Masai, Lions & Kilimanjaro

Trip Start Sep 07, 2006
Trip End Sep 29, 2006

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Flag of Kenya  ,
Saturday, September 16, 2006

    The name Amboseli comes from the word "empusel" which means, in the local Masai language, salty dust.  And dusty is exactly what Amboseli is like.

    At Amboseli we had another full schedule heading out on Safari several times a day as well as visiting another Masai Camp.  At this one we were greeted by nearly the entire village with dancing (with their great leaps) and chanting by both men and women.  It is amazing how drab the actual camp and village is with the exception of the incredibly colorful clothing and jewelery.

      We saw lots of animals at Amboseli but it is such a dry area that it doesn't seem as if it will be able to sustain the number of animals it presently holds. It is the home to some 900 elephants, zebra, wildebeests, giraffes, impala, leopards, lions, hippos, antelope, rhinos, wild dogs, hyenas, cheetah, buffalo and more than 400 species of birds, though many of these species we didn't see.  Additionally we got a glimpse of Mt. Kilimanjaro.  Apparently global warming is doing its job there, too.  There was hardly any snow on the mountain and we were told that the few glaciers that exist there are melting rapidly.  From pictures we have seen of it taken in the past, it really doesn't compare.  Kilimanjaro is actually just across the border in neighboring Tanzania but the view from Amboseli gives a perfect view of the world's tallest freestanding mountain at 19, 340 feet. 

    The park has varied environments ranging from desert-like pan to lush swamps and frankly was not as beautiful as the Masai Mara or the Serengeti.  Even the animals seemed in sparser supply.
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