Journey to Lake Natron and Back
by John Fuhring
Chapter 9
Our Third Ride

     Leaving the second camp in the morning, we headed due north over ground much like the day before, but steadily improving as we headed out.  The morning was mostly overcast, but cleared later.  There wasn't nearly as much game out this way, but there was other natural scenery of interest to see like the giant termite mounds and dry washes (sand rivers).


Beginning the third day of riding.

 Termite mound.

A Sand River.
     We rode several miles in a northern direction and then started riding westerly for several more miles.  Around noon Lisa's amazing mapless navigation led us to the Land Rover where lunch was being made ready.

Lunch Stop 3 
2 degrees, 44.421 minutes South Latitude
36 degrees, 19.027 minutes East Longitude
3428 Feet above Sea Level

     As we left the lunch camp, I was mentally preparing myself for another long ride that would extend into evening.  I knew from my map of the region (and from my GPS) that we had come about as far north as we should and should soon turn west by southwest in order to make our way between the north slope of Mt. Kitumbeine and the south slope of Mt. Gelai.  To my great surprise we continued north and a little east.  Wow, what's going on here?  This isn't the way we're supposed to be going.
     While it was still pretty early in the afternoon we came to a gorgeous dry wash (A.K.A. a sand river) and there was Camp 3 all set up.  I was surprised that we weren't going to make any more mileage that day, but I have to admit that I was absolutely delighted at the prospect of an early camp, a good shower and some leisure in the afternoon.  Obviously I had been wrong about a long ride that afternoon.  This short ride also gave my butt a chance to heal up a little.  Anyway, let me show you some pictures of this beautiful place. 

Camp 3.
2 degrees, 42.425 minutes South Latitude
36 degrees, 19.180 minutes East Longitude
3559 Feet above Sea Level

My tent is the second from the left.
Wood for the Bonfire to the left.  That night the
fire made the forked trunk look just like a Viking ship.

We took a nature hike up the dry river.

As you can see, it was beautiful up there.

Our first good look at Oldoinyo Lengai, the Masaai's 
"Mountain of God"

 Mt. Kitumbeine almost due west at sundown.

Lovely bonfire that night.


     Most of us stayed up for a while watching a lovely bonfire, but after a while I just had to hit the sack as (for me) the conversation was pretty limited and difficult.   I fell to sleep quickly and don't even remember Terry entering the tent.  Later that night Terry's snoring didn't bothered me very much at all.  When it would wake me up I'd just clear my throat or lightly poke him and he'd turn over and stop and then I'd fall back asleep almost immediately.

 Go to Chapter 10.

Return to table of contents