Overland to Kenya in March-April - feasible??





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  1. #1
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    Question Overland to Kenya in March-April - feasible??

    Has anyone driven SA-Kenya via Zim, Moz, Malawi, Tanzania in the rainy season? Is it doable (and worthwhile)? We have a conference in Kenya in the 2nd half of April, planned to drive, and only discovered belatedly that the next 2-3 months are the 'long rains' period. We plan to camp most of the way...
    Last edited by sixtysomething; 2012/02/25 at 10:35 AM. Reason: Need to add info

  2. #2
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    No problem whatsoever. You can drive on tar the whole way.

    Mike
    "A poxy, feral, Brit architect who drinks bad beer and supports the wrong rugby team." Tony Weaver

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  3. #3
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    Default 'Long rains' & camping

    Mike, thanks for response re tar roads. Any idea how much/hard, how long, how often and what time of day/night it generally rains in this season? (I know weather these days is unpredictable, but past patterns?) i.e. are we likely to spend a lot of time driving in the rain, seeing little; having to book in at hotels instead of camping; having to pack up a wet tent?

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    Quote Originally Posted by sixtysomething View Post
    Mike, thanks for response re tar roads. Any idea how much/hard, how long, how often and what time of day/night it generally rains in this season? (I know weather these days is unpredictable, but past patterns?) i.e. are we likely to spend a lot of time driving in the rain, seeing little; having to book in at hotels instead of camping; having to pack up a wet tent?
    March/April is just about the nicest time to drive through that region. The phrase "long rains" refers to the length of the season, not how long it rains every day. The rain in all the areas comes mostly in short sharp showers/thunderstorms which pass fairly quickly. It is only in the highlands that the rains set in and can last for a day or more (for highlands, read Rhodes Inyanga, Chimanimanis, Nyika Plateau, Zomba Plateau, Nairobi itself, the Abderdares etc).
    But I would warn against trying to do any remote dirt routes at that time - in mid April, it took us five days to cover 350km from Songea to Masasi in southern Tanzania because of the mud and washaways.
    As Mike says, the main routes are tarred all the way, and the rain clears the air beautifully.

  5. #5
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    Many thanks Tony! this is very helpful (and cheering). We will avoid dirt roads - unless there's something totally tantalising - and we won't say we weren't warned if we get stuck!

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    We drove home (UK) from Zambia last year. We were in Malawi the last two weeks of February, Tanzania from early March until mid April, Rwanda/Uganda from mid April to mid May and Kenya from mid May until the end of June. Sure we had some rain but I am struggling to think of any instances where it caused us any real grief. Some of the dirt roads were muddy but never impassable. Driving in and to game parks was perhaps a little stickier but nothing you wouldn't encounter in say Botswana. If you do hit a bit of bad weather and get fed up of camping there will usually be pretty cheap alternative accommodation nearby.

    Here's a link to our website - it may give you some ideas for stops along the way. And even if it doesn't you will at least see that it is sunny in almost all the pictures! Just scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the link to the relevant country. If I've missed out the name of a place and it looks interesting drop me a line, I still have all the details.

    www.off2africa.org

    BTW make sure you enter Malawi with enough fuel to exit. You probably know about the chronic fuel shortages they are experiencing there. Or go via Zambia.

    Oh and if you've ever wanted to visit the gorillas go now. Prices increase 50% (to a whopping $750) in June.

  7. #7
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    Weve been travelling Kwazulu Natal - Moz in April last year. Mid May to Tanzania via Unity 1.

    One thing was terrible, the Moskitoes in Moz. If you opened the tent in the morning they immediatly came in to attack us. Same under the shower, no chance to dry yourslef and spray again without bite.

    At Gorongosa, roads were closed for selfdrive at the end of April.

    At Kenya we arrived at the beginning of June. One night it did rain for about 2 hours. The next day at Masai Mara the roads were slippery like hell, it felt like on ice. The black cotton soil did let us look like idiots, altough we had Hankook M /T tyres. But that was only one day. You can be lucky and unlucky.

    Echo Trailer for Hire
    Last edited by Southerndreams; 2014/02/01 at 07:55 PM.

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    I need help with planning for a tour from South Africa to Kenya by road. I have a web side running where people can c where we like to go. How can i get intouch with the people that have done such tour before . I would like to drive from South Africa to Kenya But would like to visit the following places
    1.South Luangwe NP - Zambia
    2.Kariba dam -Zambia
    3.Ruaha NP - Tanzania
    4.Tarangire NP -Tanzania
    5. Ngorongoro Crater - Tanzania
    6. Serengeti Np - Tanzania
    7. Lake Victoria -Tanzania or Kenya
    8. Masai Mara - Kenya
    9. Lake Nakuru NP - Kenya
    10. Amboseli NP - Kenya
    11. Tsavo East NP Kenya
    12. Cahora Basa Dam Mozambique
    13.Lake Malawi - Malawi
    14. Gorongosa NP - Mozambique

    If some one give me advise on a good road and places to stay I will be grate full
    Best regards
    Niel

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    Quote Originally Posted by nielbig5 View Post
    I need help with planning for a tour from South Africa to Kenya by road. I have a web side running where people can c where we like to go. How can i get intouch with the people that have done such tour before . I would like to drive from South Africa to Kenya But would like to visit the following places
    1.South Luangwe NP - Zambia
    2.Kariba dam -Zambia
    3.Ruaha NP - Tanzania
    4.Tarangire NP -Tanzania
    5. Ngorongoro Crater - Tanzania
    6. Serengeti Np - Tanzania
    7. Lake Victoria -Tanzania or Kenya
    8. Masai Mara - Kenya
    9. Lake Nakuru NP - Kenya
    10. Amboseli NP - Kenya
    11. Tsavo East NP Kenya
    12. Cahora Basa Dam Mozambique
    13.Lake Malawi - Malawi
    14. Gorongosa NP - Mozambique
    If some one give me advise on a good road and places to stay I will be grate full
    Best regards
    Niel
    Hi Niel,

    I suggest you start a new thread in the Overland section with a heading like "advice wanted on Zambia/Tanzania/Kenya/Malawi/Moz trip."

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