Delays on the way back to camp

Shingwedzi Travel Blog

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Lets look out what is that over there?

I head back from the far north of Kruger leaving behind the border area of Zimbabwe and Mozambique to go to a more central part of the park. I have spent a bit too much time up north so I need to hurry a little bit to get back before the gates close. But I still have enough time to take a look at whatever interesting might appear on the road.

 

Because it is becoming late in the day it is getting close to the drinking time of many on the animals. Hence many animals are heading for one of the rivers to get a bit of water to drink before the night. The road I am on is pretty close to the river so the animals will have to cross the road.

Bushbucks
After driving for a while there is a herd of elephants crossing the road just in front of me. I drive up and stop my car next to a good size elephant and starts to take pictures of the animals. But I got a small problem with the one next to me - I have my big lens on the camera - and the elephant next to me do not fit into this lens. I need to change lens if I want any pictures of the elephant which is so close I can almost touch it. She is behaving nicely in the beginning but after a while it seems to lose her patience with the photographer and she sort of hisses at me. I guess it is time to move away from the elephant but the road ahead is blocked by a couple of elephants crossing the road - so I need to back up a bit. I move back about ten meters and the elephant seems to be satisfied.

 

The elephants crossing are a big female elephant and a young elephant. After they cross the road a couple of more female elephants set out to cross the road. For some strange reason they just stand in the middle of the road - not doing anything - this is real unusual elephant behavior usually the only thing that would make them stop in the middle of the road is if they have just found some tasty tree or a some even more tasty grass. But these two females are not eating at all - just hanging out in the middle of the road.

Two big female elephants crossing the road
I take an extra look at the elephants and then I realize it is not two females but one male and a female which might explain why they did stay in the middle of the road not doing anything. In the end the elephants leave the road and I head away to go back to camp. ¨

 

But just a bit down the road I get stopped again - a huge herd of buffalos are crossing the road. It might be the biggest herd I have ever seen. The herd just seems to be going on for ever with buffalo after buffalo coming along to cross the road to go the water. The buffalos are only crossing the road two and two so with hundreds of buffalos it takes for ever before they will finish crossing the road. After having watched the buffalos crossing for several minutes I figure I need to go further down the road. Fortunately the buffalos seem to be willing to let a car through the herd so I can get on.

 

I get back to the back gate of the camp and the storks I saw when I left in the morning are still hanging around the little waterhole in the river next to the camp. I drive through the camp to see what is going on at the other side of the camp.

Elephant trying to hide or something like that
And out there is a family of baboons hanging around doing whatever baboons are doing. I hang out with the baboons for a while before heading back to the camp in time for the official closing of the gates.

 

Before dinner I figure I should take a quick look at what kind of animals might be hanging out in front of the restaurant. The only one I can see is a small antelope.  But there is another animal making some noise. It doesn’t sound like an antelope judging from the level of the noise - but I cannot see any animal. After a while a big thing appears - and it is not an antelope it is bull elephant. It seems like the elephant has decided the people staying in the camp should have a better view from the camp - hence it would try if it could remove one of the trees blocking the view from the camp. It is doing a great effort but in the end the tree survived the attempts by the elephant to kill it.

Koralifix says:
Super snapshots of all these wild animals, fabulous!
Posted on: Jun 21, 2009
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Ok maybe not two females after all

The morning starts late like it always does in a park like Kruger. I sleep in until about 5.45 and then jump out of bed to be ready for the highlight of the day. The traditional waiting for the opening of the camp gates. The gate is closed during the night and you’ll have to stay in the campsite of Kruger but at 6 in the morning the gates will be open. So when 6 is approaching a long line of cars is waiting for somebody to open the gate so you can drive out on a morning game drive to observe the animals in the morning.

 

I get out the gate to go to Kanniedood Dam area which is pretty much right next to my camp site Shingwedzi. I drive out to go down a road and next to the road is an elephant hiding in the trees. It is actually amazing how well such a huge animal blend in with the trees around it. Even though the elephant is virtually next to the road it is actually quite hard to see it. It is only somewhat blurred behind the trees.

 

I get down to the river area where there are a few hippos down in the water just relaxing for the day. One of the places to go on the river road is a small bird hide where I go in. And right when I get in threes a few birds flying around and there is a bushbuck couple walking by having their breakfast snack. They are a couple of quite cute small antelopes which I never seen before.

The storks still there when I got back to the camp
They might not be quite as impressive as some of the bigger antelope species but they are coming up quite close to the hide in the brush in front. Down the river is a small group of hippos.

 

As I go down the road I get closer to the hippos and in the bushes are another antelope walking around in the high grass. It looks a bit like a waterbuck female.

