Katavi/MahaleOverland





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  1. #1
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    Default Katavi/MahaleOverland

    Has anyone done the trip from Mbeya to Katavi and Mahale? I am
    planning to do it in July 2012 with the intention of getting a driver/ranger
    on board for a 7 day excursion into the area. Any suggestions or advice?
    bronwend

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by bronwend View Post
    Has anyone done the trip from Mbeya to Katavi and Mahale? I am
    planning to do it in July 2012 with the intention of getting a driver/ranger
    on board for a 7 day excursion into the area. Any suggestions or advice?
    bronwend
    Hi Bronwen, there have been one or two threads about this in the past. I have done part of the route from both ends, and others have done the whole route all the way through to Mwanza on Lake Victoria. Expect very bad tracks, some of the heaviest tsetse flies I have experienced, and an amazing trip. This is not easy travel, and not for the faint-hearted. The first part along Lake Rukwa is very thick miombo and mosaic woodland after climbing the escarpment out of Mbeya, and you will keep your windows tightly closed for the tsetses. The only lake views are on a few side roads that can be tough going if there has been rain.
    Don't let me put you off - this is one of the great routes in East Africa, and well worth doing.

  3. #3
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    Default Katavi and Mahale/Gombe Stream

    Thank you, Tony, nothing will put me off, but will take care to keep
    the Tetse flies out. I am originally from East Africa, but this area I
    know is remote, tough and is one I have never ventured into before.
    Good to know it is not a completely crazy idea. I will try and find
    previous threads.

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    It would surprise me if you found a track/road to Mahale you can use.

  5. #5
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    I believe access to Mahale is by boat. That seems to be how tour operators get their clients in. Check out the Bradt guide - it gives information on how to get there. You may need to check it's currency but it should be a good starting point.

    I have heard great things about Katavi but the only time we were out that way it was wet season when I hear access is tough and game viewing unrewarding. In July it should be fantastic. I once corresponded with some people who had visited. They stayed 48 hours longer than intended .... due to a curious pride of lions who set up camp next to them. There were no other visitors in the campsite.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by itchyfeet View Post
    I believe access to Mahale is by boat..
    I haven't been to Mahale, but according to my notes on the area, there is a track from Karungu to Katumbi in the park, but whether or not it is driveable, I don't know. Visitor access is by boat.

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    It is correct that access to Mahale is by boat, it seems as though it can be arranged from Katavi and there is a track to get to the boat. The few
    people who visit mostly fly in to luxury lodges. The trip is between the two rainy seasons, probably the best time for game viewing. It seems as though bird life is also spectacular. I will give an update upon return in August for those who might like to do it on the ground using basic rest
    camps.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bronwend View Post
    I will give an update upon return in August for those who might like to do it on the ground using basic rest
    camps.
    That would be very valuable, thanks.

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