TUESDAY 21 AUGUST 2013 - ALL DAY.
Our route today was to be:
Morning: H7 - S39 - S127 and H1-4 to camp for lunch.
Afternoon: S100 and return.
It started off as a beautiful morning - still and sunny.
Our first sighting was this vulture sunning himself on the Timbavati road.
As there were very few animals to be seen we took photos of birds.
This southern white-crowned shrike also sitting in the early morning sun.
That was all for the Timbavati road.
We arrived at Timbavati picnic spot to find that there was a gale blowing. It was so hard that we could not even get the lighter to get the braai going. Eventually the guide came and helped us by holding his jacket in front of the skottel. We put our bacon and eggs into the skottel and wondered why there was no sizzling sound. The flames had been blown out. We struggled again to start and eventually the guide brought us another skottel with higher sides. This worked so we could start cooking. We really had to work hard at stopping the bacon and eggs being blown away. Now along comes a family with a couple of kids and their bicycles. The one little boy, wearing what looked like red gumboots, took great delight in pushing his bike up the pathway to the toilets and then come at great speed down the pathway into the picnic area. This was not so bad. The real pain in the proverbial was the fact that the bike had no brakes or pedals so to stop himself he would merely plant both feet firmly on the ground and skid to a stop. Now the wind was blowing directly from his side so all his dust and dirt from his skidding would blow directly in our direction. Sorry to say this but these folk were from Natal. Both fathers were much bigger than me and had humungus Fortuners so I just kept my mouth shut. We eventually managed to eat some nice bacon and egg saamies.
We did not hang around for long and went up to see what was going on at Ratel Pan. N O T H I N G.
The S127 was totally devoid of any forms of life except for hundreds of these little fellows. Not only was there no life on this road??????? it was also in shocking condition. So Joan set herself a challenge to help pass the time. To get a good photo of one of them as they never sat still for a second.
Eventually, after taking what seemed like hundreds of photos trying to get a good clear shot, this fellow stood long enough for a good photo.
At last back on the H1-4 we could put all our personal goodies back where they belonged. Wearing glasses on the S127 was a definite no no.
A few kms down this road we saw this ellie with one tusk on the left hand side but a bit into the sun.
Then these three on the right hand side - better light.
Next up was a flock of vultures all spread out along the ground. We could not ascertain if this was a kill or not - too spread out??????
The midday sun combined with our brains being in a tumble dryer all morning must have eventually got to us because we were now photographing trees. 0- 0- 0-
This lonely but colourful tree caught our attention.
At last back at camp we relaxed and refreshed.
For our afternoon drive we decided to do the S100.
A few impala all the way down to the S41 - that is all we saw. We did a U-turn to try our luck from the other direction.
This sentry watching over his troops and some impala taken into the sun.
Nothing else. As it was still pretty early we tootled north along the H1-4 for a while and then came back.
This rather dull shot of an ellie near Satara.
Finally a lovely sunset with an eagle in a tree. Can anyone ID the eagle.
NEXT: Another very quiet but windy day around Satara.