We hiked up the road from our Camp to meet up with other groups who had the same desire to see the Mountain Gorillas, hopefully, up close and personal. At the meeting point and orientation, there were two people, an older man and ancient looking woman who were being carried in sedan chairs. That option was offered to me, I’m sure because of my age. (76). If I had broken a leg or something I would have considered that option. That’s determination for ya! After the orientation we divided into small groups. We hiked up steep hills and muddy slippery jungle floors, crossing muddy streams for about an hour. At one point at a very steep section I totally lost my footing and if it hadn’t been for my wonderful porter, David, I would have taken us both down the hill, somehow he caught us both and we were able to keep on trekking. I was getting exhausted! Finally we were alerted to be quiet and to follow our guides. OMG, there they were and we were not disappointed.

Notice: I must admit that my photos were not the best. The best photos and videos came from Dan and Karen. They got much closer than we did. It was all very “Thrilling”!

Hint, when you are trying to view the videos, click anywhere in the frame to get them to start up. For some reason they are not that easy to view. I will try to keep them short and maybe only play a couple in a blog at a time. By the way I think you can click on the photos themselves to enlarge them.

This is my favorite! He is the silverback and dominant male of the band.
He is taking a break from all his responsibilities. Looks like he has mastered relaxation.
If you kids can’t be kind, We are leaving.
Heart-stopping (ly) awesome.
Proud Mama.
Cross your eyes and…
Come a little closer…
Just relaxing and it feels good.
Give me a hand…
I feel loved.
I can do it, I can climb this….
I’m waiting…
I’m stuffed…
This is how close Dan and Karen were to the gorillas. That is Dan in the hat and Karen is taking the video.
If ANY of the videos don’t come out. You can email me and let me know that you want to see them. I will personally email them to you.

JB and my porter, David. He is wearing the vest Kay Juhl recommend that I buy to give to the porters. It fit him perfectly. He was a farmer with two children and worked as a porter one day a month. I would not have survived the trek without him.
The hike back was almost as difficult. It was down, down, down steep terrain, muddy, rocky, gnarly, slippery and many streams to ford. Ugh!
The guys with the Ak’s (???) are the guys who find the gorillas and keep them safe. Our guide was the female on the right. Then there is me, David and JB. The other fellow lead our hike to and from the trek. We got certificates for being Authentic Gorilla Trekkers. Woo Woo!

Heading back to camp.

There are appropriately 1000 gorillas left in Uganda. The communities and the people surrounding the area are aware of the importance of the gorillas for their survival and existence. They are also aware of the importance that foreigners bring to their communities, creating jobs. Remember 20% of the fees paid for permits to see the gorillas go to the community.

Another video coming….stay tuned.

We still have five more days in Uganda and many more wonderful adventures to come.

Note…the sedan chairs must have gone to a different area than we did. The trail was not wide enough to carry a sedan chair. The chairs were carried by four men.

As an aside, we were never in any danger! These gentle giants see people once a day, everyday, so they are used to our presence and do not seem to be upset about us being there. It seemed to me that were showing off for our benefit or maybe that is just the way they are. Loving, playful and hungry.

Author: Barrettranch

Retired. Love to travel.

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