Mt. Elgon National Park
Mt. Elgon National Park
Mount Elgon National park is situated at the eastern part of Uganda. It covers an area of 1,121krni. At the top of the mountain is the largest volcanic caldera in the world and is a massive solitary volcanic mountain on the border of eastern Uganda and western Kenya. Its vast form. Ilkm in diameter, rises 3000m above the surrounding plains. Its mountainous regineial landscape and cool heights offers respite for humans from the hot plains below and its higher -, attitude provide refuge for flora and fauna. Mount ; Elgon National Park is home to over 300 species of birds. including the endangered Lammergeier. Small antelopes, forest monkeys, elephants and buffalos .. also live on the mountainside. The higher slopes are — protected by national parks in Uganda and Kenya. , . . creating an extensive trans-boundary conservation area which has been declared a UNESCO Man & Biosphere Reserve.
The Local People
Mt Elgon is home to two tribes, the Bagisu. and Sabiny Iiving at the forest margins. Both tribes practice cicumcsion but the Bagisu people on the southern
slopes of Mount Egon are known for their biannual lmbalu ceremony in which boys are initiated into manhood. The Karamoiong. who live between Mount Elgon and Kidepo Valley, are pastoralists who continue to resist change in favour of their traditional, semi-nomadic lifestyle. The Bagisu, also known as the Bamasaaba. consider Mount Elgon to be the embodiment of their founding father Masaba and refer to the mountain by this name.
Roads Mount Elgon National Park lies 235km east of Kampala. A tarmac road runs through kip to Mbale town at the western base of Mount Elgon, before climbing to Kapchorwa on the mountain’s north-western Rank. Dirt roads lead off the Mbale-Kapchorwa road to reach the various trail heads.
The best time to climb Mount Elgon Is during the dry seasons between June-August and December-March However, it should be noted that climbing Mt Elgon can be done all year round.
Many travelers find Mt Elgon an exciting alternative to the more strenuous climbs in East Africa. It has many of the same attractions with a milder climate and lower elevation. It requires no special equipment Or technical experience,
Mountain biking trails run from Sipi trading centre to Cherna hill in Kapchorwa town. It should take 1.5 hours and provides a view of various waterfalls
Excellent birding opportunities exist around Kapkwai Forest Exploration Centre, in particular in the secondary forest and thick shrub along the loop trail to Cheptui Falls. It supports the African Goshawk: Chubb’s Cisticola (Wroth. White-chinned Prinia and African Blue Flycatcher among others.
Lucky hikers in Mt Elgon will enjoy being amongst the parks primates, birds and rare tree species. Trails lead past caves, viewpoints and waterfalls. with the option of camping overnight on the mountain slopes.
Enjoy views of Sipi Falls, the Walls of Death and the African sunrise across the Karamoja plains on these peaceful walks just outside Mt Elgon National Park
Rock climbing takes place outside the park at Sipi. There are 14 routes requiring various levels of rock scaling techniques. The toughest is a 35m climb while the easiest is 15m.
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