Hotrock Report

Kenya: It all seemed so distant, the digging in the midst of vast deserts, andbeing stuck in the mud while in armed convoy. The fish eagle had landed on a branch above my head and was keeping a keen eye either on the colobus monkey in the opposite tree or on my plate piled high with the finest cakes, I could not decide. We had been travelling for 177 days. I tried to count back the new routes we had done, and the adventures experienced. It all seemed so inumerous, the only thing that was easy to count was the number of showers I have had, I concluded I was about to have my 20th. A gentleman appeared by my side, topped up my coffee and placed a piece of lemon cake on my now empty plate, Ahhhhh Bliss. The last few days climbing at hells gate national park had taken it out on the skin on my finger tips and the coffee cup was far too hot to pick up, I had to settle for the iced lemon juice instead. Climbing at Hells Gate is fantastic. After yet another new route I sat at the top of the cliff looking out over the lower grass and watched Wart hogs, with tails erect, scamper around the much easier going Zebra. The giraffe had moved on further down the valley and a large storm was building so we decided to call it a day and cycle back to Naivasha. Before we left I got involved in a breathtaking experiance: I hung in my harness 10m below Steve. “Ok 5 seconds” He shouted down to me. I lifted the camera to my eye and checked the settings. 30 seconds have passed since his 5 second warning.He noticed my impatience. ” You have to get used to my 5 seconds they are often much longer then they should be”. I let him have this one, after all I was hanging in free space 250m up off the floor. But he had his toes on the edge of the dubious rock above me. ” Three, two” He counted himself down. “ONE” he jumped and his body shot passed me. My camera was in full flow taking four frames a second. A second had passed then two he was still fallling. The third second passed, I wondered how long an object takes to hit the floor from 250m. I was about to count 4 and then a massive spread of colour appeared in the lens and the sound of his canopy opening echoed around the canyon. He landed safely and I saw others coming up to him to congratulate him. Mad bastard I thought to my self, I jugged up the rope and walked off the cliff, I was still shaking from Adrenaline when I shook his hand an hour later. “Excuse me sir” A man cleared his throat behind me. “More Coffee and cake?” The sun was now coming through the clouds to set on the edge of the rift valley. “What a good idea” I piled my plate high and forced a bit more more cake into my belly. After all it is not often you can sit on the lawn of the late Joy Adam´s (auther of Born Free owner of the orphaned lion Elsa) estate, and cram your self full of cream teas. Kenya has been a perfect break for us. We have been climbing solidly for the last few weeks putting up new routes all along the edge of the rift valley. In evening we settle down to enormous steaks and cold beer. We are on our way north to lake Baringo to take balsa wood boats to devils Island in the middle of the hippo infested lake. After this we plan to jump on camels to explore the unclimbed super crags on the edge of the northern desert. Plan to be entering Tanzania around the 20th of May hope everyone is well. Take Care Love Dave