Ngotso dam was extreme full and due to the fullness nothing could be seen besides a yellow billed kite resting in a far away tree. We meanwhile decided that due to the weather and time we could dare a day trip to Mingerhout dam and stay outside the whole day without a break in Olifants and we finally have been proved correct with that decision as not much came across nearly the whole drive until Letaba besides a couple of hippos, impalas
“Life can be so beautiful!”
and a lone grey heron and although we also stopped at the view point on the tar road we finally had plenty of time in exploring the area around Letaba although we already drove a lot that morning.
After only a short pit stop at Letaba – how I love the large trees in that camp! – we returned onto the road and drove all the lovely loops on the H1-6 until the high water bridge. Whenever driving that short stretch of the road we do remember the sightings of elephant bulls with either remarkable tusks such as Nhlanganini, Hlahleni or Nwatimbuti which peeped through the bushes on different visits here and also the shorter tusks are always showing up too and even around midday
so for us this part of the road is more and more an elephant highway.
The river itself was still flowing strongly as never seen before but the water meanwhile cleared lots of sandbanks so hippos and saddle-billed storks could be seen without even wet feet.
A short stop on the high water bridge showed clearly all the devastation after the flood earlier this year in that area and after quite a while watching into all direction we turned around and travelled along the S47
to Mingerhout dam and although the dam itself is always a bit disappointing because of dense vegetation and located too far away it is the drive on that road itself with lovely small loops and breathtaking views into the riverbed that is always attracting us back here and right in the first one we were already rewarded, as a pair of fish eagle were resting in the tree close
to where we parked and overlooking the riverbed. The only disadvantage was that we could not capture them both as they were simply too close so after Timon finally found a suitable place to position the car best he once again snapped away and could capture some comical poses – such as playing owl
or with an itch here and there.
Finally it was also time for me to take the jacket off as meanwhile it heated up again so we could travel without same although the wind was still strongly blowing but by far not that worst as the evening before or even in the early morning
but also our larger feathered friends allowed themselves a break from flying and enjoyed time together or simply did a bit day dreaming
and we simply loved their show and also enjoyed the time we all four spent together. After an enjoyable half an hour break with our fish eagles we carried on and discovered a very content and resting in himself dagga boy close to the road in a huge mud puddle.
What a great place to spend the day at least for buffaloes!
He had chosen a riverbed of a small stream finally ending into the Letaba and also we had to cross this riverbed and that was one of two parts were a 4x4 was highly recommendable as the mud was still extreme deep and slippery but it was nevertheless fun to drive through!
Right from the next loop we spotted another raptor drinking from a puddle in the riverbed – another bateleur and behind same a yummy fish already waited to be eaten which must have been obviously just caught but first the quench had to be satisfied.
But we were wrong a juvenile bateleur just landed behind the elderly and started to feed on the fish and this was another premiere was us as we never saw an adult and a juvenile together – funny was that the juvenile looked a bit larger in seize than Daddy!
Finally Dad spread his wings and flew away and let junior do its thing – Nevertheless for us it was a thrilling sighting and we carried on with happy hearts but did not come far
as soon a large group of ground hornbills was busy in crossing the streetto be continued......