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Gorilla Trekking Experience in Uganda

Gorilla Trekking Experience in Uganda: How is it done? gorilla permit

Traveling to see these gentle giants (mountain gorillas) has become an incredible dream for most trackers and travelers to Africa. Different people have rapidly written and told stories regarding gorilla tracking as an unforgettable experience that brings you into contact with these gentle giants in their natural homes. These stories keep morale high, boosting more and more travelers to come and also do gorilla tracking, and also causing them to wonder how this safari can be from beginning to end with Africa’s largest apes that were on the verge of extinction in 1980.

Wake up Early and attend the Briefing

The gorilla tracking briefing takes place at the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) park offices at 7.45 a.m., and the tracking activity usually starts at 8.30 am. Some gorilla families are much easier to track compared to others; this is determined mostly by the altitude they range or how long they move during the day. Usually, it takes 1 hour of tracking time to be able to find your gorilla family (when they brief you on the family they gave you to track).

Have your Gorilla Permit with you?

Carry your Mountain Gorilla Permits with you as you travel, plus other related documents for further clarification. From Uganda (UWA), Rwanda (RDB), the Rwanda Development Board, and the Congolese Institute for Nature Conservation (ICCN), the only responsible government organs to give you these permits, these permit prices vary, with Rwanda selling so expensively ($1500), Uganda at $800, and the DRC at $450.In Uganda, this permit will indicate the section from which you will track to show that a tracker booked a family gorilla in that specific section (Buhoma, Rushaga, Ruhija, and Nkuringo).

Tracking the Gorillas/meeting the Gorillas

After hiking a lengthy distance, you will finally meet these gentle giants, find them relaxed in their families, and spend 1 hour with them. All your fatigue, panting and sweating due to the hiking will disappear into excitement and joy when you look into the eyes of a dominant silverback guarding its entire family. Observe all the rules and regulations that were given to you, like keeping calm, being silent, and not touching these gentle giants. A distance of 7 meters must be maintained to avoid the spread of communicable diseases among these mountain gorillas. Watch the silverback that is the head of the family, with adult females nursing the young ones while the juveniles entertain the family, keeping it live and enjoyable. You can also stand a distance and take as many photos as you can, but non-flash-light cameras are the only ones allowed for taking photos.

Hire Porters & Hiking Sticks

The key factors you must look into for an enjoyable and successful trek. Porters help relieve you of the burden of carrying luggage; instead, you are free to enjoy your tracking activity. The walking sticks do help ease movement on the steep slopes where hiking becomes hard. These 2 (porters and walking sticks) are gotten from the headquarters at a relatively friendly price, pointing at the indirect support of the local communities adjacent to the park.

How to dress for the Jungle

Dressing appropriately for the jungle is paramount to a successful gorilla tracking experience. Wear good light & waterproof hiking boots for easy movement on slippery, muddy grounds; sturdy gardening gloves to grab the bushes for support; and rain jackets for the uncertain forest weather. Also, long socks are tacked into trousers, long-sleeved shirts, and sweaters. Insect repellents, hats, sunglasses, waterproof bags, etc. A tracker dressed well is assured of a memorable gorilla tracking experience.

Hiking into the Jungle

Immediately after the briefing, you go hiking in search of the mountain gorillas. Each group of trackers is headed by an armed ranger and a park guide. It’s quite a hard activity, but rather requires great effort to hike via slippery, muddy grounds with thorny bushes and cold weather inside the dark forests. Hiking takes 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the way these gentle giants move and where they are still located, but with 99% certainty, you will meet them. Still, hiking gives you the chance to view other animals like monkeys, baboons, etc., and many different birds, which enables you to have an enjoyable & memorable experience. All trackers are advised to stay in their groups and keenly be right behind/follow their guides/rangers since scattering away from the group can get you lost in the jungle, which is so dangerous to one’s life.