I always used to hear of hell’s gate and it’s amazing view, but I had never been there until 17th February 2018.
I had always tried several times to visit this amazing place situated in Naivasha, around 2 hours comfortable drive from Nairobi but had never succeeded. Everyone I suggested for the visit had an excuse. Ohhhh the word reads ‘Hell’, can’t go there, oooh I have plans for this weekend…
I shared my travel passion with a friend named Joe, and that’s the first time I heard of a team called The TREK, (fancy simple name huh!). A well coordinated, young and energetic of like minded individuals who happens to have plans for every 3rd weekend of the month. That’s what Joe said. As much as I was yet to meet anyone from team other than Joe, in my heart I knew ‘YES’ this is where I belong.
The first upcoming event for that month (February) was a trek in hell’s gate and swimming afterwards in the Ol Karia Geothermal spa (if you’re yet to do these activities, what are you Waiting for?). I requested Joe to connect me to the team, which of course he did. That’s why I’m writing this. The biggest obstacle at that time was, Joe was not able to make to the event (you know, I have plans for this weekend) and I had to face and share a fun day with strangers (You will relate to this if you know ‘the fear of unknown’).
I invited my high school friend Dayax, and pretended to know everyone in the team, till the D-day, when we boarded our uber Taxi. That is when I confessed to Dayax, that I knew no one in the team. lol. But I still had this strong belief that it will be a great Saturday like no other.
We arrived at the meeting point (tuskys Kenyatta Avenue seemed like a good meeting spot in town) just in time and we were the second lot to arrive. The first few individuals to arrive were soo positive and I could already feel positive vibes in the team, to add onto that the First Lady who arrived gave us a welcoming and ‘sisterly’ hug and I knew my belonging here was just 100%. The whole team arrived and we introduced each other and journey began.
We had a van that was enough for the team with a rooftop. On the road we enjoyed the great view of rift valley escapement, and we arrived at hell’s gate at the intended time. There was a photo session on the gate and our awesome and lovely organizers (Rose and Kris) made our clearance and we proceeded to the hiking section. Along the way there was a rock climbing section, and ‘semi-wild’ animals (you know, those that somehow used to humans) like zebra, buffalo, antelope among others. Don’t ask me if we took pictures there, you know we did.
We finally arrived at the start of the hiking area, we parked our van and we hit the road, it was more of a rock climbing than a normal walk. My view was amazing, can’t speak for the others and the walk was a challenging one. What makes a place or an activity more fun is when you are uncertain of what to expect. The anxiety. I was new to hell’s gate and I had never done such kind of a hike. So for me the feeling was over the moon. if there is such a thing.
We did the whole walk plus the rock climbing till the final wall. The place is called the devil’s bedroom but we renamed it the devil’s bedsitter due to its size. Open kitchen stuff, huh! We had our photo session and we hit back but with a different route. From hell’s gate we headed to geothermal spa.
Along the way, the positive vibe was still high despite being tired from the hike. We arrived at geothermal spa at around 3pm and that is where we had planned for our lunch. Our usual great organizers did our clearance and we did our orders for lunch (there was variety). As we were waiting for lunch some of us couldn’t wait to taste the waters and we changed and rushed to the pool/spa. Ooooh the feeling was just sensational, not too hot but hot. The closer you get to the water entrance the hotter it becomes (though I cannot explain scientifically). We did enjoy our swimming. Trust you me the waiter who was serving us had a rough time to get us out of the water though the food was getting cold. We were out of the water, had our lunch within 10 mins, our bodies wet and trembling and rushed back to the water like kindergarten kids having their first P.E for the day. We were in the water till 5:30 pm though the pool was to be closed at around 5:00 pm. They actually turned the hot water off. We hit the road back to Nai (Nairobi) and don’t ask me how I felt when the day was finally over, Sad of course, because no one wants such day to be over, and also very very very happy for that Saturday was one of my best days. We were finally back in Nairobi and everyone was peacefully back to their homes. How did I feel about the team? at the end of the day the whole team was like sisters and brothers I never had.