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 Post subject: roaneric 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger Aug 2011
Unread postPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:34 pm 
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Hello Image

I'm sure most of you, who love Kruger as much as I do, know the feeling of your heart jumping out of your chest every time you think of your upcoming trip to Kruger.Image

Well, I've been counting the days, hours and minutes till our trip to South Africa and our beloved Kruger.Image

We will be entering Phabeni gate at 10:00 on the 12th of August and will stay in Kruger till 8:00 on the 22nd.Image

That will be 238 hours of staying in the most beautiful park in the world.
14280 minutes of being surrounded by natureImage
and 999 600 heartbeats, embracing every sound, smell and sighting.Image

Only 2 days and we will fly from Amsterdam airport and on our way to the 'snowy' South Africa.Image
The excitement is killing me. I Can't wait Image


Last edited by roaneric on Tue Aug 02, 2011 8:43 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:08 pm 
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Hello there from Nelspruit

Only 2 sunsets and sunrises till our Kruger visit. :dance: The weather is perfect, our spirit is good, we're just waiting with lots of excitement. It's going to be great :dance: Will keep you all updated


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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 7:56 pm 
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Image HELLO

I hope you are all doing well. :wink: We just returned to Amsterdam this morning. We had a lovely, relaxing and enjoyable holiday in South Africa and in Kruger.

I only slept for a few hours on our flight last night, so I will start sorting out our photo's after a good night sleep. Image

See you all tomorrow Image


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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 7:42 pm 
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ImageDay 1

My whole life I've been terrified of elephants. Since I've been a kid, one too many elephants chased us, I had nightmares about elephants crushing our car, so I always kept my distance.

But the weird thing is, somehow they are also my favorite mammals. I have paintings, wooden sculptures and books of ellies everywhere. I can watch hours of documentaries on the wildlife channels about elephants and one of my favorite books are the Elephant whisperer.

In the past few years I've been kind of a headache when we found them in kruger. My So loves to spend time with them, watching them up close. But I normally nag him to continue and put some distance between us and the elephants as quickly as possible. And it just got worse when our kids were born and joined us in kruger.Image

My husband thought it would be a good idea to help me get over my fear of elephants and booked us a trip to the elephant sanctuary in Hazyview, the morning before we enter kruger. Being up close and personal with an elephant might just help. :?

We arrived at the sanctuary at 7:15 for the 'Elephant Brush Down'. I was terrified at first, just watching SO and the kids brushing the ellies. And then it was my turn. I walked towards the Elephant, looked into his eyes, I started to relax. It's amazing. Wow, what an experience to brush down, walk and feed the elephants. :dance: They were tame and well trained to let people touch and brush them. I will never forget the feeling being so close to them and it made me love them even more.

My whole view on elephants changed and I learned more about their body language, when you can approach them safely and when to keep your distance. I know this is not part of Kruger, but because these 2 ellies were saved as babies and came from kruger, I wanted to share it with you.

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We arrived at Phabeni gate 9:45 and exactly 10:00 we drove thru the gates. We felt so blessed being in Kruger again. It was about 20˚C and with clear blue skies. Everyone was exited to find the first animal. We were surprised to see giraffes crossing the road a few hundred meters from the gate. They are such magnificent animals.

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We decided to take the sabie river road and found this guinefowls playing in elephant dung. This was the first time I saw guinefowls do this.

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On this road we saw elephants but they were a bid far from the road for a good picture. We saw this beautiful purple-crested Turaco. Also a first for us.

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Almost at the end of the gravel road someone pulled us over and told us to look out for the cheetah. Our hearts started pumping adrenaline. We drove only 2 kilometers when we saw 2 cars parked. We saw the cheetah for a few seconds on the side of the road, then before crossing it, he rolled around on the gravel before disappearing into the bushes. We saw him only for about a minute or 2. It just shows you. It’s all about timing… and some luck.

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We continued towards Skukuza and wanted to stop at lake panic. But when we got there, there already 12 cars parked. So we mad a u-turn and went to Skukuza for lunch. It seems like Skukuza is getting busier and busier every year. There were lots of school buses and touring cars, and the shop and restaurant were overcrowded. So we decided to sit on the ground, next to the river/fence and make some sandwiches. We enjoyed our lunch the old fashion way.

We took the H4-1 towards Lower Sabie, our first overnight rest camp. On our way we saw this little naughty baboon and Fork-tailed Drongo at Nkulu picnic spot.

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We arrived at LS just after 3:00 and I was happy to see Martie at the reception. We chatted a bid and then we got the keys to our bungalow. It was a river view, number 8. He was located a bid close to the restaurant and we could hear the day visitors, but it didn’t bother us. We were glad to be there and we enjoyed every bid of it.

