Back home from Kwando (Hari)

Sep 6th, 2006, 06:38 AM
  #81  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Welcome home, Hari! I haven't finished reading all of this yet but loved this part -

"Hang onto the rails and hold tight" He yelled out, "we are running wild with the dogs".....

What a great trip!

Cindy

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Sep 6th, 2006, 07:12 AM
  #82  
santharamhari
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Thanks Cindy.

Gaurang,

Is there a reason you are doing both Kwara and Little Kwara? Is it due to space availability and you need to shift camps? It is literally walking distance apart, but, if you hv availability try Little Kwara first. You basically hv the same views from both (but different angles). However, both camps are independent and you cant see one from the other.

You must try to do both Lagoon and Lebala. Bear in mind, i just had better luck at Lebala. The two cheetah boys hang out more in the lagoon area than at Lebala thesedays. The Cheetah lady i mentioned in my trip report can be anywhere, also other cheetahs in the area.

Also, the lagoon dogs come back and forth. Infact in the recent months, lagoon has had more dog sightings than at Lebala. Just that my luck of the draw was different. Ofcourse, a lot will depend on how early it starts to rain this year and the amount of rain by the time you get there (for the big herds).

Lion sightings are good at both camps. Leopards are hit or miss at both.

If it has been raining a bit, then you need extremely good luck to see either Roan or sable.

People at both camps are fantastic.

Also, is there a reason why you planned more time in the Kwara area than in the Kwando concession? That seems a bit odd to me.

If i had 13 nights with Kwando: i would do 4 nights Little Kwara or Kwara, 6 nights Lebala and 3 nights at Lagoon. (or split L and L according to availability)

Also, by November the Selinda pack will be more mobile i think, so your chances of seeing them at Lebala are probable.

I like this dilemma of planning and itinerary sounds fantastic!!!

Hari
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 07:15 AM
  #83  
santharamhari
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Gaurang,

Dont plan your itinerary around roan or sable. For mid Nov, you may easily miss it if it rains a lot.....

Hari
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 07:23 AM
  #84  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 342
Hi Hari

The whole Kwando itinerary was based on availability at the time of booking and being able to spend consecutive nights at one camp before moving on to the next. But I do understand what you mean and I'll still keep trying to get more time in the Kwando concession and cut down on Kwara.

Thanks for the info and tips.

Gaurang
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Sep 6th, 2006, 07:26 AM
  #85  
santharamhari
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Gaurang,

This is a very excieting question for me to answer. I think you should spend a minimum 3 nights at Lagoon. I know you like video filming a lot. You should meet Jonah(manager) at Lagoon, who is not only a brilliant photographer but has a whole collection of brilliant clips he has filmed on location in the lagoon area. I think you will really enjoy chatting with him and he always has brilliant ideas as to how you can improve your pics/clips. He has clips of lions hunting hippo right outside lagoon camp (it happened two days prior to my arrival- ofcourse!!!)

I remember, last trip he was doing a transfer from Lebala to lagoon and he kept saying try it this way, try it that way. Eventually, i just handed him the camera and suggested he help me out!!! Great guy!!!

Hari
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 07:31 AM
  #86  
santharamhari
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Lagoon has added two more tents recently, so you should try again. They are now 8 tents. But, if they only hv two nights....take it anyways.

Worst case, Kwara will always deliver excellent action...so you are still in good hands. The lion sightings there are phenomenal.

Hari
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 07:38 AM
  #87  
santharamhari
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Cindy,

That's one of Spencer's classic one-liners. That was during the wild dog hunt. At one point, he slowed down for a turn and he pointed out and screamed,"black heron". Mad man, i thought!!!

