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Chimpanzee Trekking

When trekking to see chimpanzees you tend to hear them before you see them. The forest reverberates with their cries and hoots, and the sounds hit your chest giving you an almost primeval feeling.

Watching chimps in the wild

The experience of watching chimps can be very variable depending on what they are doing. If they are in the trees eating fruit you will usually get a good sighting, though possibly also a cricked neck! If they are on a hunt or in playful mood they can move around very quickly of course, so you might need to keep moving the watch them. If they are on the ground, perhaps grooming, you may be treated to a much closer view.

Watching chimps can be an altogether edgier experience than being with gorillas if they're active. They might be drumming on buttress roots in the forest, having an argument, or swinging high above you in the canopy.

Having said that, they can be calm, and when you look into their eyes or watch their hands, you know for sure that these creatures are not so different from us.  What a moment. 

Depending on where you are trekking, the terrain can vary from reasonably flat to extremely steep, but it’s always forested of course.  Once you find the chimps, you get about an hour to stay with them or follow them with your ranger.

Chimp Habituation Days

If you are really keen on chimpanzees you could also consider taking a ”˜habituation trekking day’ where you go out for part of the day with a ranger who is working on habituating a new group of chimpanzees. This is not available everywhere, though by booking in advance you can commonly do this in Uganda. 

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