Mount Gahinga – a Dormant Volcano in the Virunga Mountains
Mount Gahinga is a dormant/extinct volcano in the Virunga Mountains on the border between Rwanda and Uganda. Gahinga lies between Mount Muhabura and Sabyinyo, but it is the smallest of the three. Out of the eight volcanoes found within the Virunga mountain ranges spread across Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and this particular mountain is one of them. Mount Gahinga, also known in the local Kinyarwanda/Rufumbira language as a “small pile of stones”, with swampy caldera on its top. The caldera is estimated to be about 180 m (591 feet) wide. Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, one of the two mountain gorilla parks in Uganda also derives its name from this Volcano. Gahinga, with an elevation of 3,473 metres (11,394 feet) is a member in the chain of eight volcanic mountains of the Mufumbiro ranges.
Mount Gahinga Vegetation and Animals
The vegetation across Gahinga can be explained as afro-montane with bamboo comprising of the main vegetation. Like Muhabura and Sabyinyo, the bamboo forests on Mountain are a home to the endangered mountain gorillas. There are also numerous other species of animals and birds which are part of the Gahinga ecosystem. The golden monkeys are also notable to these.
Hiking Mount Gahinga
The mountain is easier to to climb compared to hiking Mount Sabinyo or Muhabura even though one should be fit and mentally prepared to complete the adventure.
Accommodation around Gahinga
Mount Gahinga Lodge is conveniently positioned close to the entrance into Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Note that all accommodation facilities around Kisoro town and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park are ideal bases for climbers of the mountain.
Access to the Mountain
Access to Gahinga is the same route taken by those visiting Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Mgahinga national park is located in southwestern part of Uganda and can be reached by road transport where one will drive from Kampala or Kigali City. Flying from Entebbe to Kisoro town landing at Kisoro Airstrip also offers easy access to the Gahinga by road from Kisoro.