Monday, 1 February 2016

13 Jan 16, Climbing Mt Stanley, Ruenzori Mountains, Uganda - Day 3 Muhinda Camp to Bugata Camp

13 Jan 16 Wed. Muhinda camp (3677) to Bugata Camp (4060), 4.9 km. 7 hours

I had a disrupted sleep again, not due to people getting up as I didn't hear most of them, just not able to sleep solidly, probably starting to feel the affects of altitude.  I was warm enough but happy to have my hot water bottle. The guys started talking around 0630 but I managed to drift of to sleep again until 0715. I quickly packed and took my life into my hands by heading to the toilet. There I had the unpleasant surprise that someone had decided the tiny hole was the one to use to deficate, rather than the big hole and surprise surprise it did not fit down a 1 cm hole. Not a nice way to start the morning.

Then we sat around talking and drinking coffee while waiting for breakfast.  This was porridge, lovely flavored omelet, tomato, mini pancakes and bacon. It was cold enough that I needed a hat and jacket but I stripped off just before we left at 0915.

We headed steeply down a muddy slippery track for 5 minutes then over a pretty stream and through a bog on the flat before heading up another steep muddy rocky track. The track was difficult going with either roots, rocks or mud to fight over and through. At the top of the rocky bit the others made the most of the fraction of cell phone coverage to send text messages.  We then dropped to a beautiful stream which we followed until reaching some boardwalks over a swamp in a valley.  As we walked down the valley the rain started but only lasted 10 minutes.

Ready to go again
20 meters of boardwalk before the real track began.

Mud and roots

More mud
Stream crossing

Across the small bit of flat

Before climbing again, in the mud

Now we were in the alpine zone which was much more open giving fantastic views, though limited by mist a lot of the time.  We followed a stream steadily climbing then through a rocky saddle.  It started raining properly so I put my umbrella up.  There was a discussion about lunch but as the hut was only 1 hour away we decided to keep going.  The others tried to eat an Apple but this was not easy while short of breath due to the altitude so I decided to wait. 

Once through the rock saddle we looked out over a large valley.  We sidled around the edge and the camp came into sight high up on the other side.  Half way across the valley we climbed a small hill and Lake Bugata came into sight.  Then as we were doing the final push up to camp William saw a Duiker print. Ochura looked into the bushes and showed us where the Duiker was.  It looked like a small red deer.

Our campside to to the top left, 2/3 of the way up the steep rocky face.

The brown dot just left of the middle is a Duika

Then the final push to the camp which was a steep climb. We arrived at 1600.

At the camp there were two eight bunk huts, a kitchen and dining room. We had a hot drink in the dining room while we ate our lunch of a tuna roll, fruit juice and apple.

The final climb up to the camp

The plankman still coming

Now at Bugata Camp

Dining Room

Toilet, a distinct improvement from yesterday

Looking down on the camp

Lake Bugata

We looked around at the fantastic views of mountains and the Lake.  All of us except Anna Marie and Gerald walked the old track to see Lake Kapella which was also beautiful.

Taking an old trail to get to Lake Kapella

Lake Kapella

We then did or own thing for a while.  I sat at the top of the cliff looking down at the lake. I had a slight headache so took a couple of Panadol and it went away.  Also my right little toe was rubbed raw from the gumboots. When it got cold I moved to the dining room and talked to the couple who are doing Mt Wiseman tomorrow. Then we prepared to play Uno but our soup arrived then spaghetti bolignaise and instant pudding and peaches so we just talked instead. The guides gave us our evening brief and we retired to bed with actual hot water bottles at 2015.

Home for the night

A genuine Hot Water Bottle


  1. Very nice pictures! It seems that all of you had an adventurous trip and enjoyed a lot during the tracking. I enjoyed reading your post.

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