We have just recently returned from an eventful trip to the Okavango Delta and central Kalahari game reserve. More about that later. I have just set up this new blog site to publish some of our more interesting photos. We only return to Australia later this week and have not viewed all our photos. We had some good sightings of leopard and cheetah as well as a single lion. And of course elephants galore from close quarters. I will not be publishing many of these photos on Facebook or other social media. Please feel free to comment.
Have you ever had a cheetah look you in the eye down a telephoto lens, wondering who would outstare the other first? I sat in the back of the Landcruiser, camera resting on the badger bean bag clicking, waiting for his next move, entranced in the golden light of dusk.
A cynic may say that safari is long grass and bumpy roads or 'spotting the big five' but if one looks longer, closer (and with an experienced guide) the marvels of the bush unfold. You see the gemsbok with the longest horns (!), the Crimson-breasted shrike hunting for insects and feeding it's youngster and the jackal dancing around the water hole trying to catch a pigeon. Look closer and you might see an old camel with warts on his horns, a dung beetle rolling his ball of elephant dung ten times his size, gushes of blood in the grass from an injured Impala ram or the twitch of an ear through the grass.
The soul sucks in the silence away from mobiles and Internet, craving the silence of the vast expanses. And in the dappled light of evening as the sun sets on another day and the predators come out to play once more, we enjoy a sundowner, reminisce of the shots we got, those that got away and watch the cheetah, ears alert hunting, their hides golden, stealthily head for the sand dunes.
Ollie is heading back to the Okovanga Delta in November, in time for the Carmine bee-eater breeding season and to Khwai, a microcosm on the river where one can see wild dog, almost everything in one day. If you want to experience beautiful Africa, think about joining him. Otherwise maybe an affordable flexible trip for 2-7 of you and your friends in Southern Africa. Be sure to start planning a year ahead with Ollie so he can secure the best camp sites for you. I highly recommend beautiful Africa with Ollie Rood!