Mountain Elgon is an extinct Volcano and one of the oldest physical features, having erupted around 20 million years ago. Mountain Elgon is capped by one of the world’s largest intact caldera 40Km in size which is as a result of an unusually violent eruption that emptied the volcano’s magma reservoir. Mt Elgon is the 4th highest peak in East Africa and 7th on the continent.
The park was gazetted in 1993 and is home to a variety of birds, small antelopes and forest monkeys, with elephants and buffaloes also living on the mountains lower slopes. The higher slopes are protected by national parks in Uganda and Kenya, creating an extensive Trans-Jordan conservation area which has been declared UNESCO Man and Biosphere Reserve.
|START TIME||by 8:30 AM.|
|END TIME||At approximately 7:00 PM.|
|WEAR||Comfortable athletic clothing, hiking boots, hat, jacket and sunscreen.|
Day 1: TRAVEL TO KAPCHORWA DISTRICT
Rise early in the morning, Mountain Elgon National Park lies 235km East of Kampala. A tarmac road runs through Jinja, the adventure Capital of East Africa to Mbale at the western base of mountain Elgon, before climbing to Kapchorwa on the mountain’s north-western flank.
Lunch will be served in Mbale town.
DINNER & OVERNIGHT: Sipi River Lodge
Day 2: AT SIPI FALLS
Depending on how energetic you are feeling, wake up for breakfast and take a long or short community organized walk to Sipi falls. Sipi offers stunning views of Mount Elgon and the plains of eastern and northern Uganda. The falls themselves are described as perhaps the most romantic in Africa.
Sipi Falls are situated on the lower slopes of Mount Elgon at an altitude of 1,750 m, close to the village of Sipi, 60 km and a drive of about 2 and half from Mbale on the Kapchorwa road. Lunch served at Sipi River lodge.
In the evening, embark on the Mountain biking trails that run from Sipi trading centre to Chema hill in Kapchorwa town. It takes 1.5 hours and provides views of various waterfalls and the Karamoja plains. Bikes are available at Sipi River lodge.
Alternatively, you can take up the abseiling challenge. The two hour activity is carried out beside the lowest of the Sipi Falls. This is where you drop 100m overlooking the ridge as you descend next to the pool before the ascent back to the top of the hill.
DINNER & OVERNIGHT: Sipi River Lodge
Day 3: TO BUDADIRI/ BUMASOLA
In the morning after breakfast, head to Budadiri/Bumasola. The first stretch ascends through the hillside communities above Budadiri to Mudange cliffs, further up the trail enters the National Park and climbs the scary “Wall of Death”. We make camp at Mude cave. You will have lunch as you ascend the cliffs.
DINNER & OVERNIGHT: Mude Cave
Day 4: AT SIPI FALLS
In the morning we will leave camp and head straight for the summit at Wagagai and then back to the camp. (3500m – 4321m – 3500m). The walk downhill back to Mude caves camp is fairly short and relaxing. Mountain Elgon has gradual slopes up to the peaks on the crater rim, which means that even non-mountaineers can climb it. At 4,321 m, Wagagai is the highest peak, and the fourth-class East African Mountain.
LUNCH, DINNER & OVERNIGHT: Mude Cave
Day 5: BACK TO BUDADIRI / BUMASOLA
On this day, head back to Bumasola then drive back to the Sipi River Lodge for a hot shower, food and a well-deserved drink!
Day 6: BACK TO KAMPALA
Early in the morning after breakfast, depart to Kampala via Mbale and Jinja. Mbale is on the foothills of Mount Elgon, giving it a pleasant climate. Mbale shows clearly the Asian influence on towns in Uganda. It is pleasant, safe, and bustling market town.
Stopover in Jinja for lunch and drive to Kampala.