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Park and Road Etiquette

Discuss and find information on the Kruger National Park
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Re: Park Ethic

Unread post by DuQues » Mon Feb 16, 2009 11:29 pm

Hi Tass! ;)
And welcome to the forums!

There is indeed a code, but it's not unspoken actually. It's a rule.
If you look at the pamphlet you are handed when you enter the park (a copy is in the FAQ, see the link on the left), you are not to disturb any sighting...

But there are people and then there are people...
Same with going past someone when walking.. Etiquette says you cross past their back... Which is what I try to do at sightings that do not interest me, usually lions. (Hope Bert doesn't read this! :lol: )
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

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Re: Park Ethic

Unread post by christo » Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:03 pm

The rules on the pamphlet handed out :rtm: clearly states that you should park on the "sighting side of the road" so that vehicles can pass behind you without disturbing your sighting and you do not obstruct the traffic. No stationary vehicles are allowed opposite the "parked' vehicle to enable a free flow of traffic.

This does not excuse the behaviour that was experienced, but following this Kruger rule will save you a lot of frustration.
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Re: Park Ethic

Unread post by Haplo » Tue Feb 17, 2009 6:32 pm

For the record people - and I ought to know, as I was the one holding the camera :cam: at Tionet's sighting - being on the side the leopard was, with her half climbing over me to get the better view, sometimes it is impossible to get right onto the side of the road you need to be to see the animal you want to see - cuz then you chase the animal away, especially if it is a skittish animal at best.
So what you do is try to wave the people behind you down, let them know there is something up ahead that is a serious sighting, and not "just a cuckoo in a tree" - then move to the side of the road you need to be on and try to get as close as possible to the roadside.
Now when you have a shy leopard 2.5m from you, eyeing you from behind a shallow wall of grass, getting as close as possible is not a good idea, cuz then you'll see nothing anyway- what with him then halfway to Mozambique in his best impression of "head for them thar hills!. You try the best you can, and expect other people to do the same.
:tongue: That goes out to the people who don't try the best they can to make everyones lives better!

Sometimes even the rules :rtm: need to be "interpreted" to allow you to see anything at all.
Not the letter, but the intention is what is most important in any rule or law.
So anyone out there who behaves badly - hope you enjoy meeting this guy :twisted: when you get to where I would like to send you!
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Re: Park Ethic

Unread post by droopy » Tue Mar 17, 2009 12:36 pm

Hi Haplo, I know what you mean. My hubby and I are bird lovers and will stop for almost every bird (except mossies, ha-ha), well we especially love the Burchell's Cougal (Rainbird) and everytime we see one we stop, put the engin off and just wait. The way he move, and sometimes you might just get lucky and hear it's call, it's so beautifull. :D
Either way, sometimes when u stop, you get people coming past having a look at what animal we see, because some people are only interested in the BIG 5, so they stop, ask what do we see, and we answer... Burchell's Cougal, they will say what???? :huh: Burchell's Cougal, Vlei Loerie, Rainbird, well guess what, they drive further, shake their heads and off course... chases away the bird. Well bottom line, we love nature at it's best, and that's why we come to the park,whether u see the Big 5, Small 5, Birds etc. :dance:

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Selfish people and viewing etiquette.

Unread post by mikath » Thu May 20, 2010 1:33 pm

We have just returned from 3 weeks in Kruger Park We had some amazing sightings but one was completely spoilt by one selfish person.
We were driving along the S25 and came across a pride of lions with a cub we were thrilled.
We had the sighting to ourselves for about 10 minutes then a few cars turned up from the opposite direction, then suddenly after about 10 minutes a driver in one of the other cars decided to come through as he weaved in between the lions each one got up and walked into the bush.
As he passed us he said sorry to have spoilt your sighting but they would have laid there for hours.
We were so amazed at his arrogance we couldn't speak we were so angry for the rest of the day
I will post some photo's of what he found so boring :huh:

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Re: selfish people

Unread post by mikath » Thu May 20, 2010 1:45 pm




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Re: selfish people

Unread post by Jonathan D » Thu May 20, 2010 2:08 pm

We had a similar problem just outside the lower Sabie gate.
We had just watched a brown snake eagle dive straight into the bushes just ahead of us and when we pulled up he was sitting right next to the road enjoying the nice snake he had just caught.
Just as we got there a man in his 4x4 pulled right up next to him and his kids were hanging out of the window right up to their hips screaming at the eagle.
So the eagle flew away dropping his meal.
The man in the 4x4 just smiled and drove off.
Very frustrating :wall:
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by arks » Thu May 20, 2010 2:27 pm

Micetta wrote:Maybe he had a very urgent appointment :hmz: We must always try to look a bit further and not judge without knowing what is behind a certain behaviour....and he did say he was sorry.

