Short Overview Situated on the Uganda-Congo border, Rwenzori Mountains National Park is believed to be home to the fabled ‘Mountains of the Moon’….
Situated on the Uganda-Congo border, Rwenzori Mountains National Park is believed to be home to the fabled ‘Mountains of the Moon’. Whether there’s truth to this belief or not is moot, as these visually spectacular mountains and the accompanying glaciers and icy lakes make for something truly memorable.
Size: 996 square kilometres.
Location: Eastern Uganda on the Uganda-Congo border. Close to Kibale National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Best Time: June – August or December – February for climbing. January – February and July – August are the driest months.
To Do: Climbing, hiking, and bird watching.
Known For: Excellent mountain and volcano climbing routes.
Day 1: Transfer To Rwenzori Mountain National Park
Early morning after breakfast you will commence on your Rwenzori Mountain Hiking Safari to the Rwenzori Mountain National Park trail head at Nyakalengija. Through Kampala to Fort Portal where you will stop over for an en-route lunch. Later proceed to Mihunga lodge to relax and prepare for your next day of hiking the Rwenzori
Day 2: Trek To Nyabitaba (2650m Asl)
Procede to the Nyakalengija trail head (1600m) where the Uganda Wildlife Authority will provide an informative briefing prior to commencing the trek. Walk past Bakonjo homesteads dwarfed by steep foothills and banana plantations. Follow the trail along the Mubuku River, to cross the Mahoma River and before climbing steadily through Podocarpus forest.
Accommodation: Nyabitaba Hut (2650m ASL)
Day 3: Trek To John Matte Hut (3350m Asl)
After a substantive breakfast, depart Nyabitaba early, along 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 Nyamileju rock shelter before traversing a bog to the hut.
Accommodation: John Matte Hut (3350m)
Day 4: Trek To Bujuku Hut (2900m Asl)
The trail crashes down to cross the Bujuku River and enters Lower Bigo Bog, home of giant lobelias. Cross the bog to the Upper Bigo bog before continuing to Lake Bujuku where views of the highest mountain – Stanley – to the west are to be seen.
Accommodation: Bujuku Hut (3900m)
Day 5: Trek To Elena Hut (4541m Asl)
After Bujuku, the boggy trail climbs the slopes west of the lake, passing through the paranormal groundsel gully. Ascend to Scott-Elliot Pass (4372m). A metal ladder takes you over an extremely steep section after which the trail branches, the right leads up to Elena Hut and Mt Stanley over a steep rocky trail, while the left leads to Scott-Elliot Pass and down to Lake Kitandara. at the base of the Stanley Glacier
Accommodation: Elena Hut (4541m)
Day 6: Ascent Of Mount Stanley (5109m Asl) To Kitandara Hut (4027m Asl)
For those who do not wish to climb the peak, a more restful day walking from Elena Hut (4541m) to Lake Kitandara (4023m). For those who wish, but also depending on altitude sickness, visibility, climbing ability and acclimatisation, climb a further three hours to Margherita peak (5109m) and later down to Kitandara Hut. Trek to the Elena glacier, before moving on to the Stanley Plateau. Climb and scramble to Margherita summit, the highest point of the Rwenzori. Use of Crampons and ropes may well be necessary. Be prepared for a tough, arduous time in the mountains. Return to the Scott-Elliot pass, view the magical Bujuku Lake and Mt Speke at a distance, continue to down to the Lake Kitandara.
Accommodation: Kitandara Hut (4023m)
Day 7: Trek To Guy Yeoman Hut (3260m Asl)
After breakfast, a steep climb from the base of Mt Baker to the south side of the mountain to the Fresh field Pass (4280m). Views into the Congo to the west and Mt Stanley to the north are possible. From the pass, the boggy trail continues downwards, passing the rock shelter at Bujangolo, the base camp for the historic expedition by the Duke of Abruzzi in 1906.
Accommodation: Guy Yeoman Hut (3262m)
Day 8: Trek To Nyakalengiija Trail Head (1600m Asl)
Morning breakfast and load up on the equipment. Later, the porters and the climbing partly finally descend out of the Mountains. Trekking will be through a 6 hours walk that goes past the nearby Lake Mahoma and Nyabitaba and passes through the heather area and the Moss Zone. This may be the final hut in the Rwenzori Mountains or you could exit all the way if you feel energetic.
Drive to Entebbe Airport or hotel for relaxation before taking a flight back home.