Rwenzori Mountaineering & Chimpanzee Tracking in Kibale National Park.
The Rwenzori commonly known to outside world as The Mountain of the Moon which is found in Rwenzori Mountains National Park that offers Rwenzori Mountain Climbing. Uganda Safari will enable you climb Africa’s 3rd highest peak, hence enable you encounter several great scenery found within the Rwenzori mountain ranges.
The Rwenzori Mountains are one of the most exciting and challenging mountain ranges to trek in the world. 996 square kilometers of fantastical vegetation, lakes, rocky outcrops, cliffs, high glaciers and snow-capped peaks exist as a unique and mystical world into which you can escape.
Chimpanzee trekking is the major done activity in Kibale National Park and the second famous activity in Uganda after Gorilla trekking. Uganda is one of the world’s best primate destinations – and there are over 5,000 chimpanzees in the country. Kibale Forest National Park in the southwest of Uganda is home to around 1,500 – the highest concentration of chimps anywhere in the country.
RWENZORI MOUNTAINEERING IN UGANDA
The Rwenzori Mountains were gazetted as a national park in 1991, recognized as a World Heritage Site in 1994 and a Ramsar site in 2008. These classifications testify to the mountains’ international scientific importance. The word ‘Rwenzori’ roughly translates as ‘Rainmaker’, which clearly illustrates the importance of the mountains to Central Africa.
The height of the peaks may not match taller mountains elsewhere in the world, the highest point – Mount Stanley’s Margherita Peak – is 5,109 meters (although this is still the 4th highest peak in Africa!). But their remote location, fluctuating weather conditions, startlingly diverse vegetation, remoteness, viewpoints and low visitor numbers combine to thrill adventurous trekkers looking for a very special experience.
The atmosphere is wet; the mountains receive over 3 meters of rainfall a year. This makes the lower slopes lush with vegetation and the higher reaches covered in snow and ice. Although the glaciers have retreated massively over the last hundred years due to climate change, climbers in the wet season months will still have to navigate ice walls and significant snowfall to reach the peaks.
Trek to Nyabitaba (2650 meters)
You will start your Rwenzori Mountains hiking safari challenge with the trek to Nyakalengija trail head (1600 meters) where the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) will provide and informative briefing prior to commencing the trek. Our trek will take us past Bakonjo homesteads dwarfed by steep foothills and banana plantations. We will follow the trail along the Mubuku River to then cross the Mahoma River before steadily climbing through Pod carpus Forest.
Trek to John Matte Hut (3350 meters)
Rwenzori Mountains hiking safari will start off from Nyabitaba early after a substantive breakfast. We will follow a small trail dropping down through the forest to the Kurt Shafer Bridge, just below the convergence of the Bujuku and Mubuku Rivers. The forest gradually turns into a bamboo zone where the trail is slippery and moss covered. A zone of the giant heather, lobelia and groundsel vegetation emerges before the Nyamuleju rock shelter before traversing a bog to the hut.
Trek to Bujuku Hut (2900 meters)
Rwenzori Mountains hiking safari on a trail that crashes down to cross the Bujuku River and enters Lower Bigo Bog, home of giant lobelias. We will cross the bog to the Upper Bog before continuing to Lake Bujuku where views of the highest mountain can be seen.
Trek to Elena Hut
After Bujuku, we will climb the boggy trail up the slopes west of the lake, passing through the paranormal groundsel gully and then ascend to the Scott Elliott Pass (4372 meters). A metal ladder will take you oven an extremely steep section after which the trail branches; the right one leads up to Elena Hut and Mt. Stanley over a steep rocky trail, the left leads to the Scott Elliot Pass and down to Lake Kitandara.
Ascent to Mt. Stanley (5109 meters) to Kitandara Hut (4027 meters)
For Rwenzori mountains hiking safari travelers that do not wish to climb the peak, a more restful day walking from Elena Hut (4541 meters) to Lake Kitandara (4023 meters). For those who wish, but also depending on altitude sickness, visibility, climbing ability we will climb a further three hours to Margherita peak (5109 meters) and later down to Kitandara Hut. We will trek to the Elena glacier before moving on to the Stanley Plateau. We will climb and scramble to the Margherita summit, the highest point of the Rwenzori. The use of crampons and ropes may be necessary. We will need to be prepared for a tough, arduous time in the mountains. We will then return to the Scott Elliot pass, view the magical Bujuku Lake and Mt. Speke at a distance and will then continue down to Lake Kitandara.
Trek to Guy Yeopman Hut (3260 meters)
Climb from the base of Mt. Baker to the south side of the mountain to the Fresh Field Pass (4280 meters). From there we can view the Congo to the west, Mt. Stanley to the north. From the pass, the boggy trail will continue downwards, passing the rock shelter at Bujangalo, the base camp for the historic expedition by the Duke of Abruzzi in 1906.
Trek to Nyakalengija Trail Head (1600m ASL)
The trail to Nyabitaba Hut can be muddy and very slippery under foot.