Before you read this, you will love the first and second part very important. They will give you a better understanding of the general area that is the Northern Circuit. Read through The Northern Treasures and SAMBURU AND BUFFALO SPRINGS NATIONAL RESERVES.
“THIS PLACE IS GOD’S GIFT.”
Before you read this, you will love the first and second part very important. They will give you a better understanding of the general area that is the Northern Circuit. Read through The Northern Treasures and SAMBURU AND BUFFALO SPRINGS NATIONAL RESERVES. Marsabit is a forested mountain which rises spectacularly from the middle of a desert wilderness and provides the only source of a permanent surface in the region. It has three beautiful crater lakes with a myriad of resident birdlife. The most scenic is the Lake Paradise, made famous in the early films and writings of Martin Johnson and Vivien de Wattville.
Originally part of a huge reserve which took in Shaba, Samburu, Buffalo Springs and the Losai National Reserve, the mountain was made a national reserve in its own right. It is a nomadic rangeland and the droughtland of the Rendille herdsmen. Its name means ‘Mountain of Cold’.
One of the area’s most famous residents was the elephant Ahmed – decreed a protected animal by President Jomo Kenyatta’s Order in 1970. Ahmed, who had some of the biggest tusks ever, had a 24-hour armed guard. When Ahmed died, aged 55, his body was preserved and is now on display at the National Museum in Nairobi.
Other game include: Greater kudu, Reticulated Giraffe, Buffalo, Bushbuck, Leopard and caracal. Over 370 species of birdlife have been recorded which include the Somali Ostrich, the rare Masked Lark and over 52 raptor species (eagle, buzzard, vulture). A special treat is the rare Lammergeyer Vulture. The area is especially good for butterfly viewing with a wide variety of species. There is one lodge in the park.
Nearby is LOSAI NATIONAL RESERVE, opened as a single reserve in January, 1976. It covers 1,806 sq. kms. of wild, semi – desert landscape characterised by rocky hills, plains and rivers. The scenic beauty is breathtaking; game to view include elephant, Greater and Lesser Kudu, Gerenuk and Grants Gazelle. It is accessed via the Isiolo/Marsabit road which passes through the reserve.
SOUTH TURKANA NATIONAL RESERVE
Not being a traditional tourist circuit, this area is relatively unknown. It has a number of permanent rivers with woodland fringes and salty springs. There is plenty of wildlife, including elephant, giraffe, buffalo, eland, oryx, impala, bushbuck, greater kudu, Grants and Thompson’s gazelle, lion, leopard, cheetah, spotted hyena and jackal. There are crocodiles in rivers and abundant birdlife much of which gathers on the banks of the Kerio River. There are no lodges or roads within the reserve.
NASALOT NATIONAL RESERVE covers an area of only 92 sq. km. It is mainly plains broken up by the impressive Sekess Hills, a continuation of the Cherangany ridges. To the north, it is bordered by a section of River Turkwel and Wei Wei River, to the east. It has an important eco-system with river valleys and floodplains which support evergreen forests dominated by fig and acacia trees and many types of papyrus and sedges.
The wildlife include the elephant, hippo, giraffe, impala, grant and Thompson’s gazelle, plains, zebra, eland, lesser kudu, bushbuck, duiker and dik dik and their predators – lion, leopard, spotted hyena and jackal. There are olive baboons and vervet monkeys and crocodiles. There are more than 150 species of birds. There is a murram airstrip at the Turkwel hydro-electric dam and two campsites.