Thanks Hilda -we were really glad to have seen a honey badger.
To continue our TR -
We left Skukuza and headed towards Orpen. There was a big family of baboons just after leaving - then waterbuck, and at one of the waterholes our first sight of zebra's and wildebeest - goodness knows where they had been for the last few days. We also saw unmentionables over the course of the day - including a dark variety with junior.
At Leeupan we went to turn in off the main raod and just as we turned the corner we saw this huge bull elephant just hanging around (we stopped about 150 m from him)
I must mention here that I am fairly scared of elephants. We were charged a few years ago in Botswana - we had a driver and guide and I've never been driven backwards so fast in my life.
So now whenever we are doing our own thing (driving) I'm very wary of getting too close to elephants - esp. as neither of us are really good at reading their behaviour.
My husband teases me whenever we see fresh droppings or damaged trees by saying "looks like your friends have been here"!!!!
Anyway, there's this huge bull elephant half hidden behind the big trees - while we were sitting there contemplating whether to continue and go past him a little car turns into the road towards the pan - they obviously didn't see the elephant at first. We held our breath and sure enough back came the little car - nearly as fast as it went in. Obviously this elephant not only made me scared but had made the occupants of the little car really worried as well. So we never got to see Leeupan waterhole.
We still had some lovely sightings - but still we had been in Kruger for about 5 days and still hadn't seen any cats - this was very annoying/worrying as everyone we talked to had a tale to tell about lions etc. Never mind we still had 13 more days in Kruger.
Still we saw lots of lovely animals and birds including this pair of l klipspringers on top of some granite rock formations. I've had to crop this photo considerable so its a bit blurred.
We also saw this beautiful bird - I'm beginning to think that tourists must feed the ground hornbills as every time we've saw them they always came towards the car and looked up at the windows - I hope I'm wrong.
Also somewhere along the roadside we saw this giraffe skeleton - we wondered why the bones had not been eaten by hyena. Are they (the bones) too big for the hyena to eat? When we came back several days later it was still there.
We decided to bypass Satara and took the Sweni road towards Orpen - on this road we saw ostrich for the first time as well as the usual plains animals.
Eventually we came to the main Orpen - Satara road and turned towards Orpen where we took the dirt road (the main road was still closed). We had been warned that this road was terrible corruguted - well it wasn't too bad. I guess when you're expecting the worst then things are never quite as bad as you expect. In fact many days later we found the last few kms of the S114 (Berg en Dal end) was much worse that the bypass road (Rebelais Loop) near Orpen.
On the road we saw 2 bush pigs grazing (another first for us). We arrived at Orpen and just loved the sight from our chalet (towards the waterhole).
This is a not very good little painting of our chalet at Orpen ( number 11)
Will continue the tale of our wonderful time at Orpen in about 2 weeks as I won't have access to the internet for awhile whilest I'm doing volunteer work for Birds Australia - IDing birds for tourists.