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2015 Madagascar Expedition: Coast to Coast

Join a TeamJames Hipkiss

Expedition AIm To conduct an incredible adventure crossing northern Madagascar by foot and raft. On the way we aim to summit Mount Maromokotro, Madagascars highest peak, forge a path through the wildest and most pristine rainforest on the island, taking in some of the worlds most unusual wildlife, spectacular scenery and navigate the uncharted Bemarivo River ending up flowing into the Indian Ocean. Highlights Climb Madagascars highest peak, Maromokotro (2,876m). Navigate some extremely wild and uncharted river systems. Trek across an uninhabited and pristine rainforest environment. See any of the 200,000 species including 105+ varieties of lemur on the worlds oldest island. Blog and Press Coverage Trip dossier: Madagascar 2014 expedition Coverage: UK Sunday Times article Interview: Secret Compass founder Levison Wood Blog entries: Hear from team members Stephania, Xavier and Mohamed Phase One The expedition will begin in the capital of Madagascar, Antananarivo. After having the time to spend the afternoon in the city or visit its renowned lemurs park we will be departing by plane the next morning for the famous island of Nosy Be, our starting point to reach the trailhead. After crossing the Mozambique Channel through the Bay of Ampasindava in small speed boats, we will be aiming to set up our first campsite just outside the Natural Reserve of Tsaratanana, reaching the trailhead of the trek. This is where the fun begins. The first phase of the expedition will consist of approximately 5 days of serious uphill trekking. We will be starting our journey at an elevation of approximately 35 meters to reach the summit of Mount Maromokotro at 2,876 meters on day 5, including a 1,500+ meters vertical climb day. Incredible landscapes, absence of civilization and sore muscles are to be expected! Phase Two After reaching Madagascars highest summit, we will be aiming to reach the Bemarivo River, taking us down to 400 meters. Over the next 4-5 days, we will be trekking across the countrys most uncharted and pristine rainforest being home to some of the worlds most unusual wildlife including over 10 different species of lemurs. The jungle is so dense in that region that we will barely cover five km over eight hours of hard work in some of the toughest days. We say work because trekking in the Madagascar jungle cannot be described by the word walking. Hacking, climbing, sliding, getting slapped, hurting and river crossing would be more like it. Epic adventure guaranteed. Phase Three After an approximate 150km trek, in the final phase of the expedition, we will be rafting down the wild and little-travelled Bemarivo River aiming to reach the Indian Ocean in less than 6 days. During this 125 km rafting journey we will be going through some extremely challenging rapids and physically demanding portage. Deserted white-sand beaches will truly be a deserved reward when we will arrive at our destination on the coast at Sambava. Relax for a day at the end on the shores of the Indian Ocean for some well deserved rest. This expedition is going to be tough and so the opportunity to sit back and enjoy yourself will be gratefully received. The varied terrain of this isolated region make this expedition truly remarkable. There are few expeditions that cross through such a wealth of ecosystems in such a short space of time. This gives us an excellent opportunity to see the famed flora and fauna of Madagascar. The island harbours some 13,000 species of flowering plants of which a staggering 89% are endemic. On top of that, Madagascar is home to a huge array of birds, reptiles and mammals most famously over 100 varieties of lemur.