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Our first braai was delicious and the night sounds FANTASTIC. We heard roaring lion's, hyenas patrolled the fence a few times and the hippo’s serenaded for us as we sat outside by the fire. A perfect ending of our first day in kruger.

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Last edited by roaneric on Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:24 pm, edited 10 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:16 am 
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Thanks petra

Here is a short video of the cheetah



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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:18 pm 
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Image

I want to share my photos. My mom will put them here and show you. I will ask my joung brother to share his photos too.

This is my first giraffe
Image

This one is the cheeta
Image

Bye Roan

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ROAN


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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:42 pm 
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ImageDay 2

We left Lower Sabie this morning around 8:00 and headed towards Mlondozi for some breakfast. On our way there we saw lots of impala’s, blue wildebeest, baboons and zebras. This little one was having his breakfast.

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We saw some water birds when we crossed the Sabie River and this beautiful pied kingfisher. He sat so nicely and everyone who drove past was able to admire and photograph him. He was patiently waiting for some fishes to swim by so he can have his breakfast.

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We took the S29 road towards the picnic spot, and just at the turn we saw some hyenas running past us. They were on a mission. We soon found out why. A zebra was killed and they were already late for breakfast. Lots of vultures and hyenas were eating already, as well as a little black-backed jackal. Unfortunately the grass was too high to make some good pictures, but these 2 came out okay.

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We watched them having a feast for a while before we continued to have breakfast ourselves at Mlondozi. When we arrived there were quite a few people standing on the rocks looking at something. I immediately went to have a look and was surprised to see this little snake was having his breakfast as well. It’s a Stripe Bellied Sand Snake.

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Eric was looking in his little reptile book to identify the snake.
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While admiring the snake, A Yellow Ribbon parked behind us. It was Bushcraft and his family. It was very nice to meet them. What a lovely family. I wish we could have chatted a bit longer. Maybe next time.

The kids got hungry so we made some delicious bacon and scrambled eggs on the skottelbraai. The view is spectacular from up there. We saw a brown snake-eagle flying circles right above us. Maybe he was looking for some breakfast too. :roll:
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We returned to camp we stopped at the sunset dam for a while. We saw this beauty patrolling the area.

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There were some elephants taking a mud bath too. Roan got some nice photos of them. He will share them with you later.

We enjoyed a quiet afternoon in camp. It was about 25˚C and the kids felt brave enough to try out the pool. They just jumped in once or twice and then called it the day. The water was freezing. But they were determent to swim in Kruger. What can be more fun?

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Later that afternoon, SO enjoyed some peace and quiet in camp and Eric was playing with his Lego. My oldest son Roan and I decided to go for a late afternoon drive by ourselfs, just the 2 of us. We went south to the Ntandanyathi bird hide. We were the only ones on that road and were all alone at the bird hide. It was beautiful there. We only saw monkeys and an immature fish eagle.

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On our way back to camp we saw 2 rock pythons. They were enormous. We watched them for a while and enjoyed the sunset just a few kilometers from camp.

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When we got home, the fire was already lit and the 4 of us sat outside and enjoyed a nice evening together.Image After dinner we took as stroll along the fence. We saw the hyenas patrolling again. The kids loved it. Everyone went to bed and before I tucked myself in, I went outside once more to look at the moon rising. I stood next to the fence, all alone and only the night sounds to keep me company while I took this last photo of the day. I felt so blessed and happy at that moment.Image

Image


Last edited by roaneric on Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 3:23 pm 
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Hi Image

Here is my photo's of today. We saw 3 snakes Image


Image

Image


We also saw hyena and vultures eating
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We saw this zebra with baby :clap:
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We saw elephants at the sunset dam. Look at the second photo. Image

Image

Image


And the sun at end of the day
Image

_________________
ROAN


Last edited by grootvijf on Wed Aug 31, 2011 3:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 3:53 pm 
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Mcdonalds of the bush
Image


Poor bokkie Image
Image

_________________
ROAN


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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 5:34 pm 
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grootvijf wrote:
Poor bokkie Image
Image


Roan, I totally forgot about this impala.Image

We found him under a tree and some people believed there must be a leopard close by. We only waited for a while but there was no sight of it. We did see this little mongoose.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:43 pm 
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roaneric wrote:
Roan, I totally forgot about this impala.

We found him under a tree and some people believed there must be a leopard close by. We only waited for a while but there was no sight of it. We did see this little mongoose
Just some info on this :wink:

A leopard took out this impala the evening before and dragged it down the road before disappearing into the bush on the other side of the road. The next morning we drove down to the kill sight and found the kill, as per your pic on the river side of the road. We returned 3 times during the day, but the kill remained untouched.

