Visitor’s Info

Directory

ENNR-Map 1The East Nimba Nature Reserve is located in the North of Liberia, in Nimba County at the border to Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire. Coming from Monrovia you will take the route Ganta-Sanniquellie-Yekepa. Monrovia and Ganta are connected by a well-maintained tar road; from Ganta onwards you will only find dirt roads, which especially in the rainy season might turn into bad condition and require a 4×4 vehicle.

Administratively, the ENNR is divided into three zones. The ENNR’s Headquarter is at Zortapa (Zone 1), and there are two additional Ranger Posts, one in Geipa (Zone 2) and one in Camp 4 (Zone 3). If you want to reach the Headquarter or Geipa, you have to turn right at the Sehykimpa Junction (which is just a short distance after Sanniquellie); to reach Camp 4/Yekepa go straight. Due to logistics (see below), most visitors come to Yekepa; but you can also visit the southern parts of ENNR starting from Zortapa and Geipa.

_________________________________________________________________________

Contact

ENNR-Map 2General: ennr.cmc@gmail.com

Chief Park Warden/Park Biologist:
Korvah Vanyanbah, 077088329

Zone 1 Warden, Zortapa:
Moses N. Gonsahn, 0777949463

Zone 2 Warden, Geipa:
Mohammed Sirleaf, 0776524048

Zone 3 Warden, Camp 4:
Samuel M. Freeman, 0776530217

 

 

 

_________________________________________________________________________

Logistics

In terms of logistics and infrastructure, best vantage point to visit ENNR is Yekepa, both previous and today’s mining companies’ Headquarters, located 5 km north of Camp 4, close to the Guinean Border. There is one hotel that offers rooms between 30. – and 60. – US$, and also prepares food on order:

Alvino Hotel INC.

Nimba County, Yekepa

  • Tel: (+231)775324347 / 770279522
  • Email: alvinohotel.yekepabranch@gmail.com / amit.alvinohotel.yekepa@gmail.com

ENNR-Hotel                  Alvino Hotel in Yekepa

Close to Alvino Hotel there are two local bars / restaurants (Koyah Pia and Green Bar) and one MiniMarket that offers among others “western” products such as dairy products, frozen and canned food, prepares sandwiches etc. It’s also possible to eat in ArcelorMittal’s canteen. In general, especially for bigger groups, it is advisable to order food in advance. Further, there is a local market (“P-Market”) and some smaller shops, which also sell bottled drinking water.

Given that in the past, before the Reserve was established, mining operations also took place within the northern parts of ENNR, the Reserve is accessible by car via two tar roads in the North, the Blue Lake Road and Cellcom Road (also known as Old Mine Road).

Although logistics are more favourable in the North, you can also visit the other parts of ENNR in Zone 1 and Zone 2. Zortapa and Geipa (both accessible by car) have no accommodation facilities yet, but it is possible to camp on the Ranger Station’s ground if you bring your own camping equipment. You should also bring all the food you will need. The rangers can arrange local people for cooking and fetching water for taking showers etc.. Concerning drinking water, both Zortapa and Geipa have a well, but if you want to be on the safe side you should bring enough bottled water for your trip. No car roads are leading from Zortapa and Geipa to the Reserve, but it is possible to hire a motorbike taxi (Zortapa) and /or walk (ca. 40 min from Geipa) to reach the boundary line.

Mobile coverage: There are three GSM Towers within ENNR (Cellcom, Lonestar, Novafone), so most parts in and around the Reserve have cellphone coverage.

Money can be changed in Yekepa and Sanniquellie.

In Yekepa there is also a branch of LBDI (open Mon-Fri 09-14:00h).

_________________________________________________________________________

Entrance Fees

The East Nimba Nature Reserve Co-Management Committee (CMC) and Forestry Development Authority (FDA) welcome you to East Nimba Nature Reserve! Please respect that this is a Protected Area and refrain from hunting, fishing, farming, putting fire and any other activities, since this is illegal and will be prosecuted, based on the Liberia Protected Area Law. Please also understand that there is an entrance fee for visitors which will help the CMC/FDA with the daily management and protection of the ReservePlease obtain your Entry Permit before entering the Reserve at your destination’s nearest FDA Ranger Station. If you want to visit the southern part, this would be the Headquarter in Zortapa, if you go to the North/Yekepa, please get in touch with the Zone 3 Warden in Camp 4. Thank you!

good

_________________________________________________________________________

What to do

  • Visit Blue Lake and old mining facilities (Zone 3)

The impacts of the previous mining activities in northern ENNR are still visible today. At least 10% of the Reserve has been severely affected by mining operations. The most conspicuous feature is the site of the former Liberian American Minerals Company (LAMCO) iron ore mine, leading to the creation of “Blue Lake“ and its surrounding terraces. You can drive up to Blue Lake, have a picnic, enjoy the amazing landscape and take a refreshing bath in the lake. There is also a lot of abandoned mining equipment and old buildings left in ENNR, mostly along Blue Lake Road, which are also worth a visit.

