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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Tell us about your breathtaking experiences in the parks
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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Sun Mar 01, 2015 9:09 pm

Ellies around the camp but not in the camp......

LIfe has been busy.

Managed a morning walk last week.....only 2 guests, and we had a couple of rhino sightings plus ellies, buffs, giraffe and zebs in the distance.

And just come back from Sand River Bush Camp. Good walks (although could have been better.......some guests far too noisy and would not keep quiet so we had to compromise our choice of area and route).

Several grey beasties of various sizes, buffs on foot. From the vehicle all of the big 5 including a leopard on the road for a km or so with us following. Whenever we tried to creep past he speeded up and moved into the middle of the road! Eventually he allowed us next to him and relaxed to allow some good photos. This morning we got our lion at last too. He was lazy and lying down when we first saw him, but walking towards us on the road when we returned later. Guests coming towards us got good photos of him coming close to our vehicle and looking up at our guests!!!!

Tomorrow off to the bush again.....this time sleeping out in my nylon tent again......

Before returning to Skukuza on Thursday for CRICKET 2015!!!!

(Oh, and the following week I am doing the Lonely Bull backpack trail.....)
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salamanda
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by salamanda » Mon Mar 02, 2015 6:18 am

Sounds like a good week and lots to look forward to. I find it hard to understand why guests would book on a trail, presumably to be in closer contact with the wild, and then insist of making so much noise that anything wild would be frightened away. Seems like such a waste.

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hilda
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by hilda » Mon Mar 02, 2015 7:30 am

Noisy guests on a walk .... what were they thinking? :hmz:

Great to have the big five in such a short while, although from the vehicle. :clap: :clap:

Enjoy the cricket EJ, and the Lonely Bull backpack trail! :dance: :dance:

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:10 pm

Time out in the bush in little nylon tent was good! Close encounters on foot several times, and others just enjoying being out there....such a privilege, and one I still cannot believe has fallen to my lot!

One encounter was perhaps a little too close...... We got out ready to walk in a promising area, intending to walk to a big pan we had been told about. Almost immediately we picked up both lion and buffalo spoor. We then heard and saw a big herd of buffalo at a pan and grazing ahead of us and could hear some splashing about in the water.

As we watched and decided the best way to view them closer, we realised 2 young lions were also watching us from the edge of a clearing to our right!!! Just curious young cats.....the rest of the pride were in the bushes near by. When we all turned their way they also disappeared into the bushes. It was too thick to try and track them safely especially as we knew from the spoor that there were cubs about. So we turned back to the buffalo.

We moved to the edge of the clearing and the buffalo saw us and began to close in......not the usual behaviour of a large herd when they can see anti-predator behaviour on the part of walkers..... These buffs had already been hassled by the lions (we actually wondered if there was a kill as we saw vultures, bateleur and tawny eagle in the area.....). We began to feel like the meat in a sandwich...... But our 2 guides competently led us out of danger and we continued the walk.....most of us on wobbly legs for a bit!!!!

Had we fully realised what had happened before we got there we would have avoided the buffalo as well!

Now at Skuks for Cricket.....let the fun and fund-raising begin!
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impyim
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by impyim » Fri Mar 06, 2015 12:39 am

Jelly legs !!! That would be me. Heart stopping also.
Now you've really got me wondering what had happened before you arrived at the pan !!!! Do tell.

I hope the cricket match raises heaps of money. :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Fri Mar 06, 2015 5:44 am

Only meant the obvious previous interaction between the buffs and lions which had left the buffs very agitated and aggressive. And the possibility of a kill having taken place too by the signs from the birds about.....We also saw lion tracks on top of the buff tracks indicating following and stalking...... We put it all together later in a debrief!
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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salamanda
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by salamanda » Fri Mar 06, 2015 5:50 am

Wonderful description of a very exciting walk EJ. Heart-stopping and jelly-leg inducing - you have it exactly impyim . . . .

