Sunday, 14 June 2015

May 20: Etosha in Pictures Day 2, and I'm an idiot

Today was not a great day, memory-wise. Karen forgot to charge one of her camera batteries, and I left the lodge this morning leaving my buttpouch (with my passport and a significant amount of cash) in the lodge -- a lodge we were not supposed to return to.

We were out on a game drive (having just seen some lions) when another Nomad truck pulled up; the cleaning staff found my buttpouch, and had contacted our partner truck because they couldn’t get a hold of us. So everyone in our truck laughed all the way back to the lodge -- where we found someone else had left their wallet in the lodge, too. I felt less like an idiot, but only slightly.

The day wasn’t as “gamey” as yesterday (is “gamey” a word?). We did see two lions, but Etosha is known for its lions and cheetahs, so seeing only 2 lions wasn’t that impressive (well, it was to us, but not to our guides). In addition to the list we saw yesterday, we also saw another 6 rhino, more elephants, a honey badger not in the campground (but jackals who were) and bat eared fox. I was at the waterhole tonight and a black rhino came within 5 feet of me, which was pretty cool, too.
Dawn at the waterhole 

More zebra 
Black rhino 
Yellow billed hornbill or "banana bird" 
Rhino butt
Tall giraffe 
Zebra in the savanah 
Plains of nothing 
Resting but wary lioness
Interested in the wildebeasts 
Two lions 
Getting bored 
Stalking something 
Slinking up on... unaware wildebeast 
Not this time 
Watching dinner get away 
The clay of the Etosha pan 
The wildebeest herd appears 
Lots of beasties 
Oryx & spingbok 
A napping white rhino 
Oblivious to the world, he rests 
Easy to be carefree when you're invulnerable to attack 
Not even a lion will try 
Black-backed jackal 
Jackals at play 
Our home for night 2 
Oryx at the local waterhole 
Kudu arriving 
Oryx & springbok 
And kudu, too 
An afternoon swim 
The plain around the local waterhole 
Giraffe. Took him 45 min to get to the waterhole from here 
Springboks arguing 
Slurpin' it up 
I hope they know elephants poop in this water 
More jackals playing 
The western end of the pan
Classis Africa 
Ground squirrels 
Wildebeast, springbok, kudu & oryx 
Where there is water... 
Honey badger. Nasty things 
Giraffes at sunset 
Large on a barren plain 
Bat eared foxes 
Bat eared fox 
Sunset on the pan 
A sprinbok in the afternoon glow 
The sun sets on the waterhole 
Mom and baby arrive 
Feeling "reflective" 
Mom drinks. The baby is still nursing 
That spread eagle pose 
The oranges of sunset 
Hefalumps at night 
4 giraffe, 1 elephant and a rhino just out of frame
Here's the rhino 
Coming for a visit 
Getting closer

5' from me 
Slow moving elephants 
Elephant & rhino 
Yet another nocturnal giraffe 
Always wary

As usual, the accommodations here were NWR awesome.
Our room 
The kitchen area is over there 
The resort from the tower. Waterhole in the distance on the left
Tomorrow, we head to Windhoek. Of the 16 people now on the truck, 7 are finishing their safari there; 9 of us are continuing on to Vic Falls or beyond (4 are going all the way to Mozambique) and we are gaining 2 new people. It’s another driving day with another early start as we putter out of Etosha looking for critters, but we must be out of the park gate by 8:20 AM.


Today’s Africa Travel Tip: Animal Jams

Where I live, animal jams are a pain and not usually good for the animals. In Etosha, the opposite is true. There are signs reminding you to go slowly past wildlife and be patient with traffic stopped for wildlife viewing. In Africa, drivers stop for wildlife to cross the road, because here, people come for the wildlife. No one drives through Etosha to get somewhere; there’s nowhere to go. There are strict rules in Etosha that you can’t get out of your car (the place is crawling with beasts that can do you great harm, after all), nor let stuff dangle from open windows. In Etosha, the animals seem to understand that cars won’t chase them or hurt them, so they mostly ignore them and just go about their daily business.

Not at all like Banff.

1 comment:

Bugnotogo said...

Thanks for sharing these very special moments from your adventure in Africa.