Heading for the strange trees

Pafuri Travel Blog

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Strecthing

I go out of camp after breakfast using the back entrance which I did not know was there yesterday. Back there is a part of the river which is running next to the camp. Fortunately it is the dry season so I can drive across the road which is probably under water during the wet season. Next to the river are a couple of storks just hanging around in the dry river bank. On the other side of the road is a crocodile next to the last little water hole in this part of the river.

 

As I am driving up the road I get to see the first giraffes of the trip. The tall princely looking animals are always a fascinating sight when they appear.

First giraf
A bit down the road is one of the great things you really want to see in Kruger - a big group of cars hanging around the side of the road - a clear sign of something really interesting is close by. I need to investigate - what is it? And down there along the shore of a river is something a pack of lions - unfortunately you can hardly see them in the dense scrub next to the road. Only an ear of the lions head is visible when you look hard. Fortunately the huge herd of buffalos I meet a little further down the road are a lot easier to spot.

 

Going on the road is kinda interesting even when you don’t see any animals because the landscape in the park is very diverse - at times the vegetation will change within a couple of miles. And as I get further north there is an ever increasing number of one of the strangest trees on the face of the planet - the legendary baobab tree. The tree which grows older than almost any other tree since it is not even fully grown at the age of a thousand years and can live till the age of 3-4.000 years.

 

The baobab is so strange looking it has created several legends one being that the tree was the most beautiful of all the trees.

Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Indeed the tree was so beautiful it bragged about its own beauty so much that it claimed the roots of this tree were prettier than the crown of the other trees on the savanna. The gods took offense at this behavior and as a punishment they decided to plant the tree upside down so the leaves would be under the ground while the roots of the tree would be standing lonely pointing up in the air. This is why you see the trees standing around without any leaves on them. A less fascinating story is the tree just looses their leaves during the dry season to conserve water - but that story is not as much fun.

 

I get up to the most northerly most picnic ground in Kruger. It is only a few miles from the borders to Zimbabwe and Mozambique. You can actually drive straight from Kruger into the Limpopo National Park in Mozambique - there’s a separate border control post within the Kruger Park. But I am not having any plans to go visit Mozambique today hence I stay inside Kruger. At the picnic area are lots of guest - some humans but more interesting are the different animals hanging around. There are lots of nyalas going in the outskirts of the picnic area.

Nyala crossing the road on nyala drive
And given I never seen nyalas before I find this quite fascinating. In the river is a sort of big crocodile hanging out - just to make the whole thing a bit more varied.

 

There is also a little family of monkeys playing in the trees in the picnic area. Just before I am about to leave one of the female nyalas decide it is time to leave the outskirts of the picnic area and go right through the place. After leaving the area I meet a group of baboons playing next to the road - actually they are not next to the road they are on the road so I have to stick around for a while. I try to go out on a small drive on the dirt roads which should lead to an ancient archaeological spot where people used to live in very ancient times. I can’t find any signs pointing the way to it - and I figure out the reason in a while - the place is not open to the public. But at least there have been an incredible number of nyalas along the way so I don’t feel like I have been wasting any time. It is getting a bit late and considering the low speed limits on the roads within the park it is time to head back towards the camp - I mean you need a bit of extra time if there are something interesting along the road.

Koralifix says:
Must have been an exciting walk, glad you took all these photos!
Posted on: Jun 15, 2009
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Strecthing
Strecthing
Stork in the morning next to the c…
Stork in the morning next to the …
First giraf
First giraf
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Nyala crossing the road on nyala d…
Nyala crossing the road on nyala …
Stork relaxing on one leg
Stork relaxing on one leg
There are acutally two of them
There are acutally two of them
Impalas in the dry river next to c…
Impalas in the dry river next to …
Crocodile next to the tiny pool
Crocodile next to the tiny pool
Crocodile next to the tiny pool
Crocodile next to the tiny pool
Little group of zebras hanging aro…
Little group of zebras hanging ar…
Little group of zebras hanging aro…
Little group of zebras hanging ar…
Little group of zebras hanging aro…
Little group of zebras hanging ar…
Little group of zebras hanging aro…
Little group of zebras hanging ar…
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
Giant herd of buffalos relaxing
More zebras
More zebras
The baobab tree
The baobab tree
Waterbuck
Waterbuck
Birds birds birds - they were just…
Birds birds birds - they were jus…
Birds birds birds - they were just…
Birds birds birds - they were jus…
Birds birds birds - they were just…
Birds birds birds - they were jus…
Birds birds birds - they were just…
Birds birds birds - they were jus…
First nyala pic
First nyala pic
Female nyala hanging around the pi…
Female nyala hanging around the p…
Female nyala hanging around the pi…
Female nyala hanging around the p…
Hi how are you
Hi how are you
Big croc
Big croc
Anybody dropped something?
Anybody dropped something?
Nyala male - at the picnic spot
Nyala male - at the picnic spot
Anybody dropped something for me?
Anybody dropped something for me?
Working around searching the picni…
Working around searching the picn…
Nyala male - at the picnic spot
Nyala male - at the picnic spot
Nyala male - at the picnic spot
Nyala male - at the picnic spot
Baboons
Baboons
Two tails
Two tails
Common red bucks
Common red bucks
Resting impala
Resting impala
baby baboons on the road
baby baboons on the road
baby baboons on the road
baby baboons on the road
It is ok mummy will fix it
It is ok mummy will fix it
Walking baboon
Walking baboon
Baby blocking traffic
Baby blocking traffic
Male nyala
Male nyala
Reaching for the trees
Reaching for the trees
Pafuri
photo by: sarahbergs