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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 7:31 am 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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I went on a school tour to Kruger in about 1965. It was rather under-whelming. The lions would not oblige and all we seemed to see was lots of impies. We stayed in Pretorius Kop and spent a lot of time looking for someone's lost school shoes.

I also remember pea shooters, tired and irate teachers and a boy with horrible gastro.

I do remember with a certain fondness, the Stevenson Hamilton memorial. A ranger gave us a talk that kept me spell bound. After that I wanted to be a ranger.

then, I was told the earth shattering news :big_eyes: :big_eyes:

girls were not allowed to be rangers :wall: :wall: :wall:

I couldn't even find one to marry me :whistle:

life has never been the same since.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 8:37 pm 
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It would have been interesting to see what it was like back then. I remember going to Yellowstone National Park in 1962 and having the bears come right up to your car and beg for food, now it is like Kruger, animals that learn that behaviour are removed or put down.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:16 am 
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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 5:57 pm 
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jeffgordon wrote:
I am afraid you are going to be a little disappointed when you see the film, MicMic.

The majority of the filming appears to have been done in Kenya with, I suspect, only a few close-up animal shots taken in the Park. I may just be misidentifying things, but the landscape in the film doesn't match anywhere I have seen in Kruger. At first I thought perhaps it was the hilly region around Berg en Dal, but it soon became clear that there were geological landmarks that are definitely not in Kruger.

The closing credits confirms that filming was done in Kenya but also mentions the Union of South Africa, and thanks is given to the governors of the Kruger National Park.

The film is actually available to view for free on a site called Blinkbox. If you have uncapped broadband, you may want to check it out and see if I am wrong about the locations. It's a passable film by the way, but toe-curlingly politically incorrect!


Well, it's a bit disappointing indeed, but I collect a lot of films shot in African National Parks anyway. There are so many shot in Kenya and Tanzania and very few in other safari countries.


Political incorrectness was the norm back then! And conservation was uknown, too, in most movies. I've watched many old safari movies and I still cringe at how the animals were being shot or harassed - and that was passing as "bravery"!


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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 6:06 pm 
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How far back in time do you think we should go in order to find a greater variety and greater number of animals in Kruger than what there is today ?


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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:05 pm 
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micmic, Stevenson Hamilton estimated 100 000 head of game in 1925. There were two breeding herds of elephant around Letaba, some nyala at Pafuri, few impala between Skukuza and Satara. A herd of buffalo that survived the rinderpest and occasional giraffe,sable and roan. Zebra, widebesst and waterbuck were common.

Today just impala exceed 100 000. I guess we have to go back way past 1925 to find a greater variety of game than we have today. Around 1870 you had the "gold rush" in the lowveld and hunting for the pot was rife.

The first organized expeditions to cross the lowveld were those led by Hans van rensburg and Louis Trichardt circa 1836

My guess would be around 1820/30 :hmz:


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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 1:19 pm 
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I have received the film mentioned above, and I thing it could have been mostly shot in Kruger. There's also a review in Amazon which suggests that only the elephant attack scene was filmed in Kenya. Indeed, in that scene the surroundings look East-African. But in the rest of the movie I would say the environment reminds more of Kruger.

A hint may be given by the Landrovers' registration numbers which have 5-digis and no letters, but maybe they were fake. From what I found out, during the 50s vehicles in both Kenya and South Africa did have letters too. But maybe the plate numbers for the park vehicles were different ?


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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 8:11 am 
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Duke, you possibly have a point.

The ivory trade was brutal and decimated the animals. It was also thought that the wild animals were responsible for the Tsetse fly, so there was a period of wholesale slaughter when animals were piled high and left to rot. An absolute animal holocast.

Another problem was the erection of fences which halted the natural migration. Many animals died of starvation and thirst.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 9:41 am 
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About the film on Kruger - at the height of the white lion awareness there was also one titled "White Lions of Timbavati" which I eagerly watched for a few minutes untill I saw parts of it were filmed in a lion park (it appeared to be the one between Johannesburg & Lanseria airport?) - the acting was very amateurish.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:41 am 
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Are you saying that the Lions couldn't act? They were probably amateurs, not in the Carnivore guild.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 6:26 am 
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:funny:

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:35 am 
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There were no Berg-en-Dal, no Afsaal, no Phabeni gate, and no Kruger gate. But there was a place called Ngonyamene, which was reserved for 'Non Whites'. Balule was also just for "Non Whites'

On my oldest map which dates back to the late 30's, there is no Olifants camp and no Lower Sabie. From Satara you traveled to The Gorge and then to Letaba. Barberton with 1447 residents was double the size of Nelspruit who had 660 residents. Places like Welkom and Secunda did not exist.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:53 am 
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Elsa wrote:
Hi Micmic,

Altho This Topic doesn't go back as far as your query there are some interesting threads and info in there.

Another one

Have you seen the topic with the pics from the old days?

I posted this on the Old Pics Of Kruger site but it may be worth repeating here !!

Greetings all !! I'm new on the forum and am finding my way around. Forgive me !! I posted some info on "Trips to KNP" and have only now found this section on Old Photos. I may have some photos which go back to the 1950s and a bit later. My grandfather had 8 mm movies of KNP in the late 40s(you cant believe how the old Fords with their biscuit thin tyres got around ) and 16 mm movies from the 50s and 60s but most were destroyed in a flood some years ago But I may still have some pics of KNP in the 60s and 70s --- there are a few pics of Rabelais camp maybe 50 years ago and also of Nwanedzi camp which was only 20 odd years ago. Will have a search when I return from KNP as a bit busy in next week visiting JHB from western cape --- and then from 10 May till 21 May will be in KNP !!!! The lions seemed a lot bigger in those days

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:52 am 
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Rooies wrote:
There were no Berg-en-Dal, no Afsaal, no Phabeni gate, and no Kruger gate. But there was a place called Ngonyamene, which was reserved for 'Non Whites'. Balule was also just for "Non Whites'

On my oldest map which dates back to the late 30's, there is no Olifants camp and no Lower Sabie. From Satara you traveled to The Gorge and then to Letaba. Barberton with 1447 residents was double the size of Nelspruit who had 660 residents. Places like Welkom and Secunda did not exist.


Rooies, I also have a Kruger map dated 1934. I will try to get around to scanning the map and posting it on the forums.

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 Post subject: Re: How was Kruger in the 50s-60s ?
Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 11:14 am 
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Albert wrote:
Rooies wrote:
There were no Berg-en-Dal, no Afsaal, no Phabeni gate, and no Kruger gate. But there was a place called Ngonyamene, which was reserved for 'Non Whites'. Balule was also just for "Non Whites'

On my oldest map which dates back to the late 30's, there is no Olifants camp and no Lower Sabie. From Satara you traveled to The Gorge and then to Letaba. Barberton with 1447 residents was double the size of Nelspruit who had 660 residents. Places like Welkom and Secunda did not exist.


Rooies, I also have a Kruger map dated 1934. I will try to get around to scanning the map and posting it on the forums.


Unfortunately my map is too big to scan. It measures 3m high x 2m wide. It is called "The Union of South Africa including the Bechuanaland Protectorate, Southern and Northern Rhodesia"

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