Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Back from DRC/Congo to Rockville

In my 3rd post from DRC/Congo I talked briefly about the work we're doing with the Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS)--see also previous two posts #1 and #2--here is an update:   We left with many mixed feelings about the challenges ahead--to help rehabilitate the two parks (Kundelungu and Upemba)--see Upemba National Park Conservation Project.  But a lot of progress has been made and we're encouraged!  I will go away with a positive feeling and remember the truly spectacular landscapes, people, sunsets and sunrises, and wildlife.  Here are a few photo memories from our last few days at Lusinga Station in Upemba National Park and from our 10-hour ride back to Lubumbashi. 

A lone, beautiful tree on the savanna in Upemba near Lusinga Station
The sun rising in the east as seen from Lusinga Station in Upemba NP
The Grassland (Steppe) Savanna in Kundelungu NP
Some of the last remaining Zebra in DRC
One of the beautiful falls near Kiubo Falls Lodge
Michael McBride handing out balloons and having fun with the kids as we traveled!

You can read more about our time at Lusinga Station on Michael McBride's BLOG--see post: Congo's Future is with the Children!  You may also want to see his new FACEBOOK CAUSE focusing on the needs of the KIDS at the Lusinga School.  Michael is raising funds (separate from our work) to help with basic supplies, books, and other necessities for this very isolated school.  It serves the guards and their families who make everything possible for protecting the park.  

On my flight out via Nairobi, Kenya I saw a most beautiful sunset through the rains at the airport.  The BIG rains had started in Kenya but where we left in DRC (Katanga)--the dry season had begun which is their "winter"--and it was getting cooler!  Note the trees "changing color" (photo below)--on the hillside above one of the beautiful Kiubo Falls Lodge cabins--along a streamside "gallery forest".  


I'm now back home in Rockville Utah!  It was great to see everything at their full summer green and of course, my favorite view of all--the Red Rocks of Zion National Park.

 Mt Kinesava in Zion NP from our back window!

Our lawn is finally in and green!  It was was nice to get back to work on the land again.  Haying starts soon as well--last Monday was "irrigation day" and there was lots of yard work to do--but satisfying!

My Work in DRCBetween work on my land I have started to build maps and databases for both parks including locating some of my own GPS waypoints showing where we were--see map below:  Over the next month I'll do a lot more with my colleague Steve Schill of the Nature Conservancy and we'll go back later in June and July to help further.  Later I will have more to say on the actual work.  

I wish everyone a productive and COOL "northern" summer!

My best, Bob Ford


  1. Dear Professor Bob,

    Thanks for sharing with us your last month’s occupation and help for environmental issues always in central-eastern Africa.
    We are here also doing our best for sustainable forest management in the context of PGIS project with Enda Lead you left with us at earlier stage.
    Warm regards

  2. Thank you Elias...hope all is going well at NUR/CGIS!