My Uganda Gorilla Safari was an exciting and memorable experience that i have so far had in 2019. From getting face to face with man’s closest cousin (Gorilla), I also learnt how to speak like one ”Uh uuh” to enjoying the gorilla music.This is one of the most incredible experiences I advise not to missout on your trip to Uganda.
The Uganda Gorilla Safari started at 6:30am by road and it took us 71/2 hours to get to our destination. Our guide Paul of Experience Africa Adventures informed us that we shall have two stopovers. The purpose for that is to have lunch, stretch legs and freshen up.On arrival we were welcomed to a slice of luxury at our door step, we loved every aspect especially the complimentary message. The Buhoma lodge exceeded our expectations in all ways adding a slice to the Uganda gorilla safari.
Early in the morning, we headed to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park where we were welcomed by our guide Herbert. In Bwindi there are three areas to view gorillas that’s Buhoma trail, Rushaga trail and Nkuringo trail. You will need closed shoes like sneakers or trainers or boots, raincoat and a packed lunch.
Bwindi is 131 square kilometers big with 480 mountain gorillas that cross over to its sister forests of Mgahinga in Democratic Republic of Cong and Virunga NP in Rwanda. During the Uganda gorilla safari you learn that they don’t respect borders and keep crossing from country to country. Uganda has the largest number of gorillas in the world than Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Cong.
We set off for our Uganda gorilla safari on the Nkuringo trail after a 10 minutes briefing about the dos and don’ts. The group has 19 members lead by a silver buck as the alpha male, however, Uganda has 30 families. Only 13 families are habituated and they are the only ones trekked.
Health is paramount during the trekking activity and if you have flu then they won’t admit you for gorilla trekking.This is because we share the same gens and gorillas are 99% close to humans and suffer from the same diseases as us. During the trip the guide is equipped with a gun for safety since we will encounter other wildlife like forest elephants. The purpose is to scare them away when they head our way.
Much as it’s tedious tour the rewards are immense and you need to be physically fit to take part in the gorillas safaris. The Uganda Wildlife Authority found a solution for those that can manage to go through the hi-caps. There porters and stenches they carry you on and throughout the trip. At some point you will need the porter to assist you with your cargo at $15. Each of the members in the group was given a walking stick to use in case they fail to climb the hills.
As we kept on moving we saw very many bird species and if you are a birder this is a great haven. Herbert kept on listening to the radio call for any hits about where the gorillas have been spotted. On asking him, he informed us that a group of rangers are sent to the forest before trekking starts to trail the gorillas.
After walking for one hour and 30 minutes, the briefing started to sink in, I needed a porter but I thought it was a waste of money. I cling on my walking stick as if there is no tomorrow. The good news came in that the gorillas had been spotted. We took a shortcut it was steep and covered with dense vegetation but the stick was handy on this trail. As we get closer, Herbert advised to drink enough water since as we get closer there will be no eating. You will only spend one hour with the gorillas then head back.
Oh Jesus, it’s so close to me ohohooooh. This made the tour so amazing and memorable experience I had in Uganda. The name of the gorilla is Namuhago known for the big lady in the family. I took so many pictures of gorillas from those climbing trees, taking care of their babies to those feeding. Herbert started explaining to us the gorilla vocalization meanings which is associated with different behaviors. Gorillas scream, hoot, roars and growls each has meaning in their gorilla world.
The guides have also over time learnt what the different vocalization means. When a gorilla screams wants to be had in the dense vegetation. During feeding when you hear “Uh, uh,uh uh uh” it means my friend back off. Did you know that gorillas sing, this happened and it was so amazing listening to the ‘’mwaah mwahwah hwah hwah hwah hwah’’ . My heart remained on this Uganda gorilla safari till next time