10 Day Mt. Rwenzori Trekking

Mt.Rwenzori Trekking – Uganda Safari

TOUR CODE: JEH10-RWENZORI

Day 1.

Rwenzori Trekkers Hostel-Samalira Camp

After an early morning breakfast, you will start your Uganda Safari Rwenzori trekking from Trekkers hostel at Kyanjiki which is 12 kms from Kasese. You will meet Uganda Wildlife Rangers for briefing at their post which is located at approximately 1,727 meters above sea level. Todays rwenzori trek will take approximately 5-7 hours as the climb is about 7 to 9 km. You will pass through montane forest, water streams as Rwenzori is a catchment area for several rivers. In these forests, you may see some primates or hear their calls as you climb. We always serve our lunch at approximately 2570m above sea level where several black and white colubus and blue monkeys dash through the forest. After lunch and if interested we will visit a rock shelter which used to be a poachers hideout. At this point you will have better views of lake Edward and Queen Elizabeth National Park including Kasese town. Spend your night at Samalira Camp. Full Board

Day 2.

Climbing Rwenzori Samalira-Kiharo Camp

After breakfast, our Rwenzori trek will start as we climb past several cliffs, streams and prestine environments. At a certain point you will have a clear view of Lake George and Kilimbe town. As we come near to Chavumba ( literaly and locally meaning Heaven) , the climbing becomes less steeper and demanding. After passing Nyamwamba River valley at approximately 3, 249 metres above sea level, we will then proceed to Police Rock shelter for Lunch. After lunch we will climb for approximately 1.5 kms reaching Kiharo camp which is located at approximately 3588 meters above sea level for dinner and overnight.

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Day 3;

Rwenzori Climb

After our braekfast, we will start our rwenzori climb passed short trails that offer spectacular scenes of peaks, valleys and montane vegetation including the Giant lobelias and small bogs. Nyamwamba River valley is spectacular at this stage as cliffs and the confluence are worth photographing. Lunch will be served enroute and we will spend our overnight in Namusangi valley Camp 3-(4030 meters above sea level)-where nine glacier lakes can be viewed on a clear day.

Day 4 

Climb Rwenzori from 4030 meters.

Today we start our 5-6 hour climbing of Rwenzori at an altitude of 4030 meters above sea level through Bamwanjara pass to Kachope laes where on a clear day, you can view Mt stanely, Mt speke in the center and Mt baker. We will pass Kachope Lakes as we head to Camp 4 for dinner and overnight. Kindly note that the altitude at which this camp is located(4006) is less that were we started.

Day 5

Hike Rwenzori through Sott Elliott

Today is a relativately easy walk past Kitandara Lakes and climb through Sott Elliott pass to our camp situated right on the pass with fantastic views down the valley to Lake Bujuku and Mt Speke. To the south you see Kitandara Lakes and Wiesmanns Peak. The camp is at 4,460 metres in a flat sheltered position covered with moss where you can get a good sleep before climbing any of the peaks on Mt Stanley including Margherita and Alexandra Peaks. Sleep at Camp 5.

Day 6

Trekking Rwenzori to the glacier edge

We will have an early breeakfast possibly at aound 3:30 am and some light snack to get enough energy for this hike. this 3-5 hour climb to Magherita peak is the highlight of the day. It takes about one and a half hours to reach Elena hut (4,540m) which we bypass on the way to the peaks. After Elena the climb is steep but firm underfoot as you are walking on hard rock. You reach the edge of the glacier at 4,765 metres where you will need to put on crampons and harnesses at set distances. Although there is few crevices he guide will lead the way as one never knows. The scenery is spectular and as you start to reach the upper areas of the glacier and the saddle between the two peaks Alexandra and Margherita the sun will just be peeping over the horizon giving the chance of fantastic photographs of the two main peaks tip with sunlight. You then reach the upper weather station (4,830 metres) where you climb down to a ladder (4803 metres) onto the upper glacier leading to Magherita Peaks. First you climb up the glacier to a small saddle between Alexandra and Magherita Peaks at 5,025 metres where you scrambe up a steep rocky climb to the main peak. At times the rocks are covered with snow and ice and may be slippery but mostly it is firm rock. The exhilaration of reaching the top is enormous as you look across Albert Peak to the DRC (Congo) then east across the spectra of the Rwenzori Mountains. After enjoying the scenery and signing the book, you descend using the same path down to Camp 5. Sleep at Camp 5 for dinner and ovenight.

