Expedition To Mont Nimba
December 19, 1999
At 1760 m above sea level, Mt. Nimba is Guinea's highest mountain. We climbed one of the lower peaks of the ridge, the slope of which is visible to the far right. The tallest peak is the triangular point on the far left.

Mt. Nimba is almost solid iron ore, and has been long viewed by the government as a potential source of income, just waiting to be sold, dismantled, and shipped off to Europe. Local and international environmentalists have forced a compromise in which most of the mountain is protected.

We were lucky to have a very competent guide in M. Doré, a mining engineer who is waiting for the mining to start.


A plaque left by the French explorers who "discovered" the mountain.




In Search Of The Chimpanzees of Bossou

The village of Bossou, on the western flank of Mt. Nimba, has a long-standing relationship with a troop of chimpanzees living right outside the village. For generations they worshipped the chimps, with one family in the village acting as a sort of priesthood. This family now makes a living serving as tourist guides and working with a Japanese primatology center.

  It was dark in the forest, and my flash would have scared off the chimps, who weren't cooperating anyway; so I didn't get much in the way of stunning nature photography. Here's the best I could do.