Botswana in January

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Apr 28th, 2005, 10:24 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 426
Botswana in January

I am getting conflicting info about travelling to Botswana in January(this is my preferred time, due to scheduling restraints). I have heard 110 an rainy, I have heard one thunder shower for 2 hours in the afternoon. Any first hand info would be helpful.
ellene is offline  
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Apr 28th, 2005, 11:19 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
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ellene,

The rain is not really an issue for the traveller in the conventional sense. It will effect the game viewing dramatically. The rains form a number of natural pools so the animals are able to disperse. This makes game viewing very hit and miss. The vegatation will have also grown and prevent the excellent sightings of the dry season, where animals are also attracted to the limited water supplies.

That said, bigcountry went to Zim and Bots in Jan and had excellent game viewing. This was becasue of the current low rainfall. The trip report can be found here

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threadselect.jsp?fid=4


Mombo and Chiefs will still have excellent game viewing. Though some camps will be poor. Im sure someone could give you the heads up on this.

All i can say is that the Makgadikgadi region is amazing in January. The salt pans form a shallow lake of endless water. The flamingo migration ends here as their young are born.

Hope this helps

PS it is also calving season in Jan, so it is a free for all for the predators.

backtoafrica is offline  
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Apr 28th, 2005, 12:41 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: May 2004
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Ellene: I was in Botswana in January of 2003, I think it was around January 7 - 14. 7 nights on safari staying at Duma Tau (Linyanti area), Duba Plains (Delta), and Mombo (Moremi).

We had one rain the entire time. Late in the day, maybe an hour before dark the thunderstorm rolled in. It rained for 3 or 4 hours. It was hot in the middle of the day, especially at Duba Plains. We had one day that was between 105-110. Most of our days probably topped out in the 90's. Nights were very comfortable and not hot at all. For morning drives I typically wanted long pants and had my sleeves rolled down. About midway through the drive sleeves would go up and I'd zip off pant legs but it was warm not hot yet. After having lunch it would be getting pretty hot and I would soak in the pool and read on the edge. By the time the afternoon drive came it would be pretty warm for the first hour and then fairly nice.

Wildlife viewing was great -- about 30 different species of mammals. The green makes the photos look wonderful, warmer than dry season. The part of January we were there for the grass is not too tall yet. I'm sure dry season spotting is easier but we had great wildlife sightings and animals were plentiful.

I personally would not hesitate to go in January again. Especially since we paid about 30% less than a dry season trip.
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