Rwenzori Mountain National Park
Rwenzori Mountain National Park is found in Kasese district southwest of Kampala the capital city of Uganda. The national park is located on the famous Rwenzori mountain ranges also known as the mountains of the moon. This national park is the best option for hiking and mountain climbing in Uganda. Mountain Rwenzori national park covers a relatively small area of about 1000sq.km.
The national park is a UNESCO world heritage site found in the Mountains. This national park hosts the largest and highest mountain in Uganda. This mountain is also the third highest mountain peak in Africa. Rwenzori Mountain hosts many waterfalls, lakes, rivers and a number of flowing ice called glaciers.
Accessibility of Rwenzori mountain national park
This national park is owned by the government of Uganda, Kasese district is the get way to the national park and also the nearest big town to the park. kasese town has a number of hotels and lodges in which tourists reside in. however, the national park has several camping sites and huts for hikers to the top of mountain Rwenzori. The national park has good trail networks and climbing routes with very spectacular views of the sceneries.
Rwenzori mountains national park was gazetted in 1991 and it is one of the newest national parks in Uganda. In 1994, the national park was selected and designated under the UNESCO world heritage sites, this was done to protect the biodiversity and the outstanding natural beauty of the park.
In 1997, the rebel group called rebel militias occupied the Rwenzori mountains and for a while, the national park was closed for tourism until 2001. The rebel period leads to the inscription of the Rwenzori mountain national park on the UNESCO list of world heritage sites in dangers until 2004 due to the insecurity that was associated with the area.
This national park is a host for a number of wildlife species that are endemic to the Albertine rift valley system. It is also home to a number of endangered wildlife species. Rwenzori park might be having a few wild animals, but is it renowned for its extremely high diversity of plant species and tree species. The flora of Rwenzori park makes if profound among tourism destinations in Uganda and other parts of the world. The national park has about five unique and distinctive vegetation zones which succeed each other with the increase in the level of altitude from the ground.
Besides the flora of the park, the park is also blessed with a unique range of animal species including four primate types such as the black and white colobus, l’hoest’s monkeys, chimpanzee, and others. Others include 89 species of birds, 15 species of butterfly and reptiles et cetera. The park’s wildlife varies with the increase in the altitude, for example, forest elephants, hyrax, monkeys, duikers and Rwenzori turaco among others.
Activities in Rwenzori mountains national park
The best activity demand in this national park is trekking/hiking. Despite the muddy and always dump terrain of the Rwenzori, the trekking safaris on the mountain Rwenzori national park, stay a more demanding expedition. The trails and tracks are always slippery and steep which would be a challenge. However, with the right gear, this cannot be a challenge at all.
Different routes of hiking in mountain Rwenzori national park require the use of specific tools. For
example, the routes to the peak on mountain Stanley will require you to use ice axes, ropes, and crampons, heavy woolen clothes for the coldness because the temperatures drop very low, a good sleeping bag, trekking boots to help you climb on the slippery rocks among others.