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 Post subject: UKWAZI THE RETURN: My journey back to sanity!!! Feb 12
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:56 am 
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Hey Everybody...

Ya, I'm back on the forum and it feels really good to be back!!!

My first contribution to the forum this time is going to be slightly different...you can say it’s a Trip Report with a twist.

OK, this is it...
As some of you know, I've been working and living in the bush for many years as a Professional Field Guide & Trainer (18 years to be exact), but a year ago my career was shattered due to various personal reasons forcing me to the concrete jungle with no bush contact what so ever. Whilst in Jo'burg I started a very successful company and all went well, until, one day (3 Days ago) when I had a reality check with myself. I realised that life isn’t only about being successful, building your empire and making money. I realised that there's something missing in my life, something much bigger than wealth, I realised that I was born with the bush in my blood, and that it's now time to RETURN TO MY ROOTS, no-matter what it takes...

Well, to make a long story short, I made the final decision in record timing, did the ‘shut-down’, calmed the family down, reassured the wife, packed my bags and NOW the "Journey back to my roots” is about to start, in fact, it’s starting tomorrow...and I'm planning to share my experience with all my mates on the forum in the finest detail...the sightings, the feelings, the thoughts, the highlights and ultimately the treasures offered by the African bush as seen through the eyes of a Field Guide.

The PLAN: First on my list is to get rid of the city smell and to take break from the ‘big rush’...A relaxing stay in the Park – 1 Night Pretoriuskop, 1 Night Lower Sabie and a night up at Letaba, then it’s time to go and settle down in Phalaborwa where I will base myself for the next few months...

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 Post subject: Re: THE RETURN: My journey back to sanity!!!
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 5:19 pm 
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Ok, the journey had begun...
Sitting in Pretoriuskop now under the giant Marula trees with monkeys harassing the poor tourists, guiney fowl wondering around the lush green lawns and an African sun blistering down on all the poor city slickers. Ya, Kruger is still the same, bluddy HOT. Camp is relatively quit but that's the way I like it :D Entered the park today via Malalane Gate and drove up past Afsaal, Transport Dam and down again to pretoriuskop. Sighting-wise...all I can say...it was VEEERRRYYYY quit apart from the impalas that greeted my return with their same old charm, a family of giraffe in a distance and an over confident elephant youngter (Got brilliant :cam: of our little what you may call it...!!!) Then I must admit, wrong time of the day and I didnt do much when it came to animal spotting. It's amazing what goes through a matured mans mind the day when you return back to your roots...emotions that you never knew existed in you, thoughts that confront you unprepared with no answers and just the reality check that you're back where you belong!!! Let me be honoust...I picked a tear or two, or three.... :roll:

I promice that the next update will be more entertaining with pics and all...for now, as the braai fires are going up all around me it"s time to start my own and an early bed for me tonight because the day that awaits me is ONE DAY that I've been praying for for such a long time and I"m going to make the most of it.

So, for now, with the continious call of Purple Crested Louries and Brown Headed Parrots in my ears, I say good buy with a setting sun from Pretoriuskop.

I"M BACK WHERE I BELONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: THE RETURN: My journey back to sanity!!!
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:43 pm 
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Hey Everybody...
OK, so finally I got rid of the 'city smell' and now it's time to let you in on my 'journey back to my roots'!!!
The past week can only be described by one word...HECTIC as I had to get everything sorted and in place before I could start focussing on my reasons for being back.

So, sadly my time for game viewing was very limited but according to me, what I did witness is priceless...

Shortly after entering the park via Malalane Gate I was greeted by the ever so faithfull (you know what)...
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Shortly after that I came accross an over confident Elephant teenager which is definately following in his daddies footsteps as he displayed no fear whatsoever for any form of human presence...
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Highlights of the week, hope you enjoy...

Early morning close to Pretoriuskop. This was just awesome!!! The mountain, the mist, dew on the grass and a Burchells Coucal calling somewhere down in the valley
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Brown Snake Eagle
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The BIG Boys of Afsaal...
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Patrolling Eloff Street
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Early morning next to the Sabie River...
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NO COMMENT, it's that time of the year...
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To Be Continued...

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To be or not to be, that is the question...I am and I want to be!!!


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 Post subject: Re: THE RETURN: My journey back to sanity!!!
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:08 pm 
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Hey Guys...
Just a few highlights before I close this thread only to open a new one with a very...very GOOD reason...something that blew my mind and that came to me from the 'blind side'...definitely a FIRST on the forum...Look out for my next threat, or the follow up... because THIS IS MY RETURN AND MY GRIP with SANITY...

Wahlbergs Eagle
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Elephant at Ngwenyeni
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Buff close to Moserini
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Vulture...Sable Dam
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Elephant A)$%
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 Post subject: My Bush Diary: Highlights in a Field Guide's Day
Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 8:01 pm 
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Hi Everybody

:hmz: I was thinking that due to the nature of my work and the amount of time I spend in the bush doing free-lance guiding, training and assessments, it might be a good idea to keep a diary on the forum sharing my experiences and lessons learned from the 'bush classroom' with those interested in getting a regular update via the bush webmail... as I will be updating the diary on a daily basis...or at least as far as I can!

