15 years, still discovering and enjoying the pearl
This 28km trail takes you to explore a cross section of the scenic Rwenzori mountains. The trail is an alternative to longer treks that lead to the high peaks. On this three days two nights mahoma trip, you will traverses the lower slopes of the mountains finishing at Lake Mahoma where the trail joins the existing ‘Central Circuit’ trail to return to the park gate. The entire circuit can be completed in 1-2 nights, or parts of it can be done as a day hike.
During this trip, you will explore some of the 70 mammals and 217 birds that are found in Rwenzori that include 19 species that are endemics to the Albertine Rift, as well as some of the world’s rarest plants. The plant life is mixture of lush forest, bamboo forest, heather, everlasting flowers, giant lobelia and a multitude of plant life endemic to this mountain.
Day 1: Arrive at the base camp of Rwenzori Mountains at Nyakalengija. Arrival day from your previous destination to the base camp to be welcomed by Ruboni community camp. Walk in the village, meet the local people, and eat the fresh fruits and vegetables from the Rwenzori foothills. This afternoon, you will be briefed by the camp manager and introduced to the guide. Check all the luggage to approve if you have packed all the inessentials. This is the day you will determine what to hire and put everything together before dinner. (D).
Day 2: Start trekking from the base camp (1615m) to Omuka Kiiza Camp (2,977 mtrs) With your local guide you will trek 7.2 km through a lush forested ridge with breath taking and the Mubuku river trailing along the valley. Common wildlife on the trail you might see include Blue Monkeys, Columbus Monkeys, Chimpanzees and the three horned chameleon. The forest is home to a multitude of birds with the Rwenzori Turaco as the most favorite bird of the day (BLD).
Day 3: Omuka Kiiza camp to Lake Mahoma camp (3,515 mtrs). On the second day, After an early breakfast, you will head to heading to lake Mahoma on the 6.6km journey. The camp is located besides the largest lake in Rwenzori Mountains. The trail is dominated by the Bamboo and heather forest. You will be following the forest elephant trails as you trail their footmarks, sometimes with ponds of water. On a lucky day, you may spot them taking a drink from the hot springs. Other commune sight will be the giant lobelia and everlasting flowers, later on the trail. (BLD).
Day 4: Complete the Mahoma trail trek today to Nyakalengija gate. From Lake Mahoma descend to the base camp via Nyabitaba camp through the central circuit trail. In the morning before you start off, with a ranger, you may choose to take views of the lake at different angles when you take one of the best pictures of the lake. The ranger will suggest the best nature rail of the day. After breakfast you will head to the central circuit trail looking for the outlet back to the park gate. The trail will be forested with heather and bamboo forest before you pass by Nyabitaba camp and ranger post in the Mubuku valley and descend to the park gate. Common sight will be the lush forested trail, monkeys and the three horned chameleons. Arrive to Ruboni community camp in the afternoon (BLD)
Day 5 Transfer from the base camp to Kampala, Uganda’s capital city or any other destination of choice(B)
This is a trail to the higher peaks of Rwenzori mountains. the trek goes through Nyakalengija gate on the central circuit trail. the central circuit trail is the oldest and most popular of the all the trails on Rwenzori mountains. the trek takes you up to Margarita Peak on Mt. Stanley, 5.109 m. above seas level. For those interested in doing the central circuit without margarita, the highest point you will reach is 4.023m above seas level at Kitandara camp
Rwenzori trekking can be the most challenging of all the three east African mountains (kilimanjaro and Kenya) Thanks to the great infrastructural improvement and skills of the local porters and guides, the mountains is much easier to climb than it has been in the past years. for those trekking the snow peaks including margarita, special climbing equipment will be required. the central circuit requires ordinary climbing equipment. in each e-case we will share a packing list to help you pack properly. On the trip, we take all foods, supplies, equipment. These will be included in the trip cost.
Day 1: Arrival at Entebbe airport and be picked to transfer to Kampala for dinner and overnight. (BB)
Day 2: Transfer to the Rwenzoris: Arrive to the base camp today. Depending on your past trip activities, you will be picked from Queen Elizabeth national park, Kasese town or received at the base camp. Dinner and overnight (BB)
Day 3: Nyakalengija – Nyabitaba camp 2632 m: First trekking day after a briefing with the local porters and guides you will move from 1646 meters above sea level to Nyabitaba camp at 2632 m Dinner and overnight at the camp. (5hrs) Mountain camp or Hut (FB)
Day 4: Nyabitaba-John Mathe camp 3414 m: Leave Nyabitaba and take the central circuit loop anticlockwise. The trail leads to the crossing point of rivers Mubuku and Bujuku, difficult to pass in the past but easy today thanks to a bridge. After a slippery and difficult path you will reach Nyamuleju hat at 3000 meters a simple shelter among rocks. It’s better to hike for other 3 hours and reach John Matte camp at 3414 meters and spend the night. (7 hrs) Mountain camp or Hut (FB)
Day 5: John Mathe – Bujuku camp 3962m: The third trekking day will lead you to Bujuku camp after 5 hours of hiking passing through the Bigo bog where there is an old shelter. Bujuku camp is located at 3962 meters near the Bujuku Lake in a valley among 3 mountains: Mt Stanley, Mt Baker and Mt Speke. (5hrs) Mountain camp or Hut (FB)
Day 6: Bujuku to kitandara camp, 4.023 m. After you descend to Upper Kitandara Lake and through thick mud to Lower Kitandara lake where is located Kitandara camp. From Kitandara camp you can proceed for climbing Mount Baker or Mount Luigi di Savoia and the peak Vittorio Sella. Enjoy the view of Mt. Luigi di Savoia (3hrs) Mountain camp or Hut (FB)
Day 7: Kitandara Hat to Guy Yeoman camp, 3.261 m. Some people consider the fifth trekking day as hard as the second! After crossing Fresh Field pass head for the Guy Yeoman camp at 3261 meters. In case of fog or bad weather it could be hard to follow the trail and remember that the last part is full of bogs. Before Guy Yeoman hat there are other two shelters: Bujongolo and Kaijongo. Bujongolo is well known for having been the base camp of Luigi di Savoia, Duke of Abruzzi who conquered and fully explored the Rwenzori in 1906. (6 hrs) Mountain camp or Hut (FB)
Day 8: Guyeoman – Nyabitaba camp 2632 m: The sixth trekking day on Rwenzori is dedicated to descend to the camp of Nyabitaba. On the descent there are some tricky points since the terrain is often slippery and boggy. After Kichunchu rock the trail will become easier passing through bamboo forests interesting to many birdwatchers. (5-6 hrs) Mountain camp or Hut (FB)
Day 9: Nyabitaba – Base camp/ Nyakalengija: The seventh trekking day return to the Rwenzori National Park headquarters Ruboni community base camp. After a well-earned rest with the entire trekking group, porters and guides we go to for diner and overnight. (3hrs) (BB)
Day 10: Nyakalengijo/ Base camp – Kampala: Today travel back to Kampala for dinner and overnight. Options include stopping to take scenic pictures on the way, the city walking tour, the Ndere cultural dance night (on selected days) or handicrafts shopping. (BB)
Day 11: transfer to the airport for your flight.
Meal plan Key: