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Scariest and funniest moments in KNP

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by FlorisCathy » Wed Apr 20, 2011 10:30 pm

Last October 2010 we were in Satara and because of lightning there was a lot of fire.
Especially at night we could see a totally red horizon.
But also at night, the wind started to blow.
And everyone knows what fire does when there will be more oxygen added to it... Indeed, more fire.


We went to the gate and asked about our safety and to cancel our morning drive the morning after.
They told us that they didn't expect that the wind would blow that fast and if it did would turn a bit further in other direction if it does,
Satara Rest Camp would be on the way of the fire.
They told us that the fire was out of control.
We packed our suitcases and placed them in the car and went to bed.
My parents could not get to sleep, because they were afraid to be burned alive as we could be rat trapped if the fire came towards the camp.
I told them that in a case of emergency, I would drive through the fence with our rental Hilux 4x4.
Luckily the wind kept blowing into the right direction, but the fire came very close to the camp.
In the morning after, we drove south and all the way to Skukuza, everything was fire fire fire.
There were also firemen putting the bush on fire (later we were told that they do that because there are too much animals in too small an area and there has to be good grounds to have enough food).



But that was our worst KNP experience.
I am a heartless person,
Not because I am cruel.
No, it's because I am in The Netherlands right now,
And my heart is still in South Africa

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Thu Apr 21, 2011 8:08 am

What an entertaining thread. :thumbs_up: Some funny :lol: :lol: :lol: some scary :big_eyes: and some sad. :cry:

I am really trying to think of my worst experience.
As Stark commented, some are self inflicted, :whistle: some are inflicted by others :evil: and many are linked to the calls of nature. :wink:

I think my worst experience happened on a walk.
I had a severe bout of bronchitis and would sometimes have uncontrollable coughing fits.
We had stumbled on a group of Rhino grazing peacefully.
The ranger allowed us to move fairly close, but warned us to be dead quiet.

That is when it happened :big_eyes: .. I felt the awful sensation of a coughing fit coming up.
It is the one time when I realised that mind over matter is possible.
By the time I had stifled the cough, (quite a number of minutes) I was covered in perspiration and feeling quite faint.

Anyone who has had a severe bronchitis will tell you that when you got to cough, you got to cough".
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Luren » Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:09 pm

Hi all!
I can note 2 events in my short history of visiting the park

We don't do drives in viewing vehicles but in 2006 we decided to go for our 2nd ever sunset drive.
Abdominal upset followed!
We sat for half an hour watching a beautiful leopard on a tree on S100.
as we moved along, the motion of the vehicle really didn't help!
The ranger rushed back to camp so I could get some intramuscular injections and leave me to mope in the bungalow!
They went back out and saw civet and serval- both of which I haven't yet seen :wall:

In May 2009 at Punda- we were surrounded by ellie herd. '
A youngster mock-charged the bakkie- scary- and just as he was relaxing another ellie full charged from behind!
First ever time I spun tyres in the park- had to go through the herd! Scary
A few other cars were charged soon after!
come what come may, the time and the hour runs through the roughest day

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:44 pm

Oh dear BB :big_eyes:

I had a problem.

Lost without tent poles..
Walking into strange bungalows.. with unknown men
lost in Roodewal... at 1 am with snakes.. that is another story..
meanedering at 5am through Berg n Dal..
stuck in a collapsed tent in Satara..

I also thought of fighting off baboons with my children..
screaming abuse to monkeys who had stolen my medication/my children's smarties/mywoolies mueslie..
and meeting ellies face to face :lol: :lol:

I can post many pictures of that.

thing is.. Kruger is not for sissies. :wink:

Kruger is about appreciation, surprise..


a wonderful, wonderful.. bum shot.

a rare animal, much appreciated.

