How to Ensure Safety on a Gorilla Tour

How safe is gorilla trekking
When for a gorilla tour, most travelers ask how safe it is to be with mountain gorillas in the jungle. This is a very important question especially for the first time travelers who have never been in the presence of wild animals in the jungle. It's obvious that lots of imaginations run through the minds of all travelers while planning for gorilla safaris wondering how the experience will be and their safety in presence of the silverback. However, despite the wild nature of mountain gorillas, travelers are assured of safe and enjoyable interaction with mountain gorillas in their natural habitats. Mountain gorillas share 98% of human genes, which make them people’s closest relatives after the chimpanzees. Their social behaviors and character imply that mountain gorillas are with no doubt of a human gene, very peaceful animals and calm unless they are disturbed. To ensure safety, therefore, travelers are given gorilla trekking rules and regulations, which they must follow and keep for their safety and for the safety of mountain gorillas. Safety tips for gorilla trekking

Keep a distance of seven meters

It’s a must for all trekkers to be seven meters a way from the mountain gorillas to avoid close interaction, which can be dangerous to both parties. At some time, gorillas may come close to the travelers since they do not know about the boundaries but trekkers are highly reminded to avoid them and move away when approached by the passing by gorillas. The distance is meant to keep gorillas comfortable since coming so close can make them scared and hence charge at travelers to defend them selves.

Do not trek when you are sick

Any travelers with any kind of sickness are discouraged from trekking. First of all, mountain gorillas are so susceptible to human diseases especially communicable diseases such as cough and flue, which is harmful to their health. In the same way, a traveler with weak immunity can track some diseases from the gorillas. For this case, all travelers must present their medical letters to prove their health status before they are allowed to interact with the critically endangered mountain gorillas. Discouraging sick travelers from taking part in gorilla trekking is done for the good of the travelers and mountain gorillas since it puts both of them at a risk of contracting diseases to each other.

Keep within your group

At the end of the briefing before any trekking, travelers are put together into groups of eight and allocated to 1 gorilla family. Once traveler’s set off into the jungle to meet the mountain gorillas, all of them must keep within their groups as led by a park ranger. Splitting from a group is very dangerous for a traveler exposing him/her to wild animals. Besides gorillas, there are various wild animals in the park, which are not habituated and can be harmful to people if not with an armed ranger.

Armed rangers

A group of travelers trek among with two armed rangers one in front and another one behind. This is to assure travelers of their safety while in the jungle with great protection. In case any wild animal disrupts the group, rangers shoot in the air to scare away the animals ensuring travelers are safe. Remember rangers do not shoot animals to die but rather scare them away by shooting in the air. With this, travelers are assured of their safety in the jungle not worried about any attacks by wild animals.

Avoid direct eye contact & be calm

Mountain gorillas are naturally shy animals, which are disrupted by a direct eye contact. Travelers are reminded to avoid looking direct into the red eyes of the mountain gorillas since this can make them charge at you. Similarly, travelers are reminded to keep calm while with the gorillas. Speaking at a high tone inconveniences the gentle giants causing them to run away from you hence limiting your short time of interaction. Also, avoid touching the baby gorillas even if it comes to you. Touching or carrying a baby gorilla is a threat to the gorilla family and the silverback can charge at you to defend its baby thinking you want to harm or take it.

Dress right for the jungle

Gorilla trekking is not an easy venture but rather a strenuous activity that entail hiking in the steep slopes, thorny bushes and slippery muddy grounds. Travelers must therefore dress appropriately for the jungle. The recommended dressing code for gorilla trekking include light hiking boots for easy movement in slippery grounds, long-sleeved shirts, long pants, hand gloves for grabbing on the thorny bushes for support, sunglasses, and hut to deal with direct sun. Also, travelers are reminded to carry sweaters and rain jackets since forest weather cannot be predicted where rain showers could fall anytime regardless of the season.

Conclusively therefore, gorilla trekking is a once in lifetime experience. Book a gorilla safari today with us greatly assured of your safety with the mountain gorillas.

Posted in Safari News.