C is questioning whether I can remember this far back given I haven’t been able to send out a blog for a few days. Not sure whether she thinks that now that I’m over 50 my memory has gone or what?!
We left for a morning drive at 6:15am. The sun really only rises at about 6:30am at the moment so while the gates open at 6am, it seems a little more sensible to leave a bit later. We headed east out to the Nwanedzi Picnic site. The gravel road runs along the river and is generally excellent for sightings of lion due to the herds of zebra, wildebees and impala that are in the area. We unfortunately didn’t see any lion. After morning coffee we headed to the bird hide nearby and then headed back west along the tar road and then back to camp for a late breakfast. We did see hyena (including pups) on the way back. The pups are pretty cute especially compared to the adults.
We spent the rest of the morning and early afternoon in the camp just relaxing and then headed out for a late afternoon game drive which took us past two waterholes. Again nothing spectacular on that drive. Dinner was a braai and enjoyable conversation around the braai (as always). We got a visit from an African wildcat while we were braaiing. H & I have seen them before in Satara and it is known that they are resident around the camp. Still a special treat to see them in the wild.
The next morning we headed north out of the camp and soon after leaving the camp we came across a porcupine running up the road. I have not seen a lot of them (if any) in the Kruger Park and so it was quite a nice treat to see it in the road. We then headed west to the Timbavati picnic spot with a quick stop at the Ratel Pan bird hide on the way there. A reasonable amount of game to be seen but again no lion, leopard, cheetah.
For the afternoon/evening game drive we had less people wanting to come so we headed out with 2 cars only and headed due south on the tar road with the view to drive about 90 minutes down to the Kumara dam and then turn around and drive back to the camp again. There was plenty of game to be seen but once again just the standard game. The most interesting thing was seeing a hippo stuck in the mud at the dam and we reckon it wasn’t able to get out. Not sure what happened to it because we didn’t go back but I reckon it could have become food for predators.
We had a braai for dinner again and while getting the fires going we spotted a honey badger. H and I have seen them before in the camps and they are pretty vicious (if you have ever watched the Top Gear Southern Africa special you will know what Jeremy Clarkson thinks about them). Everyone came out to look at it as it was drinking some water from the drain and then it ran around the other side of the hut. Next thing we know it has jumped up onto the stoep and grabbed a bag of chicken (B&S chicken) and run off to eat it. B managed to salvage some of the chicken but the badger had licked it so we reckoned probably not safe to eat. B said he was prepared to sacrifice his chicken to see it (though not sure S felt the same way).
At least I managed to catch up 2 days and I hope to do another 2 days tomorrow so that we get back on track at least. It has been really difficult with cellphone reception being so poor. Not sure why because usually it is a reasonable but this trip we have really struggled.
Until tomorrow ….
P, H, S, K, J, R, J, B, S, B, C (see comment at start why she is now at end ….)
PS: Sorry no photos but struggling to get anything downloaded tonight again.