How Long Does Gorilla Trekking Last?
How Long Does Gorilla Trekking Last? Though mountain gorillas normally move like chimpanzees, trekking mountain gorillas is somehow easier than trekking chimpanzees although the time taken to locate gorillas cannot be predicted because it depends on how they move and the location of a gorilla family.
Trekking mountain gorillas can take from 30mins to 7 hours or the whole day and sometimes this can also depend on the physical fitness and the speed of the slowest trekker in the group while trekking mountain gorillas. Training before embarking on a gorilla safari is always guaranteed as mountain gorillas live on higher elevations of tropical rain forests that will need you to hike.
Some mountain gorilla groups stay near the park headquarters where you start your gorilla trekking from or near the lodges within the park, these are the easiest gorilla groups to trek and usually take about 30 minutes to a few hours to locate the family compared to other families that live deep in the forest.
During the allocation of gorilla families at the briefing Centre in the morning, the old and elderly people are allocated the easiest gorilla families to trek while the energetic and youthful tourists are allocated to other families though sometimes the nearest gorilla families can also move very far and trekking them might take some good hours.
When trekking mountain gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park in Uganda, endeavor to always book accommodation in the sector where you have acquired the gorilla permit from because booking accommodation and gorilla permits in different sectors will cost you more time traveling t the beginning point and you will be required to wake up very early.
The prices of gorilla permits differ depending on the country where you will trek mountain gorillas from, gorilla permits are issued out by respective governing bodies in that specific country or by a trusted tour operator. Rwanda charges $1500 per person per trek, DR Congo charges $450 in the peak season and $200 in the low season, and lastly, Uganda charges $700 for foreign nonresidents, $600 foreign residents, and shs250,000 East African citizens.
Uganda offers gorilla habituation experience in the Rushaga sector of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and permits cost $1500. You are advised to obtain your gorilla permits in advance of 3-4 months before arriving in the country.
What is the best time to trek gorillas?
Mountain gorillas can be visited at any time of the year but the best time to trek gorillas is during the dry season which occurs from June to September and December to January. It’s during these months that the roads are accessible and the trails are dry.
The best time for gorilla trekking in volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Mgahinga National Park as well as Bwindi Impenetrable National Park both in Uganda can be specified because there are 2 rainy seasons. The short season taking place in October and November, the longer season starts from mid-March to May and the remaining months are dry seasons.
The best time for gorilla trekking are months of January, February, June, July, August, September as well as December. These months have less rainfall with no rain at all t times. Travelers should choose these months as the best times for gorilla trekking although these months are on a high demand for gorilla permits in Rwanda and Uganda. The travelers should book their permits in advance from trusted tour operators or Uganda wildlife authority in Uganda and Rwanda development board in Rwanda at least three months before the activity.
The best time for gorilla trekking is during the dry seasons of January to December and June to September. They are most favorable for gorilla trekking since the forest is less sleeper. Trekking in high seasons is most expensive in the accommodation sector compared to low seasons when the lodges re cheaper.
Low season is the best season for gorilla trekking for budget trekkers and to book last minute gorilla safari. Tracking in this season is cheap because the accommodation is lowered at a budget rate. The low season months are March, April, May, and November and the months are discouraging.
The prices of lodges is more favorable than high season rates and the low price rates are set to attract budget travelers. The few travelers are grouped into different gorilla families giving different experiences.
Although travelling in this season has an advantage of being cheap, it rains a lot making trekking in this season difficult. The forest grounds are muddy and slippery making travelers uncomfortable.
However the rain falls throughout the year and gorilla trekking still continues, the sun will shine still after the rain has fallen and this enables the gorilla trekkers to still trek the rare endangered mountain gorillas.
What to carry for gorilla trekking?
Mountain gorillas live on high elevations which will require physical fitness as you will need to hike to locate a gorilla family. For the best gorilla trekking experience, you will need to come along with good waterproof hiking shoes as the weather in the rainforests is unpredictable so it can rain at any time of the day, insect repellents to keep away from insects, a hat to keep away from direct sunlight, garden gloves, sunscreen, enough drinking water, energy-giving snacks, long-sleeved clothes, and much more.
In conclusion, the gorilla trekking time cannot be easily determined but depends on the location of the gorilla group you are to trek and the hiking phase of the group.