Marsabit National Park

Forest in Marsabit National Park
Mount Marsabit is situated in a vast desert-like landscape but because of it's height moist from the clouds have created an environment that supports dense forest

Mount Marsabit, a 1700m high extinct vulcano, is a green oasis surrounded by dusty desert in all directions. A Noahs Ark, some would argue, and obviously lake Paradise was associated with something otherworldly when being named. There are several beautiful crater lakes on Mount Marsabit and the rainforest on the mountain is a refuge for the wild animals in the region. In John Hillabys informative and very humorous book “Safari to the Jade Sea” there is a wonderful description of how it feels to take refuge from the heat of the desert in the rainforest on remote Mount Marsabit in the most northern part of Kenya – one of the last true frontier regions.

Mount Marsabit forces the warm, humid air from the Indian Ocean to rise and cool off into clouds of tiny drops of water feeding the mosses. Every morning and sometimes at night, the clouds congregate around the mountains top, feeding the forest with water – not from the ground, but from the top resulting in thick blankets of moss covering every branch in parts of the forest. The mosses absorbs the water like a sponge, as the ground also does and so the mountain is an important catchment area for the otherwise extremely sparse rain in the area.

Elephants with enormous tuskers

The elephants in Marsabit are famous for their impressive size and large tusks. Kenyas legendary elephant Ahmed lived in Marsabit and had 200-300 kg tusks -long enough to touch the ground. Since poaching has been, and some places still is a serious problem in Kenya, former President Jomo Kenyatta ordered Ahmed to be protected by an armed ranger day and night.

With its beautiful crater lakes rimmed by jungle, the mountain is a haven for a big part of the wildlife and a wide selection of species are found such as lions, leopard, buffaloes, rhino and the massive forest elephants of Marsabit. Therefore you should always be accompanied of an armed ranger when walking in the park.


Elephants by a crater lake in Marsabit National Park
The elephants in Marsabit are famous for their enormous tuskers. One of these elephants back in the 1970's was named Ahmed and was under constant armed protection by decree from the former president Jomo Kenyatta
Cloud forest in Marsabit national Park in kenya
Mosses and lichens cover many of the branches in the cloud forest on Mount Marsabit
Gof in Marsabit in northern Kenya
A Gof or Vulcanic crater in Marsabit in northern Kenya