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Atop Mount Elgon, an extinct volcano that rises 4,327 metres above sea level, is where Mount Elgon National Park is located. Mountain Elgon has a total area of 1279 square kilometres, of which 169 square kilometres are in Kenya and 1110 square kilometres are in Uganda. Trekking Mount Elgon gives you the chance to encounter a beautiful panoramic crater that spans more than 40 km and is surrounded by a number of rough peaks.

Mount Elgon National Park

In the year 1929, Mount Elgon National Park was designated as a reserve by the British Protective Government. However, upon independence, the reserve underwent modifications before being designated a national park in 1992. As part of Uganda, the park extends into the Sironko, Mbale, Suam, and Kapchorwa districts. About 24 million years ago, this extinct volcano saw its initial eruption. It is significant to note that Mount Elgon, which measures around 50 by 80 km, has the biggest surface area of any extinct volcano in the world. Wagagai, the highest point of Mount Elgon, has an elevation of 4321 metres.

There are about two seasons and an average temperature of 1270 mm of rainfall per year in Mountain Elgon. The long wet season lasts from March through June, while the short wet season lasts from September through November. Due to the dense vegetation cover, height, and quantity of rainfall, the climate of Mount Elgon is marked by frigid temperatures. Here, you’ll find cold temperature conditions, fertile volcanic soils, and a variety of plant and animal species that have grown to maturity. The vegetation patterns also vary according to altitude, supporting a variety of healthy wildlife species.

Best Time to visit Mount Elgon

The dry season, which favours an enjoyable hiking experience on Mount Elgon, is the best time to explore the national park of Mountain Elgon. But it’s crucial to remember that the park is accessible and open all year round. In contrast to the rainy season when the roads are wet, muddy, and treacherous, the dry season’s roads leading to the park and hiking are dry and simple to travel. The months of June through October and December through the first day of February are considered the dry season.

Major activities in Mount Elgon National Park

Birding

Take advantage of the chance to experience Mount Elgon National Park’s bird viewing. The park is a great place to go bird watching, especially for bird enthusiasts. In the secondary forest reserve of Kapkwai and the dense vegetation along the walking routes and loop trails leading to the Cheptui waterfall, Mount Elgon is home to approximately 300 bird species. The Chubb’s Cisticola, Baglafecht weaver, black kite, African blue fly-catcher, cinnamon bee-eater, olive and bronze napped pigeons, and chinspot batis are just a few of the beautiful species you may see here.

Mountain Hiking

You may experience the magnificent grandeur of the crater lake at Mount Elgon’s peak by hiking up it. Take advantage of the opportunity to see a variety of animals, including beautiful primates like monkeys, birds, and diverse tree plant species, while on the trekking trip. Walking routes take you to historic caverns and vantage places from which to observe magnificent waterfalls, including the mesmerising Sipi Falls.

Cultural Experience

Take advantage of the opportunity to see the nearby towns and coffee farmlands. You’ll have a chance to meet locals and learn more about how coffee is produced before being served in restaurants throughout the world. Arabic coffee is primarily farmed on the Mount’s slopes. It is significant to mention that Kenya and Uganda are the top producers of the best washed Arabic coffee. This is mainly due to Mountain Elgon’s presence, whose environment encourages the growth of the magnificent cash crop. Seize the opportunity to learn about the fascinating and real Bagishu culture, particularly at the period when a young boy is transitioning into adulthood and undergoing adolescent boy circumcision.

Wildlife Viewing

You may experience the forest’s animal populations, including forest elephants, waterbucks, oribi, spotted hyenas, buffaloes, duikers, warthogs, and other unusual small mammals, at the mountain’s peak when you take a tour of Mount Elgon National Park. Among the primates you see when hiking are blue monkeys, red-tailed monkeys, and black and white monkeys.

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