King of the Jungle

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Our trip up to Kruger, for one last shot at tracking down some lions, was a success!  1 day, 2 nights: 9 lion, 3 rhino, 2 hungry hyennas, stacks of buffalo, zebra, giraffe, hippos, bucks, and of course elephant.

We were most impressed by two young lions who were sitting next to the dirt road just after sunrise, almost like they were waiting for us.  We turned the car off and sat and waited for a short while.  They walked towards The Beast, roared a little, and stared right up at Nic sitting in the passenger seat.  “Waldu, wind the window up, quick, he might jump in.”  No, they were only interested in hanging out around the car.  When a tour group came they walked ahead a little, turned and walked back to The Beast again.  One even laid behind the car and had a nap.

A few hours later we were stopped by a lion and lioness taking a casual mid morning nap on the side of a main road in Kruger.


Lions weren’t the only animals to stop in the road, and cause mini traffic jams.  A rhino ran out right in front of us, as did buffalo and we saw our fair share of ‘zebra crossings.’  But it was on our first night in Kruger when we got up close to the wild animals.  While we were sitting around the fire, we spotted a spotted hyenna approach the fence that seperated the campsite from the wild life.  He was followed by another larger one.  They both proceeded to patrol the fence for hours, putting on a great show for us.  Was Nic scared?  Not at all, but…

Later that night we were woken up by a large crashing sound.  First thought: An elephant has broken down the fence (eek), second thought: an elephant has broken down the fence and will come for our water (alarm bells), third thought: We’re (ok, I’m) not leaving this tent to go see what it is.  We peered out the tent window and saw our neighbours return to their caravan so thought it couldn’t be anything too major.  Mind you, they had the protection of a caravan if indeed the fence had come down and the wild animals were coming through the campsite.

As the sun started to shine we could see the real situation.  A huge tree in the campsite next to us was rotten and its’ branch had falled down over the site and over the fence, pushing it half way down and creating a nice little bridge for the hyenna (or any other animal) to climb over.  Even more frightening was that we were going to camp at that site but at the last minute decided to swap sites for one with a bench seat and put up with the smell of sewerage water.  What a blessing – we weren’t flattened, and we got to see the hyennas up close.

All in all it was a great way to spend the last safari of our trip and spend a few more days camping together, albeit in pretty cold conditions. But who can complain when you get to see all this.

Water Babies


Warm Up

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We are heading off to Kruger National Park today to warm up after the cold Jo’burg weather started to set in last week.  To get back into the safari spirit (warm up – ha ha), we decided to head to the local Rhino & Lion Park for some wildlife spotting on a smaller scale.  We packed the car with snacks and invited Waldu’s nephew, Henric, along for the day.

We were not disappointed…rhinos right next to the car as soon as we drove in the gate, lions and lioness, cheetahs surrounding the car (not to eat us of course), wild dogs napping next to us, a snake show, vultures, lots of boks, zebra and then there was adorable animal crèche with South African baby animals as well as jaguars and tigers (Simon, tigers in Africa!).


White lion cubs

Male lion


Sleeping Wild Dog