THE OVERNIGHT NATURE TREKS IN THE RWENZORI MOUNTAIN FOOTHILLS
Offered by Ruboni Community, the overnight treks in the Mubuku valley are a trekking option that is off the beaten path and stands out from all other Rwenzori trekking activities. These treks give an opportunity to combine nature, culture, scenery, and nightlife in the outdoors. During this unique trek with the locals, you will prove that a campfire is the best way to light up your spirit and love for nature.
These overnight treks are wilderness camping experiences. The treks are done in the community forest reserves located next to the National park. During the activities, trekkers camp in established bush campsites. These treks can be arranged for varying time duration; from one to several nights outdoors.
Optional overnight treks that you can choose from
We offer two overnight treks. They are all outside the park, in the natural territories within the community land. The location outside the park means there are no park entrance fees required when you participate. The two optional treks include;
Overnight hill trek: Trekking from 1600 meters to the highest hills in the village at 2400 meters in 3-4 hours. The location gives sweeping panoramic views of the Mubuku valley from the Rwenzori Mountains to Lake Goerge, in the plains of Queen Elizabeth national park.
After a late lunch, you start the trek to reach the top in the late afternoon. The overnight hill trek scenery is breathtaking. As you go higher the views get better and the mountains get closer. At the scenic breakpoints on the lower altitude of the trail, you get wonderful photo moments when you scan the portal peaks of the Rwenzori Mountains.
At the top of the hill, you will be at the roof of the village. From here, you will take an opportunity to move around taking the views of the mountains and valleys from different viewpoints. On a clear day, especially in the evenings and early mornings, you can get a chance to view the margarita peak, the highest on the Rwenzori Mountains and Uganda at 5109 meters above sea level. Even without viewing margarita, the views of the Mubuku valley are beautiful when you scan the living patterns of the local people along the valley floor and hillsides.
In the morning, you will take memorable scenic views of the mountains in the west as the sunrises point at them from the east. Take great picture moments before you return to grab a cup of tea. After the tea, return to the community base camp with the rest of the team.
Buraro forest overnight trek: In a two hours walk from the community, guests trek towards the park in the Buraru area. You will cross River Mubuku and then trek on the northern banks of this popular river that drains from the fresh Rwenzori Mountain glaciers. During the walk, you take the scenic views of the residential villages on the southern hills of this valley. Mubuku valley was created as a result of the Rwenzori glacier activities many years back.
This forest trail heads to the area that is popular for chimps, monkeys, birds, chameleons, and the only remaining virgin natural forest outside the park. It is a community forest reserve that houses the oldest regenerated rainforest ecosystem in Ruboni village.
This is an established community indigenous forest. It is located next to the park. This habitat has no difference from the park as they share the same ecosystem. The trail gives an opportunity to trek and stay in real nature. Crossing the rivers, walking under the canopy, swinging on the vines, and listening to the forest sounds bring you closest to nature than you can imagine. The whole experience gives a feeling of a twenty-mile journey into the jungle.
On a lucky day, you can find primates and other mammals having crossed from the park. You can also have chances of spotting unique birds, reptiles, and chameleons on your way or while in the forest. In the evenings, you will set camp and enjoy the campfire in the real African jungle. Those interested in looking for the small nocturnal creatures will have a great time exploring this forest. Sleep to the songs of the jungle and wake up to the melody of the African forest birds. After a relaxing cup of tea in the morning, return to the community to nurse the memories of the jungle as you transfer to the next destination.
What do we carry on the trek?
On each trek, the team goes with all the supplies and equipment. The required equipment includes;
- Sleeping bags,
- Sleeping mats,
- Camping chairs
- Ligting, and
- Cooking gear.
All equipment and supplies are included in the price and will be provided by the community. Unless you have a special attachment with your equipment on the items listed above, guests are only supposed to come with their own personal items other than the items listed above. The personal items that may be required can include;
- Warm gear
- Walking poles
- Trekking shoes
- Prescription medicine
- Photography equipment
- Other items of personal nature
In our packing, we make high consideration of weight versus necessity. We find it very important to pack very light to be able to reduce the amount of weight That normally reflects in the number of people to be on the trek. The fewer people we take the better for the environment and closeness and solace with nature. Smaller groups will also help to create room for enjoying the trek and ensuring personal and environmental health on the tour.
Each of these treks takes one night. The prices for the trek (rates 2022) are charged differently as follows;
- Overnight hill trek: 100$ per person
- Buraro forest overnight trek: 80$ per person
The price above is for one night. Multiple nights can be arranged at 70% per additional night per person. It is also important to note that rates are subject to change without prior notice.
How to arrange or book the trek
Guests can book the treks through the lodge where they want to stay or directly at the community tourism center in Ruboni village. The list of lodges to stay in, the night before or after the trek can be found here. You can also book the trek directly here and space will be reserved on a scheduled or tailored trek.