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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:51 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 4:49 pm
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Location: Parry Sound, Canada
Thanks for the quick responses. I'll make good use of KG's help as I fine tune our plans.

I hadn't thought of staying at another Park between Jo'burg and KTP. Mokala NP sounds interesting - great suggestion. I appreciate your comments regarding the car - a sedan will have to do. What happens if we make a booking for a camp that we can't reach due to road conditions?

Cheers.

Doris


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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:32 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Location: Trichardt, MP
Hi porcupine,

I just want to add on that you will not be able to travel in a sedan from Kglagadi via Botswana to Kruger, but if you interest you can enter Botswana south of the park and then travel to Gabarone. This route gives you no advantage so in my opinion the only section worthwhile will be from Boksputs to Middelputs where you will enter SA again. From there a small gravel road section to Van Zylsrus where after you will get to the tar road to Hotazel and Kuruman to get back on the N4.

Have you been to Augrabies? The water levels are normally at the highest after January and should be a good stop after KTP. My suggestion is to visit Mokala after KTP and then head off towards KNP. Its possible to do this stretch of about 950 - 1000 km in one day from Mokala to KNP, but booking accommodation in Nelspruit or Hazyview will give you some time to shop in between KTP and KNP.

On the way from Jo'burg you will have many options to shop and overnight. I am not sure your arrival time, but even if early in the morning you will need some rest before heading off. Klerksdorp or Potchefstroom are not to far from Joburg and from there you can reach the park in one day without facing too much traffic early in the morning.

Hope it helps with the planning and here is another link that will help. www.aridexperiences.com

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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:47 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2005 5:53 pm
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Location: Cambridge, MA (and home from home in Darling, WC)
Another thought: you might consider flying on from JNB to Upington (UTN) and renting you car there. You can also sleep at a B&B there, do your shopping and head to KTP next day. Then as son godin suggests, visit Mokala en route back to KNP. The extra flight and a possible drop-off charge for renting at UTN and dropping off at JNB might add a bit to your cost, but it would also give you more time in the parks and less time driving?

While Augrabies is also worth a visit, especially if there have been good rains (I've only visited during dry periods :( ), if this is your first KTP visit (which I'm sure won't be your last!), you might want to concentrate your limited time there?


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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 9:31 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:15 pm
Posts: 35
Hi Porcupine1
You will be exhausted after coming off that long flight. Suggest you overnight in Jhb before either flying to Upington or renting a vehicle and driving from jhb. Local flights from jhb to Upington tend to be expensive so depending on budget constraints you might want to weigh up your options.
If you pm me, I can help out with practical suggestions of where to stay in jhb (close to airport).
Cheers
Gandalf


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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 9:42 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 4:49 pm
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Location: Parry Sound, Canada
You are all really helpful - thanks.

I had already decided that flying to Uppington would be too costly but I'll factor in the extra day car rental, overnight accommodation, etc and it may not be so bad.

Regarding driving through Botswana - I may have someone in Gabarone to visit but it may be more trouble than it's worth. Does anyone know if rental cars can even cross into Botswana - I know Namibia wasn't a problem?

Another question...did I read somewhere that fuel is only available in KTP with a gas card? Does that include credit card (Visa, M/C)?

Cheers,

Doris


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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:04 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:32 pm
Posts: 42
Hi

If you land in the morning, which I think is the case, then I will collect my car and drive for a few hours towards KTP. It will take some time getting the car and finding your way out of the city and driving on the CORRECT :hmz: :hmz: :hmz: side of the road might slow you down a tad.

Sleep say 3-4 hours closer to the park. The next day you can drive to Upington, stock your supplies and head into the park.

On your way back you can take the scenic route and take more time.

That is the way I would do it.


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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 7:53 pm 
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Location: Parry Sound, Canada
I looked into the flights to Upington and it is expensive. I think we'll be driving after all. I would prefer to get at least a few hours out of Johannesburg and the 'wrong side of the road' doesn't scare me anymore.

Thanks everybody for your input. Once I get our dates nailed down, I'll come back with questions about restcamps so that I can book. I did a quick look and still see lots of availability for February but I suppose that won't last forever...?

Cheers,

Doris


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 Post subject: Re: February 2013 in KTP
Unread postPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2012 12:33 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 7:55 am
Posts: 145
Location: Redmond,WA USA
I am going to be doing that itinerary also!
My husband and I also wanted to spend a few days in Capetown and I pored over the numbers as to what was more cost effective
We will be renting a 4x4 for KTP so driving from CPT to Upington,changing the car out etc and then again on the way out seemed to be a wash considering drop off fees and overnighting in a B&b so went ahead and booked the flights *gulp*
It just simplified things for us
I would book soon for KTP,I booked in July.The wilderness camps were almost fully booked the last time i looked

I got a good deal on an airport hotel in JNB from booking.com
It's a long flight-I have done it 4 times
Some flights get in in the morning but I prefer to get in late afternoon,shower,have a bite to eat and then go to bed
Can't imagine driving right after landing