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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by PAPA SMURF » Fri Mar 06, 2015 9:42 pm

Wow! what a great and interesting walk. you sure lead an exciting life EJ so keep on enjoying it and keep us up to date and enthralled by your adventures.
Enjoy the cricket
If you wish to live and thrive
Let the SPIDER run alive -- Old Wives Tale
Terry

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hilda
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by hilda » Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:49 am

Your experiences are so exciting EJ! Thanks for sharing them with us! I think I would have frozen and wouldn't have been able to walk any further! What a great adventure! :clap: :clap:

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Delene D
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Delene D » Sat Mar 07, 2015 7:23 pm

How exciting that all was. Thanks for sharing. :clap: :clap:

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Mon Mar 16, 2015 6:31 pm

And then it was Cricket! Wonderful few days at Skukuza meeting old forum friends and new friends too.

Friday Ladies' and Men's matches were good, then a great braai evening at the boma behind the restaurant. Saturday again at the Cricket grounds for a fun match and then the big match between Forum men and Skukuza men. What an exciting match it was too.......close run thing (if you pardon the pun) to the very last ball! And even then, until the wicket was broken it was still anybody's match. Well done Forum men!!!!

Home for a couple of nights and then off to Letaba for one night, up to Mopani and off into the bush again. This time with a backpack loaded with tent, mattress, food, etc for 3 nights camping rough. I need to do a specified number of 'observer' trails before being allowed to be a guide on the trail, and this was now my 3rd trail.....and means I have done one of each of the trails offered.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Mon Mar 16, 2015 6:39 pm

First night we camped near a dry river bed with a spring.....but water still was underground and we had to dig for it, support the sides of the hole with stones and wait for the water to filter through the sand and into the hole.....then carefully scoop it up with a cup to avoid touching the bottom and stirring up mud. It was a slow process!

Then back to camp to cook, eat and sleep. We had a small fire for atmosphere only. Next morning we woke with the sun and birds. While enjoying a hot mug of tea we saw a black rhino near us......A huge bull! He watched and shuffled around in the bushes for a while, and then decided he wanted to find out what was going on. He did not charge......he just trotted straight towards us! The lead rifle, Ian, just said loudly 'Morning!' and clapped his hands. Mr Rhino obediently turned around and trotted off again! He shuffled around for a little longer, but then moved off.
2 of the group were still in their tent and missed him completely.

Later that day we got down to the Letaba river and found a shallow rocky channel where we had a welcome 'swim' before moving away from the river again to our camp site. Again we dug for water to replenish our stocks.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Mon Mar 16, 2015 6:46 pm

Next day we woke naturally again and set off when we were all ready. We walked back towards the Letaba river, and found a large ellie herd had the same idea and were spread out in the reeds along the bank. We watched them for a while and had a deeper pool near us with hippos and 2 buffalos too. We then found a safe place, sat down and had a lunch break and short siesta before moving off. Just before we did that 3 folk went to fill water bottles and surprised a leopard!

We moved off, and after a short distance found a lovely sand beach-like area. Again time for a swim! Eventually we picked up our packs, crossed the river, set up camp and returned to continue our swim. With the sun setting we made our way back to camp for the last night. Ellies were in the bushes near us for a while, but we did not see them. Hippos were in the water just below us......Wonderful.

Final morning we again got up leisurely, packed up and walked to our meeting point. There were buffs near us at one point but no danger. A great trail and good company.

My pack felt heavy but comfortable, and the only problem was blisters just next to my big toes for some reason. Did not hold me back at all though. I am getting used to this!
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

chirinda
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by chirinda » Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:25 pm

Thanks for the updates, EJ, it's great to be able to go on walks etc with you, even if it is just in our imaginations.

impyim
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by impyim » Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:44 am

What a wonderful 3 days. I'm sure you're going to make a wonderful guide on the trail walks.

Thanks for taking the time to keep us updated on your amazing activities. :thumbs_up:


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