@ Kamjedo, thank you for the confirmation, I still have some unknown birds pictures...hope you guys can help..
@ Shi, here we go with the second part, hope you enjoy..Day 2, Thursday 22 July
Wake up early...very early, 4h30am early. Amazing how quickly you adjust to Kruger time. There is some strange noise coming from outside...some sort of whooping...get up out of bed and walk outside. Yes, definately whooping and then some, laughing? Yes, Hyena's, and it sounds like something exciting is happening. There is a lot of noise and whooping. Walk out to the kitchen area and look up, all I see is stars, and now I am in Kruger. The hyena's really are making a lot of noise, and to add to it all a lion starts making himself/herself known. I try to wake up my wife, but after a few groans that meant, wake me up and you will not get any peace for the rest of the day
, I give up and sit outside and enjoy the african serenade.
My parents are awake and we get everyone up and ready for a close to 6am kick off to Nkhulu for breakfast.
As we are more than anticipated (our 2 friend's and their child only confirmed they will join us 2 weeks prior to the trip), we have to take 2 cars. Once again I am in the bakkie with my SO and Charlotta, mom's colleague from Dubai. We are off and spot a mystery bird...but at least a good picture of the thorn bush.
It's a quiet drive to Nkhulu, not much to spot. We do see a giraffe having a early breakfast. And we do find some buffalo waiting for the brunch call to come. The bush is still very thick, the rains have been good around Skukuza, thus our sightings aren't what we promised our guests. We are really being let down....
Nkhulu is reached and breakfast is made. It has gotten cloudy now with a little drizzle. We do spot a crocodile, or at least our youngest traveller spots the crocodile in the water, and some birds on the sandbanks. No pictures as the camera's are safely tucked away from the few drops falling.
Off we go to Lower Sabie, surely the trip making sightings are just around this corner...we see a "herd" crossing the road, not the one we were hoping for, but nice baboon pictures at least. Once again I have lost the lead car, and its only the three of us enjoying the sighting.
We cross Lubyelubye, no lion on the rocks. I am sure most have imagined seeing a lion on these rocks. Maybe next time.
Once again the road is quiet, Sunset dam is full of the usual, Hippo and crocodile, and we spot this fellow lying quite far from the water. Any speculations on what happened? The hippo's were very active in the water with lot's of splashing and noise. I am thinking there was a fight and this fellow was banished from the water...
After a longer than expected stop for coffee at Lower Sabie, the drinks took forever to come to us, but the staff were all smiling and, like all our stops in Kruger at the shops and restaurants we were welcomed and served with a smile, we are off again.
We spot an unfamiliar fellow s l o w l y making his way across. We alert the oncoming traffic of his presence and we are off, as he is still now probably trying to cross the road...
Some buffalo in the river bank having a lie down. We spot more game and things are starting to look up. Lots of general game on the opposite bank, but too far for nice pictures.
We are surprised by another hippo, this time going away from the water and going somewhere I never expected to see one at 11am. He scared us a little and I was very aware that when we pass we would be between the water and our fat "little" friend. Tried not to stop between him and his route back to the water, but that means more bushes between the subject and the photographers
A nice picture of a Brown-hooded Kingfisher, I think, please let me know if anyone can identify. I like the way the tree frames the photo.
We spot some more guineafowl and a Lilac Breasted Roller posing beautifully. No need to be a good photographer when your subject co-operates nicely.
And then, finally, jackpot for our newbies. Elephants on the opposite bank coming for a drink. We can finally breathe a sigh of relief as we had mentioned culling needing to be introduced due to the population becoming too big, yet we hadn't seen any Elephants. We even tried to convince ourselves that they all migrated to Zimbabwe for winter...
Also showing up is a beautiful Steenbok.
Just before we all fall asleep in the car, a Gound Hornbill to keep us awake a little more. The we reach camp for lunch. A nice drive, although not the sightings we wanted to see, still more than enough to talk aboutand more promises of exciting sightings that might be waiting around the bend.
For the afternoon 4 of the party went on a afternoon walk. Our guides were Oupa and Roulani (spelling?). We were 8 in the group, the 4 of our party, an American tourist and a group of 3 men from UK, South African and Saudi Arabia.
The walk was very informative. We didn't get to see a lot of animals. We only saw a Kudu far off, and a Steenbok on the walk. We did get a lot of explanations from our guides on rubbing posts and middens. The 3 guys were very playful and did get a stern talking to from Roulani a few times which spoiled the walk a little.
For sunset we walked up a little koppie. You can see the koppie close to Kwaggaspan on the H3.
We did get to see some rhino and elephant and also side stripped jackal on the way back.I couldnt get any pictures of the rhino or the jackal.
That ended our second day, we returned to a nice braai. The next day we planned to drive a little south to find some rhino for our guests, and maybe the much anticipated golf game planned for a while now.