Posted by: Laura Hartstone | 13 January, 2010

Soap Eating Monkeys

Mount Kenya is truly one of the most beautiful mountains in the world. It is complete with bamboo forests, indigenous flowers, a wide variety of wildlife and snowcapped with glaciers. Driving up to the park gates is similar to a trip through the swiss alps. The grass is brilliantly green and herds of cattle and sheep are enjoying the endless food – especially this year.

The team is spending their last night on the mountain. They have descended a considerable distance today, losing over 1200m of altitude. Not only does this help reduce their headaches, but overall it allows them to breathe easier.

Team Hitting the Trail

Today’s journey was through what has come to be known as the “vertical bog”. And it is exactly that. A descent through thick wet muck.

The team’s live SMS update came through around 4pm reading:

Team was greeted by a beautiful sunrise on the summit of Mount Kenya yesterday morning. Have just arrived at Met Station (alt 3050m) and were greeted by some amazing singing by the porters. All doing really well and having a great time. Also a monkey ate our soap.

Perhaps altitude is still affecting the team! But further word from the mountain was that they are all feeling much better and the affects of altitude sickness are slowly going away as they descend.

Sheridan, Rachel & Sarah - Rachel feeling better after altitude headaches

A team of two porters was fetched in Nanyuki town at the base of Mount Kenya early this morning. After a brief shopping trip through the market they were dropped off at Naro Moru gate to ascend the route the team is currently descending. They were headed up with a resupply of food including:

– 3 kg flour

– 2 packets of spaghetti

– 2 kg sugar

– 2 L milk

– 1 bunch of bananas

– 1 bag of peas

– 3kg potatoes

– 1 kg green peppers

– 2 onions

The combination of food seemed interesting and we can only hope they had left-overs of other foodstuffs to make something out of all that! Even the porters seemed a bit concerned that the only fruit the team would be getting their last day was bananas. However, as we know from the past – the teams are always well fed.

Laura (Operations Manager) sending John and John (Porters) with resupply

More updates to come from the team once they are down the mountain.

Stay posted for pictures on the Mount Kenya page (tab located above).

To sign up for LIVE SMS updates sent straight to your phone, simply text the word “climb” to +255 688 905 872.



  1. Just wondering if the monkey started to blow bubbles?? The chorale send their best to you Sarah. May you all continue to travel safely!!

  2. Hey Sher-
    I am so thrilled for you and your team. I hope you will put together a You Tube video for all of us dreamers in awe of you.
    Congratulations and hope to see you in New York or San Fran in the not too distant future.
    Stay safe and happy.
    Much love,

  3. Hi Sher,

    Just got to look at you hiking thru some gorgeous scenery. I’m so jealous, it looks beautiful. You look good honey. I miss you, please take a lot of pictures. I’m going to wallpaper the dining room with your photographs. xoxooxoxoxo Mom

    How’s your head feeling?

  4. Hi Sher,
    Congratulations to you and the whole team on this really remarkable achievement. I’ve been following you all daily and have forwarded everything to all the cousins!
    Nana and Papa

  5. Just giving a MASSIVE shout out to Laura for all of her blogging and also for taking such good care of the girls!! You are the best Laura! Not sure what 3 peaks would do without you!

  6. Hi Sher,
    Your amazing. Good luck and have fun. Love to you

  7. congratulations on scaling the first peak! I am so glad you are having such a wonderful time! Our friend, jasmine Zeger is in Kigali, Rwanda working for an aids and w omen’s education foundation which is located here…I ahve always said you guys should meet…maybe you will run into her. If you log onto FB you can find her “jasmine zeger” (USC). Enjoy it all and you are awesome, girl! inspiring!

  8. Sarah,
    We acknowledged you last night at the first chorale rehearsal of the season. Please join us when you return. We have 16 new pieces and 2 old ones.

    Thanks Laura for all the news and your help to the team… Girls, I hope you’re all OK and enjoying your time in East Africa…


  10. Congratulations Halfie and team on conquering the first peak. Well done. I look forward to these daily updates. Aunty Helen sends her congrats and a little financial support. Much love Mother Dear

  11. Boo,
    Sounds like you are all stars! Those monkeys are something else. Hope you have some soap left!
    Well, one down two to go.

  12. Hi Jessie and fellow travellers,Hope you are all well after the first conquest. How was the altitude.
    Looking forward to afew picies
    Lotsa love Mother

  13. Hey Jess
    Great to hear the trip is going ok just keep away from those monkeys.

    only 2 more peaks to go hang in there.

    Cheers Gill

  14. Hi Sher,
    Congrats on scaling your first peak. The first of many in your life I am sure. Your Mom is “verklempt” and so proud of you. Jules is home and looks so great. we had dinner with him. Enjoy this experience and we are thinking of you. You know how we love Africa and are so happy that you connect with it so strongly as well. Much love from us all xxxx


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