Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Advisories and Urgent Information > Travellers' Advisories, Safety and Security on the Road

Travellers' Advisories, Safety and Security on the Road Recent News, political or military events, which may affect trip plans or routes. Personal and vehicle security, tips and questions.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #16  
Old 26 Jul 2011
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 9
As promised –feedback on our investigations in Nairobi re the route north.
We are pleased to hear that David is recovering well and hope that you can resume your travels soon.

In Nairobi we spoke to the safety section of the Department of Tourism who referred us to the Tourist police who were sympathetic and aware of the incident .They advised us to go to Isiolo and talk to the tourist police there who would organise a convoy and/or armed escort if they thought it necessary at no cost to us.

We met another 4x4 and 2 motor cyclists at Jungle Junction who were planning to travel in convoy up the Lake Turkana route. We also met another group who had travelled from Ethiopia on the same route, they had been stopped 3 times by ‘bandits’ who only asked for water—they dealt with this by being confident and friendly and had no problems.
There are no customs or immigration on the Kenyan side of the border, so we had our carnet stamped out of Kenya in Times Towers building 4th floor, and passports stamped out at Nyaya House next to Intercontinental Hotel both in the centre of Nairobi. This was very simple, they are obviously used to doing it.

Our route; Nairobi west to Gilgil, north to Nyahuhuru (camped at Thompson Falls Lodge- spacious and peaceful), to Maralal (we camped at Maralal safari Lodge, no facilities, understand that Yare camel camp has reopened). Maralal is the last reliable fuel until Jinka, 830kms away. On through Barsaloi and Baragoi to South Horr (we were told that this is the best route as the lorries don’t use it). It was certainly very beautiful.. The first part through the mountains was rocky, narrow and steep in places, this turned into easy sand tracks in the valley bottom. At South Horr we camped 8 kms north at Kurungu camp- we would recommend this lovely community project. On from here through lava fields on stony tracks, the lava rock did cut the tyres but damage was not excessive. We camped at Loyangalani –at the very pleasant Palm Shade camp (last sweet water here). LakeTurkana is beautiful. Next stop Sibiloi National Park (the NP guest house at Alia Bay, slept 6 and was cheaper than camping!) . We visited the Petrified forest and Koobi Fora (which we found fascinating) then on to Illiret where we reported to the police post who recorded our passport numbers. The police there told us that there were bandits in the area, but that they were mainly cattle rustlers and that they were aware of only 1 incident involving a tourist and that was 7 years ago. They advised against wild camping. We hit the Turmi- omorate road and found a quiet spot to wild camp. Went to Omorate next morning for our passports to be stamped then returned the 18 kms to the Turmi road.

Using this route turned what would have been a 3 day chore via Isiolo – Marsabit - Moyale over very bad roads into a 5 day adventure through some of the most beautiful scenery in one of the more interesting and remote parts of Africa. We followed Tracks 4 Africa all the way without deviation. We would recommend a reasonable 4x4 although we only used low ratio and 4 wheel drive occasionally (and even that was probably not essential). It was however hard work for the bikers even though we carried some of their additional fuel and water. Of the 12 tyres only one had a puncture and that was from a thorn. We were stopped by 1 herdsman (with a rifle) who asked for and was given water. We all carried extra water bottles and a small amount of cash in a separate wallet, just in case. A great experience.

Another bonus to this route is that it leads you into the South Omo valley, which in itself is well worth the diversion. If you can carry extra fuel Turmi is a good base to explore its peoples from.

Our big regret is that we didn’t spend more time on this whole route. If anyone wants further info, just ask or our blog is;
secondtimearoundafrica.blogspot.com

Terry and Jean. July 2011
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 26 Jul 2011
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Sydney, Aus.
Posts: 207
+1 for the Lake Turkana route. Your experience sounds very similar to mine at the beginning of the year - stunning scenery, friendly people and interesting but not too challenging tracks (in a 4x4 at least). All the herders seem to carry guns in this area, but to protect their cattle not hold up tourists. We also got asked a few times for water along the way, and carried plenty and some spare bottles to hand out - people were grateful and didn't ask us for anything else.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 26 Jul 2011
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Alexandria Egypt
Posts: 358
great to find info here about that route
i wonder if its ok to do it on a motorbike ??
yes without a supporting car ,maybe 2 bikes , if its not only me
can you please give more details about fuel ,(as mentioned before 800 km i cant do on motorbike without refilling ,can do up to 450 km max
thanks

Last edited by omar mansour; 26 Jul 2011 at 20:15. Reason: wants to get emails notification
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 26 Jul 2011
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 738
Hi Omar,

How's things?

