See our new blog for May and June 2011

DAY 69 SATARA (26 of 30) JUNE 18

The temperature this morning was 5 C the coldest we have experienced so far on our trip maximum today was 22 C.

We found these baboon on the S100 sunning themselves in the rays of the early morning sun.
If you look closely by enlarging the pics you will see that they are all sleeping. Note the bush buck wandering amongst them.

Stayed in camp most of the day, went out for a late afternoon drive, on the way back to camp along the Orpen road we found a Leopard draping itself over a dead tree stump. with about 10 min. to go before gates close and still 4 Km from camp we had no time to spend with the LIT or to take a photo. Maybe tomorrow!!

DAY 68 (SATARA 24 OF 30) JUNE 17

Firstly...Happy Birthday Ewa! hope you had a super day.

Left camp only at 7am, it was cold and windy this morning, battled to get out of the warm bed.
Did the “Ben Schoeman” (S100) to go and find the Cheetah everybody saw yesterday on that road. We need to add a Cheetah to our master list!
While driving along the road we saw a Lioness come walking out of the bushes near a dry riverbed. She walked across the sand road at a fast pace, to quick for a photo. She went to lye down near a small bush a distance away. We could just see her head looking in all directions. We looked to the right of the road and noticed 4 old male Buffalo’s come to graze on the grass near the road. We were the only car there for about 10min when the first cars arrived, major traffic jam! Some carried on after they saw her but turned around and told us there were another Lioness with cubs further up the road lying in the dry river sand, sunning themselves. We sat there watching the Lioness for nearly 3 hours hoping she would make a kill. Some Impala came walking towards her but she was to much in a hurry to catch them, they saw her and ran off. She crossed the road back to the dry river towards the other female. They disappeared into the thick bush.
By now our tummy’s were grumbling from hunger. Carried on and a km away I spotted something in the bush, told Andrew to stop and reverse, there I saw another Lioness sleeping! Looked through my binoc’s and saw 2 more Lions, a male and another female.
Again we were the first to spot them, but boy after 5min we had a traffic jam around us!
Carried on towards N'wanetsi picnic spot (S41). A car stopped us and told us there were more Lions on the S41! They were feasting on a small Elephant. Got there, another major traffic jam! Managed to see one Lion lying by the carcass protecting it from the Vultures who have arrived and are trying to get their share. Could not take a photo as it was to far in the bush for our little camera’s.
We managed to get to the picnic spot at 12:30 to have our breakfast.

Well what a morning!

DAY 67 (SATARA 23 OF 30) JUNE16

Left early, decided to do the Timbavati road (S39) from the north going on the tar road towards Olifants camp (H1-4)
About 2 klm we saw 2 big male Lions running in the distance on a no-entry sand road going towards the local airstrip. We could not take photos as they were to far away. We think the Lions ran towards the females, maybe they made a kill and could hear them feed.
Stopped at the Ntomeni water hole and saw the dead Hyena was still lying under the bushes but boy…the stench! An Elephant was drinking water at the trough, wonder if he knew the dead Hyena was there!
Near the Ratelpan Hide we saw these Hippos sunning themselves in the sun as it was chilly and windy today.

A Hippo standing sleeping

DAY 66 (SATARA 22 OF 30) JUNE 15

Stayed in this morning to do the weekly washing, clean the caravan, general chores ect.Went out at 3pm to Ngotso dam, on the way we stopped at the Ntomeni waterhole to see if we could see the Leopard we saw last year. When we stopped Andrew noticed a dead Hyena lying half in a bush close to the road, yet not that visible unless you look down to the bushes. We could clearly see the bite marks on her back, could only be a Lion that killed her. We sat there till we had to leave back for camp. Some Zebra came drinking water, not notacing the dead Hyena in the bushes.

Day 65 (Satara 21 of 30) June 14

Sunrise at Girivana

Back to routine and went to Girivana very early, we found the large herd of buffalo just off the road, most of them were lying down huddled very close together with the cows and calves in the centre, the big bulls on the outside.
At the water hole we found 5 Rhino drinking at the trough. We watched the sunrise with the Rhino in the foreground.
Continued on the loop to see what was left of the Jackal, nothing, the carcass had disappeared. Retuned to the waterhole as a passing motorist told us that there were Lions on the road near Girivana, they had moved off already.
In the afternoon, we spoilt ourselves and made an ice-cream float, which we enjoyed at Girivana in the company of a large herd of Elephant.
Quintin and Peter, how was the Italy game, what is the new stadium like? While you were wet and cold in Cape Town we had 35C max. and 16C min. the forecast is that the front will hit us on Wednesday.

Day 64 (Satara 20 of 30) June 13

Thanks to Micetta for identifying the Eagle as a juvenile Bateleur, spot on.
Decided to try the S100 for a change, Left at 06h00, 2nd car on the S100, saw general game and had Coffee at Gudzani dam where we watched the Hippos splashing around and making a lot of noise with the typical sound of Hippo.
Traveled north towards the S90 where we found 2 male Lions lazing in typical Lion fashion, to far for Photos.
Returned to camp for breakfast where we spent the rest of the day.
Now you can see why in Afrikaans it is called the "Blouaap"

Day 63 (Satara 19 of 30) June 12

This herd of Buffalo is huge to many to even try to count. We have seen them almost daily, they seem to move around the Nsemani dam. This morning was misty and I tried to capture the mood in this photo.

We left camp at just after 6 am headed direct to Girivana waterhole as usual.

The same lions as we saw yesterday were there again, moving off just after we arrived, again we were the only car at the waterhole.
Enjoyed our coffee and rusks before proceeding to see what had happened to the Jackal attacked by the lions yesterday.
True to nature, the once proud and brave little Jackal was been devoured by a bird of prey, an Eagle, we still have to ID the eagle, maybe we can get some help from all you raptor experts out there.
We continued to Muzandzeni for breakfast. Lettie handed over the colouring book and crayons to the two kids who live there.
Still trying to find the Sable on the S36.Soon!!!!
Returned to camp to watch the rugby and soccer and Cricket (nearly forgot).