Oh the joys of getting old! Yep, very selective memory. Had totally forgotten about that one hippo strolling by. Good to see SF keeps an eye on me.
Katja, thanks for your comments.
Micetta, don't worry, our Kruger adventure is now to start.
Had to include the day outside of the park as SA is such a beautiful country and is a nice lead-in to that bit of heaven on earth called Kruger National Park!
Well, finally our day for Kruger has come! Monday morning, first day for KPN.
Got up a bit earlier, loaded the car, had breakfast, or the other way round (memory problem), and set off to Hazyview to get some meat for SF's promised braai in Skuks. The housesitter had told us the best places in Hazyview to get decent meat. We decided that I would stay in the car, guarding our belongings as they were clearly visible again. SF would obtain the goods.
First place, no meat, nothing, nada. Off to the second place. That one didn't open till 10! Say what!?!
Decided to go to Checkers instead and get it there.
Success! SF got lots of meat and I persuaded him to visit the liquor store just opposite to get some lager as well. Keep the throat well lubricated was my thought.
On our way to Numbi Gate.
Finally we're in the Park!
Weather was overcast, but still, we were in Kruger. I start looking frantically for all the lions, leopards etc that should be there at the gate waiting for us, but no joy. We were not met by a delegation of Kruger's most wanted inhabitants. Which ment we had to search them out.
On our way then. Looking all around us. I spotted something in the tree... A hoepoe. Got to take a picture of that.First sighting
We decided to make for Pretoriuskop to have a bit of lunch.
A quiet road, not much to see, a few impalas, and a forktailed drongo, SF took a decent picture of, but that was it.
In Pretoriuskop we were watching the resident impalas and saw a pearl-spotted owlet. What a lovely creature.Pearl-spotted owlet
After our meal we headed for Shitlhave Dam. Going through all the burned areas, not that nice to see. Some places showed new growth and the green was a welcome change from all the blackness. Again, not many animals en-route, but when we got to the dam, plenty of buffalo and the weather cleared up. Even better. We only saw one hidden buff last year, so this was a real treat.Small herd of buffalo
Lovely to see and it made us think about the lovely buff pasties at Nkulu we were hoping to taste this year, having seen so much on the forum about them.
Looking along the water's edge I spotted a strange looking bird.
SF A hamerkop. Must have a picture of that!
He tried, wriggled , aimed and... could not get into a proper position. No picture for him.
I tried and got one or two, not brill as some long grass was obscuring it. But just for SF, here's mine The much wanted Hamerkop
It walked along the edge, SF frantically trying to get a picture, but didn't manage. A few french words escaped from his thoughts.
On our way back to the H1-1 we saw a few kudus, who were going to cross the road.
X I've got to get some pictures of those lovely kudus, they taste delicious. Did you know that?
Of course SF knew that and we got our pictures. Graceful animals.Lovely rump. Sorry kudu.
A bit further on we came across SF's favourite animal (if it stays off the road
)Let me think... oh, an elephant
This is getting better, we thought. More animals now. Who knows, maybe even lions await us.
No lions, but a few steenboks on a rocksteenboks
And it didn't take long for me to find another bird. I'm getting good at spotting them! Not that I know what they all are. But SF has a vast knowledge of their names, so I rely on him to enlighten me.Purple Roller
Although looking at this bird, which SF named a European Roller, I think it's a Purple Roller (checking the KP guide).
Off to Skuks to book in, get our stuff in the rondavel, cleaned up a bit and prepare to visit Lake Panic. I've been looking forward to visiting LP again. It was so good last year and we had so little time then. Now we're able to stay as long as we want. To our surprise we met the housesitter of I&W here. We wondered if we'd forgotten something, but they had decided to leave a day early and go home, in their caravan, via Kruger.
No leopards lying along the dust road waiting for us, like last year, but a parking place at the hide, just, and lots of people in the hide. Its always busy there.
It took a little while before we had a chance to sit down and get the cameras working. SF needed a bench for himself and the hubble telescope. Jealous looks from other canonites.one of the usual residents
Lots of birds, I'll let SF report on the great variety as he's an expert. Just one of my pictures, before he posts all his hubble shots Green-backed heron
Just a joy to see all these birds. We stayed till nearly 17:30. Time to get back to Skuks and get something to eat.
We used the restaurant and had their buffet. Very enjoyable, sat on the veranda looking out over the Sabie river. Someone had a powerful torch and highlighted a buffalo. We saw later a small-spotted genet sneaking into the camp and tip-toeing behind us. Lovely little creature. Watched the stars and milky way. All so different from the northern hemisphere.
Tomorrow, at first light we'll be off to Lake Panic again.