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 Post subject: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 2:40 pm 
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Our long awaited 3 night visit to Marakele from 14 – 16 October followed by a 7 night visit to the North of Kruger from 18 – 24 October was only 10 days away and everything except our clothes were packed when the youngest of our 4-legged kids, Frederick, became ill on Sunday the 5th of October.

We took him to the vet on Monday morning and he was diagnosed with pancreatitis. He received some injections and meds for the week. The three 4-legged kids always stay in kennels for their vacation, whilst we are going away and we were holding thumbs that Frederick will be cured by the 13th (on his 7th birthday) when they have to leave for their vacation.

We took Frederick for a follow-up to the vet on Friday the 11th and he gave us the bad news that it will not be possible for him to go to the kennels on Monday and we should cancel our 3 night trip to Marakele.

Everybody that knows us will understand that we did not even think twice and the trip was cancelled.

Lucky for us the vet cleared him on Thursday the 16th and we could still book them into the kennels on Friday morning, the 17th and leave for Punda Maria on Saturday as planned.

After booking the kids into the kennels we went through the Kruger list for a final time and after packing the suitcases we were ready for the bush.

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 2:53 pm 
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Day 1: 18 October 2014

It was decided to leave home at gate opening time (05:30) because Punda Maria camp is only 9km from the gate. This was quite a strange feeling because we normally have breakfast at Malelane by 08:00 and enter the park by 09:30.

We arrived at Punda Maria gate at 11:50 and we could start enjoying the bush after the friendly personnel at the gate did the admin bit :D .

We decided to drive along the H13-1 till the H1-8 and then north and back with the S60 to Punda Maria camp. It was still very dry up North but we don’t care. We are in “heaven” and enjoy the silence except for the cicadas keeping everyone awake with their unique sounds.

Our first sighting of this trip was a kudu bull and his mate enjoying the greenery next to the road, followed by a very sleepy ellie.

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It was striking how many baobab trees there are up north. I had to stop many a time during this trip for Hilda to take a picture of these stunning trees. Here is the first one we came across.

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Our next sighting was a couple of Natal Spurfowls looking for food.

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Kruger will not be Kruger without impala. Here is a picture of a proud ram next to the road.

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It was wonderful to be the only vehicle on the road. When we reached the H1-8, we came across a herd of buffs resting in the shade.

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We also came across a Red-crested Korhaan who played hide and seek with us by lying down behind a tuft of grass and thought we don’t see him anymore :D .

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We had to stop and wait for this wartie family to cross the road.

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It was just wonderful to be back in the bush and took in everything around us. The next residents to greet us were these ostriches about 200 meters from the road.

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We turned onto the S60 gravel road and found it to be like the N1 in peak traffic with all the vehicles that made a dash for the Pafuri Border post. Along the way we found this ellie enjoying the shade, pondering where to go next.

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We were also greeted by this little Grysbok.

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We were surprised by all the nyalas we came across up North. Here are two nyala ewes that crossed the road in front of us.

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Just before we enter the camp gate we came across this beautiful little bushbuck.

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We booked in at reception at 14:30 and were allocated tent number 2. We were quite impressed by the accommodation and the view from the veranda. With the unpacking done, we unwind with a cold one and just enjoyed the view when this Yellow-bellied Greenbul (a new lifer for us) welcomed us to our home for the next two nights.

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It was great to have the braai at veranda level, to enjoy the scenery whilst we had our braai. It was a long day and went to bed with the thought that we will wake up in the place we love so much.

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 3:04 pm 
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Oh dear Barry and Hilda, I hope little Frederick is back to normal now, I understand that you canceled you first part of your trip, I would have done exactly the same

What lovely sightings, great start to your TR, I just love the Bushbuck crossing the road, they are so beautiful

Waiting for more :dance: :dance: :popcorn: :popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 3:43 pm 
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A trip up North :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up: Will be joining you on this trip :thumbs_up: Some really good sightings on the way to camp :thumbs_up: I see you remembered your lens this time round Barry :D :D

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 5:41 pm 
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Oh I'm glad your furry one is ok - pancreatitis is not good...

Love the north too! Thanks for all your great photos and the baobab is my fav!!

I think your steenbok is a grysbok....?? :hmz:

Nice greenbul!!!

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 6:24 pm 
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Great start to your KNP trip, sorry about the Marakele visit :(

:popcorn: :popcorn: :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 7:02 pm 
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Sorry to hear about you "child" being ill but really pleased all worked out well for you to still do the KNP stretch. Great start and looking for to the rest of "our" trip. :popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 8:35 pm 
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Barry & Hilda so sorry to hear little Frederick was not well. :( Hope he is back to a bright happy bundle of fur again. :dance:

What a marvellous start you had up north with so many amazing and wonderful sightings and pics. :clap: :clap:

That beautiful baobab "sigh* making me sooooo :mrgreen: they are such magnificent trees, they really make me miss Kruger even more!!!

Then the piggies my all time favourite. :dance: ...just looooove the pic of them. :thumbs_up:

Thanks for sharing :popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:42 pm 
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Sad you needed to cancel Marakele trip :(

Am most certainly riding with you on this bus. :dance: already enjoying the pics especially the baobab and the nyalas. Agree with Jaytea that your steenbok is actually a grysbok. :mrgreen: Very cute little animals.

Just fantastic to be up north and so few vehicles around.

Looking forward to more tales......... :popcorn: :popcorn:

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Next trip "Cape Town to Namibia border" - Ebb and Flow, Karoo NP, Mokala, Augrabies & KTP.


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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 10:14 pm 
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Very excited, another trip report despite being thrown a curve ball. Lovely sightings for day 1, the north looks extremely dry. Looking forward to this journey, I have lots of :popcorn: :popcorn: for the ride.


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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2014 11:46 pm 
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Great to hear that you could travel at least to Kruger, Hilda & Barry,

and that Little Frederick is okay again. :thumbs_up:

You had already some nice sightings with all the bokkies, ellies and birdies :dance: and the tents in Punda are very comfortable - Indeed I should plan to stay there again one day.... 8)

Ready for more :popcorn:


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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2014 6:07 am 
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Sorry to hear that you had to cancel the Marakele part but glad that your ittle one is now better.

Aaaaahhhh......... Punda (deep sigh) definitely one of our favourite areas - we're on this bus and look forward to more great pics!

:popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2014 6:08 am 
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jaytea wrote:
I think your steenbok is a grysbok....??


umtali1 wrote:
Agree with Jaytea that your steenbok is actually a grysbok.


Thank you jaytea and umtali1! It is indeed a Grysbok! :thumbs_up: I'll correct is immediately. :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2014 7:23 am 
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:D I am looking forward reading more Barry and Hilda after a great start :popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: I like the title of your travel tale :clap: :clap: :clap:

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 Post subject: Re: Life throws us a curve ball during our October 2014 trip
Unread postPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2014 9:14 am 
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barryels wrote:
We took Frederick for a follow-up to the vet on Friday the 11th and he gave us the bad news that it will not be possible for him to go to the kennels on Monday and we should cancel our 3 night trip to Marakele.
Everybody that knows us will understand that we did not even think twice and the trip was cancelled.

:hmz: Barry...That is why they call us "Nature lovers" and Human beings. Get better soon Frederick :thumbs_up:

Great Sightings and Pic's. Thank you for sharing. :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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