ENNR-Blue Lake Blue Lake and its surrounding terraces
ENNR- Old mining equipment Old mining equipment in ENNR


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Visit Picnic Site (Zone 3)

There are several good viewing points in ENNR, one that is easy to access is a spot called “Picnic Site” along Cellcom Road in Zone 3. It was one of the famous recreation places during mining operations in the past. You can reach it by car, and, while having a picnic, enjoy a great view of Blue Lake, Guinea and Yekepa. Since at the Picnic Site today is nothing more left than a concrete platform, you will have to bring some chairs and tables, if you don’t want to sit on the ground. And of course your picnic and drinks!

ENNR-Visitors enjoying Christmas at Picnic SiteVisitors enjoying Christmas at Picnic Site

  • Camping

The CMC still needs to identify and designate public camping areas within ENNR, but for now it is possible to use the existing ranger camps in all three Zones. It is also possible to camp at Blue Lake.

  • Hiking

ENNR offers a lot of hiking trails of different lengths and levels of difficulty. Please find some suggestions below.

Trinational Border (Zone 3)

Starting from Blue Lake, you can hike to the transnational border between Liberia, Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire. Set your foot across the border on the other country’s ground! Features: approx. 11 km (return trip), 5-7 hours, physically demanding

ENNR-View into Côte d’Ivoire on the hike to the trinational border View into Côte d’Ivoire on the hike to the trinational border
  The demarcation stone at the trinational border (Liberia, Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blue Lake – Cellcom Tower (Zone 3)

Starting from Blue Lake, you walk towards Cellcom Tower, which is located at the end of Cellcom Road. There are 2 ways, one leading across the mountain ridge, the other one below the ridge (less demanding). You can do a round trip or arrange a car to pick you up at Cellcom Road.

Features: approx. 6 km (return trip), 3-4 hours, easy – medium

ENNR-From Blue Lake to Cellcom TowerFrom Blue Lake to Cellcom Tower

Blue Lake – Sehtuntuo (Zone 3/2)

Starting from Blue Lake, you mainly walk downhill into Sehtuntuo Valley in Zone 2, finally reaching Sehtuntuo Village, where you can be picked up by a car.

Features: approx. 7,5 km (one way), 4-5 hours, medium

ENNR-Descending to Sehtuntuo ValleyDescending to Sehtuntuo Valley

Waterfall (all Zones)

There are several waterfalls in ENNR, at different hiking distances and levels of difficulty. Please check with the Ranger Stations for more details.

ENNR-One of the beautiful waterfalls in ENNR                                                    One of the beautiful waterfalls in ENNR

Caves (Zone 1, 2)

There are several caves in ENNR, especially in Zone 1 and 2. Please check with the Ranger Stations for more details on hiking distances and levels of difficulty.

  • Chimpanzee Survey

Although there is no guarantee to see chimpanzees, the best option currently is to do a multi-day survey either in the southwestern part of ENNR in Zone 1, or in the northeastern part in Zone 2. According to the Ranger’s preliminary biomonitoring data, these two areas seem to contain higher densities of chimpanzees than others. It’s recommended to plan several days for the survey and camp in the Reserve.

  • Around ENNR

Old LAMCO swimming pool in Yekepa

Sanniquellie – nothing spectacular, but good for shopping food for surveys

Please note: The CMC cannot provide any transport / vehicle

_________________________________________________________________________

What to bring

What to bring depends on what you want to do, here are just some suggestions:

Backpack, binoculars, camera, camping equipment, food and drinking water, good hiking shoes, medical supplies/first aid kit, mobile, mosquito repellent, torch…..

 

 

 

 

The ENNR Conservation Project

The East Nimba Nature Reserve lies within the concession of ArcelorMittal Liberia (AML), an iron ore mining company, that takes its green image very seriously and, as part of its compensation (“offset”) mechanism, supports the CMC and FDA in the long term with the management and protection of ENNR. In December 2015, a joint project, funded by AML and technically supervised by Fauna & Flora International (FFI), was launched in order to ensure the effective ENNR Management Plan Implementation. The 2-year project is designed to provide the technical support and broad capacity building required to transform ENNR in a well-managed Protected Area. Its overall aim is the successful and sustainable conservation of ENNR through improved capacity building of the CMC. The project comprises 4 main objectives:

Objective 1:  Capacity building for co-management implementation at all levels, including Work Planning & Reporting, Computer Literacy, Financial Management etc.

Objective 2:  Building critical infrastructure for CMC operations (Project Office, Transportation etc.)

Objective 3:  ENNR protection, law enforcement patrols and threat monitoring

Objective 4:  Biodiversity baseline research and long-term biomonitoring

The pictures below give an insight in the main activities that are carried out by the CMC with support of the project.

