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 Post subject: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 4:54 pm
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Location: South Wales, UK
Hello all,

I have finally got around to start writing my trip report from my most recent trip to Kruger. I spent 4 nights in all, after flying in to Skukuza on the 30th October we stayed at Lower Sabie for 2 nights and Berg-en-dal for 2 nights.

We had a great trip, with some great (and unusual) sightings!

To summarise before I start, i'd like to point out that I intentionally booked this trip with less nights staying in only 2 different camp sites reasonably close together to reduce time driving. I found that doing the trip this way it was far more rewarding with more opportunities to enjoy the camp sites in the middle of the day for a change and sometimes just having a nap!

The trip to Kruger started with a short flight from JNB to Skukuza. I have to say after experiencing this internal flight for the first time, it is so convenient for arriving into Kruger. But I suppose more so for us international visitors.

30th October 2014 JNB to Skukuza

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Coming into land at Skukuza, with an overhead view of the rest camp

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Some pics of the airport...

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More to follow soon :D

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Please click here for my latest trip report


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:46 pm 
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WELSH_ASH, what a entry to the Park :whistle: Looking forward to a great TR. :)

Love the aerial Pic. :thumbs_up:

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"Lose yourself in Nature and find Peace!" (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
UNITE AGAINST POACHING...What we protect,
do not let poachers take it away!

Extinction is forever and survival is up to---every last one of us!


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 7:15 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 4:54 pm
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Location: South Wales, UK
30th October 2014

Animal sightings:

Black Rhino
White Rhino
Giraffe
Large herds of elephants
Buffalo
Fish Eagle
Hippo
Kudu
Waterbuck
Steenbok
Widerbeest
Bush Buck

I was excited to arrive at Lower Sabie for the first time as an overnight guest. My gf and I were booked into a Safari tent with a perimeter view.

We were allocated tent 16 which had a great view but unfortunately was in a very bad state. It is in serious need of a renovation.

Here are some photos taken from the deck of tent 16 at Lower Sabie

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Just had to zoom in on this little fella falling over 8)

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Sighting of the day

Black Rhino 8) My first ever sighting

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Unusual sighting of the day...

This poor giraffe had some awful looking growths on it

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Hopefully those onboard are enjoying so far. I will try to write another post for our next day in Kruger as soon as I can :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 8:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:55 am
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Location: (NZ) -Outside the park - always looking back in-
Nice way to start my day, arriving in KNP on a plane with Welsh Ash.

Great entry and interesting pic's.

Have not stayed at LS yet , so am enjoying sharing the experience.

Thanks WA


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2014 8:54 pm 
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A great way to use every minute of your time available by flying into Skukuza - and a blackie, what a great sighting :clap: :clap:

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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 1:39 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 4:54 pm
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Location: South Wales, UK
Many thanks all for your kind words

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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 2:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2005 4:54 pm
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Location: South Wales, UK
31st October 2014

Our first full day in Kruger :D

We awoke early to get to the gate for opening time and made our way towards sunset dam as before I left the safari tent at LS, I checked the WhatsApp sightings group and it was reported that there were a few young male lions sleeping on the tar road.

Whilst I understand that many of us do not like the sightings social networks and the problems that they may cause, I was using this group for the sole purpose of seeing if there was any significant sightings near to a campsite at a time when I was at a particular campsite. So if I checked the whatsapp group when in LS and it told me there were Wild Dogs in Croc Bridge, I would not go racing down the tar road to find them. As these lions were right next to LS, we were in luck so I suppose I reaped the benefits of using this app on this occasion without rushing all over Kruger which I am against.

Sighting of the day

Lions! As my GF has never seen Lions in Kruger before, this was one tick that we needed 8) She was pleased, and so was I.

