Twenty Six

Happy 26th Anniversary to my twiinnneerrr.

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Gorilla Trekking

Things you should know before going Gorilla Trekking

{one} Gear

I had planned on wearing jeans and a t-shirt when I went gorilla trekking. The day before we were supposed to leave we found out that you actually need some special equipment. A quick trip to the mall fixed that problem!

-Shoes & Socks (hiking shoes, thick socks that are long)

-Rain jacket with a hoodie (light weight and water resistant. rain in the rain forest is no joke)

-Long sleeve shirts (So you don’t get scraped from brush and trees. You do some pretty heavy hiking through some nasty brush. I wore my rain jacket the entire time so this didn’t really even matter)

-Pants (You need a material that is pretty water resistant. I bought some adidas jogging pants that was made to be water resistant.)

-Backpack (size doesn’t really matter because you don’t need to hold too much. Just your lunch and water, and anything extra you want to bring when you are hiking. My friend had a camelbak which she liked.

-Gloves & walking stick (The guides at the rain forest recommended these items, and some people had them. Gloves were for when you had to grab vines and onto trees etc and the stick for walking. We didn’t bother with them and I don’t think you really need it. And the walking stick seemed to be in the way sometimes.)


  


{two} The 10 Hour Drive

This depends where you fly into and how far away you are. But I think its going to be a long drive no matter which direction you come.

We flew into Entebbe Airport and drove 2 hours to our hotel, Red Chili Hideaway in Kampala, where we spent the night. We bought a  3-day package deal with the gorilla trekking that included transport, meals, and lodging. But what we didn’t realize that it would take so long to reach the Gorillas. As we were getting into our little bus, our driver told us how long it would take. Road trip across Uganda?!

This means you have to plan when you drink water, and be prepared to do your business on the side of the road. Sometimes you have no choice! In our case, this happened twice.

Our driver stopped at the equator line for pictures and breakfast.

Pretty cool.

(pictured is our little safari car we drove in)

 



{three} Skin

 mosquito/insect repellent!

sunscreen !

face wipes !

I think the first two are a given, most people know to bring them. But the last item was a savior ! I just brought along some makeup remover wipes. And we used them for everything. Wiping our hands, our sweaty faces and bodies, cleaning things.


{four} Etc

Things we brought that I was glad to have : snacks for the early morning wake up calls,  a good water supply, battery charger , lots of cash – they take US dollars. I would actually bring some more smaller bills, by the end of it we only had 50’s and 20’s and it got a little tricky. But even if that was the case, we just got change back in the local currency which I think is a cool souvenir.

Also, I have never felt like more of a celebrity than in Uganda. Especially once we got out of the city (Kampala) and the closer we got to Bwindi National Park. Everyone stares. But its not really a rude stare, it just feels like they never see white people. The kids are super fun,  big smiles and they love to wave. Keep your waving hands ready.

Also, gorillas smell.

Like really bad B.O.

 

Our guide with his machete ! Sometimes he would have to cut brush to create a path.

 

Our group spying on a gorilla.

 

We were very lucky with our gorillas. We saw them playing/wrestling, a baby 1 month gorilla climb a little tree, it rained (not too much but just enough to say , oh hey rainforest), and two gorillas climbed to the top of some trees to eat.

 

Once we got back to our camp, it rained soooo hard. We enjoyed the show as we drank our coffee and rested.

 

Try a rolex ! Its chapati bread with omelette and onions and tomatoes. Basically a breakfast burrito. Ask them to add avocado. Yummmm.