11 October 2016
Today I collect my guests, Jim and Marty, celebrating a 20 year anniversary and Jim’s 50th.
Incredibly hot as we headed to our first stop, berg en dal for 2 nights so we really weren't expecting to see much.
Instead we were greeted by zebras, kudus, warthogs, giraffes and elephants.
A stop at afsaal for refreshments and we checked into our accommodation.
After supper Jim and Marty decided to walk to their room.. but ended up at the gate entrance where they heard the lions calling close by!!! They quickly retreated to the safety of their room...eventually!
12 October 2016
An early start and after hearing the lions last night we decided we had to find them.
We were doing a morning drive so we could take a slow amble around the area.
Lovely Elephants and rhinos along with impalas and zebras but still no lions. We headed on the 114 and lovely sighting of a tawny eagle as well as lilac breasted rollers and blue waxbill.
Turning onto the 119 we saw a few cars and there in the tree were at least 6 spots...of a well hidden leopard! always good to wait, so we did and very slowly a huge male leopard climbed down and walked along side of the vehicle, an absolutely stunning sighting.
After breakfast we headed back to camp where Jim and Marty were doing a sunset drive at 4:30.
I greeted 2 very excited guests showing me photos of a handsome male lion and a beautiful lioness about 2 meters from the road. Marty was also luck to spot a honey badger.
Supper and then we were off tomorrow for a night at skukuza.
13 October 2016
We left berg en dal and headed to skukuza at 6am. Always good to start early. We decided to make a day of it and had lovely Elephants and lots of general game.
We made a stop at skukuza as we were too early to check in so decided to drive to high level bridge. Along the way we came across some very well hidden wild dogs!
At high level itself to the right of the bridge we saw 2 lionesses lying on a sand bank. Quite far but still impressive. Heading back to camp along the river lots of elephants, hippos and buffalos.
14 October 2016
We decided on an early drive and then to head back for breakfast at skukuza for a delicious buffet. Driving down the 114 to renosterkoppies we came across a duiker just staring at a termite mound, we watched and she would move every now and then a couple of steps back, something had her attention. .. to our surprise we saw a huge, at least 3.5 m long African rock python moving slowly over the termite mound, so fascinating to witness and something I've never seen. Marty also saw a honey badger!!!
After breakfast we were heading to our next stop, nkambeni and we heard of a leopard kill not far away so we headed off. We came across a female impala wedged into a marula tree and to the left we saw a tail and 1 leg! So we decided to sit and wait...every now and then she appeared and would relax and just stare at us. Lovely.
Checked in at nkambeni and time for a siesta and an early supper.
15 October 2016
Leaving camp we headed off to skukuza for a full day drive. We went via watergat and to the right we came across an old male lion and 2 lionesses, all full after feasting on a young buffalo. We sat for a while and drove off, just at the junction something caught our eyes. .more lions with another buffalo kill!!! We wanted to go and check to see if the leopard was still at the same spot so took a drive and she was on the opposite side of the road lying incredibly well camouflaged in a bush!
After lunch we drove along the Doispan road. Lots of general game and then just before nyamundwa dam we saw something hanging in the tree, it was a young buffalo that had been killed by a leopard, the leopard was on the opposite side cooling down in the shade. A fantastic day!
16 October 216
Our last day together and a short drive around shabeni and pk koppies. Lots of elephants and some beautiful sable antelope. Perched on top of manung koppies were 2 klipspringers.
We grabbed a coffee and then went to shitlave dam where there were lots of elephants and giraffes. Listening carefully I heard the impala alarm calling and we drove to see what was bothering them, we'd just missed the leopard and it was resting in the drainage line!! Oh well it was still interesting to witness the impalas calling and literally showing us where the leopard was!
So another safari is over, Marty and Jim heading off on their next adventure...Cairo!