Our four days at Kapishya Hot Springs were some of the most peaceful and relaxing I’ve spent in Zambia. We camped along the beautiful Mansha River, and the simple act of falling asleep to the sounds of flowing water might’ve made the whole trip worthwhile. But we also got to soak every night in the semi-tropical surroundings of a natural hot spring, hike up rocky hills for sunset views, climb boulders, and float along the river. I even got a massage (!) in an open-air nsaka along the banks of a small tributary of the Mansa.
Located along the always-amazing Muchinga Escarpment, Kapishya was my idea of paradise. And to top it all off, I spent the whole trip with some of my favorite PCVs in Zambia, along with Adam’s awesome girlfriend and sister, who were visiting from the States. We shared transportation adventures, good food, and an Iron Chef cook-off at the end. The twelve of us had planned to spend three nights at Kapishya. In the end, five of us stayed an extra night. I could’ve stayed another week. Or maybe the rest of my life. :+)
Just getting there was half the adventure. The 12 of us hitched in three separate vehicles to the turnoff for Kapishya, and while we waited with all our bags for transport to the hot springs, we were quite the spectacle. Here’s Tristan and Kirsten, surrounded by curious Zambians.
Apparently white people normally have cars and drive on through. This time, local residents were treated to three full hours of muzungu-watching. I’m pretty sure a lot of kids skipped school that day because of us.
Adam waiting with the bags.
Erica and Kirsten load up the truck that took all 12 of us and all our gear to the springs.
While local residents watch the whole spectacle from nearby tuck shops.
Finally on our way. Twelve people piled into the back of a truck on a long dirt road always for good times.
Jesse and Dan in the truck. Dan wore his helmet for extra “safety.”
Zach apparently enjoyed his spot seated under Dan’s crotch.
Images from four days spent at Kapisha Hot Springs, along the Muchinga Escarpment’s Mansha River.
Campsite along the Mansha River.
For our float trip on the river, Adam brought out his best pants and his worst booze.
On our way to the put-in: Erica, Dan, Molly, and Megan.
Local kids watched us put the boats in the water, and kept on staring from the bridge as we floated away.
You’d stare, too, if you saw this spectacle of muzungus setting out on the river.
Dan was the first to go overboard. (Commandeering and destroying Kirsten’s shirt in the process.) Nearly everyone went for a swim eventually, in spite of crocodile warnings.
Kirsten inspects her ruined tank top.
Megan, Erica, and Zach struggle along on the second boat.
Erica goes for a swim.
Our very serious co-captains: Jesse, Kirsten, and Adam.
Negotiating a bridge underpass.
Back at the hot springs.
Crescent moon at camp, just after sunset.
Steamy hot springs!
Zach and Adam enjoy the luxury of pizza while Kajsa lounges with a book.
Bouldering!!!!! Adam on a rock.
Does this count as alpenglow? Doe these count as mountains? When you live in Zambia, the answer is: Yes!
Views on the way up a rocky hill.
Made it to the top just in time to catch the sunset.
Adam with his epic ladies: Kajsa and Molly.
Me journaling in a comfy spot.
Me enjoying the view from atop a boulder.
One up, one to go. Adam’s climbing up underneath me.
More “mountain” views.
Sweet old growths on an old tree. Looked to me like the gnarled face and hands of an old, old man.
Adam up a tree.
Zach out on a limb.
The spot where I got an amazing massage.
Iron Chef Cook-off! On our unexpected fourth night, we had an odd mix of leftover food: soya pieces, peanut butter, carrots, powdered milk, stale bread, rice, taco seasoning, and a whole lot of eggs. So we turned in into an iron chef competition: siblings Adam and Molly vs. the internationals, Zach and Kajsa. I got to judge.
Adam carries away his huge stack of strange soya omelettes.
The internationals, Zach and Kajsa, were the clear winners.
Molly and Adam’s final product was, well … less inspiring. Though the presentation – on a frisbee – was certainly novel.
On the way out, Zach and I got a lucky ride with a South African couple in their insanely huge, decked out motor home.
Our generous drivers.