Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Kruger National Park, South Africa

Oct 8, 2013 - SLR Africa 2013

Up early to see the sunrise over the mountains, we took a 5 minute walk up from the camp site to beside The Big Cave Resort, Breakfast and off driving today to South Africa, more stops by the police, in Zimbabwe crossed the boarder with out incident until we stopped for lunch and promptly where surrounded by the local police. Hallo, how are you? Was how the police greeted us...you need to move this is very dangerous here, .TJ tried to bribe them with sandwiches and he had them convinced until another car turned up and moved us on, so we had...

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Trip Journal

South Africa-SLR

Oct 6, 2013 - And elephants make 5!

Sunday, Oct 6. Thornybush waterside lodge, South Africa Another early morning safari drive beginning at 5:30am. Cool at this time of morning. We head out with the goal of finding elephants today; our final member of the Big 5. Our Rover mates today are the usual crew: Sean (who we've nicknamed Cliff Clavin because he knows it all and is compelled to tell us), Zelda, Shaunae and Jim & Nora. Our usual seating arrangements are: elise and I in the seats closest to the driver; Jim & Nora in the middle tier and Cliff, Zelda and Shaunae in the...

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Oct 5, 2013 - 4 out of 5 ain't bad....

Saturday,Oct.5 Thornybush lodge, South Africa, Day 2 My oh my, 5am rolls around quickly. We were up, dressed and rolling by 5:15. Yeah, even me. Juice, coffee and biscotti were available but that's just not reasonable at that time of the morning. 5:30am, we head out in our Rover with the same group. It wasn't fully light yet and very cool, but pleasant. Lucky had heard there were white rhinos in a certain area so we started out with that. We found 4 of them lounging by a watering hole. We learned that the white rhinos is easily...

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Oct 4, 2013 - Lions, zebras and a surprise!

Friday, Oct.4 Our 4:30am wake up call came at 4:36 but we were up anyway. We'd packed everything the night before so we were downstairs and ready for our 5am pickup/transfer to the airport. That all went well and we caught our 7:15 flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg just fine. Arriving in Joburg, we moved directly to the next gate to catch the flight to Hoedspruit, the airport seving Kruger National Park. This plane was a much smaller,twin propeller plane; we'd been worried that they wouldn't allow our regular size suitcase and we'd have...

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Aug 8, 2013 - Elephants, birds, leopards and more

I realized yesterday (our last full day of safari) that there is no way to explain all of what we have seen or experienced because it has been so action packed and amazing that it defies description AND there is such spotty Internet that I will write it up and it disappears which totally frustrates me. But to get back on point here as we wait for our ride to the airport, yesterday afternoon we were in the midst of a herd of elephants. Lots of moms and young ones-even a very pregnant one. We followed them for a time then headed off to see if...

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Aug 7, 2013 - Drive until you find something with a pulse

We drove and drove this morning not seeing any animals until finally we came across a herd of elephants who proceeded down the road right by us and to a lake to drink. Twice one of the moms charged at us to protect her baby. Quite exciting! Then we heard that another ranger had seen two male lions snatch an impala from a leopard and the leopard had scampered up a tree. We headed that way, waited our turn and watched until the leopard came down and went back to the hunt.

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Aug 6, 2013 - The most amazing day yet

We headed out this morning to see a couple male cats when the ranger got word that someone had spotted a young male leopard. We followed him as he stalked a wart hog. He took off and we lost him. In searching for him we came across a momma rhino with a baby who was less than one day old. As we jockeyed to get a better view we saw the hyena stalking the rhino for the placenta (or the baby given the chance), then we were moving around and saw the leopard on the other side. So we were trapped between the leopard and the hyena close to the...

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Aug 5, 2013 - BINGO!

Our safari is called "The Big Five" and we hit the jackpot-all of them already. Cape Buffalo, Lion, Elephant, Rhino, Cheetah. I realized that I have posted many photos and a few descriptions, but not much explanation of how our days go. So, here is a bit more detail. Game Drive 5:45 am awakened by ranger in our room 6:00 am meet in main lodge for coffee/tea 6:30 am take off in land rovers with 3 rows of seats. On most safaris there are 3 people per row, but we are so lucky that we each ave a seat to ourselves We start out on the unpaved...

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Aug 5, 2013 - Stary, Stary night

We enjoyed a beautiful 4 course gourmet meal at a table that was candle lit and on the river bed. Then we loaded night sky equipment and headed for an open area to photgraph the unbelievable Stary sky. All the way out we ohhhed and ahhed over the millions of stars in the sky. We arrive, spend some time discussing the approach and what everyone is hoping to do, then the camera gear is all set , mirrors locked remotes attached and we are ready to shoot. Then we look up to see the stars disappeared under fast moving clouds. A few shots had...

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Aug 4, 2013 - Night tour followed by morning tour

Posting is easiest in mid day when we return from our morning tour as we leave quite early 6 am and are out until 10:30 or so, then we come back for brunch, down time and tea, then head out again from 3:30 until about 7:30. Then we have gourmet meal and crash to repeat. These photos are from yesterday afternoon when we came across 14 elephants in a herd, a couple male lions resting from what had been some type of a big meal, and a group of giraffes Tonight we are going out a bit later to photo the night sky. Stars here are unbelievable.

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Aug 3, 2013 - Unbelievable first day

Morning drive was incredible! First the cheetah from yesterday was posing on a termite hill and then hopped to a tree, then headed across the field. Next we saw the wildabest and the zebras. Then onto the bateleur eagle and two male lions. After a brief drive we saw a few elephants including a momma and 3 month old baby. To finish the drive we encountered 2 male giraffes wrestling over dominance when another came along. We returned for brunch and a rest. Next we head out for late afternoon and dusk view of the lions.

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Aug 2, 2013 - Sabi Sabi

A short flight, a 2 hour drive and we were at our "camp" for the next 7 days. After a drink and a short orientation, we were off on our first game drive. John and I were in the "trampoline" seat in the last row of the three. It was an incredible introduction with a beautiful 4 year old cheetah, zebra, impala and a great African sunset. We came across a leopard on the drive to the lodge, but it was too dark and he was too reclined for much of a photo. Then back for dinner with Kudu steak and quickly to bed for a 5:45 alarm.

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