On Safari With Gert From 12 December 2015
12 December 2015
This afternoon we welcomed 2 new guests, arriving in about 40 degrees after a long journey from Germany. We transferred to the Park in our open safari vehicle and shortly after entry encountered a small herd of Kudu, browsing nearby as well as a herd of Impala with a large number of lambs.
At a sighting of two large old male Buffalo we also saw a Black-bellied Bustard on a large termite mound, calling as a territorial advertisement.
Distant thunderstorms with the occasional bolt of lightning were approaching and the wind quickly picked up. We encountered a male White Rhino against the wind and it was rather skittish in such conditions, but did eventually cross the road in front of us. It was then that the rain drops started falling and we headed back to camp for a welcome dinner and a good night's sleep accompanied by the sound of rumbling thunder!
13 December 2015
Today was absolutely perfect conditions for a game drive after the overnight rain and we set out early with a light drizzle coming down. Approximately 1 hour into our drive we encountered 3 male cheetah in an open area and in quite a playful mood, chasing each other and rolling around, stretching and eventually settling on a termite mound to survey the surroundings. Evidently something drew their attention as all 3 got up simultaneously and trotted off, into a thicket and out of sight.
We then passed an active hyena den and had 4 adults and 4 cubs out of the den, the cubs especially in a very playful mood, coaxing the adults into their games and also investigating the smells on the various parked vehicles observing them.
Not long after that we came across a female white rhino and her calf of about 2 years old. Also feeling refreshed and energetic after the rain, the calf was nudging his mom and jumping around and eventually got her to play back and they ran chasing each other around in an apparent game of tag, eventually trotting across the road in front of our vehicle.
This was followed by a sighting of 2 large dark-manned male lions in their prime, with full bellies, lying in an open area about 30 meters off the road. They were both in magnificent condition and although not very active, had their heads up most of the time allowing us some very good views.
We returned to camp for a midday break before heading out for a short late afternoon drive during which, incredibly, we were fortunate enough to see all of the Big 5! The highlight of these was undoubtedly our leopard sighting...
The young male was lying down about 5 meters off the road, soaking up the attention from holiday makers and surrounded by a small herd of about 15 elephants feeding. The leopard's ears perked up at the sound of Impala calling not too far off and it quickly got up and moved in that direction, crossed the road and lay down in the grass. It then seemed to loose interest in the impala and got comfortable on its side, apparently having a snooze. Thus it was back to camp for us to conclude an exceptional day's game viewing.