Let's Go Hiking to Rurimeria
The power of manifestation lies within each of us.
Rurimeria is the third highest hill in the Aberdare Ranges. According to UNESCO, the Aberdares is an isolated volcanic range that forms the eastern most wall of the Great Rift Valley to the east of Laikipia plateau. Also referred to as Sattima range, it’s a 160 km (100 mile) long mountain range with an average elevation of 4001 meters (13, 130 ft). It folds through five counties: Nyandarua, Nyeri, Muranga, Kiambu and Laikipia.
A friend invited me to join her as this would have been her last hike before embarking to climb Mt. Kenya. I had been craving a new challenge for some time, but I didn’t have the motivation to look for it. When the invitation came through a phone call, I quickly jumped on the opportunity. The power of manifestation is real.
The meeting point was Karen Country Club and we set off between 5:30 and 6:00 am. The drive took about 3hours from Nairobi until the drop off point in Kinangop where Joel, the tour guide gave us a briefing before beginning the hike. From the foothill, we could see the peak of the mountain where the hike was leading. As we began the walk, Joel advised us to keep our pace while hydrating in small amounts to avoid getting a stitch.
Within the hiking community, Rurimeria is referred to as the beautiful beast. One really has to find the inner motivation to keep going and be your own cheerleader because it’s easy to quit. I had multiple conversations with myself at various points during the hike; why I’m I doing this, should I stop here? Will I fall along the way? How will I get back down after reaching the summit?
There are three false summits which will make you feel like you’re getting closer to the top but more exhausted as you go along. However, all three summits have stunning views! We were advised to take breaks, hydrate, and eat some snacks. In my bag, I pre-packed orange juice, water (of course), two apples, ham sandwiches, honey coated nuts, and chevdah.
I chose to eat at the actual summit which was at 3,860m (12,664ft) above sea level. The hike up the hill was extremely challenging, at some point I found myself crawling to the top. Although the trail is one of the most exhausting in the Aberdare ranges, that’s what makes conquering it so rewarding! I’m proud to say that I was the first in the group to reach the top. The view was simply breathtaking, on a clear day, you can see Mt.Kenya, Satima and Kinangop Hills.
The journey back to the foothill was more difficult than the ascent. If you have any knee problems, you’re advised to be extra careful and pack some knee support if possible. I never knew one would need these while hiking, so I wasn’t prepared for that. Fortunately, Joel was kind enough to hold my hand during the descent which took almost 2 hours.
I love hiking because the challenge of climbing up a hill or mountain forces you to focus on the next step. So many times in our lives, we set high goals but we don't give ourselves grace to take it one step at a time. During this hike, I had to stop looking at the summit and focus on breathing through it; the same can be applied in life, when faced with tough situations, never give up. My hope for 2023 is to develop a monthly hiking routine that will hopefully lead to climbing Mount Kenya.
Hiking Difficulty: Moderate to High
Hours to Summit: 4hours
Descend time: 2hours
Yours in Wellness,
Writer: Loise Machira
Hiking Company: Joel Tour Operations (+254 721 936 078)
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