The name “karisimbi” comes from the word “ amasimbi” which means “ White shell” referring to the white caped summit which is always seen at the top of this mountain.It is bordered by;Bisoke to the East; Nyirangogo to the West and Mikeno to the North. It is popularly known for mountain Gorillas.
Mountain Karisimbi is the fifth highest in Africa rising at an elevation of about 4507m above sea level. This stratovolcano is the highest of the 8 volcanoes of the Virunga field and it lies along the borders between Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda on the Western Branch of East African Rift Valley, as shown below;
Climbing this mountain is fabulous experience although it is stranous,but its worth rewarding after the two days hike. The climbing starts very early in the morning taking 6 hours and it involves navigating the Bisoke before reaching the first stopping side at an altitude of 3700 m for overnight camping before finishing it the next day.
Hiking starts from the edge of Volcanoes National park to the ridge of the huge caldera that extends at the base of the actual cone at mount Karisimbi, crossing first the bamboo forest and the hagenia-hypericum forest. The hike then continues through the caldera, across the bush of lobelia and Senecio .Another route begins at the foot of mount Visoke, takes the hikers across the saddle and up mountain kirisimbi. The return hike then takes the whole of the second day.
The site also affords sights of bird varieties, primates since the park lies in the primates park of volcanoes national park.
Climbers need to be totally fit with good health and should be self-sufficient with i.e. should carry food, sleeping bags, adopted clothing etc…
The current fees for the hike is $175 per person and it include the park guide.