Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Uganda Mountain Gorillas...

I can't believe I actually got to do this!

We stayed way up in the mountains of a little village called Nkuringo. It was the most beautiful place I have ever been. Little cottages were tucked into the mountainside surrounded by crops of beans, corn and tea. It was 'out of a movie' beautiful. Absolutely breathtaking!

As if this were not enough, we got to trek into the Ugandan Rainforest to come within arms-length of the Mountain Gorillas. These creatures are amazing! There are only around 720 left and NONE are in captivity. The only way to see them is to go to their territory.

The trek itself was hard. I am out of shape for sure, but it was hard for all of us! most of the time we were on a trail, but toward the end when the trackers were leading us to the gorilla family, we had to enter the impenetrable forest. This is not an exageration. It was INTESE. I was not sure if a Black Mamba or some deadly spider was about to jump out at me. We had leaders (natives) that lead with machetes. There was literally nowhere to walk. Imagine vines so thick your feet cannot touch the ground because you are walking on vines, trees like an umbrella over your head, trees completley hugging your body...literally nowhere to walk. They would cut a path by chopping vines and trees down for us to walk. It was crazy. At one point I just looked at Micah and thought "is this real? are we about to die"?

Thankfully, you can hire a porter for $15 bucks to carry your bags and help you. At first I thought this was silly, but got one anyway in case I started having asthma and needed assistance. At first I didn't not need my porter, Mathius, at all. However, once we enter the impenetrable forest, I could NOT have done it without him! It was such unstable grounding that I was slipping and falling everywhere. Keep in mind, this was also very steep as well. Mathius kept me from killing myself! Honestly, this man was worth a million bucks! He was so sweet and would just turn around and grab my hand when things got tough.

The little family that we got to see, consisted of a mommy, a silverback daddy, a 4 year old and a 7 month old. I was really, really hoping to get put in the group that got to see the baby and I did! The mom and dad really just laid around, but the 4 year old was like Remi! He hopped around, tried to take our cameras and was 100% eating up all the attention. At one point, we were a bit close and the daddy started letting us know we better back off...it was kinda of scary. I got to see the little, bitty baby some, but never got good pictures. You can't use a flash so most of my pictures are pretty terrible. Anyways, here is what I have....


Arriving in Uganda


















Mathius, my porter











4 comments:

Cindy Rector said...

What an experience! You did a great job of narrating and the pictures are incredible.

Kiley said...

Wow! This is amazing! I love the gorilla pictures!

The Probandt Family said...

That is awesome!!!! What a life experience!!

The Holik's said...

This is amazing! Never thought someone could go into the rain forest like that.