Yes, you can do the Turkhana route on motorbikes, unsupported by trucks.

Having a support vehicle will make the ride much more enjoyable though, so if you can coordinate and go with a 4x4 overlander, all the better.

The reason is that you have to carry extra fuel and water for the route and that makes your bike very heavy. You most likely won't need fuel for the full 800km as usually you can buy some private fuel in Loyangalani (from the mission) but it is still more than a tank.

Keep in mind that the road is pretty rough and very rocky in places for a motorbike and as such you will be going slow and your fuel consumption will be high. From memory I think we carried an extra 20 litres of fuel each and that got us to Loyangalani. Plan for plenty of water as well.

Have fun if you go, it's good adventure.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 27 Jul 2011
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: France
Posts: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by frenchian View Post
Nadine,

.... if you PM me the information in French, I'll translate it and post it here in English for the benefit of everyone else if you are happy with that?

Ian
Hi Ian
Thank you very much for your offer
I have just sent you a PM with our story in french.
Merci et bon courage !
Nadine,
__________________
::-::-::-::-::-::-::-::-::-::
01/01/04 <-> 31/01/05 : Overland trip through Africa and Australia
http://www.kapsud.net
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 28 Jul 2011
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Alexandria Egypt
Posts: 358
Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainMan View Post
Hi Omar,

How's things?

Yes, you can do the Turkhana route on motorbikes, unsupported by trucks.

Having a support vehicle will make the ride much more enjoyable though, so if you can coordinate and go with a 4x4 overlander, all the better.

The reason is that you have to carry extra fuel and water for the route and that makes your bike very heavy. You most likely won't need fuel for the full 800km as usually you can buy some private fuel in Loyangalani (from the mission) but it is still more than a tank.

Keep in mind that the road is pretty rough and very rocky in places for a motorbike and as such you will be going slow and your fuel consumption will be high. From memory I think we carried an extra 20 litres of fuel each and that got us to Loyangalani. Plan for plenty of water as well.

Have fun if you go, it's good adventure.
hi Mountain man ,thanks a lot for your info
please if you still have your route ,way points will be good for every one if you post it in H-U is i think many other people will like to do it to avoid road to hell through Isiolo - Moyale
,for sure when ever you have time ,
cheers
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 4 Aug 2011
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: On the road somewhere in Africa
Posts: 79
I'd be interested to know if there's a consensus of opinion on the best strategy to use in this type of circumstance - ie faced with an unknown armed local wanting you to stop.
What would you do? Stop, be freindly and discuss, hoping that they only want water? Drive past at speed? Stop, reverse and wait for other vehicles? Stop and be prepared to hand over everything?

I suspect reading Nadine's information that by the time that you see them, you've already passed one accomplish (ie reversing is probably not an option?), and that there's probably another accomplish further up the road too (so driving on isn't an option?).

It possibly depends on your vehicle type - a bike will be different toa 4x4 will be different to a high truck.

Any thoughts would be welcomed.

Ian
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 5 Aug 2011
Gold Member
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: BOSTON
Posts: 1
Safety

Glad to hear he is recovering! sad though that banditry is still a concern up North- I would say though before crossing into the Northern Frontier talk to the local Police and find out when the next convoy leaves or better if you have the funds workout something with them - they do this all the time- you have to be the one making the suggestions since by law they are not supposed to do this - wink wink - also find out what local banks operate at the next stop and wire the money to yourself (western union/moneygram).

Check us out for rentals n support - on www.motoadvkenya.com & facebook/motoadvkenya
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 6 Aug 2011
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: France
Posts: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by frenchian View Post
I'd be interested to know if there's a consensus of opinion on the best strategy to use in this type of circumstance ... Ian
Hi Ian,
Thank you very much for the translation you made. I put it at the end of this post. To answer to your question : we've always been told that the best strategy is to not resist and that is what we tried to do. But the problem is that in our case they didn't let us apply the strategy ! Things go so fast that not sure you have enough time to really think, you do aswell with your instinct. For our case, it was too late to go inverse, too hard to avoid stop and keep going on because the track was very slow (and after we saw that there were people aswell ambushed in front of us and in our back), so we decided to slow down and stop and try to be cool but at the first sight we saw that the situation was not good.

