Gorilla Trekking Advice
People planning to have a gorilla tracking experience in Uganda, the information below would apply (as it is in the printed-leaflet offered by the Uganda Wildlife Authority- UWA; ‘the Gorilla Rules’).
Prior to setting out on your gorilla tracking:
At most 8 visitors can visit a habituated group of mountain gorillas per day. This reduces behavioral disturbance of the gorillas as well as the risk of exposing them to human-borne-diseases.
At all times wash your hands just before you set out to see the gorillas.
On the way to the gorillas:
- *Please endeavor to maintain your voices down. You will as well see the rich bird life plus additional wildlife within the forest.
- *DO NOT leave any rubbish within the park. Everything you taken into the forest must be taken out as you leave.
- *You will go to where the park-guides last observed these gorillas the previous day and from there you will begin trailing the gorilla. Watch out for the nesting places of the gorillas along your way!
- *When you close in to the mountain gorillas, your guides will certainly inform you.
When you are with the gorillas:
- *A distance of seven meter or 21 feet must be observed always from these gorillas. Actually the further you are from them the more the group is relaxed.
- *You should stay together as a group whey you are close to the gorillas.
- *Maintain your voices low always. But , it is all right to ask your guide questions.
- *Do not eat, smoke or even drink or when you are near the gorillas. Drinking or even eating inevitably will raise the danger of food or drink morsels or droplets falling, that could increase the danger of transmitting diseases.
- *At times these gorillas charge. Follow the example of the guides (squat down slowly, don’t look directly into the eyes of the gorillas and wait for them to pass). Don’t try to run away as this will increase the threat.
- *Flash photography isn’t allowed! if taking pictures move unhurriedly and cautiously.
- *Don’t touch the mountain gorillas. Remember they are wild.
- *The utmost time visitors can spend with these gorillas is 1 hour. but, if the gorillas turn to be restless or nervous, your guide will end the visit earlier.
- *Following the visit maintain your voices low until you are two hundred meters from the mountain gorillas.
General health rules:
Keep in mind that mountain gorillas are extremely susceptible to any human diseases. The rules below are ways to reduce the risks your visit could pose to them:
- *Respect the restrictions put on the number of visitors permitted to see the gorillas ever day. This reduces the risk of transmitting diseases as well as stress to the gorilla group.
- *In case you are feeling sick, or suffering from a contagious disease, please remain behind. An alternative visit will be organized for you, or be refunded the money.
- *In case you feel the urge to sneeze or even cough when close to the gorillas, please turn your head away from them and cap your nose plus mouth so as to reduce the spread of viruses or even bacteria.
- *At all times stay seven meters or 21 feet from these gorillas. This is to safe guard them from getting human diseases.
- *Do not leave rubbish (such as food wrappers) within the park as all foreign items can port diseases or additional contaminants.
- *In case you want to go to the toilet when in the forest, please request the guide to actually dig you a hole using his panga. Ensure that the hole is thirty cm deep and properly fill it in after you have finished.
What to bring on your Gorilla Safari:
- *Wear comfy hiking shoes appropriate for sheer muddy slopes.
- *Wear ear plugs if you feel uncomfortable with the sounds of the jungle.
- *Carry adequate drinking water plus packed lunch.
- *Carry a rain-gear, sunscreen lotion plus a hat (since the weather is very unpredictable) as well as an insect repellent.
- *Carry along a photo of film-camera. Remember flashlight is not allowed so we advise using films of 400-800 ASA.