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Pictures from South Africa 2010

South Africa 2010

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Wed
24
Mar '10

Suddenly, Elephants!


Team Alta managed to over-sleep, resulting in no breakfast for any of the participants (Thinh likes his Breakfast in the morning). Hopefully he will forgive us one day. The guide had already asked us if we could be ready at 7 instead of 8, but we didn’t make it. About 15 minutes late we met up in the reception, checking out and shaking hands with our Guide, Dirk. After exiting the center of Johannesburg, most of us was sleeping parts of the way to Kruger Park, waking up every second minute to look at something interesting. It’s worth noting that Dirk is 77 years young, but drives as a Schumacher on amphetamines.

We went full speed from Johannesburg towards the Kruger Park. On the way, we had a few stops. The first one was at Pilgrims Rest, an old gold mining community. Very cozy, but not so interesting that we stopped. A bit later we had a short stop at a famous pancake-house. The pancakes lived up to their name, and we left from there happy and full. In that small town there was surprisingly many people selling nuts and avocado from baskets on their heads. Another well known attraction is “Gods Window”, a great panoramic view into the Blyde canyon (if you’re lucky with the weather). We weren’t, so we pretty much just met a wall of fog. Not that we complain, fog can be pretty nice too.

The canyon revealed its glory from other angles during the rest of the trip, so we got some nice pictures from it. We also passed lot of small villages and half slum-ish places, but nothing too special. The trip to the park left us a bit sleepy, but after entering the “Orpen gate” to the Kruger national park, our eyes we’re pinned out the windows.

The plan was to go east to┬áSatara where we had accommodation for two nights.┬áThe trip there was filled with animal-sightings and great scenery. If a picture is worth a thousand words, we have some novels ready in the “Evidence” section on the left. At least in a while.. thus far we have only uploaded the pocket camera snapshots. Keep in mind that the censoring and quality check is not in order, so a lot of pictures might be sub-par. Right before entering the camp, we finally ambushed some giraffes having a evening snack. We counted seven beautiful specimens, including one overly-cute small one, and of course the girls in the group went wild (OK.. the boys were fascinated too).

Our accommodation for the following two days were Bungalows in a camp called Satso in the middle-ish of the Kruger park
. Each bungalow had an outside kitchen, with a braai (barbecue) that we were eager to try. We met up with the guide for dinner, which was a small buffet at the camp restaurant. The food was OK, and the beer was great. Nice signs on the premises informed us not to feed the hyenas, which was a pretty good tip

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. During dinner, suddenly a flood-light was turned on outside the fence, revealing an elephant sneaking around. We were amazed by the concept, and enjoyed some combined beer and elephant-watching.

Seeing that most of us had a long trip we were pretty tired, and went to bed around 23. Our plan was to start the next days safari at 6 am, so we needed our beauty-sleep. The beds were comfortable, and the animal-sounds were soothing.

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