Day 7.

Climb down – camp 4

After a good breakfast you walk from Camp five down to Camp 4 which takes a couple of hours passing through Scott Elliot Pass. After a short break at Camp 4 there is a rather tough climb of 450 metres to pass over Bamwanjara Pass then down to Camp 3 at 4,030 metres While crossing the pass you get the chance to see hyrax sitting at the entrance to their rock shelter warming in the midday sun. Their main predator is the Rwenzori Leopard Panthera pardus ruwenzorii which is rarely seen. The leopard has been heavily poached in the past and there are few left however on a rare occasion on a misty or overcast day you may be lucky to see one briefly as they move between the rocks. Sleep at Camp 3.

Day 8.

Descend via Namusagi Valley – Rwenzori

Today we descend via the Namusangi valley across open moreland and large areas of tussock grass. As this is a valley floor it is relativately flat and water from farther up the mounains sweeps across the moors making the going wet and boggy. It is not soil but layers and layers of compresed tussock grass which over the years has transformed to peat. It is a good idea to have rubber boots for this section although occasionly you may find your foot can sink deeper than a rubber boot. In the future we intend to construct a timber boardwalk however this will be after construction of huts and other infrusture as it will be a long and expensive process. We contine down the valley passing several small waterfalls and moss covered valleys until we reach the steep rocky section above Mutinda with fantastic views of Mutinda Peaks directly ahead. We turn left just as before the river drops over a sheer cliff to the Mutinda valley to walk down several steep slopes until we reach the valley floor. Here we again cross the river before climbing to the Mutinda Rock Shelter. Although very beautiful this section can be tiresome as you scrambe over huge boulders on your climb to Mutinda. We have placed big tents under the rock shelter which is large enough for 80 to 100 people to take shelter from the weather. Sleep Mutinda Camp at 3,688 metres. 4-6 Hours of approximately 8 hours hike.

Day 9

Climb to top of Mutinda Lookout

In the morning you may decide to take the option of climbing to the top of Mutinda Lookout (3,975 metres), this takes about one hour and offers fantastic views as you stand on the moss covered peak. This climb is steep and near the top we have constructed a wooden ladder to enable you to climb more easily. There is no extra charge for this option and timewise it is easy to climb to the lookout and then walk down to Kalalama Camp. After taking in the views and unique atmosphere you then descend to the rock shelter and a cup of tea or coffee before descending to Kalalama. This adds about two hours or more to your trek.The walk down to Kalalama follows mainly down a rocky river where in places you are required to rock hop down longside the stream. The atmosphere is truly unique as the valley is closed in and often misty creating the ideal environment for mosses and lichen. As we near Kalalama Camp we pass though a flat valley dotted with Gaint Lobelia. Some say this is one of the most beautiful sections of the entire trip. Sleep in Kalalama Camp which is perched on a high ridge overlooking the Kilembe valley and Kasese town. approximately 4-5 hours

Day 10:

Descend down

Descend down through the bamboo forests which at times get boggy and slippery due to the mass of fallen leaves. During the wet season we cross to the ridge climbing to Samalira camp just above the lunch spot on day one as the river above Musenge Rock Shelter may be very deep and fast flowing, however during the dry season we continue directly down the ridge to Musenge shelter and down to the rangers post After debriefing, we sign off and walk down to Trekkers Hostel. Some fast walkers have descended to the rangers post by midday however the majority of people arrive at the rangers post around 1pm. 4-5 Hours.

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