Day 5 – Bale Mountain Lodge, Ethiopia

I was in Ethiopia to tag onto the last few days of a Kibran Tours fam trip to Ethiopia.  They had visited the cultural sites in the North of Ethiopia and were spending the last few days of their trip at Bale Mountain Lodge.  I caught up with the group at Addis airport and it was great to catch up on all their adventures they’d experienced in the 6 days they had been in Ethiopia. Our charter flight down to Robe airstrip lasted just over an hour and took us over stunning views of the Rift valley. The Ethiopian airlines (ET) flight down to Robe was stopped a few months ago whilst they fix the runway. It is expected to take 3 months to get the runway fixed but ET have promised to update us on its progress.

View of Rift valley on the way to BML

After a couple of donkeys on the runway prevented us from our first two landing attempts, we eventually landed to be greeted by a crowd of onlookers!   Guy and 3 Kibran drivers were there to greet us and drive to the lodge. The drive takes 1.5 hours from Robe airstrip but takes you through the park and over the Sanetti plateau where the Ethiopian wolves can be found.

Sanetti plateau

The park is incredible in its diversity of ecosystems ranging from moorland, Alpine forests and then up onto the lunar-type landscape of the Sanetti plateau.

Dropping down into the Harenna forest

On the drive over we were treated to endless sights of endemic birds including the Blue Winged Goose.

Blue winged goose

Unfortunately the wolves were proving to be a little elusive today. Guy, was incredibly frustrated, especially as they have a 100% success rate of seeing the wolves. At least we had the return journey to have another attempt!

Team briefing at BML
Team briefing at BML

We arrived at Bale Mountain Lodge to be greeted by tea and cake or alcoholic beverages depending on what took peoples fancy.   Rooms were allocated and after a lovely, long, hot shower we reconvened around the fire pit.   Dinner was a delicious meal of fresh Greek salad (with lettuce from the BMl Vegie patch!), marinated beef and ginger pudding.

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