residents Rondo Retreat was praised enough to raise my curiosity.

The drive from the main road to the retreat is about 10-13kms on a dirt road my only fear was the rain it was already getting dark and we did not know how far the place would be.

We made it at around 7pm the Retreat doesn’t take people after 6pm but since we had called in advance they were kind enough to let us in.

We were assigned a cottage called Isukha which is a cozy family room with nice furniture and fittings. I don’t usually write about food but the food at Rondo deservers a special mention Dinner time the soup and bread (Oh the bread). That bread was finger licking good I have never had bread this soft and sweet I nearly forgot about the main course… (Visit Rondo and have that bread then let me know what you think about it).

Since we reached at night I did not get a chance to see the grounds until the following morning this is one place I wouldnt mind waking up every morning. Birds singing, Fresh Air, breath taking view, the trees ohh the trees, the gardens, the tea growing outside the gates and the BREAD…. I am on again about the Bread….

Unfortunately I did not get enough time to visit the Kakamega Forest but for sure I will be back for a proper visit…

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Enjoy your week and have some bread……

Places I have been to – Volcanoes National Park Rwanda

Rwanda is an amazing place on a recent assignment I had a chance to visit the Volcanoes National Park (which coincidentally has been on my bucket list) for Gorilla Trekking. Nothing prepares you for this trek you just have to show up and experience it and what an experience it was……

Woke up early couldn’t sleep the excitement got the better of me our driver picked us up from our hotel at 5am, we started our drive from the capital city Kigali heading North West towards Musanze final destination being Kinigi. The route is scenic along the way you will understand why its called the Land of a thousand hills. Steep windy roads with insane drops down valleys with rivers at the bottom it was a hair raising experience considering the way our driver was taking those corners.

We made it to Kinigi in one piece headed to the Volcanoes HQ a welcoming cup of tea worked its magic to brighten the chilly misty morning. our team was split into two each team consisting of 8 trekkers to visit different groups of Gorillas within Volcanoes National Park.

The fun started when we were introduced to Francois and Agatha let me digress just a bit Francois is a veteran at the park with over 33 year experience working at Volcanoes National Park he is a walking gorilla encyclopedia where to start…… from the different groups, their dietary habits, their mating habits the list is endless.

 Up and onward to search for our assigned group Agashya up a gentle climb we finally entered the Forest. Now there are forests and then there are Forests I have never seen bamboo this tall visibility is less than 15meters talk of there being buffaloes and Elephants walking these woods doesn’t help matters one bit. Thank the soul that suggested we hire gumboots at the park headquaters the going was not easy the terrain, mud and the insects biting on my exposed neck.

We finally reached the Agashya group as I said nothing prepares you to be this close to the Gorillas we were within touching distance of these gentle giants the rangers kept humming/grunting as we approached the group since this group has been habituated (8 habituated groups in total at Volcanoes National Park if i remember correctly)

See gallery below click to enlarge images

Meet the Francois and Agathat

The Silverback head of the Agashya group

One of the females of the group

One of the groups babies

One of the sub adults

Within no time a hour had gone by that the maximum amount of time you can spend with the gorrila back the same route used and a certificate to confirm I visited the Agashya group

I have to visit this place again in this lifetime…..

Places I have been to – Moto X Jamuhuri Grounds (Nairobi)

On Friday I got a message on our group chat of an invitation to shoot fast bikes Motor X at the Jamuhuri Grounds. I made my way to the grounds at around 1 pm to find the races had already started quickly I made my way track side and began shooting.

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For those that don’t know what Moto X (is Google is your friend) the participants ages range from 5yrs to Older competing in different classes.

