Hats, hats, hats. You need a good hat to protect your head, and most importantly the back of your neck. Sunstroke comes mostly from the head and back of the neck area, so it's important to stop the sun from boiling your blood and cooking your brain! This means a wide brim hat, or some kind of hat designed for the bush, with protection that drapes down over the neck; some even fall down onto the shoulders. You want a hat, and a spare, and I even carry a bandanna or something similar, just in case. These come in handy for other things as well, but are a good backup. There are good hats that are soft and pliable and scrunch up nicely to be packed away and will do the job. I prefer a wide brim Tilley, and my backup is a Columbia Sportswear soft hat.
Shoes. Yes, you need shoes in the bush. For both the Turkana and Samburu safaris good, sturdy trail or hiking boots are the order of the bush. Note that you don't want mountain climbing style boots, that have a stiff, mostly unbendable sole. Just normal hiking boots. You need your foot to be able to bend to some degree and contour with the rocks in Turkana, the Samburu safaris are just like hiking anywhere through hilly terrain. I actually prefer minimalist trail running shoes, as my feet feel light and nimble in them. They do have slight drawbacks though, in that they offer little protection against water, (just think morning dew on the grass), and they usually breathe very well, letting dust in, so socks are quite dirty by the end of the day. They do not work for Turkana, however, as I found out when my foot found a fallen branch it liked, liked it enough to initiate intimate contact with, sending a thorn straight through the sole with ease. Luckily I didn't put my full weight on it and it didn't pierce the skin, but I learned my lesson. Waterproof is your choice, as we aren't walking though rivers or flooded areas. Doesn't hurt to have them if you like them and your feet tolerate them, but personally I need shoes that breathe. Also, a simple, light pair of sandals are nice for camp at the end of the day to get out of your walking shoes.
Sun screen. The equatorial sun is intense, and even when it isn't particularly hot, the sun is beating down on you like an equatorial hammer. You'll want sunscreen.
Something for when you forget your sunscreen. We'll remind you frequently, but depending on how sensitive your skin, you may still burn some, (please reference Sun screen, and then Hats, hats, hats). In Samburu we occasionally find Aloe Vera, but not frequently enough to count on. In Turkana, no such luck.
Water Bottle. Especially in Turkana, you will need a one liter water bottle at your side at all times. At all times. Yes, at all times. Except at meal times and when you are sleeping, you will have that water bottle at your side. Ok, most of the time. It's not as crucial in Samburu, but we will still insist on it. I find that the old style army canteens that clip to your belt are still the best for scrambling through the bush, as the hard plastic resists the thorns and branches. This is mostly the case in Samburu, as there are precious few bushes to scramble though in Turkana. If you do get one of these though, replace the chain or wrap it in some cloth or something, as the constant clink! clink! clink! of the chain against the plastic gets annoying. And it attracts lions from great distances. Just kidding.
Clothes. At this point, you really just want clothes that you are used to for any type of camping or trek. Safari style clothing, usually with pockets, are good. Don't go overboard though and look like you just walked out of a Tarzan movie, the locals will laugh at you. The usual khakis and green/brown colors are good. Bright colors attract bugs, black absorbs heat, white is impossible to keep clean. Design your bush wardrobe accordingly. It's s good idea to have at least as many pairs of socks as the number of days in the safari. Socks get wet, and you'll want to change, and depending on the conditions, water may be scarce. Washing your self will be more important than socks, and especially in Turkana, you may only get a small amount of water for that. Like, a few cups a day. If that. Water isn't nearly as much of an issue in Samburu, so washing socks, underwear is possible. Larger pieces of clothing depends on the conditions, (again, Samburu).
A good water proof jacket and layers are really the order of the bush. In Samburu, nights do get chilly, so you'll want a few layers to keep warm, but you don't need heavy clothes. We rarely see rain in Turkana, but it does happen, and while evenings and nights are a relief from the searing heat of the day, you can still feel chilly at night, so layers are good, but you don't need as much as Samburu. For me, a t shirt, a light long underwear top and a vest fleece go under my jacket, and I'm toasty.
Cameras. Take a chance, leave it at home. Experience your safari through your own eyes instead of a lens. Actually see and process the events that unfold before you instead of seeing them after the now digitally enhanced fact. Don't lose out on the moment while you're stumbling for the correct f stop and shutter speed. Or maybe not. You will need the obvious, which is memory cards to last the trip, but you will also need batteries. We have the ability to recharge smaller cameras, but not the bigger SLR type models. Our solar and battery systems charge very, very slowly, and will take a good 6-8 hours to charge a battery that normally charges in around 2 hours. Check with us though, as we are working on bigger and better systems that will charge smaller cameras faster and larger cameras as well.