Trekking to see the Gorillas
The trek starts in the early morning and after border formalities you are transferred to a ranger’s station where the trek commences. Your rangers will lead you through the cultivated lands and then into the dense rain forest and as close as is allowed to a gorilla family. The rangers monitor the gorillas on a daily basis and have a fairly good idea of where they are. However, they are free roaming animals, and their sighting cannot be guaranteed. Trekking can take anywhere from 45 minutes to 8 hours and it can be quite strenuous, so a reasonable level of fitness is required.
To ensure the gorillas do not get too used to the presence of humans and because they share many of our genes (and are therefore able to catch our diseases), the maximum time permitted to spend with them is 1 hour. You will have plenty of time to watch their activity and to take photographs. The rangers will be able to provide you with a background to the family you are visiting. Once your hour is up, you trek back out of the rain forest to your meeting point. Clients considering joining this trip should realise the demands and unpredictability of the areas visited. These factors may contribute toward restricting or delaying our trip and viewing of the gorillas. Often, the trek through thick, dense jungle can be somewhat strenuous and due to the nature of the gorillas and their habits, viewing cannot be guaranteed.
IMPORTANT: Although the groups of gorilla that are sought out on our jungle trek have been habituated, they have not been tamed and their behaviour is not demonstrably different from that of non-habituated groups. Nobody forces them to stay with us for the allotted hour, and they can fade into the forest as you appear, if they wish to do so. Further, as gorillas are EXTREMELY sensitive to human disease, the park authorities will not allow anyone they consider to be in poor health to visit the gorilla groups. Additionally, no children under 16 years of age are permitted to visit.