H had arrived from Guinea Conakry late on Saturday evening.  We had planned a full six day itinery as requested which he had already received by e mail. We sat and had a Star beer with him and gave him more detail about the plans for the following day.We were to start at 5.30 am from our compound and Kenneth was meeting us here. This would allow us to meet day break at the Guma Valley Dam, which is in the heart of the western peninsular rain forrest. Kenneth assured us this was also one of the best places to have a chance of seeing the white necked Picarthartes, which H had indicated he would like to see. We had discussed the whole programme with kenneth and taken his advice. He had explained to us that at this time of the year the white necked picathartes or bare headed \guinea Fowl were not mating and so the best time to see them was around 6.00 pm in the evening when they came back to their nesting site.

The plans worked perfectly and following an early breakfast and with some provisions and water packed in a coolman in the jeep we set off for the 40 minute drive to guma Valley dam. We drove to the top most part which has a shaded picnic area and stunning views over the dam, this reservoir supplies the whole of Freetown with water.

H and Kenneth started off on their walk and Kenneth told us to wait for around half an hour and then follow behind them slowly until we could just see them. This would allow them to top up with water, food etc if they wanted.

We just stayed at the summit of the hill watching with awe as the sun rose from behind the mountains It was a magnificent sight and turning to face the dam we found it bathed in that unique, stark greyness of dawn. wonderful. What a way to pass half an hour. To be continued