As for MM, no saint, but loving the moment :wink:
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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by rich87 » Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:03 am

This happened in the mid 60's,we were traveling in the south of the park and my sister and I were eating naartjies in the back of the station wagon.
My sister and grandma were talking about someone who put a bean in their nose and it started growing.
So what did I go and do?
I put a naartjie pip in ear and could not get it out.
My gran tried to hook it out with hair clip but was unsuccessful.
We went to Lower Sabie but no doctor and we ended up driving to Komatipoort to see a doctor.
I ended up with a sore ear and backside.

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Mama fariu » Sun Apr 24, 2011 7:45 pm

In January this year we were camped at Lower Sabie.
We had bought a brand new gazebo (Spelling), it looked like rain so I suggested to my hubby to lower it so that the rain if it came would not collect in it.
Anyway it was about 4 in the morning when I heard a rather loud noise and my poor hubby moaning and groaning where he was lying. (One should always listen to your wife) :roll:

The entire gazebo collapsed because the rains did come and the rather heavy frame hit my hubby on the head. Shame he was genuinely confused and dazed for about 5 hours after the incident.
We packed up at the petrol station, as we were moving camp anyway.
We just left this mangled metal frame in the middle of the camping grounds.
My hubby was really not with it at all and at one stage I thought I would have to take him to Skukuza to the doctor!!!!
Thankfully he came right, but it was a terrible experience.
The junk they make these days make me sick and it was not a cheep one either.

Looking back we laugh about it now!!!!Mama Faru

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Kwagga 1 » Wed Apr 27, 2011 8:59 am

I have had my share with bad experience.

It was about 2005.
We were booked in at Skukuza, when one morning we went out with my brother in law as he was leaving the park.
Just as we were about to exit camp I couldn't find any gear on the Caravelle
There we were stuck with a bill.
Lucky we were still in camp and the mechanic close by, which helped us.
For about 3 days stuck with no transport.
We had to rent a car and luckily the kids had there bicycle to use around camp.

In 2006 we were ready for the holidays packed and off we go.
Just past Bronkhorspruit the Caravelle started heating up.
We struggled on until Witbank where we found a dealer.
They replaced the thermostat and after about 2 hours off we went, as we got to the tollgate it all started again, we phoned the dealer and he phoned Middelburg dealer to tow us in.
Stuck again, of we went to the next town (Middleburg) they flushed the radiator, by that time is was about 5:30 in the afternoon.
Off we go and about 10km outside the town we heard a loud noise, phoned and back we go.
Got to the workshop at about 8 (holiday wasted)
Camp outside the workshop with the caravan.
So what to do now?
so we phoned some family that stays in Nelspruit and gave them the 2 weeks free holiday in Kruger.
My aunt phoned back and said that we could use their car (Cressida 2.4)
we now had to phone someone in Pretoria to bring down our Opel Cadet.
The next morning Aunt arrives with the Opel from Pretoria.
The caravelle gets towed back home to our mechanic.
had to struggle with two cars but at least we were there.
When we got home the mechanic replaced the radiator and the combi was fixed.
That whole experience cost us about ( R9 000 with out the holiday)
not long after that we bought a Bakkie

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by homer.s » Wed Apr 27, 2011 12:44 pm

Well its not the worst experience in the Kruger - I don't really have bad memories from the Kruger but i do have 4 scary stories (two now and two later - I'm at work...)

1. I was driving on the S118-119 and met a few cute ellies... they were really friendly and calmly came real close to my car although I stopped very far from them... i continued and saw more ellies and than met with a huge female eating just next to the road.
She didn't see me, and i couldn't pass her so i sat silently about 75 meters away, when i started to see ellies coming from behind...

Now I cant drive forward and cant back up... suddenly i saw a big ellie behind me starting to get irritated - had no choice, i quietly approached the big female upfront until i was about 10 meters from her and she still didn't know i was there and than raced away passing her... she mock charged me - i guess for scaring her like that...

The same day i was at a water hole somewhere, I saw a big ellie bull approaching a car from behind - the driver didn't see him as he was facing the water hole and the ellie came from the back, he had his trunk in the car smelling the driver inside that did not dare to move... and was whiter than white...

one or two more later...

