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 Post subject: Elsa's Bonus Kruger Trip : Jan 2007
Unread postPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2007 2:22 pm 
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Just when I thought I would have to wait until May for my next trip, up comes a surprise package in the form of a 6 night stay. :D
Myself, son and daughter-in-law, namely Martial and Tawny will be using Jock's week at the timeshare lodge just outside Kruger gate.
Unfortunately poor Klystron can not join us this time, owing to leave restraints and work getting in the way. :roll: :(
We will be leaving at daybreak tomorrow, enter at Croc Bridge and travel through the park to Kruger gate.
We plan on daily trips in to the park and will get Klystron to post our sightings as they happen each day.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2007 9:48 am 
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Well, Elsa and company got off to an early start at about 0545. My first trip report came 10 minutes later to say that all except Elsa had left their cell phones behind. 45 minutes later came another call this time Elsa had left her whole one bag of essentials (make up, etc). This time Klystron was called upon to meet them half way and the missing item was delivered. They are currently enjoying breakfast at Mkuzi.
Hope the next report shows more progress such as animal sightings.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 18, 2007 8:07 am 
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Further to my last posting, they arrived safely after seeing 'the normal animals' on the way through the park exiting at Kruger Gate at minutes before closing time as usual for Elsa. Only one ellie charged them so the trip was good. Will post more as I hear it.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 18, 2007 9:43 pm 
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Elsa reports a quiet day spent in camp with one excursion to Lake Panic. Rather surprising that the water level is very low but lots of birds and two Bushbuck. Ellie between the bridge and the main Kruger Gate but not much else to report.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:51 am 
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I spoke to Elsa last night and aside from the heat they have had a very good few days in the Park - beautiful elephant, lots of buffalo, yet another dark chanting goshawk (yippee Elsa) and lots of other special sightings - no cats as yet but today they were to do the triangle from Skukuza - up to Tshokwane and hence down the H10 and home along the Lower Sabie road keeping a good look out for the leopard Mum with her 2 cubs. They are still being seen in the area so hopefully they will get lucky. Their plan was to be at the gate when it opened at 5.30 a.m. so it should not have been too hot at that time of the morning. Lets hope that their day was a gratifying one!

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 7:21 pm 
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Sms just in from Elsa - true big five today as they got the black rhino just outside Skukuza. Way to go girl - repeat it tomorrow!

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NO BAIL - JAIL AND NO TRADE IN RHINO HORN EVER!
NO TO BUILDING OF HOTELS IN THE KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
26.09.14 - 03.10.14 Burchells Bush Lodge
03.10.14 - 10.10.14 Ngwenya Lodge
The addiction is fed once again


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:07 pm 
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Elsa has asked me to report one of the rare sightings of all our trips, two (yes 2) cars with yellow ribbons today. They stopped and chatted. In terms of animals it seems they (the animals) decided that yesterday was enough and not one of the big five were sighted. The best sighting was a second Dark Chanting Goshawk. Spent some time at Lake Panic and tried out the new Boardwalk. More tomorrow.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2007 12:20 pm 
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Right, at last I can try and get to some sort of a report together.
It seems like ages ago since I had my bonus trip. :roll:

I thought I would do this one a little differently and just post the pic and a little desciption of where it occured and any special circumstances surrounding it.

We found that unless we were up and in the gate at opening which in our case was 5.30 am sightings were extremely difficult as the heat built up incredibly quickly and by 9.30 or 10am it was just too hot, often over 35C and most days were hovering just under and over the 40C by midday/2pm with high humidity to boot, so felt a lot hotter. :shock:
But I am not complaining, I will take it any way it comes, before I am accused of being a sissie. :tongue:

These are some taken on the first all around the H11 and at Lake Panic

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Lake Panic

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:53 pm 
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Location: Ballito, KZN North Coast, South Africa
Day 2. Monday 19th.

In again early and this sunrise welcomes us as we head along the H11.

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The S1.
After missing a Leopard by mere minutes we find this Hyena family.

