Bukurungu Trail with Mt. Margherita
8 DAYS (Wilderness Camping)
Day 1: Omu'Korukumi (1560m) or Amundsen Camp (2200m) - Rwigho Camp (2650m)
After breakfast, drive for 1hr as from Kasese town to Okorukumi and start your hike to reach RMNP / Kasanzi Gate to for registration at the Park Ranger outpost. Here after, take on the trail which bends west on the ridge overlooking the Kasuka and Isule valleys and onward to EKebitakuli for a hot lunch while taking a breath and thereafter, hike through the montane rain forest overlooking bamboo forested valleys. Encounter plant species like the Disa stairssi, Scadoxus cyrtanthiflorus, Impetiens apiculata and spot or hear calls of black and white colubus monkeys, The Rwenzori Turaco and other birds. On trail you will spot chimpanzee nests and droppings or hear their calls. The trail will lead you through the heather zone and reach Rwigho Camp for an overnight rest immediately after crossing River Rwigho. It will take you only 6-7 hours.
Day 2. Rwigho Camp - Kambeho Camp (3700m)
After breakfast, the trail takes you through the heather trees (Ericathiasis) with lots of moss hanging over these trees. The is the heather zone with a lots of heather trees, scencio trees, alchemila, black berries, and many more plant species. While on trail you will be able to spot black black and white Colobus monkeys, Varvet monkeys, sun birds, the Rwenzori turaco a rare beautiful bird in the park. On this day you will see lots of giant lobelias, everlasting flowers and rock shelters. Overnight at Kambeho Camp. This hike will take you 5 – 6 hrs with a stopover for a hot lunch at Mitiyighaghire.
Day 3. Kambeho Camp - Mughuli Camp (3877m)
After breakfast, start with a climb along river Lhume, in the early morning hours of the day when still fresh and strong with urge to climb the only steep Mughuli bypass. As you think of slopping down to Lake Mughuli which is within MTN network coverage to give you a chance to call friends and family members about the beauty and experience encountered on the trail. There are several short peaks which one can easily climb depending upon what time you have arrived in the camp and how you feel. The vegetation along the Lake is so beautiful to catch up your eyes. Animals you might see along the trail are the Rwenzori red-duiker, rock and tree hyrax and wild pigs. Around the camp, you can have a self guided walk to explore the water falls. The approximate time taken from Kambeho to Mughuli Camp is about 6-7hrs hike with a stopover for a hot lunch at Mulhalhama resting view point.
Day 4. Mughuli Camp - Bukurungu East Camp (4291m)
This camp is set in the heart of the two mountains of the Portal Peaks and Mount Gessi; it is a relaxing point to acclimatize for those interested in climbing the Portal Peaks and Mount Gessi. Five hours from Mughuli camp takes you through a very gentle crossing passing the vegetation of the alchemila, several giant lobelia species and the wonderful unknown leaf looking like a human palm. From Mughuli Camp to Bukurungu Camp will take you 6 – 7hrs with a stopover for a hot lunch at Kinyamiyeye. On this day if the weather is clear, your eyes and hands on the camera will have all the main peaks of Edward on Mount Baker, Margherita and Alexandra on Mount Stanley, Vittorio Emanuela on Mount Speke, Kihuma on the Portal Peaks and Mount Gessi at glance.
Day 5. Bukurungu Camp - Lake Bujuku (3962m) From Bukurungu East Camp, we continue to Lake Bujuku.
Day 6. Lake Bujuku - Irene Lakes (4495m)
Today we enter the alpine zone and trek all the way up to the camp on the north-eastern flank of Mt. Stanley. Prepareing for climbing Mt. Margherita next morning.
Day 7. Irene Lakes - Mt. Margherita (5109m) - Bigo Camp (3440m)
Early breakfast and start trekking towards Mt. Margherita. A quick lunch in Irene Lakes Camp before hiking down to Bigo Camp
Day 8. Bigo Camp - Ibanda (1650m)
Your final day of leaving the beaty of Rwenzori leaving you with lust to come back. With your guide and porters over the ridge, local telecommunication signals, call your driver to pick you from the park.
For the fit clients this itinerary can be reduced with 1 or 2 days. RRGEA reccomend the above suggested itinerary.
Here is a central point for clients to choose the kind of extension for the trip depending on ability, interest and program. The several options are;
1. From Bukurungu Camp you can opt to climb the Portal Peaks and back to Bukurungu Camp for an overnight rest and descend to Mahoma Lake for a night and descend through the Mahoma trail the next morning. You will use the same trail with the mountain Elephant which seem unusual.
2. You can also do Mount Gessi starting from West Bukurungu Lake and back to Bukurung East lake after the Gessi, and then out through Nyabitaba.