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 Post subject: Bushbaby30 The Bushwhatsits go north Oct 11
Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2011 8:42 pm 
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Location: Unfortunately not in KNP so I had to settle with Jo'burg
Last year my mom and I had our first mother and daughter break away going camping… That was a test and I’m glad to say Bushmom passed the test, so this years break away was booked. :dance: BM hasn’t been to Pafuri in almost 50 years and after my visit in December I could see that Pafuri was a must on the itinerary. Our booking looked as follows: 2 nights Punda Maria (of which Mads and Vlakvarkvrou would be joining us for 1), 2 nights Shingwedzi and 2 nights Tzendze which was soon changed to 2 night in Phalaborwa with Crested Val and Dungbeetle2.

For anybody who has followed some of my TR’s will know there are 3 things that I don’t do… :naughty: That is making lists, not starting to pack until the day before and listening to my dad… Then of course there is that small problem of BM being forgetful and me being forgetfuller! :redface: Little did we know when we did the booking that it would be a trip filled with changes…

About 2 weeks before we were about to depart something strange happened. I started making a list of what to buy and what to pack etc… :big_eyes: If that wasn’t scary enough everything was bought 2 days later! Bushdad doesn't want me to drive at night so instead of driving at night (and getting another smack against my head) Mads arranged some accommodation in Louis Trichardt which is a little more than half way. That of course got a big :thumbs_up: from BD. Then came the thing that not only scared me but my family too… A week before our departure everything was packed and ready to be put in the car! Mom and dad were ready to phone the loony bin to tell them the time has come to bring the straight jacket and take me to a padded cell.
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Then the wait came for us to actually leave... Time has never passed by so slowly... :wall: :wall:

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Last edited by Bushbaby30 on Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2011 8:51 pm 
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We really experienced some scary moments there! She even forced me, of all people, to pack beforehand!

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The world is truly round and seems to start and end with those we love...
Nelson Mandela
December '12????
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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:46 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Unfortunately not in KNP so I had to settle with Jo'burg
We started our journey northwards to our half way stop when I eventually could get away from school on Friday 30/9. The monsters were ok with me leaving them for a week as teacher was going to see the animals (and I think they thought to themselves that she is always nicer when she comes back :lol: ) We met up with Mads and Vlakvarkvrou in Louis Trichardt after a very stressful journey. We ended up only going to bed at 1! Which is WAY passed my bedtime…

Saturday 1/10
We left very early that morning after about 2 hours sleep to make our way further up towards Pafuri gate… I am so not a morning person and think I drove in my sleep until we spotted the first livestock next to the road then we played a game of dodge the cattle and I was WIDE awake. :big_eyes: We entered at Pafuri and a calmness set in immediately when we were first greeted by this steenbok
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That first part is not my personal favourite piece of road and I couldn’t wait to get to the bridge. This Giant kingfisher came for a quick pose before it flew away… We looked around on the bridge for a while (and I think we made some coffee but seeing that I had little to no sleep I cant quite remember (I am forgetfuller after all!) :redface:
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We decided to do the Nyala drive and it turned out to be a good decision. We saw quite a lot of squirrels on this trip!
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And after I spotted some Crested guinea fowl we came across this Nyala showing off
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Another very interesting sight was this deformed zebra. It didn’t look as though it bothered him as he ate with little difficulty.
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The rest of that roads sightings were baboons, monkeys, more nyala, kudu, impala, more nyala and then even more nyala! Guess I can gather where the road gets its name from!

We then made our way to the picnic spot and first heard and then spotted this Heuglins robin
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Frank was amazing and when Mads asked him about a Orange winged pytilia he took us to go and find it. BM walked with and I’m proud to say stayed upright the whole way… Mads was over the moon when we found it (if I knew how scarce it was I would have been too :doh: ) Luckily Mads told me to take a lot of photos of this little one and now I know better!
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And here is the man himself Frank… I have met him on a few occasions now and have yet to see him without a smile. What a great guy with a bird knowledge of note! He is such an asset to SanParks. :clap: :clap: :clap:
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While we were walking around this Egret flew passed.Jen we were standing right infront of your spacial place
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Then some Baboons quenching their thirst…
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Then it was time to go and show Bushmom Crooks corner…

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 10:05 pm 
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BB30 forgot one thing about the start of our trip. We were barely an hour away from home when we had a call from Bushdad: we forgot half our cold stuff in the fridge. Forgetful and Forgetfuller were at it again! :doh: However we managed fine without margerine, viennas etc. and had a stocked fridge when we arrived home!