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We were unable to resist this 1 horned Wildebeeste mom and young.

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On to Phabeni Gate for a pitstop

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2007 1:52 pm 
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Same day.

S3 Albasini Road.

Never have I seen so many W Rhino middens but no owners.

Last Feb, we were thrilled to see our very first Dark Chanting Goshawk on this road and as if on cue, but not such a good sighting this time round, another DCG.

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Not too much else along here but it is getting hotter by the minute, so we enjoy the scenery and this group of Warthog who are unfazed by the heat.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 1:04 pm 
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Location: Ballito, KZN North Coast, South Africa
Day 3 Tuesday 20th Feb.

H11 @ 5.30am
Just before the Skukuza Village turnoff we see a car has stopped and lo and behold a 10 sec view of a Leopard in the process of climbing down the tree.
We switch off and sit waiting with bated breath for about 10 minutes, deciding to move on Martial starts the engine and checks the rear view mirror only to discover the Leopard standing in the middle of the road about 50 metres behind us. :roll:
A quick U turn and stop where we estimate it was and then we see it walking away from us deeper into the bush, just catching glimpses of its dappled beauty.
Another 10 minute wait and we decide to continue onwards.
Stopping on the N'waswitshaka river bridge, someone gives us the info that the Leopard was again in the road back where we had just come from. So another U turn and back we go but all we can find is a big Male Impala on full alert and extremely agitated.
After waiting for quite a while with nothing to see we call it quits and carry on with our days agenda. :?
But we did really try hard to bring some nice pics back here. :wink:

By this time and after all the to-ing and fro-ing we had to make an unscheduled pit stop in at Skukuza, for obvious reasons. :wink:
And then, I promise you not 500 metres from Skukuza camp gate we see a long horn poking through the bushes and I can hardly believe my eyes when out comes this BLACK RHINO.


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He unfortunately didn't hang around and seemed rather nervous.

No explanation needed here.

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Low level Sand River bridge.

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Mutlumuvi Bridge.
Very thin and restless pride of Lions.

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Olifantdrinkgat (Elephant drinking hole)

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and to prove it is one.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2007 12:13 pm 
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Same day.

Carrying on up the H1-2 and calling in at Leeupan and Silowini, with no sign of Duke for us, we see this unidentified snake slithering rapidly across the road.

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Stop in at Tshokwane for lunch, a few monkeys and the usual chattering Starlings around looking for easy pickings.

H10

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Waterbuck baby, but not the best pic, I'm afraid.

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Reedbuck with one horn.

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Sunset Dam.

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Large Ellie herd along the Sabie River.

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My favourite Antelope.

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Hyena.on H11

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2007 4:07 pm 
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Thanks Elsa.
I think we saw the same group of Lions in the same place on the Friday when we arrived. I did not notice whether they were as thin, maybe they had eaten since then, but were it not that I think you left the Park the day we arrived, I would have thought we were watching the same place at the same time.
They do look thin in your photo. I hope it was just that they needed a good feed.
Maybe they were still in the same place because they had had a decent meal.
Lovely Black Rhino, what a treat!

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Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2007 4:24 pm 
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MM, I am amazed the Lions were in the same place 3 days later.
I did not think they usually hung around for so long, unless they had left and then returned to the same spot.
It did look to us as if they were thinking of going hunting that day, as they seemed extremely restless and kept on standing up and walking about, looking intently into the bush. :?
Lets hope they did get a good meal.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2007 4:36 pm 
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I am fairly sure it is the same group. The one even slept under the "same" bush.
We never realized that it was such a large group initially until one by one they seemed to appear from the surrounding bushes and lie down.

We also debated whether they were all female or whether the one was a sub adult male.
I thought they looked rather young with not much hunting experience. That might have accounted for their skinny appearance. The one female might have been a bit older. :?

We were very excited by the sighting and the Lions appeared in no hurry to move.
On our way back to Skukuza we saw a lovely sighting of a Leopard on a rock.

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