The next morning it was gone. :hmz: :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:52 pm 
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Day 3

The previous night we decided to take it easy the next morning and sleep late. But 5:30 I was wide awake. So I got up, woke Roan and the two of us sneaked out, letting Philip and the youngest one sleep a little bit more. They are light sleepers, so we got dressed and went to the communal bathroom and kitchen for some coffee. At 5:50 we were at the gate and ready to go.

The moon still shining strong
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Crossing the Sabie river
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And this was the MOST BEAUTIFUL sunrise I have ever seen.
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And the last photo

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Last edited by roaneric on Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 01, 2011 9:39 am 
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We took the H10 toward Mlondozi and enjoyed the sunrise on the river bridge. It’s amazing how close to nature you feel when you turn off your vehicle, with open windows and listening to the sound of the river while watching the sunrise.
We found this hyena just before the Mlondozi turnoff and he was so lazy. It was still quiet and no other cars around.

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There were quit some activity still going on at the kill from yesterday.
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We arrived at Mlondozi and were all alone. The guard was just dropped off and he was doing his rounds. We sat there for about 30 minutes before someone else came.

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We returned to camp and found these ellies close to the road. Unbelievable how relaxed I felt with them so close by. He was enjoying his breakfast and we enjoyed watching him do so.

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Unfortunately we also had a sad sighting. Apparently someone just hit an impala before we arrived and it just died next to the road. I hope it’s not because of speeding that this happened. That makes me furious when people don’t stick to the speed limits.

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We returned to camp and started packing up. Our next destination is Berg en Dal. We decided to leave the park at Crocodile Bridge, do some fresh meat and fruit shopping in Komatipoort and enter the park at Malelane again.

We left camp at about 10:00 and took the H4-2 towards CB. Only a few kilometers from camp we saw this beautiful fish eagle eating his breakfast. It was amazing to see.

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The rest of the way was pretty quiet. We drove in silence, just enjoying the scenery and kept our eyes open for any kinds of predators. And before we knew it, we saw a traffic jam. Finally we saw our first lioness. She was quite a bit far, but you could see her without a binocular. We were so exited and spend about en half-hour with her.

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We left kruger and did our shopping. We bought some pies for lunch and then took the highway towards Malelane and entered there again. This is what we found when we just went thru the gates. There were about 7 or 8 of them next to the road. They are just beautiful.

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We arrived at Berg en Dal and got bungalow number 39. It was a perimeter, but not with the best view. This little one welcomed us.

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We unpacked and I went to the laundry to do my washing. Just as I turned around the corner I saw another YR. It was Magic Guarri. We chatted for a while and it was nice meeting them. :clap: They were doing the sunset drive and we said we will try to catch up again later.

I filled up the washing machines and it gave me about 40 minutes to spare. So I decided to take a little drive outside camp. Just as I left camp, not even 1km, I saw a lot of cars parked. And right in front of me, another YR. It was PALA. Nice meeting you Pala. :wink: They were looking at a leopard that walked towards camp. I just saw him for a second before he disappeared into the bushes. Wow, my first leopard this trip. Such a pity I saw it alone. I didn’t even get a picture.

I returned to camp all exited and I couldn’t wait telling SO and the kids. But they didn’t believe me. I normally take pictures of every bird and antelope, let alone a leopard. And now I had NO proof.Image

Before the braai that evening Roan complained about stomach pains. Only 30 minutes later, Philip started complaining and just after him, I ran to the bathroom.Image

Everyone got sick except for our little one Eric. We got some sort of food poisoning. We ate meat pies that afternoon, and Eric ate a sandwich. So I had to be the pies. We braaied but the food went straight to the fridge. No one was hungry. So we turned in very early that evening. And Oh what a night. One bathroom is not enough if 3 people are sick.Image


Last edited by roaneric on Sun Sep 11, 2011 3:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2011 4:20 pm 
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Image

My photo's of the day

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Image

Image

Mom is making her photo's smaller and she said she will add them later. Bye :yaya:

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 Post subject: Re: 999 600 heartbeats in Kruger
Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2011 9:02 pm 
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Day 4

We got up this morning and felt a slight change in the weather. The wind was strong and the clouds were getting darker. We left B&D and this is the view we had.

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We left camp a bit too late and due to this we only saw some impala's and zebra's on the road to Skukuza. Our destination is Satara so we decided to take the H3 and then the H1-2. We stopped at Skukuza for some coffee and ouma rusks. It's amazing to sit on a bench next to the river and waiting to see if anything moves on the other side of the river bank.

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Eric enjoyed the binocular. He was so proud of himself when he saw this herd of Elephants crossing the river.

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Roan spotted this hadeda in skukuza camp. Their feathers are beautiful when they shine in the sun.

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Last edited by roaneric on Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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