Kenya 2012 - Mount Kenya Expedition and African Wildlife

Mount Kenya was the main target in our 5 weeks trip to Kenya this year. After the Rwenzoris, the Bale Mountains and the Simiens Mt. Kenya completed my coverage of the high mountains of Africa and for trekking it is without doubt my favourite choice. Great landscape, big walls, lovely vegetation and much more predictable weather than in the Rwenzoris!

To make the trip more complete we added the more important national parks and reserves in Kenya to do some african wildlife. After a long time it was the first wildlife shooting I did and I enjoyed it more than I expected!

Check out the pics to get an impression.


Mount Kenya

Mount Kenya is located right in the center of Kenya, and the highest peaks are only a bit lower than the much more famous Mt. Kilimanjaro. The landscape can be compared to the high mountains in the eastern alps added with the typical bizarre east african high altitude vegetation.

We spent there 15 days walking in using the Chogoria route, circeled the main peaks and walked out using the Sirimon route. Mount Kenya is right at the equator but at altitudes above 4000m it freezes daily and snow is common. But enough talking, now the pictures!

Most people will know, that I am fascinated by the high altitude vegetation of East Africa. Giant Groundsel, Giant Lobelias, Tree Heather and so on. This bizarre and unique ecosystem never gets boring and adds a strange touch to the alpine landscape.

Most of the time we stayed in our tent. As I wanted to stay as close as possible to my photo locations, the huts where not really an alternative. We have been lucky with the weather and stayed dry most of the time. Only the strong winds where the grain of salt. The strong winds made sometimes photography of the vegetation very complicated and the chill factor added some degrees to the already icy temperatures during sunrise and sunset. The first km could be done by 4x4 all the rest was hiking. Our expedition staff (guide, cook, porters) where very helpfull and the cooking was really good.

Mount Kenya was definitly one of my best trips in Africa, not only for professional photography, but alos for trekking. Highly recommended!!

Wildlife and Landscape in the Kenyian National Parks

We visited some of the more famous Reserves and national Parks like Maasai Mara, Amboseli, Tsavo, but also smaller Parks and private Game Reserves, to name them: Lewa, Solio, Aberdares, Hell's Gate, Lake Naivasha.

We had quite a lot of rain during the wildlife shooting. Most amazing where the thunderstorms rolling in from Lake Victoria into the Mara, but I also will never forget the storms in Amboseli. The cloudscapes sometimes with wildlife in front where amazing.

Due to my heavy equipment and all the mountaineering stuff, flying in Kenya was no option. We opted for a driver with a sturdy 4x4, which is definitly necessary.

some statistics for the photographers among us

I add some statistics and information regarding photography.

For landscape and some wildlife I used the Pentax 645D. It performed really well and took the harsh climate on Mt. Kenya without any flaws. The wildlife shoots where done with my trusted Canon 1Ds III. Not the latest model but performing still very well.

10200 files adding up to 440GB of disc space. App. 4000 files have been shot with the Pentax 645D, 6000 files with the Canon.

Many thanks to Pentax Germany, which supplied me with a working FA 35mm after lots of trouble with Pentax Benelux. Now Pentax listen! Thanks as well to Canon CPS which supplied me (without any hesitation!!) with a loan EF 600mm lens, as they could not get the necessary spare parts for my own lens in time. This I call good service (Pentax listen again)


last but not least I want to thank some of the people, which helped us to manage everything (in order of appearance) and make all the pictures possible:

  • Abby, James and Daniel from Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

  • all our team from Mt. Kenya, especially William and Wilson (all from Mt. Kenya Guides and Porters)

  • Petra and her team from Sandai Homestay

  • Sonja, Clare and Julius from Enchanting Africa

It was a great trip and I hope you all liked to browse through the pictures