Calvinia to Twee Rivieren
June 23, 2018

We still had around 650km to traverse to get to the Kgalagadi and so we agreed to have breakfast at 7:30am this morning so that we could leave immediately after breakfast and still arrive at a reasonable time at the park to allow ourselves to go for an evening game drive.  Traffic was fortunately pretty sparse and so we made good time in covering the 650kms.  The drive north from Calvinia takes you through semi-arid desert though in places in looked like total desert.  The road was called the Kalahari Red Dune route so I guess that should give you an idea of the type of landscape.

Outside of Brandvlei and before we arrived at Upington we drove through amazing fields of flowers.  There was just a purple blanket (and in places orange) that covered the ground.  It was quite incredible to see.  We found a spot to stop to enable us to take photos and a few people took the opportunity to not only take photos of the flowers but also to take photos in the middle of the road.  Fortunately traffic was pretty limited and so no one got hit by a passing car.

We made a quick stop at Upington to refuel and buy some lunch and then we headed on to Kgalagadi.  Besides crossing the Orange River (before we got to Upington) the scenery doesn’t really alter much and so only remarkable things stand out. This includes Khi Solar One which is a large field (140 hectares) of solar panels which reflect into a solar tower plant which then produce 50MW of power.  What makes it even more remarkable is that it produces power 24 hours a day (don’t ask how that is possible because I don’t know!).

We arrived at Twee Rivieren at 3:10pm and after the tedious checking in procedures, we unpacked our cars quickly and headed out for a quick evening game drive.  We only managed to go about 12kms out of camp but saw gemsbok, springbok and Red Hartebees on the drive out as well as a reasonable smattering of birds including a really good sighting of Secretary Bird and Southern Pale Chanting Goshawk (trip list is 20 birds for me so far).  On the way back into camp we also saw a black backed jackal.

Dinner was braai (as it will be most nights!) with great conversation.  What a great way to spend your birthday with friends in a game park.

Until tomorrow

P, H, S, M & O (still missing you C!)

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