Dian Fossey Hike

Dian Fossey Hike: You can take part in the dian fossey hike in Volcanoes national park, a park famous for housing the endangered golden monkeys, half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas that can be accessed once you take part in virunga mountains hike. Dian fossey was an American primatologist who made the conservation of the mountain gorillas possible with the different efforts she put in place. Dian Fossey established her research centre in Volcanoes national park between Mount Karisimbi and Mount Bisoke where she established the Karisoke research station where she carried out her activities of researching the gorillas finding out the different threats of the gorillas which was mainly poaching, the different diseases that affect the gorillas, she was also part of the people that made gorilla habituation in Rwanda easy for gorilla trekking to be carried out.

Dian Fossey Hike

Dian Fossey hike will give you the chance to understand more about the primatologist whose initial purpose of coming to Rwanda was to understand more about the Mountain Gorillas and the more she spent time with the primates, she fell in love with them which contributed to the protection of the gorillas from poachers who were increasing in the park because of their need for the gorilla products.

When she discovered that the gorillas faced a big threat of poaching, she established her anti poaching patrol team which fought against a number of poaching related activities and throughout her anti poaching struggles, she managed to decrease poaching in the park which annoyed the poachers because during the process of fighting the illegal activity which led to the killing of her favourite gorilla Digit, she destroyed poachers’ traps, killed their dogs, burnt their homes which increased the number of enemies that were interested in ending her life because of the fact that she was sabotaging their activities.

After the death of Digit, Dian Fossey established the digit Gorilla fund which was established to raise funds in order to conserve the mountain gorillas from poaching and the funds that were collected, was used to carry out regular patrols, hiring of skilled veterinary officers that would take care of the gorillas when they fell sick. with the different efforts that were spearheaded by dian Fossey to avoid poaching in Volcanoes national park, it contributed to her murder in 1985, Dian fossey was found murdered in her cabin and as a way of paying tribute to her they decided to bury her next to the Karisoke research station in the gorilla cemetery next to her gorilla friends that were also killed by poachers.

Added Benefits of the Dian fossey hike


After tourists are briefed, they are then escorted by a ranger who possesses a gun who is responsible for the safety of the tourists in case of any break out. The guide takes it upon himself to tell the tourists about history about Dian fossey as explained above and the different attractions in the area, the hike can take 1-3 hours and during the hike to Karisoke gorilla cemetery tourists can see different plant species, bird species like example the handsome francolin, Ruwenzori turaco, Ruwenzori Batis, Shelley’s crimson, Dwarf honey guide, Dusky crimson and also other primates like the vervet monkeys, golden monkeys and also the mountain gorillas.

birds of in dian fossey hike

Primate Viewing

On reaching the gorilla cemetery, Dian fossey tomb stone can be seen and next to her is the tomb stone of her favourite gorilla Digit who was killed by poachers and at the cemetery the guide tells the tourists about her research centre Karisoke which is now one of the biggest gorilla research centres in the world.  It has contributed to the community and the tourism in the area because through the Dian Fossey gorilla fund, the conservation of the gorillas is ensured with the numerous patrols to protect the gorillas which have led to the tourism in the area.

Equipment to carry while on the Dian fossey tomb hike

  • Cameras to capture moments while on the hike for instance the golden monkeys, swinging from the different tree branches.
  • Water bottles because it can be tiresome while hiking given the high elevations of the mountains which leads the body to dehydrate while hiking leading to the drop of oxygen levels.
  • Hiking boots because the road leading to her grave is quite slippery which can lead to a number of accidents.
  • Long sleeved shirts and trousers to avoid being scratched by nettles
  • Insect repellents because the park is a habitat to a number of disease spreading insects like mosquitoes, tsetse flies among other insects and with the repellents tourists are protected from insect bites.
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