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 Post subject: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 3:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 1:03 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Cape Town
We used to camp at Maroela in KNP many years ago and most of the time we were alone there(bear with me - I will get to the point!). Maybe one other group. I did not know about Maroela and was told by an old omie about it. KNP's best kept secret at the time! No shop, no electricity, parafin lamps and freezer, absolute magic! Then one fateful day, Pee Wee Botha decided in his wisdom to delare the first Monday in May as workers day, thus suddenly creating an unexpected long weekend for the entire country. We left camp on Friday morning when the gate opened, the only campers there, and returned to an overflowing camp, bustling with people, tents and caravans everywhere! Turns out that so many people suddenly wanted to get to KNP for the long weekend that all camps were full up and all and sundry were sent to Maroela, forever spoiling it!
Which brings me to the point: so many people carry on about Storms River Camp, and I like it too, yet seemingly nobody ever says anything about Nature's Valley/De Vasselot camp? That is by far my favourite - no power at the camp sites, but the most beautiful little camping area. Big trees and thick bush with bush pigs visiting camp every evening to rummage through the trash cans.
The second night we camped there, a few years ago, we sat up in the caravan tent with the boys (at the time one 10 year old and five year old twins) to show them the pigs. We "spiked" the rubbish bin with some nice snacks (oops, should not confess to that!). The boys looked at the pigs in amazement and silence and once the pigs had left they quietly went to bed.
Next morning we discovered that all three had wetted their sleeping bags! Too scared to get up and go to the ablution block in the middle of the night! Had to make our own night time toilet arrangements from then on!
Now, I do not want to spoil Natures Valley camping ground by telling too many people about it (the fishing and rowing in the lagoon, the lovely beach, the lekker restaurant/pub in the village) but, why the silence? Are we the only ones who like the peace and tranquility of that camp? Or am I really befuddling everything now? :huh:


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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 3:19 pm 
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Doedsie, as they say in Afrikaans "hou jou bek" (keep quiet) :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 3:20 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 3:32 pm 
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Location: Zambia, inbetween visits to Knysna
Why do you feed the animals - they will become a pest and have be put down :evil:

IMHO - It is also not a good example to your kids :rtm:

The Monkeys at Marakele have become totally out of hand, even if you open a packet, they are so close by and try to steal it out of your hands - All because people feed them and they learn like Pavlov's Dog :naughty:

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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 4:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 19, 2009 2:15 pm
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Location: Johannesburg - too far from the closest Sanpark
Last time I was in the area I couldn't get in at Nature's Valley (stayed at a backpackers above the village). That trip I hit MZNP, Storms River, Wilderness, Bontebok, TMNP and Karoo on the way back, so would have stayed at De Vasselot if I could have.

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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 7:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2008 11:38 pm
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Hi Doedsie,
By "spiking" the bin which would have been raided anyway, I don't think
you did such a bad thing. The bin just had a few more "interesting" bits
than it would have had. :lol:
Yes, we have stayed at De Vaselot. It's beautiful, and the birdlife was
absolutely lovely.... just a little bit scary going to the loo in the middle
of the night... pitch dark and pouring with rain!


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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 7:52 pm 
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Location: Kleinmond, Western Cape
Jungle Junkie wrote:
Why do you feed the animals - they will become a pest and have be put down :evil:

IMHO - It is also not a good example to your kids :rtm:


Very true. But lets not throw the baby out with the bathwater. The dust bins would probably have been raided anyhow. They raided our dust bin at Ebb & Flow (without "the nice things" put into the drum) every night when we were there in the beginning of August. The one night they ate the box of a empty wine box I've put in the drum.

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 Post subject: Re: The black sheep of the family?
Unread postPosted: Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 1:03 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Cape Town
JJ, they would have raided the bin in any case....and they did every night! Not quite the same as feeding the baboons at Cape Point or KNP. In fact, my feeding them was in the bigger picture probably of no consequence. They will be there every night as long as there are bins to raid. I am not really a hugely irresponsible cretin....but I do agree one should not feed the animals. :thumbs_up:
@Cedron, true that a walk to the loo can be scary. Imagine how my boys felt about it! :(
@Joshilewis - if you can get in there, do it. Lovely place. But Billyf is right - ek gaan nou my bek hou! 8)


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