Around the World with Yellow Wood: Uganda
Yellow Wood friends Marc and Beth recently went gorilla trekking in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda. The experience allows hikers and their professional guides to get up close and personal with gorillas amidst their natural habitat. Beth so generously shared some key takeaways with us; read on to get a feel for this incredible opportunity!
What was the coolest thing you saw or did there?
Absolutely no question—gorilla trekking. I think to gaze into the eyes of a mountain gorilla is one of the greatest thrills of my life. And the money from permits helps conserve them, with the funds from responsible tourism providing jobs for the communities. So not only is it a thrill to be in their presence, you know that you are doing something to help preserve them.
What is one thing you wish you knew before you went?
How desperately poor Uganda is. Unless you see people walking over pitted dirt for hours in order to access water—and then have to make the return trip carrying it in order to have water for the most basic needs, I’m not sure you realize how difficult life is for so many people. Rwanda, where we also went, has far more in terms of infrastructure, accessible water, education, and health care.
What's one item you absolutely couldn't have done the trip without?
The Fjallraven trekking pants!! Marty helped Marc with his, and Cyd and Debra helped me with mine. Loved them!
Anything else you'd like to share about your trip?
Our trip was particularly meaningful because of the advanced learning. Whether it was about primates or the Rwandan genocide, having a context and knowledge base made things even more meaningful.