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 Post subject: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:16 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:51 pm
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Location: Liverpool
I’d not intended to write a trip report for our 12 day stay in the park but after what can only be described as a Super Monday up in the Mopani area I changed my mind. The original intention was to call the report ‘Looking for needles in a haystack’ the reason for that will come clearer in due course. That soon changed after a special hour at a waterhole in the south of the park. This TR will only cover a day and a half of our holiday but the memories of those days will be with us for a long time! As a taster though I’m posting some of the highlights of the days before, whilst I write the main TR

But back to the very beginning, during last year’s Christmas break I was truly surprised with my SO response about our main holiday for the coming year. We’d been to the park for our 25th wedding anniversary for 2 weeks last year in May/June so I did not think that she’d want to return for a 3rd year running but she did, happy days of planning started.

We ended up booking the following camps
Pretoriuskop 1 night
Satara 2 nights for the S100 and Nsemani dam
Mopani 2 nights I wanted to higher up the park and had intended to reach Shingwedzi
Olifants 2 nights for the sunrises
Lower Sabie 1 night for Sunset dam
Crocodile Bridge 2 nights as it’s our favourite camp
Pretoriuskop 1 night to avoid the roadwork’s through the crocodile river gorge

So the flights and car hire were duly booked and we arrived at Nelspruit airport on the 31st July slightly worse off for the overnight flight from London. So with the paperwork sorted for the hire car we headed to Hazyview to stock with food and drink supplies for the first few days. Phabeni gate was soon reached and in we went, every time we enter the park we try to guess the first animal we will see.

Well for once I got it right with this buffalo just after the gate

Imagehtml

More to follow shortly


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:51 pm 
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We’d been to the park for our 25th wedding anniversary for 2 weeks last year in May/June so I did not think that she’d want to return for a 3rd year running but she did, happy days of planning started.

I can understand why you have been married to your lovely SO for 26 years, Welshboy :clap:
Thanks for sharing your memories with us :D

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:53 pm 
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:yaya: Welshboy, i'm glad you started this TR...Love the Buff. :whistle:
Waiting for the rest to follow. :hmz:

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 7:24 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:51 pm
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Location: Liverpool
Thank you Philip1 and Matthys for your kind comments

Well the family are now fed with a Chinese takeaway so I'll post the next section below


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 7:31 pm 
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Location: Liverpool
Things were pretty quiet down to Pretoriuskop but after a late lunch we headed out to the circle dirt road and what did we see first but this youngish leopard lying right at the road edge but he up and headed into the bush pretty sharpish so all we got was a bottom shot!

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The following day we headed up to Satara following the tar until we headed onto the dirt roads for a while.
This young one was just lying at the side of the road without a care in the world. Heading up to Skukusa and Phabeni gate this Monday gone he was just lying in the middle of the road with cars passing him by

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Shortly afterwards we found this lizard high on a dead tree trunk

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Somewhere north of Skukusa we found these four rhino sheltering from the sun, it did reach 34C that day on the car’s temperature gauge

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This African Hoopoe posed very nicely for us.

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The following day we headed out for an early drive before breakfast and on the way back to camp this gentleman had put in an appearance with 2 of his brothers. On the far side of the camp road an orderly line up had formed for this youngster and one of his young uncles but it’s a bit had to hide when you stand out clearly on the burnt areas surrounding Satara. The pride had been hunting buffalo right on the camp fence at 4am right next to the camping area according to one of the watchers, his description was the best alarm call ever!!

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And just on the other side of the road embankment was this hyena, it struck me how calm the buffalo and zebra’s that were still in the area were!

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One of the best bird sightings for this day was this secretary bird hunting for his breakfast in the grass

Image

Off to Mopani next


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 7:40 pm 
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Thank you for taking the time to share Welshboy great pics and sightings so far, hyena's seem to be getting more and more tame. Secretary bird wow. :clap: :popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:02 pm 
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Looking forward to the rest of your report :)

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:09 pm 
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Wow ...what a start with some superb sighting and images!!! :clap: :clap:

:popcorn: :popcorn:


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:52 pm 
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Very pleased you decided to do a TR...Welshboy :great:

What a super start it has been...with wonderful sightings and awesome pic. :mrgreen:

More please :popcorn:

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TR "Born to be Wild"..37 Days of sights, sounds and smells!!
TR There and back on a Sunday drive


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:56 pm 
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Welshboy wrote:
This TR will only cover a day and a half of our holiday


:(

these are great pictures thus far :clap: :clap: :clap: - maybe you might consider doing a full report? :popcorn:

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KTP 23.09.-08.10.2014
TR KTP 2013 In search of honey badger, porcupine and whistling rat
TR KTP 2012 It is almost time to go back to KTP
TR KNP 2013 Gatita's KNP - will we visit a green park again? March 2013


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 10:19 pm 
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Wonderful start with some fantastic sightings and pics! :clap:

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 10:27 pm 
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More than a great start, Welshboy :clap: :clap: :clap:

with these gorgeous hyaenas, leopard and lions already :mrgreen:

Ready for more :popcorn:


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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:24 am 
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Welshboy, I am thrilled that you decided to write a trip report and what an eventful start. 8) Nice to have you back.

Looking forward to more.

:popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 7:25 am 
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Great start to your trip report Welshboy :thumbs_up: I am looking forward reading more. Great photographs :clap: :clap: :clap:

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 Post subject: Re: A tale of 5 waterholes
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:41 am 
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What a great start Welshboy! :clap: :clap:

Super sightings, looking forward to more 8)

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