Kidepo Valley National Park; The size and beauty of nature and wildlife in kidepo national park is, perhaps, the reason as to why is called the park at a glance. The park, lies on a land of aver 1442 sq.km approximately 540 sq.miles of the divers spectacular landscape. Kidepo valley was gazetted in 1962 as a national park, and it is now under the watch care of Uganda wild authority (UWA); government organs in charge of all protected areas in Uganda.
The park has altitude of 194 m and 2758 m above sea level; the high altitude areas are the hilly inselbergs of kidepo valley national park. Perhaps, the low altitude areas are occupied with the seasonal swamps of narus in kidepo national park. Kidepo valley national park is found in the north western region of Uganda, between ugandan border of Kenya in the east and the southern border of south sudan in the north.
Cultural encounter in kidepo valley national park
Kidepo vally national park is remote, about 700km away from kamplala the capital city of Uganda. this factor has limited its accessibility to the tourist. Despite, kidepo valley national park is a unique area on the world map because it is the area where you can find the uncivilized karamajong people whose culture is unbelievable when just narrated, not until you visit and experience it full person.
The karamanjong people are dominant among the other local communities in kidepo national park, they are pastoralists and their livelihood depends on their cattle; in all terms of surviving, the cows are all they look up too. The karamajong pastoralists are highly mobile; they walk from one place to another looking for water and pasture, from the deep semi-arid Karamoja region, for their glorious cattle.
Other local community is the “Ik”, the smallest ethnic group of Africa. Just as its name, the ik people are threatened of their existence since it walks under the shadow of the famous karamajong people. Unlike the karamajongs, the ik are not pastoralists, but hunter-gatherers and survive on the prey they hunt. A lot of journalists from the national geographical channel and linguistic researchers who have visited kidepo valley national park have found the interest in the ik community. The ik people speak a very distinctive language, which is said to be similar with some other language in Egypt. And, this factor makes them to be a phenomenal important archeological finding that is still under research.
Despite the remoteness of the park, ranks among the world’s finest wild places of vast savannah running from apoka; the center of the park, through the spectacular land scape of almost flat plains outlined with a horizon of distant hilly outliers of north eastern Uganda.
Kidepo valley national park is a home for over 70 mammal species, and over 470 bird species which fly in the clear skies of kidepo valley national park. The wildlife in kidepo valley national park is unique and some species are endemic to kidepo national park in Uganda, for example, cheetahs, jackals, bat-eared foxes, hyenas among others. In this national park you can also spot a number of giraffes, and the burchell’s zebras, lions, leopards and others.
The birds in the national park include ostriches, and prey birds such as vultures. The game drives in kidepo national park are not so rich with large groups of wild animals like in other parks, but the sighted few make it significant among Uganda safari experiences you have had so far. The depopulation of animals in kidepo national park is believed to have been as a result of the 1980s- 1990s warfare in northern Uganda. However, according to research and statistic by the Uganda wildlife authority, the wild population in kidepo is bouncing back over time.
Kidepo national park is drained with a river just a few distances from the border of south Sudan, which floods and flows through kidepo valley national park to south Sudan. The precipitation fills up the narus seasonal oases; the phenomenal area for the game drives in kidepo national park, which dry up in the dry season thus forming a seasonal swamp, a home of extensive bird species. The kanagorok hot springs from the ancient volcanic activity makes spectacular views in kidepo national park; they also harbor a number of birds and wildlife around.
Climate and weather of kidepo valley national park
The national park is a very hot area with a semi-arid climate, this means that the dry season is famous in the park region. The dry season in this park occurs in September to march with an average temperature of about 29 degrees Celsius, however, the higher altitude areas are slightly colder to full fill the geographical fact; the higher you go, the cooler it becomes.
The wet season appears in April to august. Afternoon showers are so regular in the wet season; however the showers are not as heavy as those of western and central Uganda. The best season to visit the national park is, the dry season; it is so clear to view the animals at a glance around the main water bodies in kidepo valley national park. You can also visit the park in the wet season to enjoy the discounts on a number of park fees, and accommodation facilities.
Therefore, you can visit the national park any time of the year, the park is widely open to receive you any time. Your real wilderness camping adventure is awesomely done in kidepo valley national park.