Kijabe Hill – Kinari Ridge

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Location Mai Mahiu/Longonot
Starting Point Mai Mahiu – Longonot road
Ending point Soko mjinga or Flyover
Walking Duration 9-10 hours
Terrain grazing tracks
Difficulty Moderate
Elevation gain 650m

The objective of the hiker is to traverse the section between the old to the new Nairobi-Nakuru highways. The hiker will go up Kijabe hill, then down Kijabe hill and then up the Kinari ridge and onward to the New Nairobi-Nakuru highway. This hike is ideal for a moderately paced hiker. A mix of slow and moderate speed hikers on this hike always leads to hikers crossing the notorious Kinari forest at dusk which is not advisable

The trail follows the Kijabe hill trail, as described in this post, up to the second crossing of the railway line. (the Lunatic express meadres round the hill)

The Lunch Dome

To recap, the hike starts 9 km form Mai Mahiu just after the conspicuous IDP settlement. Starting at an altitude 2010masl, the  hiker trudges steadily up hill for two to three hours to be at the peak, that is 2659masl. After resting at the peak and doing what hikers do on peaks, you start your descent down the eastern slope. You walk past the place where the paragliders launch their escapades, into and past the farms and homesteads, then into the forest reserve again, and march on to a point near the railway line for lunch. In total you will have dropped down 467metres to 2192asl.  If your timing is good, but it won’t, you will have lunch under some trees as you rest and re-strap your boots. After lunch you walk downhill a few metres to the railway line then walk northwards along it up to two hundred metres off the station. After stopping for a breather it is time to tackle the Kinare ridge.
Overgrown bush over the trail
Sunset through Kinari cypress forest

During the dry season the trail is easily visible. But during the rainy season the bush quickly reclaims territory and the hike is more like a test of wits between bush and man.  Make you’re your way through the barely discernible grazing tracks until the path opens to the rush expanses of Kikuyu grass. Cross the grass and into Kinare forest and on to soko mjinga or flyover.

Weather allowing you will be treated to a spectacular sunset on the escarpment before heading to soko mjinga for roast maize. Beware that the place is not called soko
mjinga for nothing


Guide fee
Forest charges


Having outdoor fun in Kenya