Hiking looks difficult only when you sit back and watch others do it.. Without hiding the truth to beginners like me, it is hard! It is however doable.
I do gym hours, and I can handle the pressure for hours on end, but doing hikes in certain seasons is quite a challenge especially in the African heat. Gladly, this hike was in winter.Our winters aren’t that cold to someone from Europe. In short, the weather was user friendly.
Kafue is a small town in Zambia found in the Southern part of the capital of Zambia called Lusaka.It gets it’s name from the river Kafue that flows through the town. This water body I must say, added to the refreshing mood of the hike. If you ever want to book a hike, do try Mwaba Mwila adventures ( https://mwilaadventure.com). This actually was motivated by the Duke of Edinburgh Award Leaders and Adventurous Journey Supervisor certificate we were eyeing to get at the end of this escapade. Kafue town was the perfect town to do this.
It took us a good 45 minutes to get to the starting point of the hike. Of course the perfect vehicles to use are the land cruisers. It was only the six of us led by the guide. Kafue town was left far behind the outskirts we were gonna spend the night camping at.
WHAT TO PACK
The goal of this hike and camp out was to build endurance and so the guide only helped carry our tents in his car and the really heavy stuff otherwise all those personals like our bags, foods, drinks and all were for us to carry. I can’t stress enough but this load caused a lot of energy from me to be sucked dry. I thought the challenge was just taking that hike carrying nothing but boyyyy was I wrong.
I am not sure what expert campers carry for food, snack, drinks and all but this is not glamping and my sleeping disorder of having ‘earlier nights’ really tried my patience.I am not gonna stay up late cooking up a storm! On our menu which the instructor had us make was 2 minute noodles, canned beans and vegetables.Mother nature did supply us with some mushrooms.We picked some fresh ones and added them to our meal. What a treat it was!
THE HIKE DISTANCE
The starting point was set for us. Maps were given to us as well. The guide had given us a mini training of how geography works.(Geography was not exactly my fav subject in school…..sooo) but if I could understand the map so can you.
We studied it. We also had never been down this trail but the guide had been and he wasn’t supposed to spill all the beans about where we headed.
Off we went down this endless trail and frankly speaking it was refreshing. We told stories and all until we stopped for water, rest to take a leak or to allow rest for our bodies since they protested against tiredness. We covered both flat and hilly places, stony and watery places. The good news is we managed to cover half the required number of kilometers for the day.
The target was to use this one route that was like 10 kilometers to the camping grounds. We started at about 9 o’clock to 5 pm and found the guide had prepared our camping spot, pitched the tents already and all that was left was to tell some night stories and call it quits for the day ….. and we did!
HIKE DAY TWO
I woke up to music from the birds and the ground was wet from the night showers and I hoped to hike on dry ground.We didn’t need continental or English breakfast but we did stuffed ourselves with some bread, beans, juice and remainders of previous night’s meal. It was perfect to start another day of a 10 kilometers hike.
At this point, I was done enjoying nature. I just wanted OUT!! I picked up my tired pieces with the help of my team and we walked through that trail. The second hike had more of hilly and stony land.Very uncomfortable. My team mates developed blisters on their feet but their drive to want to finish the 10 kilometers fueled mine. Fast forward, we made it!
THE HIGHS AND LOWS
The high of this hike and camp was how I got a certificate to be a Duke of Edinburgh Award and Adventurous journey leader. I also enjoyed the nature and being away from the usual and the normal.
The low was that at one spot which happened to be a picture taking place because of the beautiful scenery, we were stopped from taking pics because it was believed to be a shrine and taking pictures would upset the spirits. Can you imagine!?