Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb – (mountain of god) - 7 Days

7 DAYS TREKKING OL DOINYO LENGAI 2023

Lake Natron is situated in the north of the Ngorongoro Highlands; to the south is the active volcano, Ol Doinyo Lengai and to the west, is the edge of the Serengeti National Park.

The journey is a long but beautiful passage through dramatic, harsh territory. Making this an outstanding destination for walking safaris. Walking in the African Bush with Maasai Warriors as you guides is a unique opportunity for spectacular game viewing combined with the prospect to experience cultural encounters amongst the Maasai, Datoga, and nomadic Bushmen.

Lake Natron is a soda lake at the base of the active Ol Donyo Lengai volcano, the area around the lake is often described as having a desolate and almost lunar beauty. Walks around the lake and up along the side of the streams to the waterfalls along the nearby escarpment make for a fantastic adventure that is well and truly “off the beaten track”. Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb – (mountain of god)

Overview

7 DAYS TREKKING OL DOINYO LENGAI OL DOINYO LENGAI CLIMB Ol Doinyo Lengai Climb Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano, altitude 2960 meters (9711 feet), is a unique and extremely fascinating volcano that towers above the East African Rift Valley in Northern Tanzania, just south of Lake Natron. It is the only volcano in the world that sometimes erupts natrocarbonatite lava, a highly fluid lava that contains almost no silicon. Natrocarbonatite lava is also much cooler than other lavas, being only about 950 degrees F (510 degrees C) compared to temperatures over 2000 degrees F (~1100 degrees C) for basaltic lavas. Natrocarbonatite is the most fluid lava in the world. Lava with a low gas content can flow like a whitewater stream, and actually has a viscosity near that of water. Natrocarbonatite lava glows orange at night, but is not nearly as bright as silicon-based lavas since it is not as hot. During the day it is not incandescent; most flows look like very fluid black oil, or brown foam, depending on the gas content. In the past, some visitors to the crater believed they were seeing mud flows. Most newly solidified lava is black and contains crystals that sparkle brightly in the sun. There are also sometimes small flows known as “squeeze-ups” that are light gray when they flow and harden. Contact with moisture rapidly turns natrocarbonatite lava white because of chemical reactions that occur when the lava absorbs water. Eventually the water absorption process turns lava flows into soft brown powder. During dry weather the whitening of flows happens over a period of a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on the thickness of the flow. In rainy weather the lava surface turns white immediately. In parts of the crater that have been inactive for several months, the ground is light brown/white and so soft that one sinks into it when walking. Ol Doinyo Lengai also has phases of explosive activity during which the composition of the lava may contain much more silicate material, reducing its viscosity. In this type of eruption there is no fluid lava and activity takes the form of ash eruptions accompanied by ejection of blocks and bombs. However, initial phases of an explosive eruption may include strong lava fountains. The two most recent explosive eruptions occurred during 1966-1967 and 2007-2008. Since the mid 1980’s, lava flows, and to a much lesser extent, explosive eruptions, have been witnessed by many observers of Ol Doinyo Lengai. Natrocarbonatite lava eruptions are usually centered in one or more small cones that have been formed on the crater floor by previous eruptions of lava. These eruptions have typically taken the form of open lava pools or lakes that may or may not be overflowing, lava flows issuing from holes or cracks inside or near the base of the cones, or lava splashes or fountains from the summit vents of the cones. The activity is not well understood but is thought to be a function of the plumbing of the crater, the level of the lava within the plumbing, and the gas content of the lava. No one knows what causes the lava to flow out at any particular time or how the various vents in the crater are interconnected. Mineralogists would like to understand how the lava evolves under the surface and why it has its unusual chemical composition, but that also is unknown, although there are several theories. Finally, no one has any idea why the pattern of frequent small lava flows gave way to explosive activity at the end of August 2007 and how that may have related to earthquakes in the region during the previous two months. Lake Natron is situated in the north of the Ngorongoro Highlands; to the south is the active volcano, Ol Doinyo Lengai and to the west, is the edge of the Serengeti National Park. The journey is a long but beautiful passage through dramatic, harsh territory. Making this an outstanding destination for walking safaris. Walking in the African Bush with Maasai Warriors as you guides is a unique opportunity for spectacular game viewing combined with the prospect to experience cultural encounters amongst the Maasai, Datoga, and nomadic Bushmen. Lake Natron is a soda lake at the base of the active Ol Donyo Lengai volcano, the area around the lake is often described as having a desolate and almost lunar beauty. Walks around the lake and up along the side of the streams to the waterfalls along the nearby escarpment make for a fantastic adventure that is well and truly “off the beaten track”. Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb – (mountain of god)

Itinerary

Day 1
NAIROBI | ARUSHA | NGORONGORO CRATER

Day 01: NAIROBI | ARUSHA | NGORONGORO CRATER Catch the morning shuttle bus to Arusha. Lunch in Arusha. Proceed to Ngorongoro Crater with an en route late afternoon game viewing in the crater, 3500m. Dinner and overnight at a campsite, L,D.

Day 2
NGORONGORO | EMPAKAI CRATER

Full day in the Ngorongoro Crater. Morning game viewing in the crater then drive through highlands to the rim of Empakai crater campsite, B,L,D.

Day 3
TREKKING EMPAKAI CRATER.

Full day of trekking and walking in the crater, we explore this unique forested crater on foot, and marvel at the variety of its wildlife and flora that abounds in it. Dinner and overnight at a campsite, B,L,D. Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb – (mountain of god)

Day 4
TREKKING RIFT VALLEY | SALEI PLAINS

Today, we hook up with Maasai guides for a walk/trek down the Rift Valley escarpment to the Salei plains. Dinner and overnight at campsite, B,L,D. Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb

Day 5
TREKKING RIFT VALLEY | LAKE NATRON

We continue with the trek/walk along the Great Rift Valley escarpment. The views over Lake Natron are magnificent. The flamingo colonies from a distance are a splash of dark pink colour on the lake. We reach the floor of the Rift valley where we camp for an overnight stay. An early sleep would be preferred owing to the next day’s early trek up the Lengai to summit by sunrise, B,L,D.

Day 6
TREK LENGAI | LONGIDO 01:00hrs

An early start just after midnight. Start the climb up Lengai mountain to reach the summit just in time for the sun rise on Mount Kilimanjaro some 200 km away. Inside the crater we witness small eruptive cones spurting liquid magma which in turn form pools of hot lava. It is a powerful magical place sacred to the Maasai. We descend to catch our afternoon vehicle transfer across the Rift Valley towards Mount Longido for an overnight camping, B,L,D. Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb – (mountain of god)

Day 7
LONGIDO | NAIROBI OR ARUSHA

Return to Arusha or Nairobi. We take a little-used track to reach the main road to the border (Arusha – Namanga Road). After border formalities, we head back to Nairobi, B,L.

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

Ol-doinyo Lengai Climb – (mountain of god)
× How can I help you?