So that how everything happened :

Wednesday 25th May 2011, my friend David and myself were driving towards Northern Kenya on the A2 heading for Marsabit after having visited Samburu Park. My friend was driving our right-hand-drive Toyota 4x4 converted into a camper, I (Nadine) was in the passenger seat.
After the village of Merille, the tarmac finishes and we had to continue on a poor track and therefore driving slowly. It was around 3:30pm when we saw a man on the left of the road, armed with a rifle signalling us to stop. We slowed and stopped next to him, keeping the motor running.
The young man, very excited, shouted at us, threatening us with his gun. We remained with our hands in the air. We didn’t understand exactly what he wanted, but we thought that he wanted money and anything of value. We told him that we had money and that we would give him it. Unfortunately, as soon as we moved to try to give him something, he got annoyed, and if we didn’t move he got even more annoyed, continually threatening us with his gun.
Very soon we heard loud banging on the car: another youth appeared from behind, also on the left hand side, hitting the car with a “rungu”, a traditional weapon, and once he drew level with me, he hit me violently below the left shoulder blade.
Then he tried to open the left hand door, but luckily David had locked the doors. The bandits were totally excited, and we couldn’t find a way of calming the situation. Suddenly, in front of us, but on the right, we saw another armed man arriving, running towards us.
As the situation was only getting worse, we decided to get away.
At the moment that we started off, they fired at us, from all sides.
Happily for me, I had ducked down at this moment, but David couldn’t because he was driving, he was hit by a bullet in the left hand side of his jaw. In spite of this we managed to get away.
We passed a 4x4 coming the other way but didn’t stop it because we were afraid that it could be accomplishes of the bandits.

Several kilometres later we were obliged to stop because the rear left tyre was totally destroyed due to having been hit by bullets. Even though he was injured, David had to change the tyre while I kept a lookout in case the attackers caught up with us – we had turned the engine off to try to avoid being heard.
Once the wheel had been changed we continued and almost immediately came across a truck loaded with passengers and goods, coming the other way. We stopped them to let them know and to see if they could help us. They indicated that there was a village a few kilometres away with a hospital and police station. A few minutes later we arrived at the Laisamis catholic hospital where my friend was looked at by the Dr Mollis and Sister Jessica who gave him first aid while I tried to contact our medical insurance to organise his repatriation.

After several hours an ambulance was dispatched from Nanyuki with an armed escort from Isiolo. It arrived around midnight and we took the same road back to Nanyuki cottage hospital where we arrived around 4am. There was no doctor, just a nurse. We had to wait till 10am to finally see a doctor who organised an airlift with the Royal flying doctors and we arrived at Nairobi hospital where David was seen by a doctor and a specialist – he was operated on the following morning.

Lots of luck in spite of everything!

Merci encore à Ian pour la traduction

Nadine,
__________________
::-::-::-::-::-::-::-::-::-::
01/01/04 <-> 31/01/05 : Overland trip through Africa and Australia
http://www.kapsud.net
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 9 Aug 2011
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 9
Consensus ?

Don't know about any concensus but if you try anything like escaping you are provoking the situation and there may be an unpleasant response from them - even to shoot at you.
Surely the best is to try to avoid the situation by travelling up the other route, travelling in convoy and or arranging a police escort.
You must be prepared to give up "everything" if necessary. We kept some cash in a wallet available and some hidden which we could also give whilst keeping the bulk of cash hidden elsewhere. You can always get more cash or water, another life is more difficult.
Having said all that and over dramatising a bit, we have spoken to lots of people who have travelled both routes as well as the tourist police and criminal police. Most have had no problems and the rest have only had to give water. Nadine and David were extremely unlucky which is sad for them but they only got into bad trouble when they tried to drive away. In the heat of the moment who knows what we would have done in their situation? We are really glad he is on the mend.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Moyale-Isiolo road AfricaByBike sub-Saharan Africa 0 14 Oct 2005 19:29
Moyale-Isiolo through Wajir TurAfrika sub-Saharan Africa 4 25 Aug 2005 15:14
Moyale-Marsabit road AfricaByBike sub-Saharan Africa 4 19 Aug 2005 16:05
Kenya to Ethiopia via Marsabit RichLees sub-Saharan Africa 5 9 Nov 2003 22:40

 
 


HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.


Renedian Adventures


Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 16:50.