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Bennievis » Sat Apr 30, 2011 1:58 pm

rich87 wrote:We stopped one day at Nkuhlu,a troop of baboons were raiding the rubbish bins.
In those days they used cut open 44gln/210ltr drums as bins and were placed by the steps.
As we walked down to the river my grandpa told me to leave the baboons alone as I was making noises and pulling my face at the baboons.
Anyway as my family were looking at hippos in the river I saw a young baboon climb into a rubbish drum,so I went up the steps and when I got close to the drum I shouted "BOOOOO".
The baboon came out the bin and went "BUHAAAA" and I ran to my grandma crying.

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Mabudu » Mon May 02, 2011 11:52 pm

But now you can laugh at me.
Anyone who owns a Land Rover will know that anything can happen at any time.
SO and I were watching a nice big bull ellie, not to close 50-75 meters away.
So no problem got some nice photos and decided to move on.
Well our dual battery system decided to short and set fire to my wife’s seat.... (Battery is under the seat, to any non-Land Rover drivers)
Now having a big car, you would say she could jump to the back, but if we have space in the car, my SO will find something to fill it, I think she even brings her hair straightener on our trips... (Don’t ask me why???) so she had to jump into the road. -
Much to the ellies delight, he didn't do much other than look on.
Well being a man I have my toolkit!
Under all my wife’s necessities!!
So I also had to jump out and dig through all the bags to find it.
Anyway after much chaos we put the fire out, disconnected the problem battery and moved on, thank goodness no-one was around to take photos or i would be on the gallery of shame, with both of us faffing around the car at an ellie sighting!
Don't know if that’s my worst, but is the most recent! :roll:

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by twigga » Tue May 24, 2011 6:59 pm

Just got reminded (thanks alot , you know who you are :naughty: ) of a terrible experience last year June in Shingwedzi for me.
For those who have not experienced it, it should actually go under funny experiences, but for me terrifying!

Picture this scene: Any camping ground in Kruger in winter=Peak hour traffic.
2010 Shingwedzi camping ground in winter amidst Soccer world Cup=Peak hour traffic X 10.
I think every Kruger Saffie that ever walked this planet was up North wanting to avoid the crazy South.
Any corner of that camp was occupied, I think you could actually see all the tents & caravans from outer space!

(Before coming to my terrible ordeal I have to add to my defense it was my first ever trip up North and first ever to Shingwedzi (definitely not the last :dance: great camp).
Ok, and I get lost with a GPS :roll:
We got an excellent spot, close to the kitchen but unfortunately not close enough for any female to the ablution facility :slap:
We finally set up camp and it was way after sunset that I decided to take a quick shower before dinner.
After shower I walked in the direction that I thought was to our tent.
After 10 min. of strolling with my pj's, hair washed & and all my groceries I just got that feeling.
You know mos that terrible feeling, I'M LOST! :redface: :redface:
I felt so stupid, eventually I ended up near the swimming pool and backtracked from there.
When I finally got to our camp I was so relieved! :dance: :clap:
Needless to say dinner was cold and I needed to shower again!
I eventually told everybody about my ordeal and I was the laughing stock of the whole trip, they offered me the GPS every time I went to the ablution blocks :redface:
Those in glass houses should not throw stones...

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by cptphotographer » Tue May 24, 2011 10:57 pm

Funny, Scary, call it what you like! :D

My wife and I were still dating around 1999, we were camping in Satara, when after coming back from dinner in the restaurant she unzipped the tent and stepped on something wriggling so much that she lost her balance, at the same time shouting “snake!”, :big_eyes: my fear of snakes immediately kicked in and all I knew was that I needed to get out of there.
By this time I was also inside the tent and just about tore the tent to pieces trying to get out when she said the snake was not in the tent but under it.
I am now halfway in and halfway out, not sure where is safest and it is pitch black dark.
Our neighbours soon heard the commotion and came pouring out of tents and caravans pointing flashlights all over the show.
My wife started laughing uncontrollably, must have been the adrenalin, me, I was in snake hunt mode :sniper:
fortunately still no idea what species snake it was or where it disappeared to, but not much sleep for me that night….

