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 Post subject: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 4:19 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:27 pm
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Location: Hermanus
This has been posted on the web by the tourist in the tent:

"About 1:30 am I awoke to the sounds of Hyenas in the distance, although clearly it was not this sound that had woken me. Very quickly I hear the distinct sound of the male lions "cough", very close to my tent. My 2 mates who had joined me had also woken and had called to me that there were lions outside to which I whispered to them to keep silent. One of the guys , my mates cousin was on his first trip to a game park and was his first night. He had never even pitched a tent before...

Soon I felt tugging and pulling on my tent. I was uncertain of what was going on and then realised that it was probably cubs that were being nosey. but then they got a little too nosey and were chewing on the ropes of my tent, severing it and causing it to collapse a good section of the tent, then they were tugging on the air mattress as the bulge was sticking through the tent.. a very frightening thought so early in the morning and in pitch darkness. I remember my heart was racing and my mouth was dry and I could barely breathe.
after a while I noticed the cubs were chewing on the zips and heard one of them give way, this being the cover of the tent, as well they were having a right good time with other apparel that we had at camp... I had a small tear in the fabric of the fly screen, maybe 10cm vertically, and when I could see that the cubs were finding some interesting to have a look at through the rip I was scared they would rip it further so I kept flashing my flashlight at them though this gap.. this seemed to scare them off and they disappeared. However I think the disturbance got the interest of the large male and he came to have a look, pushing at least half of his head into the tent through the rip making it now over half a meter. I took my flashlight and was going to shine it on and off in his eye to try and blind him a bit, but at the time actually hit him on the face just above the eye. after that he left me to some small amount of peace.

About 10 minutes or so passed and I called to my mate in the tent next to me to see if they had all left and he said that there was still a male laying not far from my tent. Not having heard anything in 5 minutes I asked again, to which he said the same thing. Thinking he may be having a laugh with me I had a look out the tent and the coast looked clear. I climbed out and shone the torch around, not realising that in fact his tent faced the opposite direction to mine, and true as bob there about 2m from where I was standing was the male lion having a sit down just staring at me. I did not even think and just made a dash for the vehicle which was parked just off the other side of camp. I then started the engine and drove around to the tents where the male was, he got up and walked off. I then took a quick drive around Rooiputs with the spotlight and saw a group of cubs about the size of a border collie and a group of females and another male, about 12 or so in total based on the number of eye reflections at the time.

After that I got my mates and we drove to have a look but only the one male was still about and one of the cubs in the long grass.

The next day we checked out of Rooiputs in fear of another 2 nights that we had booked. However our fear slowly left us a few days later and we spent our last 2 nights of the Kgalagadi back at Rooiputs, although I did sleep in the car as I felt that having a half meter rip in the door of my tent was just not a grand idea for Rooiputs.

The first morning of our stay back we actually saw the pride on the horizon at sunrise and managed to get some magical photographs and also had the big male that I believe visited me sitting just a few meters from us in the long grass just half a kilometre for camp.

Hope you enjoyed my story, if sounds like a lot of fun, but I can tell you I would never wish to go through this again. But in a way glad I did."


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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:34 pm 
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Wow Mistral, what an amazing story to tell!! Thank you for sharing!! May that never happen to me though.... :shock:

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:53 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:27 pm
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Location: Hermanus
Well there can't be too many people who have hit a lion with a torch and survived!

- Quote: "Actually hit him on the face just above the eye.."


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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 10:30 pm 
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thanks mistral for this... entertaining story :whistle:
what a night :shock:

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 10:43 pm 
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Location: Pretoria but on my way to KTP
And I was still planning to go and stay there!!! :big_eyes:

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 11:19 pm 
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What a fabulous but scary story.


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 Post subject: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 4:39 am 
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I wonder what Sanparks will have to say about you "torching"an aninimal?


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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 5:07 am 
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:big_eyes: :big_eyes:
What an experience!

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 5:44 am 
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That is some story! :big_eyes: The adrenalin would have been pumping if it was me in that tent! Just goes to show that wild animals can ever be so curious and unpredictable. That's what makes them wild I guess.....

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 6:39 am 
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My goodness, what a story :big_eyes: :big_eyes: :big_eyes: :big_eyes:

clever idea to use his torch.

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:20 am 
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:big_eyes: I read this last night and have woken up exhausted :redface: Could not get this vision out of my mind. We are camping there in a ground tent for 3 nights next week but my torch is bright but only 8 cm in size !!!!! :hmz:

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:34 am 
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Dreamer, I would certainly park my car as close to the entrance of my tent as possible. I am pretty sure that I would have had to have thown my tent away afterwards.. due to unmentionable stains.

How do Lions respond to sudden noise.. like an emergency whistle. That must be pretty ear piercing. It would at least give a moment of stunned shock.

Now you know why I believe in guardian angels.

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:02 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:27 pm
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Location: Hermanus
Well I don't think you will find many SANparks rangers using ground tents in the Kalahari.
I think Jannie Kriel uses his rooftop tent. :D

I wonder whether ground tents should be banned in unfenced camps?
Aren't we really putting too much temptation in the way of the lions (and the cubs are very playful) which are becoming habituated to camps and people?

Isn't this an accident waiting to happen and when it does the lion/lions will have to be shot?


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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:08 pm 
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Come on all.... :twisted: how else do we keep our lions strong and fit he he :roll:

Seems that ROOIPUTS now has a reputation, BG you would love to camp there?

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 Post subject: Re: Lions and the Rooiputs tent - full story
Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:12 pm 
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Mistril :clap: what a experience you had.Thanks for sharing. :D Now that it is all over how do you feel? :hmz: (to live another day to tell the tail) :thumbs_up:
KG, love lions but that is a bit close for comfort. :naughty:


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