Rwenzori Mountain Hike
A 13-day wildlife safari in search of the mammals, particularly the primates, of Kibale Forest, Queen Elizabeth and other national parks, as well as the Mountain Gorillas of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.
Rwenzori Mountains - Western Uganda
This is a 10 day safari which starts and finishes in Kampala. This safari can also be done on a scheduled basis.
This safari takes you to the Mountains of the moon-a World Heritage Centre. The 120km Rwenzori chain is regarded to be the legendary snow-capped Mountains described by Ptolemy in AD150 as the “mountains of the Moon”. The mist-shrouded peaks and the distinctive glacial peaks visible miles away, provide stunning back drops to this magnificent mountain and gives your eyes the beauty you have been looking for. A safari into the Rwenzoris is an exhilarating and rewarding experience which cannot be easily got any where on the African continent.
For high climbers, reaching an elevation of 5,109m (Margherita peak) is one of the most rewarding experiences in Africa. Though the mountains ranks third among the highest mountains of Africa, many climbers have found climbing the Rwenzoris as the most challenging on the whole African continent.
The eastern side of the Rwenzoris receives high rainfall amounts leading to growth of luxuriant mountain floral vegetation which grows to absurd proportions, with giant lobelia and groundsel shooting up to 10 metres. This has attracted different animals and birds that can thrive in this luxuriant vegetation.
Magherita Peak - Western Uganda
Day 1 Kampala - Kasese
Our safari guide will pick you from your hotel and drive to Kasese passing via Queen Elizabeth National Park. On the way have a stop over at Mpambire to see the royal drum makers, as well as at the Equator for photography at this amazing place.. Proceed to the Queen Elizabeth National Park, keeping an eye out for wildlife. Dinner and Overnight at Margherita Hotel, Kasese
Day 2 Nyabitaba Hut (2650m)
Early in the morning, after having a cup of coffee, drive to Nyakalengija trailhead (1600m). Meet porters and guides and begin hiking up to Nyabitaba hut. Walk through the matooke plantations on the side of the steep foothills, past the local Bakonjo homesteads. Continue with the trail along the Mubuku River, through landslides. After crossing the Mahoma River, climb steeply through bracken fern slopes and Podocarpus forest to Nyabitaba Hut. Dinner and Overnight at Nyabitaba Hut.
Day 3 John Matte Hut (3350m).
From Nyabitaba follow the trail that drops down through the forest to the Kurt Shafer Bridge, just below the confluence of the Mubuku and Bujuku rivers. Passing through the bamboo forest, traverse through a long and exhausting stretch of slippery moss-covered rock. From the Nyamileju rock shelter, Mount Stanley and Mount Speke can be seen before passing into the zone of the giant heather, lobelia and groundsel. Finally reach John Matte Hut after passing through the tiring bog, for Dinner and Overnight at the Hut.
Day 4 Bujuku Hut
From John Matte Hut the trail drops down to cross the Bujuku River and enters Lower Bigo Bog, the home of giant lobelias. Jumping from tussock to tussock, the bog is finally crossed but rarely without the feet sampling some of the freezing ooze below. The Upper Bigo bog gives way to Bujuku Lake, with views of Mt Baker to the South and Mt Stanley to the West. Bujuku Hut, well located in the shadow of Mount Baker and Mount Speke, is set in a narrow valley below Stuhlmann Pass. Dinner and overnight at the hut.
Day 5 Elena Hut (4541m).
Leaving Bujuku, the trail takes you through more bog, while climbing the steep slopes west of the lake and through the magical Groundsel Gully as it ascends to Scott-Elliot Pass at 4372m. At the head of the gully a metal ladder takes you over a steep section after which the trail is divided into two. The trail on your right leads up to Elena Hut and Mount Stanley on a steep trail over large boulders, while the trail on your left leads to Scott-Elliot Pass and down to Kitandara Lakes. Dinner and Overnight at the Coolly and Icy Elena Hut
Day 6 Margherita peak
For those aiming at reaching Margherita peak (5109m), continue to the base of the Stanley Glacier. To reach the summit of Margherita, the climb takes about 5-7 hours depending on the weather conditions and the pace of climbing this mountain. This tough walk takes you over three glaciers, slippery rock, ice and very exposed areas which are open on many sides. Note that this climb is for only physically fit and technical climbers. Climbing on to the glaciers, cross the Stanley Plateau and proceed with the ascent. Acclimatized to fog, altitude sickness and coolly weather, scramble up to the summit of Margherita the highest peak of the Rwenzoris. Given the high altitude and the tough conditions even if you do not reach the peak, don’t get disappointed. Prepare for you return through the Scott-Elliot pass, where there are spectacular views back to Bujuku Lake and Mount Speke, up to Mount Stanley and down to the Kitandara Lakes. After the trail that passes you through an alpine zone of sparse vegetation and rough boulders, descend past the Kitandara Lakes for dinner and overnight at the Kitandara Hut.
Day 7 Guy Yeoman Hut (3260m)
From Kitandara, take on the trail that ascends steeply up the headwall, spreading out from the base of Mount Baker and continuing along the south side of the mountain to Fresh field Pass. At this point you can view into the Congo to the west and Mount Stanley to the north. From the pass, take on the long trail passing the rock shelter at Bujongolo, the base camp for the historic expedition by the Duke of Abruzzi in 1906.Dinner and Overnight at Guy Yeoman Hut.
Day 8 Nyabitaba (2650m)
Take on the path down to Nyabitaba hut. The path can be slippery and muddy and there fore requires careful balancing over the vertical mud or steep rock. Remember this is part of the adventure with in this mountain. Dinner and Overnight at Nyabitaba Hut
Day 9 Nyakalengija trailhead (1600m)
Descend gently down the muddy paths to the trailhead, finally arriving in Kasese towards lunch time. After having lunch in Kasese, drive to Queen Elizabeth National Park. Proceed to the Kazinga channel for a launch cruise where you may see a wide variety of animals such as hippos, elephants, solitary buffaloes and a vast array of birds come to drink. Dinner and Overnight at Mweya/Jacana
Day 10 Queen Elizabeth - Kampala
Wake up for an early morning game drive. Take breakfast and depart for Kampala reaching late in the evening.