The Experience of Hiking Mountain Bisoke
Hiking Mountain Bisoke is a mind-blowing experience in Volcanoes National Park, filled with Rwanda’s top attractions, and exceptional and unique wildlife, some found nowhere else in Rwanda. With the mountain gorillas and the golden monkeys with stunning landscapes, why not immerse yourself in some of the most exhilarating experiences in Rwanda that are imaginable.
Simple exercises and a simple packing list are some of the few things that hikers require to take when you think of hiking mountain Bisoke, one of the eight Virunga Volcanoes and surprisingly home to the endangered mountain gorillas. This 3696-meter tall volcano is a haven of beautiful trails with jaw-dropping and awe-inspiring views, stunning Crater Lake on its summit, and a plethora of bird species, primates, and butterflies of different kinds.
Given the fact that Mount Bisoke gets thronged in the dry months and hiking trails are also busy, some adventurous travelers opt for the wet seasons but it comes with lots of challenges that include heavy rains that make hiking trails muddy and slippery.
Hundreds of hikers from around the World make their way into Volcanoes National park, not just to track the mountain gorilla but also to hike the Virunga Volcanoes, one of which is Bisoke, shared by Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
When is the best time to hike mountain Bisoke?
The majority of the hikers attempt to ascend Mountain Bisoke’s peak in the dry months- usually June to September and December to February when temperatures are warmer and precipitation levels are lower. This time of the year also coincides with the ideal mountain gorilla trekking months for the majority of the travelers but then, expect small crowds.
Surprisingly most hikers usually try to avoid exploring Mount Bisoke if there’s frequent rainfall, from March to May and October to early November, owing to the fact that it can make the forest trail conditions become muddy, slippery, and sometimes dangerous. Perfect weather is significant for hikers to the Crater-filled summits of Mount Bisoke.
How is a typical day of hiking Mountain Bisoke?
The 3696-meter tall Mountain Bisoke sits right at the border between Rwanda (within Volcanoes National Park and The Democratic Republic of Congo (within Virunga National Park). It normally takes only one day to hike this phenomenal mountain and the day begins with a briefing at the Park Headquarters (in Kinigi). This is followed by the transfer of hikers to the trailhead and later accompanied through well-maintained trails through dense vegetation, the foothills, towards the Crater Lake before getting to the peak filled with another Lake. The beauty about this hike is the sightings along the way that include primates (such as mountain gorillas if lucky, golden monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys), birds and so much more.
How long does it take to hike Mountain Bisoke?
It takes about 8 hours to hike Mountain Bisoke- 6 hours for the ascent and about 2 hours for the descent. The hikers, along with armed (to scare away stray animals) and experienced park Rangers and Porters go through the slopes, valleys, bamboo and dense vegetation along the way until the peak that sits at about 12,126 feet above sea level.
How much does it cost to hike Mountain Bisoke?
The exact cost for Mount Bisoke hiking safari depends on so many things (accommodation, transportation and also Company with whom you organize the trip) but this cost will include $75 for the hiking permit from Rwanda Development Board, which also covers the entry fee into Volcanoes National Park and Ranger fees. However, tips to Rangers, driver and porter fees are always at hikers’ cost.
What you need to carry or wear for hiking mountain Bisoke
A typical Mountain Bisoke hiking expedition requires carrying/or wearing waterproof rain jacket, waterproof safari pants, a sun an warm hat (depending on the weather), cotton socks, strong trekking boots, sunglasses, a small waterproof backpack, travel documents (passport, documents, visas in copies), personal toiletries (like moist wipes, lip balm, toothbrush, toothpaste, hand and body lotion and others), personal first aid kit and medical supplies, a good camera and memory cards as well as extra batteries, insect repellant, energy giving snacks, enough drinking water, to mention but a few.
There really is no remarkable place than visiting Rwanda for a safari on the African continent, give you close-up encounter with the rare, majestic mountain gorillas, the chimpanzees of Nyungwe and the Big Five mammals in Akagera National Park. It is the ultimate wildlife destination!