Gaurang,

If i had the time, i would do 10 days Lebala, 5 days each lagoon and Little Kwara. Ofcourse, everyone there already think i'm nuts!!! hahahaha
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 07:40 AM
  #88  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9,220
Hari,
Only now got to your report and am really enjoying it and how interesting that BK who was my guide during our first visit to Mombo in 2001 is now working at Kwando. Harry, it seems he was managing the camp during your stay but isn't usually in that role - is he usually guiding or does he have other duties?
I ran into his cousin at Jacana in 2004 who told me that BK was at that time working on establishing his own business since leaving Wilderness Safaris so I assume he's joined Kwando sometime since then.
Julian, when you described the BK that guided you, I have to say it didn't sound anything like the BK I met at Mombo. For a start I seem to remember that you described your guide as a fairly young man. "My" BK Setlabosha would be in his thirties at least I think though I don't know that for certain. I would estimate that he was already in his thirties when I met him back in 2001 though perhaps he was still in his twenties then. He is a tall man, well built rather than scrawny, warm, intelligent and friendly and very good at teaching visitors about the environment, animals and people. I remember also that he was deeply committed to his local Christian church and also a real family man and very proud of his children. And he was one of the guides who impressed on us the importance of respecting the animals' space.
I simply cannot imagine him behaving in the way you described of your guide. So hence I wonder whether there are two guides using the nickname of BK? If there is indeed only one then I am truly so surprised that he behaved as he did during your visit both in terms of respecting animals and visitors.

Kavey is offline  
Sep 6th, 2006, 07:44 AM
  #89  
 
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Oh, just looked at all 14 wild dog pics - those are great pics! What fabulous sightings!
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Sep 6th, 2006, 07:45 AM
  #90  
 
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Hi Hari

I have just told my agent and he should definately be able to get me:

4 nights Lebala
2 nights Lagoon
3 nights Lebala
4 nights Little Kwara

It's all he can do at the moment, but he will try to squeeze in some more time at Lagoon. It will be unusual to leave Lebala and then return two days later, but I don't mind as it will be a game-drive during the transfers.

What do you think now?
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Sep 6th, 2006, 07:59 AM
  #91  
santharamhari
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Kavey,

The BK Manager at Lagoon is indeed the same one you describe. Now, maybe early 40's. He was a Mombo legend, indeed!!! Glad you liked my pics.

Gaurang,

Sounds good. Yes, game drive transfer from Lebala to Lagoon and back. That's what i did last year when i had scheduling problems. No worries at all. You pack your bags and do a longish drive....those cheetah brothers like that area inbetween both camps. You will be in good hands.

Hari
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 08:03 AM
  #92  
santharamhari
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Kavey,

I missed your other question. Harry- the Lebala camp manager, usually just manages the camp with his wife. But, he is a more than capable guide as well. He does have to guide at times like the week of my visit, where they needed to hv 5 jeeps running (Prvt vehicles etc etc).,

Yes, BK is very much a big part of his church. He has some sort of a pin on his shirt pocket signifying the church he belongs to. He is not thin by any means. Kavey, i definitely met the BK you are referring to.

Hari
 
Sep 6th, 2006, 08:47 AM
  #93  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Loved the wild dog photos. Maybe the fourth from last was my favorite, but it's very difficult to choose.

GREAT report, too. Sounds like lots of fun. And how wonderful that your sister shares your addiction.
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Sep 6th, 2006, 01:43 PM
  #94  
 
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Yes, Hari, that sounds like him. Now I just need to wait to hear back from Julian again to see if it's the same BK that acted as his guide - I'm sure he said that his guide was younger. I sure hope it's not the same BK as I'd hate to think of the BK that I met behaving in that manner.
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Sep 6th, 2006, 02:40 PM
  #95  
 
Join Date: May 2006
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Hari,

I just wanted to say thanks for sharing such and exciting trip report! I felt like I was right along with you on those exciting game drives. I'm glad that you had such a fantastic trip!


Jenn
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Sep 6th, 2006, 05:49 PM
  #96  
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Thanks Jenn, Kavey and Leely.

Kavey,

Maybe a different BK Julian was talking about. There are so many BK's, KB's, LT's, OB's, BB's, JFK's etc etc., no one can be sure.

Hari
 
Sep 7th, 2006, 12:28 AM
  #97  
santharamhari
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Here's some faces to the trip report:

http://www.kodakgallery.com/I.jsp?c=...q&x=0&y=y5b3w1

Hari
 
Oct 6th, 2006, 06:30 PM
  #98  
santharamhari
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topping this thread up, for Loru100

Enjoy!!!

Hari
 
Oct 6th, 2006, 07:27 PM
  #99  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 689
Thanks so much! Exciting report...I always envy those that can post such detailed trip reports. Your race to see the wild dogs brought back memories of racing through the Mara when we went to Kenya in '99. There is nothing like getting a call on the radio and racing along a "road" (I use the term loosely) to find a pride of lions or a leopard or cheetah sighting. Thanks again!
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Oct 6th, 2006, 07:54 PM
  #100  
santharamhari
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Glad you enjoyed it.....

Hari
 

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