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 Post subject: Best Time
Unread postPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 1:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 11:12 am
Posts: 20
Hello
I would like come again In Kalahari (I went there in August this year ) but it is very difficult find availability.
Off course I known that the best time ( I am a photoamateur and I like wildlife but also all in the right red light and dust...) could be october..but It is very difficult for my job.
I am Italian and for me it is a very long and expensive trip..so I would like try the best time...if possible.
At he moment I found availability for :
June : but I think it is very cold and the game remain stopped and no move, no action.and light ?
The end of July : it coul be a bit better ?
march/April (if there is availability) it could be fino or too much rain..no game...
And which is the time of births?
Could you give me your tips in accordance with your experience?
Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Best Time
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 8:26 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2007 2:58 pm
Posts: 266
Location: Stellenbosch
I normally go in the winter months June and July and I never ever had the same experience for weather, light, thunder, rain, sun, animals. We have seen 'babys' in every month. A cute pair of 'baby' cheetah in July and the most adorable ostrich family. 11 little ones, hard task for the parents to keep them together in the Auob.
We met a couple from Italy once end May, who stayed in the park for 3 weeks, and they were both keen photographers and told us they were very very pleased with the results.
It is a difficult one the choice you have to make. Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Time
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 11:06 am 
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Thanks
about march what you think ?
I understood that it is very difficult because every year the situation could change...but if you go in June/july (which of both for you could give more satisfation) ..I think it could be fine


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 Post subject: Re: Best Time
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 1:20 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Location: Cambridge, MA (and home from home in Darling, WC)
I agree with Jonkers, giova, and really, ANY time will be a good time, it's always different and you really can't predict the weather much beyond HOT in summer and COLD in winter. March is the end of summer and when I was there in early March (2010), the park was very green — amazing!! It also was nearly as hot as I'd expected for later February and early March. One morning I woke to thick, chilly fog and had to wear my fleece!! :shock: I'd say that you should choose whatever time of year works best for you and then just enjoy everything that KTP will give you.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Time
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 1:46 pm 
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Location: Centurion, Gauteng
Award: Angel of the Year Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year (2012)
Welcome to the forum giova :thumbs_up:

Great advice from arks and Jonkers.

Anytime is a good time and make the best of your time there. We have been there in April and had stunning thunderstorms. That allows for wonderful photo opportunities. In October we had the pleasure of seeing springbok give birth and in December the Park is abound with raptors. At all times the early morning and evening light is best.

Predators can be seen all year round with little ones.

In the summer months you get long days which I love. As for the heat....a good sighting and the heat is forgotten :wink: :)

Whichever time you choose I hope you have wonderful sightings and get great pics and we get a TR

:clap: :clap: :clap:


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 Post subject: Trip planning guidance please!!!
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 7:45 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2010 11:17 pm
Posts: 26
Location: Brighton, East Sussex, UK
Having been home now for a week from our last fantastic SA trip which included two great weeks in KNP (albeit they were surprisingly rather wet and grey/ cloudy weeks!) we find ourselves unable to resist starting to think about our next trip. This was meant to be in no less than 2 years time - we really meant to go somewhere else in the world next year, but have had to be honest with ourselves and acknowledge that going elsewhere will only happen with and not instead of an SA trip.

So - what we have decided is that we will try something new and go to KTP rather than KNP. Although we have been to parks in other southern African countries so know that each offers its own special range of experiences and needs its own discreet package of travel arrangements, it seems to usthat it is only Sanparks that offers, through the forum, invaluable first hand advice from people who visit its parks and we thought it would be foolish not to ask those in the know.

Our plan so far is to fly from UK to Capetown to Upington and then spend 8/9 nights in the park. Burning questions so far relate to cars. Any advice on what best to hire? Would a ruggedish vehicle like a Nissan XTrail (not 4wd) be good enough? Cost of hire is of course a factor in our choice. Also should we be concerned about lions and hyenas munching tyres, or anything else, either whilst on the road, or more likely over night if in an unfenced camp? Have read the tales of this happening and have to say its a bit worrying!

We plan on going late October next year so want to be ready to book accommodation on 1st November so plenty of excitement and fun over the next three weeks putting the trip together.

Any help welcomed!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Time
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2012 8:29 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Welcome to the forum Giova,

According to my experience its best to avoid the school holidays and come out of season. During holidays families and friends join in to share one campsite resulting in 2 - 3 cars per campsite. This means more cars on the road, problems with water supply at the camps and ablution facilities.

SA school holidays are as follows

21 March - 8 April
22 June - 14 July (Very popular)
21 - 30 Sept
5 Dec - ~8 Jan (Popular period from 16 Dec - 8 Jan)

June and July can be very cold resulting in less cat sightings along the river beds. (Wild cats strangely were plentifull)

March will be a good time, but try to book before 21 March. You might even be there for the Cricket game. April would be great as well and not too cold, but all depending if you will get rain or not. Try to book then from 9 April if you want to go during that time.

We prefer the longer days and at the moment will book for early Dec, but my first choice will be from Jan April as soon as my LO finish school and we can book outside school holidays.

In summer you will see the summer visitors like the Abdims stork and Steppe buzzards and even spoon bills and stilts after a good rain fail. Baby cats can be seen all year round, while the baby springbok and wildebeest mostly arrive from Oct to Jan.

Last year we noticed very few antelope end of Nov, but after the first rains came in Dec the river bed was green and plenty springbok, hartebeest and wildebeest returned.

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