There is allot to look forward too in the near future which includes a North to South journey in the park, various specialized field trips with area specialists, behind the scenes insights on conservation work, day to day life in the bush and much, much more....

SO, WELCOME TO MY WORLD!!!

For starters...The highlight of today's afternoon game drive

Date: 2012/03/06
Area: Phalaborwa Gate
Time: 16:00

Overall the afternoon drive turned out to be VERY quiet, and I mean...VERY QUIET...untill we got to Sable Dam and this is what awaited us very close to the overnight-hide...

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And only for today, I'm not going to comment or interpret to much, just enjoy the series of images as they happened with the KING of Sable as the lead player...

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JUST AWESOME IS ALL I CAN SAY !!!!

Well untill tomorrow when I will start my diary in full swing!!!!!!

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To be or not to be, that is the question...I am and I want to be!!!


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 Post subject: Re: My Bush Diary: Highlights in a Field Guide's Day
Unread postPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 7:27 pm 
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Good Day Mites...

Ya, its time for another update from my side and a BIG word of appreciation to everybody following my advantures in the bush...and RADMAN...your wish is my command, I will devote today's diary to your request!!!
Thanks for sharing and hopefully you can share some great tips on spotting animals as well

Well, here it is, my view on...

ANIMAL SPOTTING IN KRUGER - The tricks of the trade
Spotting animals in Kruger is actually very easy! It works like this...OPEN YOUR EYES AND SEE!!!

OK, on a more serious note, this is how I see it...
1. The biggest mistake people tend to make when game driving is to go out with the mindset of 'finding animals' instead of allowing the animals to find them:lol: . If you drive around expecting to see a cat around every corner and under every bush, you're going to be disappointed. Yes, we all, or most of us enjoy seeing predators, but never allow your trip to become a predator rush.

2. I admit, it is part of a nature lovers nature to be tuned into finding the predators but instead of looking for a leopard in a tree, look at the tree first and then focus your attention on what might be in it. This will allow you to see the bigger picture and be or become part of your surroundings which will automaticly enhance your experience.

3. Obviously the best times to be out is early morning and late afternoon, BUT that does not mean that you'll see nothing between 9 and 3. Some of my best sightings came at midday. Another thing...and this I find very amusing, NEVER JOIN THE GATE OPENING RACE..people waiting in the cue to be first ones out of camp and then rush down the road to stay in front, it"s crazy.

AT THE END OF THE DAY...JUST ENJOY IT!!!

I'm currently operating in the Phalaborwa area and today was yet again a 'typical phala' day, sunny and hot. We went on an afternoon drive and this ellephant stole the show after we witnessed a spectacular secratary bird together with the 'usuals'

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Well, that's all for now, chat to you tomorrow again, and I might just add, there's a camping trip coming up in the near future...

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To be or not to be, that is the question...I am and I want to be!!!


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 Post subject: Re: My Bush Diary: Highlights in a Field Guide's Day
Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 6:24 pm 
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Hey all my friends...
Time for another update from Phalaborwa, today was once again slow, hot and very quite BUT we were as always blessed with memorable experiences which include a VERY unhappy and unfriendly visitor to our sundowner spot and a discovery of wisdom from my side... :lol:

Let's start with the sundowner saga...

This is what we saw at first where and when we least expected it...and that reminded me of the most important rule in the bush namely...NEVER SAY NEVER (...and I suppose that's why some people call them the ghosts in the bush)

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The elephants appeared out of nowhere with the matriarch in front and definately not to happy with our pressence

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And then all hell broke loose...

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And I'm sure you would understand why this one is a bit blurred!!!!

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And NOW my moment of wisdom!!!

I finally discovered the answer to the question on everybodies lips...WHY SO MANY ANIMALS (SPECIES) IN THE KRUGER PARK???????????????????????

I've got it now after so many years.......and the answer has been under our noses for soooo looong and nobody ever noticed it :roll:

And before I reveal...I just need to add the thought that I might just win a nobel price or award for this discovery, IT'S GROUND-BREAKING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Before I start I need to say that what I'm about to reveal is going to be said with all the best intentions and in a very light hearted spirit

I guess that my 'moment of wisdom' is based purely on personal philosophy...

OK, many, many, many years ago Noah was told by God to load all the animals on a BIG boat, or better known as the arc because the floods are coming soon. In good faith he did just that and loaded a male and female representing each and every species on the boat...the water came and off they went. After some time the water levels went down and they stranded allowing the animals their freedom from the boat...(A long and well respected story made short!!)

Well, today I discovered the remains of Noah's Arc right in the middle of the Kruger Park...and all is starting to make sense to me now ...the evidence...there's enough animals around, water (lately) was more than enough to represent a flood and the Arc is still sitting at the summit of Shekumbu Mountain close to Phalaborwa...if you dont believe me...well, FEAST YOUR EYS ON THIS!!!!!

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:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Well, that my story for the day...tomorrow I will be leaving Phalaborwa for a night all the way down South in the Park. I've decided to make it a camping trip so keep your :popcorn: ready for some wild and exciting updates.

Cheers

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To be or not to be, that is the question...I am and I want to be!!!


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