The morning when we left for Kruger from Louis Trichardt, I must admit that I talked non-stop all the way. I could see that BB30 was really tired. Not a word of this was breathed to Bushdad however! He will ground us forever if he knew! :evil:

The short walk at Pafuri picnic site was special and I managed to stay upright the whole time! Must admit I used a helping hand now and then! We decided Frank deserved a new yellow ribbon on his binoculars as his was looking a bit tatty and when he asked about the red one, we made him an honorary stiffneck! His bird knowledge is certainly remarkable. :clap:

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The world is truly round and seems to start and end with those we love...
Nelson Mandela
December '12????
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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 8:52 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Unfortunately not in KNP so I had to settle with Jo'burg
I just love the Baobabs up north!
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On the way I got a reflection of this kudu in my rear view mirror
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And a zebra mom with a young one posing quite nicely for me
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All the small loops feels like there is something hiding around each corner… When I came around a bend this little nyala got such a fright… me too!
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We saw two largish herd of buffalo which was in such contrast to my visit there in December where sightings were far and few between (but I didn’t care I was in wonderland!) :lol:
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We got to crooks corner and I’m glad I don’t have to cross that river on foot as there were LOTS of crocs all the way… We spent some time there taking in the surroundings and even learned a new tree name thanks to Mads.. The Faidherbia Albida or more commonly named the Ana tree or Anaboom… :doh: I thought school was over! All to soon it was time to start making our way down to Punda

We had a few more sightings like this monitor playing chicken with me… I stopped so I guess it makes me the chicken! :tongue:
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At Klopperfontein we saw this hamerkop in flight…
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As well as this ele having a drink it decided to take a short cut through the dam towards us… Luckily it was quite calm (I on the otherhand… not so much!) :big_eyes:
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We got to Punda and went to check in… Mads and Vlakvarkvrou went to their safari tent and BM and I went to look for a nice spot to pitch our tent. The kind gentleman in the spot next to us offered to help me but I could see that his son was waiting to go and have a swim so declined his help (I am such a sucker!!) While we got our camp sorted out Mads and VVV went for a drive.

Later that evening we all had dinner at their place and it turned out to be a great evening with an unexpected visitor. A civet came to say hello. My camera was in my car and I didn’t want to scare it of by going to fetch it so I grabbed VVV’s camera laid down flat on my tummy and with some help of Mads and her spotlight managed to take some pics of it. This alone is proof of how spacious the safari tents veranda is as there was still space for everybody to sit around and laugh at me! Maybe VVV can post one or two here as well…

A lovely night spent with great company and lovely frikkadels made by BM Nobody's comes close to yours mom!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 4:36 pm 
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My return to Crooks corner was filled with nostalgia as I last visited it as a child with my parents almost 50 years ago but the whole area was just as I remembered it!
BB30, as usual, you forgot something very important: searching for a camping space in Punda was very frustrating! We had a camping spot with electricity but throughout the camping area there was not one open plug to be had. :evil: We finally set up camp and decided to make do without any electric appliances. Luckily we are well prepared for any eventuality and were quite comfortable.
The evening with Mads and VVV was a night to remember: between the civet and the meringue, strawberry and cream pudding, we went to bed very satisfied! :dance:
I have an idea there is a sighting or two BB30 missed but I will check :whistle:

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The world is truly round and seems to start and end with those we love...
Nelson Mandela
December '12????
1-6 May '13


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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 5:13 pm 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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Location: Back home in the caravan at Malelane camp, KNP
If that happens again - no power point available although booked and paid for - get hold of the duty manager. They must sort out something for you! Sadly at the camp sites where some sites have electricity and others not there are dishonest folk who pay the lower price and then use the power points anyway. At Punda where no power is the majority, this can be a real problem.

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 6:22 pm 
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BB30 and BM,
Photos as promided earlier today: (Photographer: BB30)

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After all this excitement we sat down and enjoyed a wonderful meal and this pudding as BM mentioned in her post above
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7-14/11 2014
17/12/2014-01/01/2015


Last edited by Vlakvarkvrou on Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 8:21 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: Unfortunately not in KNP so I had to settle with Jo'burg
It has become quite a joke in the family and with friends that I dont believe that there are lion or any cats any further than Mopani... In the last few visits there has been no cats what so ever up North! We came across this scene on the way to Crooks Corner in August when Mads and I was there for a day visit...
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I had one look at it and said it must have jumped up into the tree to die as there is nothing to catch and drag it there up here!
And I stick to my story as this was taken is 2 months later and its still there and literally untouched! :tongue:
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Ok I did end up having to move my imaginary no cat line a little further north later on... but that is a story for another day!

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 7:12 pm 
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Location: Unfortunately not in KNP so I had to settle with Jo'burg
Sunday 2 October...

We were up and ready to go just as the gate opened… We wanted to go to Klopperfontein again to see what it had in store for us.

