Whenwe got back, our lodge gave us complimentary massages and washed our boots and all our clothes free! AND...in the rainy forest, we had a beautiful weather day!
Monday, November 25, 2013
BWINDI IMPENETRABLE NATIONAL PARK
As if things weren't exciting already...today was the topper. We were one of 24 people schedualed to hike into the Bwindi NP with rangers and gorilla trackers. We had to give the officials our passports, go thru a health screening, listen to instructions, and our group had to drive another hour into a certain part of the Forest. Steve and I were with another couple from US, 2 people,from Switzerland, and one from Spain. Most of us elected to hire a porter($15.) and worth it. Our tree top lodge had packed us a lunch, and canteens of water. Off we went. The group we were assigned to ..the Habinyanja Gorilla group, was the largest...18 gorillas. They were also the fastest movers and the ones who roamed the farthest. We lucked out. After only about one mile of hiking, the trackers reported movement. We were astounded and so were they. Almost the whole group was feeding in the forest, and we saw 2 babies only 6 months old, and the big silver back and the next in line black back. Our ranger said last week, they were really hard to find and the people almost gave up on it. We are only allotted 1 hour, and have to keep 20 feet away, UNLESS the gorillas intitiate closer contact. We were over 5,000 ft and it was steep! But...as you can see by the pictures, the gorillas were very visable and my little,"point and shoot" got some good shots. Observing these apes in the wild...was worth this whole trip. I will say Uganda is doing a great job of protecting the 400 they have in their country. They are extremely serious about their welfare and saving them for the world to enjoy.