Lake Bogoria National Reserve was gazetted to protect the herds of greater kudu which live mainly on the western slopes of the Laikipia Escarpment, which towers over the lake to the east. The reserve covers approximately 110 square kilometres (44 square kilometres) and includes the shallow soda lake which attracts huge flocks of flamingoes. Bogoria was formerly known as Lake Hannington during the colonial era. It was named after the missionary bishop who was murdered in Uganda.
Hot springs and spectacular spluttering
steam jets are one of the main attractions and are located approximately three-quarters
of the way down the western lake shore heading south. The water in the springs
is boiling hot and spouts up from subterranean aquifers surrounded by magma
heated rock. Extreme caution should be exercised in walking around the springs.
Some of the apparently solid ground is merely a crust on top of extremely
hot mud. The sides of the larger springs are treacherously slippery, and more
than one unfortunate soul has died after complications from scalding. If you
get a bit hungry there is often a helpful fellow who, for a few shillings,
will arrange to have fresh maize boiled to a turn on the end of a pole in
The entire lake is fed by hot, sulphur rich springs which make swimming impossible but have created an environment of particular interest for the geomorphologist, ornithologist, or those interested in the special adaptations of fish. Even the layman will marvel at the primaeval scenery.
Lake Bogoria (formerly Lake Hannington) is 64 kilometres (40 miles) north of Nakuru and can be reached either from the south by taking a turning to the right about 38 kilometres (24 miles) from Nakuru or by continuing along the tarmac road until near to Marigat and then turning right at the sign post for Loboi Gate. The approach from the south gives a spectacular view of the lake which can suddenly be seen after a bend in the road. However, only four-wheel drive vehicles should be taken and even then progress is very slow, particularly along the lava flows near the entrance to the reserve. The northern road is good and can be negotiated by any saloon car up to the hot springs.
The only accommodation is Acacia, Fig Tree and Riverside campsites at the southern end of the lake. No facilities are available. All necessary water has to be brought along since the water in the lake is not drinkable. There is also a campsite just outside the northern entrance to the reserve, where water is available.
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