On the way there you could clearly see some nice ellie prints in the road and then I spotted a funny print in the sand and just as it clicked what it was Mads said over the radio to have a look at the human footprints! :big_eyes: :big_eyes:
A short way later we found the shoes that once belonged to the footprint owner! :hmz:
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The first time round there was nothing but we did have this Ground Hornbill a little further…
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Then we had quite a nice sighting of Yellow spotted hyrax… You can clearly see the difference to the normal rock hyrax.
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They gave us a great show of their tree climbing abilities… :lol:
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A little further on we had some runaway buffalo on a serious mission…
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And then some more buff… We went back to Klopperfontein and there were some Kudu there that just had a drink and then our first Tsessebe sighting of the trip. :dance:

Another lifer was mine for the ticking when we saw this Crowned hornbill
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Mads and VVV stopped to photograph a Nyala when BM spotted this Giant eagle owl in the tree… Nice spot BM!!! :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:
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We stopped here for another tsessebe and the trees just begged to be photographed, as it was so green and looked so cool
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Nice scenery turned out to be worth the wait because as I put my camera down a movement caught my eye… My first reaction was NO WAY! It can’t be… Yes it is! OMW!!! Roan! :redface: :dance: :dance: I called Mads and VVV back as they had already moved on a little. We followed them for about 20 minutes but they didn’t want to come closer. Until this big boy decided to come and cross the road right in front of us! Nothing could describe the excitement that we had…
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We had a short break at Babalala and continued down to Boyela where these Ellie had a bath…
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Then it was time to say goodbye to Mads and VVV as they carried on down and we had to make our way back to Punda. What a lovely time we had with them!

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:37 pm 
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The shoeless prints were followed and overlapped by elephant prints and we saw them very early in the morning. We will always wonder about the story behind the story!
The roan sighting was indeed something special and a definite tick on our (unwritten) wishlist.
What a wonderful time we had with VVV and Mads. We made an awesome team and we did not like to say goodbye, even though our holiday was not yet at an end: we still had 5 nights waiting!

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The world is truly round and seems to start and end with those we love...
Nelson Mandela
December '12????
1-6 May '13


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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:10 pm 
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BB30 and BM,
Sigh.....we had 8 eyes between us, and as BM said - what a team we made :gflower: Thank you my friends for a wonderfull time. Now we have to wait for the Cricket in March before we can team-up again :dance: :dance:

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 8:16 pm 
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Location: Unfortunately not in KNP so I had to settle with Jo'burg
We started making our way back to Punda… Everything that was there on our way down seemed to disappear! We had quiet afternoon sightings wise Maybe I was just ready for an afternoon nap!… This mud puzzle caught my attention (I hope it has had some water since then)
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We went back to camp to refill our water… We had hoped to get an open plug to plug our lead into but no luck… :wall: It was still full. At least our lights were still charged and we had a back up gas lamp. We decided to go and drive the Mohony loop… For some reason I didn’t take that many photos. It just shows you what a hypnotic effect that place has on me.

Bushmom really wanted to see a Grysbokkie but we haven’t had much luck so far. This little one stood quite close to the road and was not bothered by us at all!
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We had another strange sighting… Next to the road was a nyala ewe’s carcass. Still intact as well clearly showing the lack of predators and scavengers. :tongue: BM just shook her head when I said she must have died of old age. :lol: I think BM sometimes wonder if they didn’t swap me in hospital! :lol:

And some more Buffalo… Seeing that there are no lions up there they were very relaxed… :tongue:
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We had a lot of steenbokkie, duiker and grysbokkie sightings and this Nyala bull came quite close.
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Back at camp this moth caught my attention outside the bathroom… It was really pretty in a six legged kind of way… :redface:
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The weather was looking ominous and we decided against having a braai and rather opted for toasted sandwiches from the restaurant. It turned out to be a good idea as it started to drizzle. Thank goodness it stopped during the night, as there is nothing worse than packing up a wet and muddy tent…

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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 10:29 pm 
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The smiling Sharpe was one of my favourite sightings of our trip :D
It was easy to forget all stresses on the Mahonie loop. It must be one of the most awe-inspiring drives there is. So much so that we even forgot about cameras. :redface: I am however starting to wonder if your theory about the dying bucks hold water.
The toasted sandwiches were very tasty and for the size of the "restaurant", they ought to be complimented.
Our new next-door neighbours came in very late with their fancy trailer and all. We warned them that there were no open plugs and offered them our spare gas lamp as they were setting up in the dark, but they said they were fully equipped! A little later they sheepishly asked to borrow it as they had forgotten to charge any of their equipment. Bushbaby to the resque again!
Bushbaby30 wrote:
Thank qoodness that it stopped during the night as there is nothing worse than packing up a wet and muddy tent.

I can verify that she hates and have always hated anything dirty or yucky drying on her hands (and opted to become a nursery school teacher :shock: ).

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The world is truly round and seems to start and end with those we love...
Nelson Mandela
December '12????
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 Post subject: Re: The Bushwhatsits go north
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 2:44 pm 
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Location: Pretoria
Hi BB30 and Bushmom!

Sorry!! I was so quiet on this report... but duty called!! BB30 yes you nearly missed the photo oppurtunity of the "Petunia". The Civet was definately a highlight of our trip time together, and the roan was all thanks to you!! That showed me again... the right time at the right place!! :hmz: We went past there a minute before you and saw nothing!!! :wall: :doh: The dassies could go and work in the sircus... :slap:

I love your young Grysbok!! :thumbs_up:

Thanks for a wonderful 2 days!! Hope we can do it soon :wiz: :mrgreen:

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