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I am one of those guys that like speed but from afar (Having dependents bearing my name has eliminated the need to put my self in harms way if it can be avoided) these bikes move fast at some point they actually fly see below, the skill level of the competitors is amazing makes you wish you could ride. One thing that you cant get used to are the falls moving at those crazy speeds on uneven tracks at some point people will fall broken limbs and other bones i had no idea existed in the human body. Lucky thing no one got any major injuries just minor falls those ones you dust yourself and mount your bike again or for the young ones your Dad probably putting you back on the bike one time. 

Enjoy the images save the date August 30 for the East African Moto X championship to be held at the same grounds

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I think this is the highest number of Images I have uploaded in a while….

Enjoy your week.

 

 

Places I have been to – Lake Nakuru National Park

One day (always cheesy when a story starts this way) while at home my wife casually asked when I would be taking the family for a holiday. Being a guy i gave a monosyllabic response to kill the story and that was the end of it…..

I have a guy who knows a guy that has links and contacts in the hospitality industry a quick phone call and a deal was in place Flamingo Hill Hotel within the Nakuru National Park was to be my residence for 3 days. Having a game plan I asked wifey to pack for a couple of days for the kids and we hit the road 2 hours later we are in Nakuru.

Being a hard head is a bad thing asking for directions does not make you less of a man so i decided to use Google maps ended up in the wrong side outside of the park while Google maps was showing me a road I was on the right path. I finally swallowed some humble pie and finally asked for directions

The hotel was good the staff were helpful especially having small kids they went an extra mile to make our stay comfortable I would recommend to anyone willing to listen…..

Lake Nakuru National Park covers a relatively small area compared to other parks I have visited before. During my stay I managed to go round the park 3 times getting stuck a couple of times when there was some unexpected downpour (My trusty jalopy has not let me down yet) made it out in one piece.

For those that don’t know the water level has risen and some of the routes that had been accessible before have been submerged KWS have made alternative routes the Parks offices have also been claimed by the Lake.

Long story short You have to Visit Lake Nakuru National Park let the images below tell the story

Enjoy your Week..

The Cats

 

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The Birds

 

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The Animals

 

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Places I have been to – Amboseli OneTouch Edition

Disclaimer : I don’t like writing.. I am learning to write… hopefully I will enjoy writing as much as I enjoy taking photos.

I love travel and discovering new frontiers being part of a group of photographers read OneTouch I have had the pleasure of traveling to different parts of Kenya with the intention of showcasing the beauty that is Kenya

On this particular trip our destination was the Amboseli National park one of the parks in my wishlist with 15 persons, two vans and an open road its was the beginning of an amazing/breath taking/awesome/did I say amazing yeah you get the point

I have to visit Amboseli again and again I have a soft spot for Elephants what magnificent creatures they are….. a pity we are letting poachers threaten our National Heritage

Enjoy the images!!

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Swabra watching the sunrise in Amboseli

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First Ellie we saw at Amboseli

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Present and Future generations

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Bulls

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Meet Tim one of the last remaining Ellies with massive tusks in Amboseli

Nairobi National Park

Been a while since the last post been its my intention to write more frequently or at least share images that I have taken during the forced absence.

A lot has happened since my last post I quit my 8 to 5 job (A long story for another day) I have had a chance to visit a couple more National Parks though not enough…, my baby girl turned 1 year (hooray) my boy turned 3 years old, got to trek Gorillas in Rwanda (Separate post for another day) etc etc etc

Today’s post is about Nairobi National Park or NNP one of my favorite hangout places its a quiet escape from the hustling and bustling city of Nairobi the large spaces just seem to call my name whenever i feel like getting away, a quite place to think, reflect and collect your thoughts.

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The abundance of wildlife is the icing of the cake will animals roam freely within the park 4 of the Big 5 can be found within NNP Elephants the only exception It boasts of Elands, Grants and Thompson’s Gazelle, Wildebeest, Zebras, Snakes,jackals, hyenas etcImage

 

For birdwatchers NNP the home of a wide range/variety of bird

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For the next couple of weeks I will attempt to take you on a safari with me at NNP you experience the Wild animals right outside our doorstep

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Enjoy… have a fab week and #VisitNairobiNationalPark

 

Wildlife Photography

The Last three weeks I have been fortunate to visit the Nairobi National Park and the Tsavo West National Park.

