Hiking Mt. Elgon – Piswa Trail

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park

Overview

Piswa is one of the less strenuous trails to opt for on a Mount Elgon hike of 7days covering a distance of about 49km, starting from Kapkwata gate at 2,190m on far East side near Suam at the border between the Republic of Kenya and Uganda.

This trail offers magnificent views of the Karamoja plains, and Kenya’s Kapeguria and Nandi hills. The climb takes you through the magnificent views of bamboo, heath and moorland to Wagagai peak the highest point of Mt Elgon.

Highlights

  • Day 1: Arrival Entebbe-Kampala
  • Day 2: Kampala – Mbale – Mount Elgon National Park
  • Day 3 : Hike to Piswa camp
  • Day 5: Hunters cave Camp
  • Day 6: Hike to Wagagai peak
  • Day 7: Descend to finish the hike and head straight to Entebbe.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival Entebbe – Kampala

On arrival, you will be picked by our company representative transfer to your overnight accommodation in Kampala. Serena Hotel (High end Lodge) or Cassia Lodge (Moderate facility) or Ken Rock Hotel Muyenga (Budget facility)

Meal plan: Dinner

Day 2: Kampala – Mbale – Mount Elgon National Park

After a relaxed Breakfast, drive to Mount Elgon National Park with a lunch stop along the way and a visit to Sipi Falls for a community walk before proceeding to check in for Dinner and overnight at Lacam lodge/Sipi River Resort.

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3 : Hike to Piswa camp

After breakfast start the hike at 2190m following Kapkwata Trail that leads to Piswa Camp at 2850m winding through magnificent views of bamboo, heath and moorland.

Dinner and overnight at Piswa

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Hunters cave Camp

After breakfast continue with the climb starting at 2850m and the hike goes via the calderas through amazing columns of Lobelia Elgonensis, the Hot Springs and Suam Gorge before descending to the Hunters cave Camp at about 3870m.

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 6: Hike to Wagagai peak

After breakfast climb further to the top of the calderas to finish at Wagagai Peak at 4321m, before descending via Jackson’s summit and the Jackson’s pool for dinner overnight at Mude Camp.

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 7: Descend to finish the hike and head straight to Entebbe.

Today start the day very early with a descend heading down to Sasa trail and on to Budadiri to find your safari vehicle ready for the return journey to Kampala. You will have lunch en route to Entebbe and arrive to prepare for a late night flight home.

Meal plan: Breakfast, Lunch End of safari

This Safari Package Includes

  • Accommodation and meals during the hike
  • Transportation by 4x4wheel drive safari vehicle
  • Park Entrance fees
  • Guide allowances
  • Professional Guide fees
  • Porters 25kg per person
  • Professional cook
  • Hiking fees
  • Mountain ranger fees
  • Rescue fees in case of emergency rescue on Mt. Elgon

The Safari Exclusions

The expenses of personal nature like: Air fare, Visa, soda/alcoholic drinks, laundry, tips to local guides, telephone, and porter fee while trekking, personal insurance, personal shopping bills.

What to bring: Clothing (essential)

  • Summer shirt/s and shorts – for walking in the heat at the start of the trek
  • Warm long-sleeved shirt – for when it gets cold
  • Warm long walking trousers (not jeans!)
  • Fleece jacket (one or more, and/or a down jacket) – for additional warmth; or a warm anorak/jacket which should not be too heavy
  • Thermal underwear
  • Good quality waterproof and windproof outer shell (Jacket & trousers)
  • Cheap plastic poncho
  • Hat – a warm hat and a sun hat (that has both a peak and shades the back of your neck)
  • Wool Hat/Balaclava
  • Gloves – 2 pairs; one pair of thin liners and another of warmer, waterproof outer gloves are more practical than mittens.

Footwear

  • Mountain boots – essential (good quality well worn in)
  • Walking Shoes (another pair of lighter weight walking shoes / trainers for the start of the climb)
  • Several pairs of warm, cushioned socks (so you always have a dry pair to change into)
  • Gaiters have a limited but useful role in preventing scree, snow and mud (at the start of the climb) from getting into your boots. Rubber boots can work out more.

Equipment (essential)

  • Good quality Sleeping bag (minimum rating of 4 seasons) (Extra sleeping bags available from us upon request at $15 each for the whole trek)
  • Soft Bag / Hold all or Rucksack (framed or unframed) – large enough to hold your personal gear (limit 25Kg) on the mountain; this will be carried by a porter.
  • Day sac – minimum capacity 20kg – that you will carry. Big enough for you to carry your daily water (3litres), lunch box, camera, wet weather clothing and fleece jacket.
  • External protective cover for rucksack & day sac (or pack all contents in plastic bags for water-proofing)
  • Polarized snow glasses or goggles – to protect your eyes from sun glare and snow. At the very least good quality sunglasses (models with side-shields are preferable).
  • High factor sun block (minimum factor + 15)
  • Lip salve
  • Head Torch and a set of spare batteries (special batteries are not always available locally)
  • 2nd / Back up torch and spare batteries
  • Water bottle(s) (strong) to hold 3 liters – which you will carry with you, daily)
  • Water treatment tablets / iodine or quality filter (although water gets boiled for you by our staff and served as tea or coffee)
  • Spare plastic bags (to keep things as dry as possible)
  • Wash kit plus a small towel
  • Basic First Aid kit (for personal use) including paracetamol & dehydration sachets
  • A few of your favorite sweets/’chewies’/dried fruit