Tuesday, 27 November 2012

26th November: You Can't Make A Wrong Turn.

Pic Of The Day.
Morning Drive.

( Grant, Herold, Shadrack, Marka & Godfrey.)

Rhino ( Female & Calf)
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Peru – Elephant Crossing.
Elephant ( Kambaku) / Borneo – Borneo Access.
Leopard ( Ntombi's Cub) / Vielmieter – Mangawaan Rd.
Wilddog ( 19 x Pack) / Peru – Mangwa Clearing.

Afternoon Drive.

( Grant, Herold, Shadrack & Marka.)

Buffalo ( Breeding Herd) / Motswari – Hangar Rd.
Buffalo ( Breeding Herd) / Kings – Cheetah Plains.
Buffalo ( Dagha Boys) / Peru – Giraffe Kill Rd.
Wilddog ( 19 x Pack) / Peru – Mangwa Clearing.
Rhino ( Male & Female)
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Peru – Klipgat.
Elephant ( Breeding Herd) / Java – Buffalo Kill Rd.

Daily Synopsis.

Waking to the same conditions as the evening before we thought it a good morning to drive out to a spot and then walk, experience the bush from another perspective. It is a great opportunity to be introduced to the smaller things that are out there with the added bonus that a little exercise would also keep us warm and the get the blood flowing. While Jacky drove ahead and set up coffee at a nearby dam, we set off on foot to discover a whole other world. Not running into any big game although we did have a close encounter with a snake, we meandered towards drinks taking in all the small little flowers that have appeared since the rains, talked trees, tracks and termite mounds , and arrived two hours later feeling as if we had walked only two minutes. Jacky had been listening to the radio and informed us that we had made the right decision as since his arrival at the dam not one sighting had been called in from around the reserve. 

Finishing our coffee we traded our walking shoes for wheels and set off to check the South East Corner. As things warmed up the animals started to appear and we had ourselves a brief visual of a female Rhino and her calf followed by a sighting of a large Elephant Bull. By the close of play the rest of the gang between them had seen Ntombi's cub, the Wilddog and a breeding herd of Elephant. So all was not lost, lets hope the weather improves this afternoon as it has been predicted and all our animal friends are out and about.

Afternoon drive got under way under far better conditions as the wind died down and the skies had cleared. We received news that our two new guests that we were expecting would not arrive for afternoon drive, so no doubt everything would make an appearance this afternoon and disappear tomorrow when they joined us in the morning. Not having the pressure to find anything was nice and Jacky and I took advantage of a slow, chilled drive taking in whatever came our way. We worked out a rough route hoping to fill in the gaps for our existing guests but this was getting difficult as we had been spoilt the last few days. This afternoon we had the luxury of visiting things that they would like to see more of or again. So on the afternoons wish list was Hippo, Elephant and Wildebeest. The first was an easy one and we headed off to the nearby Argyle Dam for Hippo. They behaved themselves this time and not only put in an appearance but also preformed a bit of a show, yawning and grunting their deep tenor call. 

Checking the box we turned to the North West and followed our boundary towards the Tsharalumi River. Finding ourselves in the vicinity of the Wilddog, fancy that, we popped in to visit. Against odds they too were active with the youngsters yet again not being able to sit still for any length of time and engaging in a range of playful games while the adults rested up in the shade nearby keeping a watchful eye over them.

We spent a fair amount of time with them but when we received news that there were a number of Elephant herds further to the South along the Tsharalumi River we took our leave and headed in their direction. Arriving at the Elephant we found that they were not in a particularly good position for us as they had headed into an inaccessible region of the riverbed and were busy feeding on the reeds. Sitting with them a while we hoped they would move out but they seemed very content and milled about the area so we chose to leave and head off to Java airstrip for a sundowner.

Along the way we found an African Wildcat that must have provided the best sighting I have ever had of theses elusive cats. It totally ignored us and went about its grooming and resting without giving us a second glance. 

We actually eventually left it without it having moved off and all of this in the days last light. Making it onto Java airstrip before sun down, another unheard of, we enjoyed uninterrupted views of the sun setting beyond the mountains of the Escarpment to the South. Getting caught up in the beauty of the evening we spent a long time at drinks and finally resuming drive we only had time enough to head back to camp, thus bringing an end to another magnificent day in the bush.


  1. African wild cat ... very curious about them. Stunning wild dog shots (Chad is loosing out again) and amazing sun set.

  2. Thanks for all the updates Grant, lovely photos. Love the full table of drinks with the sunset, and the beer with sunset, very well done.

    Great wild dog photos, and I still need nice photos of a wild cat, only seen a few crossing the road, too quick for photos :-)