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 Post subject: Bush Baptist Sex in the desert January 2012
Unread postPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:06 pm 
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Now that I have got your attention, :tongue: if you are under 18 ask a parent to read this report and tell you the story. :rtm:

I asked my wife where she would like to go on her brief yearend holiday and to my surprise, she chose Kgalagadi. I had been there a month previously on the forum Nossob ecotrail with Barcud, but I didn’t mind at all.

We left Cape Town at 2h00 on Friday morning, anticipating that the traffic going north would be at its least then and we would have a clear run through the Olifants River valley. This proved to be so, and it was quite surreal as we rose above the mist clouds to crest the Van Ryn’s pass just before sunrise. The stop/go had also disappeared from the Piekenier’s pass, so that was also a doddle. :thumbs_up:

It warmed up quickly as expected, and we refuelled car and body in Upington, before heading up to Twee Rivieren.

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After checking in, booking the new year’s night ride and letting down the tyres, I went looking for KG and found him in his office, and handed him the bag of clothing we had not been able to cram in on the forum ecotrail trip the previous month. In exchange he updated us with the latest sightings.

It was now after 14h00 and pitching the tents in the heat was not fun. Afterwards, my wife suggested that the coolest place would be in the bakkie and that we should bring forward our afternoon ride. Who am I to argue. :whistle:

The mating pair of lions was exactly where KG had told us, under a sprawling camelthorn tree, a few metres from the road. They were a magnificent couple, both very big and extremely healthy looking as they lay in the shade not moving a muscle. :roll:

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After a few minutes, the female suddenly got up and strode over to where his nibs was lying, and gave his face an affectionate rub with hers. That woke him up, and as she went to lie down, he got up and followed her. She presented herself and he started the proceedings. He gave her a love bite and she growled back at him, and within a minute they disengaged, and went to lie down again. He yawned and then they resumed the comatose status. :roll:

No unnecessary energy loss in ‘preamble’, or anything else, just focussed on the ’business’. :wink: Lions mate every 20 – 30 minutes, so no wonder they were knackered as the crowd, about 5 cars, waited for the next performance.

We saw quite a lot of the usual springbok, gnu, oryx and jackals, plus a good variety of birds, some that were inquisitive as we had put up the tents, and some sheltering in the shade as it was too hot to fly.

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We were in our way back to our campsite, when we drove past KG & his family on an evening stroll. They joined us for a drink and a chat, which revealed very interesting things, :twisted: as the night enfolded us.

We ate a simple meal and had a swim before getting into bed, only for our neighbours to keep on drinking and nattering until 23h00. :naughty: I would have asked them to keep quiet, but we had borrowed a tin opener from them. Somebody else asked them, but it didn’t help much. :wall:

Pictures by kind courtesy of my wife - despite my 'derogatory' remarks in the last TR.

Next: Day trip to Mata Mata.

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 Post subject: Re: Sex in the desert
Unread postPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:51 pm 
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Don't kid yourselves Round Tablers & Rotarians. :naughty:

Day trip to Mata Mata.

When the alarm sounded at 5h00, we got up and prepared for the day, but not as quietly as we could have! We had heard that there were cheetahs under (almost) every tree on this road so we set off early to find them.

It was a very quiet morning, until we got to Auchterlonie, where we came across a mum and very recently born gnu calf. We must have missed the birth by minutes, as the calf was still wet and the placenta had not yet been delivered.

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Also the leopard mum and cub that we had heard was in the area yesterday, had obviously moved on.

At 13th, was a distressing sight for my wife. A new born gnu was lying on the ground with the herd nuzzling it in an attempt to get it on to its feet. We couldn’t tell if it was already dead or not, as the only movement was an ear that twitched, which could have been a result of the nuzzling. Very sad indeed, but at the end of the day, everything in the park is food for something else.

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The birding was good,

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but the nest where I had seen the white faced scops owls a month ago, was empty, but the barn owls were still there.

At 14th we found the lion we had been told about, but his pose was anything but what you would expect from the ‘king’ of the jungle.

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It was extremely hot at Mata Mata when we sat under the shade eating our crackers for lunch. Afterwards, I decided to catch up on some sleep, while my wife had a swim. After a 2am start, 11pm sleep and a 5am start even the hard core must sleep a bit, although I had grabbed a few winks on the trip up.

Afterwards it was my turn to swim. When I got to the pool, it was ‘full’, almost like a big Jacuzzi party, and there was a Shark in it. Yes a Shark – Dale Chadwick, one of the Sharks rugby team’s front rowers. (I had been alerted to this by his name on the vehicle parked outside the pool area.) We all had a pleasant chat and exchanged sighting info, and afterwards my wife said that even the people near the hide could hear my sightings. (Must have great ears!)

On the return journey, we saw some giraffe – where were they on the way up?

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– but the king had disappeared. Had great raptor sightings,

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and decided to do the dune road to Kij Kij.
We went to Melkvlei, and I was anticipating some ‘action’ at the picnic site, but again nothing.

We passed a lot of traffic on the Bots road and came across a YR. It was Caracal & family. The lovey dovey lions had moved to the top of a ridge on the new and vastly improved Skiddy Corner but were a bit far off.

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We lit the braai fire and again KG & family came for a visit. This time KG junior set off exploring the campsite area with his mother in tow. It must have been frustrating for Santa at the KG home, bringing interesting stuff, but all this little chap was interested in playing with, was stones sticks & sand.

