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AFRICA MAP
  Pico del Teide
  Jebel Toubkal
  Jebel Siroua
  Mount Cameroon
  Mount Stanley
  Karisimbi
  Mount Elgon
  Mount Kenya
  Mount Meru
  Kilimanjaro





| View from the top of Mount Elgon with a light dusting of snow
(photographer unknown)   <click to enlarge>

Mount Elgon
    14178 ft (4321 m) .
Major Peaks:
Wagagai:     14178 ft (4321 m)
Sudek:     14115 ft (4302 m)
Koitobos:     13852 ft (4222 m)
Mubiyi:     13816 ft (4211 m)
Masaba:     13650 ft (4161 m)
Location: Uganda-Kenya border, East Africa
Lat / Long: 1.1° N, 34.5° E
Volcanic Type: Eroded stratovolcano with caldera
Volcanic Status: Extinct
First Ascent: Wagagai: Kmunke and Stigler, 1911
Sudek:     F. Jackson, E. Gedge, and J. Martin, 1890
First Ski Descent:
Skiable Vertical: ?



Mount Elgon is a huge, ancient, and eroded stratovolcano which sits astride the Uganda-Kenya border. Although not the tallest of the isolated volcanoes of East Africa, it is among the largest in volume, rising up from a base over 50 miles (80 km) in diameter on the plains at about 4000 ft (1200 m) elevation. Elgon is topped by a caldera about 5 miles (8 km) in diameter, with several high points over 13000 ft (4000 m) along the rim. Elgon is noted for its unique Afro-alpine trees and plants, and for the many caves in its mid-elevation slopes, where elephants and other large animals can often be found eating mineral salts. These caves are not lava tubes, since Elgon has few suitable lava flows, but are instead eroded from the volcanic tuff (welded ash flows) which make up the bulk of Elgon's volume (digging by elephants may also contribute to the enlargement of the caves). Although not presently glaciated, during the Ice Ages Mount Elgon supported numerous glaciers which extended down below 11000 ft (3400 m). Occasional snows still fall on the higher slopes, but accumulations do not last for long. With good timing, it may just be possible to ski a short run someplace near the caldera rim after a major storm.


| Sketch map of the Mount Elgon caldera
    <click to enlarge>
Some useful links:  

    Uganda Travel Planner: Mount Elgon National Park (general info)
    Uganda Tourist Board: Mt Elgon National Park (general info)
    KenyaWeb: Mount Elgon National Park (general info)
    Underground Elephants of Mount Elgon (info about cave elephants)
   

Topographic map of Mount Elgon (1:500,000 scale)
    from Tactical Pilotage Chart L-5D
    <click to enlarge>


        More photos and info about routes, access, etc. may be added in the future ...


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Amar Andalkar   Seattle, WA, USA   <About the Author / Contact Me>
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