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Sunday, July 23, 2017

#Ride 47: Pastor pedals to educate children

This epic journey round the 47 counties of Kenya began on April, Sunday 30, at the flag off ceremony at Nairobi Chapel. The energy was high, the anticipation was tangible. We got on our bikes, and with cheers from the congregation and roars from the exhausts of the bikes were well on our way for this historic adventure.

Right outside the church were many more bikes that escorted the Ride47 Team out of town. The convoy of bikes snaked its way towards town bringing Ngong Road to a standstill. The combination of cruisers, commuter bikes, adventure touring bikes, and superbikes made the convoy a spectacle to behold.

The most puzzling part of this journey had actually been before the flag-off – it was the packing – making the difficult decision of what to take and what to leave behind, and having to keep the delicate balance between personal and technical bike items, the simple verses the extravagant. Most experts in adventure motorcycling project that people always pack twice what they need - I proved them right – I had definitely overpacked.

One of the most amazing discoveries of the first day was definitely the new ‘Nyoka Nyoka’ Road in Murang'a. This road winds like a snake and in biker terms is the ultimate ‘twisties’ – a true bikers heaven. The pleasant weather, endless bends, declines and inclines, with picturesque landscapes of all shades of green, made it a ride to remember.

This was in contrast to the heavy rain that beat us all evening as we made our way to our host's house. The rains had made the route to the house practically impassable. The road was slippery, steep and muddy, so we turned back and decided not to take the risk that late into the night with tired and worn-out bodies and instead found alternative accommodation.

With most of the bikes on reserve tank fuel we scrambled to the nearby town to fuel them the next morning before heading out to Kirinyaga, Embu, Tharaka Nithi and Meru counties. We did not know this day would be packed with trip drama.

On our way to Karoti Girls we took a turn onto a dirt road not knowing how muddy it was. Before long we found ourselves stuck in mud, with several bikes going down before we could figure out an alternative route.

We then proceeded to Meru town, with a brief stopover at Chogoria town for a meal. The road to our host's house in Thuraa, Meru, was scary … it was a rarely travelled, rocky and steep road with narrow passages that had to be technically navigated by the bikes. The dusk did not make it easier as the diminished visibility made it even more adventurous.

We all made it safely, were well-received and had supper, a huge snake found its way underneath one of the bikes (I guess in search of warmth) and startled one of the bikers … the rest of that evening was spent killing the snake and later settling down to much-needed rest.

The other highlights of this first week were seeing the Isiolo International Airport almost complete, riding round Mt Kenya though the amazing Igembe-Maua-Nanyuki route, seeing the splendour of the mountain enveloped by clouds on either side and clothed in thick green forest cover – this was breathtaking.

We ended up riding off road from Naro Moru towards Nyahururu, on to Rumuruti and back to Ol Kalou. We crowned this week on the new Dundori-Nakuru road that gives you a spectacular bird's eye view of Lake Nakuru.

Rev Nick Korir

Executive Pastor, Nairobi Chapel

#Ride47 Team Leader

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