FOCUS Hike4Life 2009 - Uganda: Itinerary
Friday, 25th December 2009
- Evening departure to Entebbe on Kenya Airways (connecting in Nairobi)
Saturday, 26th December 2009
- Arrival at Entebbe airport
- Transfer by road to Kalagala Falls (approx 3 hr drive). The road journey takes us alongside Lake Victoria and through the capital city of Kampala to the Kayunga District to Kalagala Falls.
- Overnight camping in Kalagala Falls.
Sunday, 27th December 2009
- Following an early breakfast, we drive south along the course of the Nile crossing Owen Falls dam and the Victoria Nile near Jinja. Our journey by bus takes us Eastward via Mbale to the village of Bugitimwa on the slopes of Mt. Elgon (3 hours drive).
- Initially we hike through village fields that are heavily cropped then into forest where the path now begins to ascend very steeply. We soon reach Mudangi Cliffs where a set of shaky ladders take us up over the escarpment to a much easier climb. We then trek through heavy bamboo forest terrain, before reaching a clearing which is the Sasa River Camp (2850m), our home for the evening.
- Distance: 6.2kms
- Hiking time: 4-5 hours
- Ascent: 1480 metres
Monday, 28th December 2009
- Initially we hike for several hours in the bamboo forests and thick bush. The trail is littered with roots and is very wet and boggy in many places making progress challenging.
- After a couple of hours of climbing, the vegetation changes dramatically and we hike through more open heath and moorland following the smugglers’ path for our first views of the high peaks on the rim of the crater, weather permitting.
- We enter the crater itself via the ‘Uganda pass’ and traverse Eastwards crossing a number of small streams before reaching camp at Jackson’s Caves (4060m).
- Distance: 10kms
- Hiking time: 6-6.5 hours
- Ascent: 1200 metres
Tuesday, 29th December 2009
- Traversing from our camp, we gain height up toward the rim of the crater. We hope for clear weather as the views across this area are magnificent. A large gap in the crater wall to the west is the Suam gorge which forms a low point and is the outlet catchment for the entire crater. The higher we get, the more spectacular the views and finally at the summit of Wagagi (4321m), we can appreciate the immensity of the crater and of all its peaks. We summit the flat-topped Wagagi soon after dawn and enjoy the most surreal of surroundings.
- Our return path takers us back into the massive crater and then down to the Sasa River Camp.
- Distance: 18kms
- Hiking time: 8-9 hours
- Ascent: 260m followed by a descent of 1470m
Wednesday, 30th December 2009
- Walk from Sasa River Camp back to the trail head at Bugitimwa.
- Hiking time: 3-4 hours
- Descent: 1480m.
- Drive to Mt. Kadam (3 hours)
- Walk in the foothills of this majestic rock outcrop to the Mt. Kaddam base camp. Mt. Kaddam is very seldom climbed, the trails are almost non-existent and we rely heavily on our local guides to show us around the mountain.
Thursday, 31st December 2009
- We will start before dawn towards the summit of Mt. Kadam (3068m). All will enjoy the stunning, semi-arid scenery, varied and very different from Mt. Elgon. We traverse around steep rock buttresses, scramble up scree and hike slowly up this incredible massif. We expect to enjoy the most remarkable views over the surrounding plains and the heavily forested gorges.
- Hiking time: 8 hours
- Ascent: 1800m
- We return to our base camp for a traditional New Year’s Eve celebration.
Friday, 1st January 2010
- After witnessing the first sunrise of 2010, and enjoying a hearty breakfast, we will walk to trail head (2 hours) and travel to Kampala by road (approx 5 hours) along the Jinja-Kampala highway.
- Overnight at a hotel in Kampala.
- Hiking time: 2 hours
- Driving time: 5 hours
Saturday, 2nd January 2010
- Free day in Kampala
- Farewell dinner in the evening
Sunday, 3rd January 2010
- Early morning departure for London, via Nairobi, on Kenya Airways.