Micetta, that is NO excuse for forcing lions — or any other animal — off the road.
It is the lions' "place" and WE are the intruders.
Anyone who can't wait until the lions choose to move ... well (unless it happened to be an actual matter of life and death and merely saying "sorry" wouldn't indicate that), IMO they don't belong in KNP or any other reserve :twisted: :sniper: :twisted:
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by ndloti » Thu May 20, 2010 2:57 pm

Agreed Micetta .
After waiting a while in the hope that I would not cause a disturbance I had to pass cars viewing hyena occuping one half of the road width outside Mopani - the hyenas were very lazy and weren't too perturbed , though the people were - as I was en route to Olifants to join the Olifants backpack trail and had to make the 9 am meeting time .
I eventually arrived late as an elephant in musth also kept me at bay further on - so where does one differentiate ?
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by TheunsH » Thu May 20, 2010 5:50 pm

Great sighting Mikath with some beautiful photos! :clap: :clap:

This is a difficult one, but I don't think visitors at a sighting can expect everybody else to stay put until such visitors had enough of the sighting. That is selfish as well.

Some other visitors have long distances to travel, etc.

It also happens a lot when visitors at sightings sit and sit and sit and sit and sit and sit at a sighting next to their cars blocking the road, with a lot of other visitors not able to see anything and not able to go by...that is selfish as well!

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Re: selfish people

Unread post by Walloceros » Thu May 20, 2010 6:54 pm

A brief recount of the ultimate chaotic sighting:
Years ago lion killed (presumably) a giraffe on the S114.
The carcass was in the middle of the road with only a narrow passage between the giraffe's head and the culvert.
As expected cars piled in and soon the guys at the back could not see and the guys in front could not move out.
After long deliberation/negotiation everybody pulled back, the narrow passage was opened so that the guys in front could move out and the guys at the back move in.
That was the plan... :hmz:

As soon as the passage opened a Free State farmer in a Isuzu backie charged in and stopped right next to the kill, front wheel on top of the giraffe's head, and started taking pictures.
All hell broke loose, people screaming, swearing and shouting but the Isuzu stayed put.
People got out their cars and starting pelting the Isuzu with stones, the farmer was not outdone and promptly returned these compliments. :big_eyes:
The lion?
They ran like crazy and only returned that evening. :huh:

Try and beat this one :tongue:
Last edited by Walloceros on Thu May 20, 2010 6:57 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by arks » Thu May 20, 2010 6:55 pm

The point that I was trying to make had nothing to do with ruining a sighting for other visitors.
Rather, that particular oke forced the lions off the road and IMO there is NO excuse for doing that unless it is a matter literally of life and death.
IMO, if you have to be at a particular camp relatively early in the day, it's best to actually stay in that camp the night before, rather than assuming that you can easily get there in 3-4 hours from gate opening time at another camp.
Inevitably, you can't.
But to force lions, hyena, or any other animal off the road because of your selfish needs is IMO inexcusable.

As well, when it comes to missing gate closing time, I believe that being delayed because elephants or lions are blocking the road is usually considered an acceptable reason for lateness.
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by flying cheetah » Fri May 21, 2010 10:50 am

Had a very bad experience near BnD last week. I came upon a LIT, stopped around 15 m away from the tree and waited for the cat to show it's face.
When the leopard finally looked in our direction another car stopped right next to the tree and the driver tied to attract the cat by making calls.
End of the story: the leopard looked in his direction and the next moment it left the tree :twisted:
As it comes to lions on the road I also think the cars next to the lions should drive on after a while to allow other people to pass by or share the sighting.
If there is a gap and you pass by slowly you don't chase the lions away.
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by gmlsmit » Fri May 21, 2010 12:41 pm

Lions are not the only sightings enjoyed in the PARKS, there are many other very satisfying sightings that are also ruined by inconsiderate visitors.
What is normally lacking as always is - that long forgotten thing called respect . . . . . .
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Re: selfish people

Unread post by Sanpfan » Fri May 21, 2010 1:45 pm

Selfishness works both ways.

The road is a certain width and at cat sightings the road soon becomes impassable due to everyone jockeying for position.
I hate people pushing in and shoving to get a better view or driving through disturbing the animals......BUT.......

Some people first to arrive at a sighting park their car in the best viewing spot (naturally).
That is fine if they are willing after a while to move and let others get to see too.
Some people are content to spend 5 minutes to see a cat and take a few pictures and then move on.
Others tend to want to sit there blocking the road for half and hour or more
(The sighting in the original post here as example).....Lions lying in road with cars blocking rest of road.
Car 1 wants to sit for long time so rest of cars have no choice but to sit or have to drive through and potentially disturb the lions.
Not everyone wants to wait to see if the lazy cat is going to yawn or lift a paw up or stretch etc.

There will always be someone who feels hard done by at these type of sightings and complain that it is others fault and selfishness that ruins it.
Are we really the most intelligent species??

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