A lion of a time!

by sandy on March 27, 2010

Friday 26 March – late afternoon (but only posted Saturday lunchtime!)

We are flying down a freeway heading back to Johannesburg following Ronda as closely as we can so we don’t get lost as we enter the outskirts of the city.
Driving back from Kruger National Park to Johannesburg

The freeway drivers here are wonderfully polite and pull way over onto the shoulder of the very well made roads, to let you pass. Equally politely everyone flicks their hazard lights to thank the drivers after they pass. We have found it delightfully chivalrous.
Montains of Mpumalanga

You drive through the mountains of Mpumalanga, great rugged, granite outcrops with massive boulders impossibly balanced on their flanks.

What a wonderful week we have had in the Kruger National Park. The internet access at Ngwenya was sporadic at best, so I could not share with you, on a daily basis, the incredible excitement of seeing wild life in such abundance.

Lion in Kruger National Park

Look who we found the next day. This stately, but battle-scarred lion was completely un-phased by the vehicles that skirted him respectfully on the other side of the road. The morning light lit up has mane like an Elizabethan copper collar. Lions are territorial, so it may have been he who so clearly warned us to leave his space the night before.

The days were about driving vast distances slowly through the park spotting game.
Zebra in Kruger National Park

We saw elephant aplenty, hippo, giraffe, impala and 20 other species of animal. And on the last day, we were rewarded for driving in outrageously hot temperatures to find a pair of cheetahs panting in the shade of a thorn tree, right on the side of the road. Truly incredible.

These two zebras are cleverly keeping the flies of each others faces with their tails, although we preferred to think they were in some kind of wonderful embrace.

On our return from game viewing we spent every other second wallowing like hippo in the pool to cool down. But unlike Australia, the temperature drops at night and it was cool in the evening and mornings which was a welcome relief.

Ngwenya Lodge is a vast time share resort and employs literally hundreds of local folk. Apart from them this week, we have not really engaged with the people of South Africa (family apart), just nature.

Now as we head back to Johannesburg after our week’s holiday we have plans for most of our 8 days here which involve KAS, starting with a good day’s parcel opening tomorrow.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Dawne Smith-Sliming March 27, 2010 at 23:11

Sandy,
I love the photographs. I also prefer to think of the zebras as embracing. :) Thank you so much for taking the time to share such beautiful photographs. Someone on Team KAS is quite the photographer!

Don’t forget your sunblock!

Sandy March 29, 2010 at 16:54

Your warning came too late Dawne and I have a full blown sun rash which is most unattractive!

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