Next: Happy new year!

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 Post subject: Re: Sex in the desert
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 8:23 am 
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Happy new year!

The hard-pressed guide apologised as he arrived a few minutes late from the night ride and his passengers disappeared into the night. One claimed to have seen everything except a flying reindeer, but you always get one.....

The excited group filed into the truck and found seats. The guide gave a brief introduction that seemed to satisfy the restless midnightriders who were eager to get out there.

Explanation. There will be no pics on this section because we decided just to go and enjoy the ride for what it was and not have the pressure of cameras etc.

Fortunately the floodlights found their way into very competent hands, and our Dutch guide, Boy, had hardly got back into the vehicle after closing the gate when one located a lion in the beam. Then another. They were going in the direction from which we had come. I suggested to Boy that he park on the ridge overlooking the waterhole just outside of camp, which he duly did, and we saw 5 in total, as 2 females and a cub drank under the watchful eye of the 2 males.

From then on the mood got even more festive as we proceeded along the Nossob river road at the junction. Every now and then we would be called to a halt and there would be great excitement as groups of bat eared foxes would be seen scurrying around, very different from their sober inactivity of the daytime. There were also Cape foxes looking for a meal, and a number of Kalahari kangaroos (spring hares).

After a while we came to Skiddy Corner and guess who were still there. The mating pair, still on the ridge where we had left them earlier. There were children on the ride, so mercifully they did not do anything that would have made parents duck and dive at the embarrassing loud questions that usually flow. :shock:

A bit further, Boy brought the vehicle to a stop and asked everyone to switch off the lights. In the magnificent Kalahari darkness with a billion stars as witnesses, Boy counted down. 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1......HAPPY NEW YEAR! :k Bottles cracked open and the niceties of crystal glasses were absent, so the bottles were handed round for a minute or so, and we were off again.

We turned at Rooiputs, and made our way back past the sleeping amorous couple, more bat eared and Cape foxes, ‘kangaroos’ and inquisitive owls (VEO & SEO) that wondered what all the fuss was about.

To be honest, I don’t remember much else until we got to the camp gates. The 2am start, 23h00 finish and this morning’s 5h00 plus a swig of red wine had taken their toll on even the hardest core.

Next: Oh dear!

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 Post subject: Re: Sex in the desert
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 8:45 pm 
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Sorry everyone. I got side tracked by the year, which is now in full swing.

Oh dear!

First a bit of background. Over the years, as a customer, I have learnt not to take ‘no’ for an answer, where excuses are offered, or ‘sorry, we can’t do that’ is said, but most of the time I have found that with a little bit of effort or ‘creativity, ‘no’ turns into ‘yes’, and somebody ‘can’. All you need is a bit of determination. So.....

It seemed that my head had just hit the pillow when the alarm sounded shortly after 5. I dragged my body out of ‘bed’ and we prepared for the last day of our brief trip. We got to the gate to pick up the permit a minute before 5h30, and saw that we were there first. I went to the deserted office and waited a few minutes as my annoyance at the absence of the permit dispenser grew. :sniper:

I noticed that the door was open, so I decided that self service was in order because of the doorman being late. I duly found my permit and entered our route, a lower dune road loop, into the route book and the permit. Now, quite fed up, I got back into the vehicle and drove to the game viewing gate. :whistle:

At the junction, I could see the gateman opening the gates, and was about to give him a piece of my mind when he asked me to fetch my permit. I showed it to him and was about to ask why he was late when he firmly told me that it was now January and the gates open at 6h00, not 5h30. :rtm: Oh dear..... :redface: :doh:

The egg was now plastered thick all over my face and I had to apologise profusely, and explain feebly. In the past, I had won with reason on my side, but now I had no leg to stand on and was totally offside.

Darn, I could have had an extra half hour’s sleep!

The drive (2R to Auchterlonie, across to KijKij, Melkvlei, KK to 2R) proved to be quite quiet, with the usual springbok, gnu, oryx, bbj sightings, until we came to the mating pair of lions again. By now we were familiar with the ‘routine’ and decided to wait. Not long.

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While we were there a yellow ribbon ‘drove‘ into the waiting throng of traffic. It was Bibronsgecko and family. I also noticed that some poepol (person who is not highly thought of) had thrown a Vienna sausage to the lions. They had completely ignored it. (See the foreground in front of the lioness)

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Back at camp, we swam and had lunch in the shade of another campsite that had been ‘booked’ by some deckchairs. A cardinal woodpecker was intent on destroying our shade while we ate.

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Just as we were finishing lunch, the owners of the deck chairs arrived and I told them that we were just ensuring that nobody took their site. In exchange they told us of a cheetah sighting just past Auchterlonie.

By now we all know that hearsay sightings are hit and miss, but this was a hit! It was Lisette and her 4 cubs. They had moved down from the Craig Lockhart area where we had seen them last month. At last! We had seen another cat species.

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Tonight when KG & family arrived in the game drive vehicle, I thought we were in for a private night ride, but no amount of coaxing would persuade him to make it a reality.

As we chatted, a fellow camper brought a camera for us to do some raptor IDs. Easy. Blonde tawnies.

All too soon, we said our goodbyes. Tonight was an early night. We needed some decent sleep for the long drive home tomorrow.

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