Hiking Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda

Hiking Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda : Mount Muhabura, also known as “Muhavura,” is an extinct volcano located on the boundary between Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Rwanda. In other words, one portion of the volcano is located in Uganda’s Mgahinga National Park, while the other is located in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park. The mountain contains the third highest summit in the Virunga Ranges of mountains, standing at 4,127 metres above sea level. Mikeno is the highest, followed by Mount Karisimbi. Muhabura, on the other hand, is the steepest of the eight Virunga Volcanoes.

Hiking Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda.

Mount Muhabura can be hiked from Rwanda or Uganda basing on your preference. Mount Muhabura is the most hardest of the eight volcanoes in the Virunga Ranges to climb. It may not be the highest, but it is quite steep, and the trek must be completed in one day. To reach the top and return on time, one must be psychologically prepared, as well as a bit obstinate.

If you are ascending Mount Muhabura from the Uganda side, you will be welcomed by Uganda Wildlife Authority guides and brought to the Ntebeko Visitors Centre. If you are hiking from Rwanda, you must report to the Kinigi visitors’ centre, where you will pay for the excursion.

After paying at the office, your group will be allocated a Guide and Rangers who will guide you all the way up the mountain. Porters are available for rent at the mountain’s base if you are carrying large luggage or equipment. When there is a large group, hikers are generally divided into two groups: slow hikers and seasoned/experienced hikers. If it becomes too late and you haven’t gotten close to the peak, you should just quit up and descend with the others who finished on time.

Climbing Mount Muhabura begins at 7 a.m. and takes between 5 and 7 hours. The Rangers will arrange a briefing for all hikers before departing for the main path. This briefing covers all key components of the trek, including the mountain’s history and creation. The Rangers will advise hikers on how to psychologically prepare for the exercise as well as how to cope with any injuries or signs of altitude disease.

During the briefings, the Rangers and Guides will also check to see if all hikers have the essential equipment, which includes hiking boots, walking sticks, a packed lunch, appropriate clothes, a packed lunch, drinking water, and a walking stick.

Before heading to the head trail, all supplies and equipment must be arranged. Hikers are driven or transported to the beginning site of the trek by park officials, their personal driver, or a Guide/Driver from their Tour Operator Company after the briefing. Mount Muhavura is a difficult hike due to its steepness. To finish the hike, one must be in excellent physical condition.

Hiking Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda
Mount Muhavura

Before reaching the peak of Mount Muhabura from the Ugandan side, hikers must make two important stops. The first stop is around 3,117 meters above sea level, while the second is approximately 3,860 meters above sea level. Many hikers do not make it past the first rest stop. They just take a break, have their lunch, and decide that enough is enough before returning to the starting point.

Why hiking/climbing Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda is difficult?

In reality, in most big groupings, fewer than 50 people reach the top. Those who continue must face a more arduous climb to the second shelter. The hike becomes increasingly difficult after the second halt. By this point, though, there is no turning back because the top is so close. Continuing from here necessitates more stamina, determination, and a certain level of fitness. It grows colder, and the peak is frequently shrouded in mist. At this time, some people may have altitude sickness or ankle injury.

There will be little time to spend on top of the mountain if the hikers climb at a leisurely pace. The Rangers will request that you leave the top as soon as possible so that you do not encounter forest mammals such as buffalo or find yourself descending in the dark. A group photo with all participants is required before climbing down. It’s not simple to make your way down the mountain.

In fact, for some, it is just as difficult as getting up as it is descending the mountain. This is due to two factors. It’s quite slippery coming down, and this second section appears when your body is exhausted from the climb. At this time, the legs and body joints would be in agony, and descending puts extra strain on the body joints. Furthermore, even after reaching the mountain’s base, you will have to pass through gardens and human villages before returning to the office or meeting your tour guide.

Why you should hike Mount Muhabura in Rwanda or Uganda.

Those that reach it all the way to the top after such a difficult walk are rewarded with stunning views, lovely countryside, lakes, and other Virunga range volcanoes like as Sabyinyo, Gahinga, Karisimbi, Bisoke, and Nyiragongo. The peak gives you the sensation of being entirely removed from reality. It is possible to see monkeys, birds, and even huge forest animals like as buffaloes and elephants. Then, at the peak, there’s a crater lake with crystal-clear water.

Hikers can swim in the lake, although most do not because it is generally quite cold. The magnificent twin lakes Ruhondo and Burera may be viewed from the Rwandan side, while Lake Bunyonyi can be seen from the Ugandan side. Unfortunately, cloud cover and mist sometimes obscure views of distant volcanoes during certain months of the year.

Hiking Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda
Hiking Mount Muhavura

Cost of Mount Muhabura Hiking Permit in Rwanda and Uganda.

The cost of a Mount Muhabura hiking permit is $100 per person in Rwanda and $80 per person in Uganda. This fee does not include transportation, lodging, or the hire of porters. The porters must be paid individually. Mount Muhavura hiking permits may be obtained on the same day as the trek in both Uganda and Rwanda.

Other Activities to do alongside hiking Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda.

Climbing Mount Muhabura is best combined with gorilla trekking in Mgahinga or Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park. Aside from gorilla trekking, one may also go for a walk in Uganda’s beautiful Lake Mutanda, follow golden monkeys in Uganda or Rwanda, or see the Batwa pygmies in Uganda. The Iby’iwacu cultural village is the finest spot to go for a cultural tour in Rwanda.

How to get to Mount Muhabura in Rwanda and Uganda.

Mount Muhabura is accessible by automobile from both Uganda and Rwanda. It will take 8 hours to drive from Kampala, Uganda, to Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Kisoro via Kabale (510 Kilometers). Those hiking Mount Muhabura Volcano from Rwanda simply travel 3 hours by car from Kigali to the Volcanoes National Park. If your journey begins in Kigali, Rwanda, you must leave by 5 a.m. to be in the park in time for the briefing.

To summarise, climbing Mount Muhabura is a fantastic tourism activity that visitors may partake in when visiting Mount Mgahinga or Volcanoes National Park for gorilla trekking safaris. Anyone would be tempted to climb it because of the amazing views from its peak, which is made up of a crater lake.

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