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And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

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dukla2000
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And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by dukla2000 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 6:16 pm

It is so hard to decide where to begin – I guess the short version is we had an amazing time. :D :D

As reported last year, we are preparing for the real safari in 2019 and decided the gap between November 2016 and January 2019 needed to be filled, so planning for our Kgalagadi initiation in November 2017 started about 12 months ago.

This report is not going to be a chronological journal – more a collection of chapters about our experiences. Probably something like

    1 Planning – getting there & Facilities
    2 Sand & 2WD
    3 Scenery
    4 Meerkats
    5 Birds
    6 Tiny things
    7 Small animals
    8 Bigger animals
    9 Cats
Twee Rivieren 15, 16 & 25 Nov 2017
Nossob 17-20 Nov 2017
Mata Mata 21-24 Nov 2017
KNP: November 2016

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Robbert
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Robbert » Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:05 pm

Hi Dukla,

This sounds very promising!! The more because we had to skip our planned (luckely not booked) trip to the KTP last October/November.

Best regards,

Rob
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Mokala 24/03-27/03/2018

colbol
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by colbol » Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:39 pm

Am interested in your experience Dukla, first time visiting ktp next year for us, so am keen to learn how you got on. :D

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Karin Mitton
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Karin Mitton » Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:39 pm

Definitely sounds interesting - can't wait to hear more!

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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Tobieo » Mon Dec 04, 2017 9:08 pm

I am also on board and ready to go
Nov 2017 KTP
9 & 10 Nossob
11 to 15 Grootkolk
16 to 19 Urikaruus
TR on the Nov 2017 trip is active, bus has departed

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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by sofarigo » Mon Dec 04, 2017 9:10 pm

I'm on board too :)
KTP November 2017
KNP November 2016

dukla2000
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by dukla2000 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:15 pm

Honoured to have anyone on board. But Robbert you have a large role in our inspiration with your many tales from your hire car and tent!

colbol - JFDI! I guess it is trite to tell you you will enjoy it: all I can say is I hope you have as good a time as we did.
Twee Rivieren 15, 16 & 25 Nov 2017
Nossob 17-20 Nov 2017
Mata Mata 21-24 Nov 2017
KNP: November 2016

dukla2000
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Planning

Unread post by dukla2000 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:33 pm

Much of the inspiration for the trip, and thoughts and ideas for planning, came from these forums. We have been lurking for nearly 2 years and there are just too many folk to thank. Suffice to say anyone who has ever written a KTP travel tale gets our thanks and hopefully this report is our small contribution in return.

Planning was interesting as we managed to get inexpensive flights that allowed us each two 23Kg checked bags. So we decided to take as much of our camping equipment as possible. Unlike KNP/2016 this trip was planned to be in our own tent. Much time was spent planning the menu as we allocated minimal time for shopping between landing in South Africa and the real arrival at Twee Rivieren. Based on various reports of the ill effects of corrugated roads on groceries we were limited to 1 glass bottle (Cruxland – rather appropriate and very good with ice and tonic with a full dose of quinine), the rest had to be cans/tins, bags or packets. Fortunately we had no accidents, even with the bottle. The menu was somewhat repetitive but did allow a baked camembert brunch which worked out fine at Auchterlonie.

The daylight flight from Amsterdam was routine, with great views of the Alps and Sahara desert. Arrival in Johannesburg was also routine and we were straight to bed after collecting the hire car.
Image
Departure from a rainy Amsterdam. (It was too dark at Heathrow for a pic!)
Image
Alps in distance, lake/river somewhere in southern France.
Image
Sahara desert.

Next morning was planned to split our forces: I was off to collect the rental freezer, pre-ordered frozen meat, a table and gas canisters (the only camping kit we could not pack!) and a copy of Kgalagadi Self Drive while the A-Team did a smash & grab in Spar hoovering up 2 weeks of groceries in 2 hours. One part of the planning that proved problematic is we could only find/research online groceries/pricing at Pick n Pay and landed in a Spar for the grab which was a bit confusing and in fact we dashed into Pick n Pay in Vryburg (on the way to Hotazel for second night in SA) to resolve some of the resulting issues. Yup, we had decided to do the Vanzylsrus/Askham gravel which went fine and saved about an hour each way.

We had some concern whether the car would be big enough – with the benefit of hindsight we were fine.
Image
Had to move the hubcaps inside after 1 tried to escape on the early gravel roads!

The camp site at Nossob was booked first (in March) as they were running low, and then later swapped to one of the new premium units as soon as they became available. Mata Mata and Twee Rivieren bookings were added later giving an itinerary of 2 nights TR, 4 Nossob, 3 MM then last 2 back at TR. After first night in MM we realised 2 back at TR was not for us and so we spent 4 nights at MM and only 1 back at TR. In our opinion the swinger is TR has no water hole!

The Nossob premium site was marvellous, although after only 2 months in use the workmanship seems poor. e.g. edging on the floor tiles was already broken when we checked in and a rather silly (to me) arrangement that the power should be switched on before inserting the plug, was also broken on our site.
Image
Landscape shot showing proximity of new premium Nossob campsite to fence. That is our orange/brown tent

One comment on facilities in the campsites: they are not consistent which may or may not be a problem. Twee Rivieren has a microwave/oven and washing machines, Nossob has electric rings (no microwave or washing machines) and Mata Mata has only dishwashing and clothes washing sinks. On the other hand the shops in all 3 camps have enough basic food and drink items that it would be possible to survive a trip with no advance food planning. (Unless you are particularly fussy!)
Twee Rivieren 15, 16 & 25 Nov 2017
Nossob 17-20 Nov 2017
Mata Mata 21-24 Nov 2017
KNP: November 2016

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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:38 am

I love the title :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: as a lover of all thing small and cute (especially wee mouses), this is just perfect.

That is quite some packing. It looks like the precision of an engineer. :hmz:

I am sorry to hear that you experienced those problems at your site. I hope that they could be fixed up.

More, please.

:popcorn:
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by WillieV » Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:34 am

I am also on board dukla2000.
Hope you were able to handle the sandy roads with your small vehicle.
:popcorn: :popcorn:
KGALAGADI MAY 2017 What a great time we had !

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Karin Mitton
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Karin Mitton » Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:11 am

The photo of that packed car and your comment about the hub cap still has me smiling!
I do love that photo of the Sahara desert!

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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Cape of Storms » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:40 pm

Wonderful start! Looking forward to this trip report. Your car looks like most cars headed to camp. Somehow one makes it fit


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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by GavinW » Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:28 pm

Sounds awesome so far
Looking forward to more :D
See our trip reports:

Christmas Trees in the Kalahari May 2012
Winner Travel Tale of the year - Other Parks 2012

Wannabe Larnies in the KTP December/Jan 2015
Winner Travel Tale of the year - Other Parks 2015

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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Pikkie » Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:45 pm

Please don’t let the bus leave without me, a little late but I’m onboard.
BOSKIND

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Robbert
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Re: And then the Meerkat interrupted - KTP, Nov. 2017

Unread post by Robbert » Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:09 am

Great to see we are not the only ones with a tiny little car in the KTP :redface: although the last visit we drove a medium sized (non 4x4) SUV to cope with the soft sand :redface: :redface: because the time before we got some serious problems with the soft sand on the last part of the road to Mata Mata.
A pity to hear about the quality of the new constructions at Nossob :wall:
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Mokala 24/03-27/03/2018


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