 

ENNR-The demarcation stone at the trinational border Setting demarcation stones at the boundary line
Singboard BB Setting up sign boards
Cleaningup BB Cleaning campaign in ENNR
Biomonitoring BBBiomonitoring data collection
Butterfly Monitoring BB Butterfly survey
Ranger Traning BBRanger training
Exif_JPEG_420 Study Tour of CMC members to attend a trans-boundary workshop in USA
Law Enforcement BB2  Law enforcement and confiscation of hunting equipment
Law Enforcement BB1 Arrest of a hunter with bushmeat
Awarness BB Awareness campaigns for local communities
Signing MOU BBEstablish transboundary collaboration with Guinean counterpart
Signing MOU BBENNR boundary line brushing and demarcation

The ENNR Co-Management Committee (CMC)

In 2010, a Co-Management Agreement was signed between the Forestry Development Authority (FDA) and the stakeholder communities in order to jointly manage the East Nimba Nature Reserve through a joint board, called the Co-Management Committee (CMC). The CMC comprises twelve members – six representatives of the local communities and six representatives from the FDA. Both parties share their management responsibilities, with the community representatives leading on community-related operations around ENNR, such as awareness raising, sensitization, human-wildlife conflicts etc., while the FDA leads on technical operations within the Reserve, including law enforcement patrols, biomonitoring, research etc..

Please find below the current CMC members.

Saye Thompson Saye Thompson
_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Chairman
April 2010
I live in Gbapa, married with six (6) children. Beside supporting CMC, I am the Chairman of the Joint Community Forest Management Body (JCFMB); also engaged in farming and diamond mining in my farmland and student willing to enrol in any College or University .

 

Joe Dayee Joe Dayee
_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Co-Chairman for Awareness & Mobilization
April 2010
I live in Goagartuo, Zar Chiefdom and I’m married with eight (8) children. I’m a farmer, and working in the CMC till present.
Dada Konkah Dada S. Konkah

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Secretary
April 2010
I live in Gbapa, Nimba County, Republic of Liberia. I am married with six (6) children. Now I’m engaged in working for the Joint Community Forest Management Body (JCFMB) and as secretary for the ENNR Co-Management Committee (CMC). Besides, I am a community mobilizer and a farmer.
James Karmen James Karmen

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Public Relation Officer
April 2010
I live in Zolowee Town, Nimba County. I am married and blessed with six (6) living children. I am a certificated Nurse Aid running my own Drugs store and also a member of the Joint Community Forest Management Body (JCFMB) as a Treasurer besides supporting the CMC.
Helen Weanquoi Hellen Weanquoi

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Chaplain
April 2010
I live in Zolowee town and I’m blessed with four (4) children. Besides supporting the CMC, I am engaged in business and farming. I am the chaplain of the CMC and have been working with the ENNR since 2010.
Willington Tuo Wellington Y. Tuo

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Public Relation Officer Assistant
April 2016
I live in Zortapa; I am married and have three (3) children. Besides supporting the CMC, I am mainly engaged in gardening. I am a member of CMC working in ENNR.
Korvah Vanganbah Korvah K Vanyanbah

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Co-Chair for Technical Operations
April 2010
I was born in Lofa County, Liberia. I was employed with FDA in 2007 and assigned as Park Biologist. Educational Level: BSc. in General Forestry University of Liberia. Certificate: International Traning course for Establishment and Management of Field Research Station (2008), Instructor at Nimba County Community College (2012-2014)
Grace Kotee Grace Kotee

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Assistant Secretary
April 2017
I live in Zortapa. I’m not married and don’t have a kid yet. I hold an Associate degree in Forestry from the Nimba County Community College. Besides supporting the CMC, I’m the Secretary for the East Nimba Nature Reserve since May 2016.
Joseph Wleah Joseph K. Wleah

 

_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Member
December 2015
I am married and blessed with ten (10) children and have been employed with this entity since 1985. After my graduation from the Forestry School as Law Enforcement Ranger, I served as a Data Recorder, District Forest D-B & Scaler with FDA. Currently I’m Zone Warden of ENNR Zone 1
Mohammed Gonsahn Mohammed Sirleaf
_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Member
June 2016
I am employed with the Forestry Development Authority and FDA Zone 2 Warden working in the East Nimba Nature Reserve.
Sam Freeman Samuel M. Freeman
_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Member
June 2015
I was transferred from Sapo National Park (SNP), which is the mother Park of Liberia, in 2015 where I served for fifteen (15) years as Conservation Education Officer and later as Zone Warden. I am married with three children and presently I serve as Zone Warden of Zone 3 at ENNR with residence in Camp 4, Nimba County.
Moses Gonsahn Moses N. Gonsahn
_Position within CMC:_
_Joined CMC:_
_Personal Information:_
Member
October 2012
I live in Yekepa, Camp 4 Nimba County. I am married with twelve (12) children. Besides supporting the CMC, I am Community Engagement Ranger working in ENNR since 1988.