 

I keep going down the road but the road just continues a quick look at a map kind of indicate this road will go on for a couple of hundred kilometers hence I will not be going to the end of the road before breakfast. I decide to go back and get something to eat.

 

At the camp for breakfast there are a couple of small visitors coming to pick up the scraps. There are some squirrels running around but the main cleaners are the bright blue starling which come and pick up the breadcrumbs. They are not scarred by the humans but they seem quite hostile towards each other and very territorial when they particular good spot to pick up the small stuff you have lost.

 

Other birds run around the campsite as well. The most noticeable are the different hornbills which seems to be everywhere around the park. When you see them on the roads you’ll get the impression they are quite stupid and unwilling the fly to safety when a car pass them on the road. This is actually the only road kills I saw in the park.

 

Even though the birds in the camp is funny it is time to put an end to breakfast and leave again for the day.

Lets look out what is that over th…
Lets look out what is that over t…
Morning birds
Morning birds
Bushbucks
Bushbucks
Two big female elephants crossing …
Two big female elephants crossing…
Elephant trying to hide or somethi…
Elephant trying to hide or someth…
Ok maybe not two females after all
Ok maybe not two females after all
Crossing on a single line to take …
Crossing on a single line to take…
The storks still there when I got …
The storks still there when I got…
Morning impalas - most common big …
Morning impalas - most common big…
The boss hanging around
The boss hanging around
Morning snack
Morning snack
Time for cleaning in the morning
Time for cleaning in the morning
Hey there
Hey there
Hippos in the river
Hippos in the river
Bushbucks
Bushbucks
Bushbucks
Bushbucks
Bushbucks
Bushbucks
Hippos again
Hippos again
Waterbuck hidding in the tall grass
Waterbuck hidding in the tall grass
Hippos on land
Hippos on land
Crocodille
Crocodille
Hippos on land
Hippos on land
Hey birdie
Hey birdie
Impalas
Impalas
more impalas
more impalas
Many more impalas
Many more impalas
relaxing impala
relaxing impala
More relaxing impalas
More relaxing impalas
Female impalas
Female impalas
Male impala - the boss of the fema…
Male impala - the boss of the fem…
Male impala - the boss of the fema…
Male impala - the boss of the fem…
Visitor at breakfast
Visitor at breakfast
Another breakfast guest
Another breakfast guest
Portrait of the breakfast guests.
Portrait of the breakfast guests.
Elephant along side the road back …
Elephant along side the road back…
Zebras hanging out
Zebras hanging out
More zebras hanging out
More zebras hanging out
Young elephant getting ready to cr…
Young elephant getting ready to c…
Big femalte elephant ready to cros…
Big femalte elephant ready to cro…
Mother and baby getting ready to c…
Mother and baby getting ready to …
Big female which did not like me p…
Big female which did not like me …
Mother and baby crossing the road
Mother and baby crossing the road
Next in line getting ready
Next in line getting ready
Mother and baby
Mother and baby
Two big female elephants crossing …
Two big female elephants crossing…
Next to the road
Next to the road
Ok maybe not two females after all
Ok maybe not two females after all
Herd of buffalos next to the road
Herd of buffalos next to the road
Crossing on a single line to take …
Crossing on a single line to take…
Still crossing
Still crossing
Will they ever stop
Will they ever stop
Is there a break in the line now?
Is there a break in the line now?
No still one to go
No still one to go
Ok maybe more than one to go then
Ok maybe more than one to go then
Last ones ?
Last ones ?
No not really
No not really
Still going
Still going
and going
and going
Baboons next to the camp
Baboons next to the camp
Baby baboons next to the camp
Baby baboons next to the camp
Babies
Babies
Babies playing
Babies playing
Babies playing
Babies playing
Babies playing
Babies playing
Babies playing
Babies playing
Mother and baby
Mother and baby
Mother and baby
Mother and baby
Mother and baby
Mother and baby
Cars need to stop
Cars need to stop
Hanging out
Hanging out
Hanging out
Hanging out
Hey whats up
Hey whats up
Who said that?
Who said that?
Oh over there - what do you want
Oh over there - what do you want
Very noisy antelope
Very noisy antelope
Or maybe a noisy elephant
Or maybe a noisy elephant
Antelope at night
Antelope at night
Elephant walking past the camp site
Elephant walking past the camp site
Elephant destoying trees at Shingw…
Elephant destoying trees at Shing…
Yep that tree gotta go
Yep that tree gotta go
Shingwedzi Hotels & Accommodations review
Shingwedzi Rest Camp
There are several big rest camps around Kruger National Park but most of them are in the southern part of the park. Up in the north are only a few big… read entire review
Shingwedzi
photo by: tj1777