Interestingly though, my wife had numerous offers from folk to use the spare bed in their caravan/tent/chalet or whatever, because she just went through such a traumatic experience…, me not a single offer! :hmz:
Last edited by cptphotographer on Tue May 24, 2011 11:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by KDJ » Sun Jun 26, 2011 12:30 am

We were rather new to camping (having only done it once before), had bought all new equipment, including what is referred to as a hotel tent (6m x 3m), and decided to spend a week of our honeymoon in KNP.

We arrived at Satara on a Monday morning, found the perfect spot and spent close to 2 hours unpacking the car and setting up camp.
We had also brought with us an electric bar fridge and a large cooler-box full of meat.
When it came to plugging in, we realised that we were more than 50m from the nearest plug point with only 20m of extension cord. :wall:
Very disgruntled, we took everything out of the tent and dragged our brand new tent across the campsite to the proximity of the plug point.
At this point we realised that we would need an adapter as these were caravan points.
(The staff at the curio shop must really have a laugh, the adapter costs roughly 3x what it costs in Joburg :shock: ).
After having set up camp a second time, we realised that there were certain disadvantages to camping under a Marula tree, but we decided to just live with the fruit falling on us. :roll:

On day 2 of our stay in KNP we realised our second (or third) mistake - never camp in soft sand at the lower end of a slope. :naughty:
The heavens broke open, the tent windows were rolled up and everything from our clothing, to our pillows, to our sleeping bags was either sopping wet and/or covered in mud which had pooled around us and seeped in from under the tent.
We moved the tent a 3rd time and took everything to the laundry.
Shortly after we had put the machines on, there was a power failure.
Reluctant to leave things unattended, we went back to camp to collect a few essentials (torches and a 5l wine) and spent the rest of the night waiting for the power to return.
By this time (1am), having eaten nothing and drunk plenty, we were in no condition to sort anything out, we took our wet washing back to our tent and made do with sleeping on the bare mattress.

The next morning we used the nylon cords off of the tent to fashion a number of washlines, we must have been to talk of the camp :redface: .

To put the cherry on the top, we found out the next morning that the plug point for that campsite did not work.
With tears in our eyes, we went to the main office and begged them to repair it, which they did within about 30 mins.

Don't get me wrong, that was my best ever trip to KNP and probably the best holiday ever!
Also a really good crash-course in camping :tongue:

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Mfezi » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:56 pm

A few years ago in Lower Sabie, I was the first one at the gate that morning.
I got out, had coffee and rusks and decided to go to the bathrooms for the last time before the gates would open.
On my return I could not get into my car - yes, I have locked the keys inside... :redface: :slap:
Many visitors behind me, did not appreciate this car not moving when the gates opened...

Then I had to wait for the staff to pitch and after quite some time, we managed to get the car open.

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Re: Worst experience in the Kruger??

Unread post by Sheenaugh-Lee » Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:46 am

OK so I was 13 years old and my family went to camp at Berg en dal.
I went to the bathroom when I heard this blood curdling scream coming from in the toilets, I myself was on the loo and heard the scream coming from the toilet next to me, a lady had gone to toilet and on closing the door she only then saw that a snake had curled itself around the door handle, the door handles in those toilets are quite big most of the ladies here would know that!
anyhow so now I'm alone in the bathroom and this lady is trapped, I myself am petrified of dam snakes, so I climbed on the toilet seat to ask if the lady was ok, she was shaking like a leaf, I told her the only way to get her out was for me to help her climb over the wall dividing the two toilets without bothering or making the snake aware that she was their,
I helped the lady get over the wall and then we called the rangers to come and remove the snake, needless to say that lady spoilt me rotten for helping her and I today looking back on that whole scenario ask myself What the hell was I thinking LoL :hmz: "
Im still In LOVE with my Kruger!

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