Saturday, 25 February 2012

24 Feb - Eish!

Photo of the Day
Morning Drive

Elephant (2 kambaku) / Karans – Karans Southern Access

Afternoon Drive
(Marka, Herold, Shadrack & Andrea)

Elephant (Kambaku) / Peru – Vyeboom Dam
Buffalo (2 Daghaboys) / Peru – Lion Pan
Lion (1 male) / Motswari – Link Road North of Shlaralumi

Being a newbie out here certainly has its challenges as today so fervently proved. With new guests who had arrived this afternoon we set out afresh, main goal being leopard. Taking the first part of the drive relatively easy I headed down the western side of the reserve toward Vyeboom dam. We had some wonderful sightings of Saddle-billed and Marabou Storks in the river bed and could see one bull elephant on the other side. We made our way across finding a small herd of Zebra, and then caught up to the elephant bull as he meandered past. He did not seem too phased with our presence but was certainly not in the mood to stick around. 

We continued along and found two Daghaboys lazily resting up in Lion Pan, enjoying an afternoon dip. Shadrack and Marka had been following up on Lion tracks further north and as we were finishing up with the buffalo, Marka called in one male lion. Just as we had turned around to respond to the lion sighting, Nthombi, the female leopard, was spotted further south. Redirecting ourselves once again, we headed straight for Vielmeter, and it was here that things took a bit of a turn.

As we passed through Java we came up to a rather wet looking patch, not thinking too much of it, I continued along. We had just about made it through when the whole vehicle sank and despite diff-lock, it would not budge. Our guests sat contently on the car, Gin and Tonic in hand with a beautiful view of the riverbed while myself and Petros spent the next hour jacking the Landy up, logs under the wheels and elbows deep in mud. Despite our efforts we still had to call for help, and Giyani came to the rescue and pulled us out. It was rather humourous to say the least, and in hindsight I should have taken a couple of pics, but my focus at the time was more on getting us out. It was dark by the time we got out and so we headed homeward finding 12 nightjars along the way.

So, after all that, I must apologise for the lack of images today but it was certainly an adventurous drive. I Giyani a beer or two, and hopefully tomorrow I can redeem myself.

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