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Kidepo NP in remote northern Uganda using the Moroto/Kotido road

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Jan 29th, 2013, 11:45 PM
  #1
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Kidepo NP in remote northern Uganda using the Moroto/Kotido road

In December 2012 me and my girlfriend made a 2-weeks trip to Kidepo NP in the far north of Uganda.
As it was my 2nd time in Uganda, my focus was on the northert/north-eastern part of the country.
We took the Moroto-Kotido-Kaabong route...the "virtually impassable eastern route through desolate, remote, authentic and colourful Karamoja land".
Beforehand I had very high expectations of this trip and I must admit that they have been exceeded...it was very safe, the people and local tribes we met were very friendly and welcoming, the landscapes were overwhelming, there are hardly any "muzungus", no traffic (just a few UN trucks) and the roads...well, they were...quite a challenge. It took us 2 full days of from Mt Elgon NP up to Kidepo, but despite the very long drives...I enjoyed every minute of it. This is the "real Uganda" and I can only recommend it to anyone who has the time to go up there.

Also...we spent 3 full days (4 nights) in Kidepo NP (stayed at the UWA bandas) and for me, it's by far the most beautiful national park in Uganda...Murchison Falls NP where we ended our trip (via the Gulu-Kitgum road) comes second.

Since we has only 2 weeks and the drive up to Kidepo NP is a very challenging one (safety and especially the road conditions), we arranged this trip with Primate Watch Safaris (PWS), based in Kampala.
Our very experienced driver/guide Ben and his 4WD Landcruiser really made our trip. Beforehand we were told to be very flexible during this trip (as this was also unknown territory to PWS) and...that proved to be correct.
It was an adventure for the 3 of us...and thanks to Ben, the great back-up from the PWS office and to all great people we met during our trip...I can only say...go there!
Superbeem is offline  
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Jan 30th, 2013, 04:33 PM
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I'd be interested in the specifics of your itinerary. Can you give us a day by day of where you stayed and your drive times? Would you care to share what the trip cost you?

What were the highlights of what you saw in Kidepo? What time of year did you go?

Thanks.
atravelynn is offline  
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Jan 30th, 2013, 04:36 PM
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Kidepo to Murch Falls - what was the timeframe on that drive?

Thanks again.
atravelynn is offline  
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Feb 1st, 2013, 01:00 AM
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I'm also interested in the details of your trip, the species you saw in Kidepo, the cost of such a trip, .... Is it OK to go there in the second part of May or very difficult because of rains???

Thanks in advance
walrus is offline  
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Feb 1st, 2013, 02:39 PM
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I'm not surprised this post has attracted a walrus.

In responding on the second part of May, can you expand on best/worst times to go, Superbeem?

At least 2 people are interested in your response.

Sharing some info I have gleaned second hand, here's what I have found, Walrus.

The rains normally return to the Kidepo valley from April to October and this creates conditions that are good for game viewing as more animals are concentrated around the park headquarters.

August/September is possibly the worst time of the year for visiting Kidepo, since the grass is at its highest and the game is somewhat dispersed..... It seems that the best months are January, February and March (also December and April are supposedly very good).

It appears Kidepo is in the planning stages for you, walrus. How exciting.
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Feb 2nd, 2013, 02:42 AM
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I hope Superbeem comes back to provide some more detailed information about what they saw in Kidepo. I've been waiting a long time for a Kidepo trip report!

I was tantalizingly close to Kidepo (about 100 km) a few years ago while working in Kitgum. I would periodically pass a road sign there indicating the road to Kidepo; so close, yet so far away! At the time it was not safe at all to take that road, however.

I've not driven between Kidepo and Kitgum, but I remember taking about 1 1/2 hours to get to Kitgum to Gulu when I was there a couple of years ago. The road is not paved and I would imagine it could get very bad during the rains. The drive from Gulu to Murchison would take about 3 hours max. All told, I'm guessing that Kidepo to Murchison would take a full day to be on the safe side.

The north-central part of Uganda is really beautiful, lots of tall green grass, not many people, very quiet.
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