I had lots of fun Kenya is blessed with wildlife and we have to protect this animals (Elephants and Rhinos) for the future generation  poaching is on the raise and it will take a concerted effort by the Government and the People to end this vice. Raising awareness is a start and am using this little space here showcasing the beautiful animals.

End of Rant…. Enjoy the photo 

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Nairobi National Park – Antelope

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Tsavo West Jumbo

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Kilaguni Herd

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Tsavo West – Jumbo 1

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Nairobi National Park – Gazelle

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Nairobi National Park – Giraffe

 

bEEn uP aNd aBout

Howdy its been a while since I last posted any thing up in here thought I would change that being another year. So far its been pretty quite have had a chance to shoot more which is a plus on my books.. Its been a good 2 months already I’ve been blessed to visit some parts of this beautiful country of ours and taken up some interesting assignments.

Below are randomly picked images for the couple of months in between since my last post.

Have a cold one!!

Have a cold one!!

The wildlife and fauna with thin this country is simply amazing..

This is Kenya!!!

This is Kenya!!!

Flowers in Kenya

Been to a couple of weddings

I know am pretty!!

I know am pretty!!

Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast

 

more pictures to come in the next post..

 

 

#ShootingKenya #OneTouchLive

There is a group of highly talented and totally awesome photographers and videographers  by the name OneTouch and I’m highly privileged to be a part of this team.

We have this on-going theme and vision of showcasing the beauty of Kenya hence the handle #shootingkenya and #OneTouchLive. These week the plan was to shoot the sunrise from Uhuru Park, the Ngong Wind Farm your guessed it Ngong and Sunset at Lake Magadi.

On the material day I work up at 4:30am was ready to be picked up by @profkatts and @nkatetei.  at 5:15am Optimus was at my gate we made our way to South C to pick up @sirnare @MemyKenya and @Amungathegreat. God must have been listening to our prayers since it was a cloudless morning the moon was still glowing up above.

We were at Uhuru Park at around 6:05 where the OneTouch fam (@Shaydest, @dipwiz, @jaydabliu, @truthslinger, @Nyingez, @SunnylikeNjeri, @stevekitots, @kevjapicha, @mwarv,@skubi and @joemakeni follow them on twitter)had already gathered Cameras, Lens, Phones and Tripods taking aim towards the direction of the sun.

At approximately 6:20am the amber glows of the sun and within no time the sun in all its glory and majesty appeared… You may need a moment or two to take it all in…

Next stop was Ngong Hills at the Ngong Wind Farm it was a bit windy and cold you have to see these monsters up close these machines rotate to follow the wind as they generate clean energy we need more of that I think to save the hole up top Ozone something right..

What transpired after the wind farm has been given a name ‘Chaipati’ which is becoming a tradition of sorts 35 Chapatis and 17 cups of tea the Cook/Chef had to chomoka from the kitchen to see who was eating the chapos faster than he was cooking them..

Another stop at Corner Baridi absorbing the view some photo bombing and lots of banter we proceeded to Olepolos only to fine it closed bummer only for us to discover another joint across the hill called Kitalu a fairly new place. The chaps were passing by to do a bit of work at the site but were kind enough to slaughter the goat below for our indulgence… Indulge we did to a point where we lost track of time.

Magadi being 60km away we had to literally race against time to capture the sunset. It was like an episode of the Amazing race. Upon reaching Magadi there was little time to setup the sun was almost setting and this massive cloud was shielding the sun from us. We had to make do with what was available and had our 10mins before the sun disappeared.

Last words it was a day well spent with great people, lots of laughter, lots of images and lots of learning. Take time to follow the OneTouch team on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and on their individual blogs/sites.