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So, Black Rhino done, Lions done. Only Wild Dogs left now I suppose!? Joke :wink:

After spending time at Sunset Dam with those young male lions, we made our way down the Ntam'awhiri Road where we seen no less than;

Buffalo
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Hyena

This lilac breasted roller

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Giraffes
Bateleur
Steppe Buzzard
Steenbok

One of the main reasons for us taking our trip to Kruger was that I wanted to scatter a small portion of my late dad's ashes that were kept after he sadly died in July last year. He was the one who introduced me to this amazing country as he was working in the mines of Phalaborwa and Middelburg, and more importantly he introduced me to Kruger for which I have had the "bug" for over 10 years now :D

I thought a great get out place to scatter the small amount of his ashes would be at the Stevenson-Hamilton memorial. I really enjoyed this moment and was so pleased to give my dad his own little view of Africa

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After spending some time here taking the moment in, we decided to make our way up to Lake Panic as I have never visited it before. I left my girlfriend sleep in the car at Lake Panic, and i made my way to the hide with camera and binocs. At Lake Panic I saw;

Crocs
Hippo
Yellow Weaver birds (sorry I don't know the official name)
Heron
Jacana

So after quite a long day out on the road, it was time to make our way back towards Lower Sabie. On the road between Skukuza and Lower Sabie we had the following sightings;

Buffalo
Goliath Heron

More Lions :dance: There were 4 in this small group, 2 big females and a young male and female. This is the best photo I took. A lioness stretching after being rudely awoken by the Joburg style traffic jam on the road

Image

Other notable sightings on the way back to LS were;

Elephant
Brown Snake Eagle
Kudu
Bushbuck Ram

After spending time relaxing at LS, we decided to make our way to Duke waterhole.

Here there was a pride of apparently 27 lions about 80 metres away from the road at the waterhole. I took quite a few pics, but they were quite far away. Here is the best one

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We spent as much time at Duke with these Lions before having to make our way back to camp before closing time without having to rush.

On the way back we had the following notable sightings;

White Rhino
Giraffe
Leopard sleeping in a tree about 3km from LS (too far away from road for pics :? )

It was a perfect end to an emotional day with scattering some of my Dad's ashes, but he must have given us some luck today as were lucky to tick the Big 5 all in one day :D

I will try to post my next instalment as soon as I can

Cheers,
Ash


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 3:27 pm 
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I am enjoying your TR immensely Welshboy and really look forward to more.

Love the photo of the buff. Such clarity that you can actually see the markings on his horns

What a treat for your gf to have 2 lion sightings in one day.

Hope you get to see the wild dog.

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Next Kruger Park Trip Booked:

Shingwedzi 30th Dec 2014 - 2nd Jan 2015
Letaba 3rd Jan 2015 - 5th Jan 2015
Tamboti 6th Jan - 9th Jan 2015

Starting to plan for December 2015


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 3:29 pm 
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Maybe someone could let us know what would be the cause of the growths on the giraffe's skin?

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Next Kruger Park Trip Booked:

Shingwedzi 30th Dec 2014 - 2nd Jan 2015
Letaba 3rd Jan 2015 - 5th Jan 2015
Tamboti 6th Jan - 9th Jan 2015

Starting to plan for December 2015


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 3:46 pm 
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Great TR :clap: :clap: The photos are just stunning.

And how well I know tent 16 at LS :whistle: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

On board :popcorn:

Leana


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 3:54 pm 
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Sorry, I called you Welshboy, instead of Welsh_Ash :redface:

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Next Kruger Park Trip Booked:

Shingwedzi 30th Dec 2014 - 2nd Jan 2015
Letaba 3rd Jan 2015 - 5th Jan 2015
Tamboti 6th Jan - 9th Jan 2015

Starting to plan for December 2015


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 4:24 pm 
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What a great start already, Welsh Boy,

with the blackie and the lions :dance: :dance: :dance: Poor Giraffe same does indeed not look that healthy :?

Never saw Skukuza from above what a great view you had shortly before arriving in Paradise :popcorn:


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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 9:28 pm 
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Wow, such great sightings! :dance: Sounds like it was a great trip so far, waiting anxiously for the rest of it :popcorn:

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 Post subject: Re: Kalmer Kruger - BnD & LS Oct Nov 2014
Unread postPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2014 10:41 pm 
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Great trip report! We're going to try to fly in next time!!! My SO would be over the moon to do that!

I love your lions and good colours on your LBR!!

For Tessa G - the giraffe is likely suffering from a poxvirus - "lumpy skin disease"

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next best thing - a trip report! A New Species each day! KNP Nov 2013


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