Escorts to/from Your Tent - How does this work?

Jul 18th, 2007, 04:17 AM
  #1  
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Escorts to/from Your Tent - How does this work?

Hi All - For those of you who have been on safari, how do the escorts work to and from your tent in the morning and at night?

For example, many of these camps are obviously located in game rich areas which is why we all want to stay at them...On the flip side, I don't want to wake up in the morning and stumble upon a lion outside of my tent waiting to have me for breakfast! Do the guides come get you from your tent in the morning and walk you to your vehicle when they see the "coast is clear"? Are they typically armed guides?

Also, when you have to go to and from your tent after returning from a game drive or even going to dinner at night, how does that work? Is it necessary to be escorted by a guide at all times going to and from your tent?

Thanks everyone...Just not sure how this works and wanted to get some advice from the experts on this forum. Thanks!
lmavolio is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 05:08 AM
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In my experience, there are only escorts are to and from the tents after dark, not in the daylight times. This may be different in different areas/camps. After dark, the escorts are ususally armed, although probably their best defence is a big, bright flashlight. I would not be overly concerned about this, but common sense would need to prevail.
betsyatl is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 06:36 AM
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Don't know where you are travelling to, but, in most of Southern Africa....you get a wake up call by someone in the morning and they check the walkway etc etc., for animals and tracks from the night. When you get ready, you just proceed to the lounge.

During the day, you go about your routine.....

After dinner, you are walked back to your tent- usually by a guide....

Enjoy!!!

Hari
HariS is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 06:40 AM
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Thanks everyone! Just to clarify, I am going to Kenya & Tanzania. Certain camps are not a far walk to the main area of the camp from the tent. Others are a bit farther from what I understan/read. I am staying at one camp Serian in the Masai Mara, where one trip report talked about a roaring male lion right in front of the tent! Got me thinking I would feel much better having an escort at all times!!
lmavolio is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 06:42 AM
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Imavolio,

Sounds fantastic....please update us of your game experiences from Serian. I have been curious about going there for sometime now...

Cheers,
Hari
HariS is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 07:20 AM
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NCL - escorted at dusk and during the night. Buffalo in front of the dining/lodge area about 25 ft. And also one under our deck (Number 3 - North Camp).

Segengeti Serena - excorted at night

Kirawira - escorted during all dark times - never saw any animals, but heard them all the time.
dssxxxx is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 07:21 AM
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Hari,
I guess you are right, I always assumed the "good morning" wake up was just that, a wake up. Never thought about it being more than that, since we were not escorted out of the tent.
betsyatl is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 07:26 AM
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Yeah, a dual purpose thing....

Last year, we learnt that the lions were not far from our tent during the night. However, they had left by the morning and we drove for atleast 3 hrs plus before we found them. Those boys can walk!
HariS is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 08:23 AM
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Imavolio, at every camp I've been to, an escort was available for the asking for those who wished one. I never especially felt a need, except once at Nxabega when I found a small elephant herd (the herd was small; the ellies were not) on the path to my tent after lunch.
DonTopaz is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 09:19 AM
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We had escorts to and from our tent in TZ after dusk and early morning, if we were going to dinner after dusk we told them in advance what time and we were collected and walked back when ready, you are normally asked what time you would like breakfast if dark they would come and collect you as betsyatl says armed with a torch in some cases only a dim torch and occasionally a stick nothing more. We too had lions roaring by our tent one so close we could hear him breathing and his shadow on our tent as we had left our outside lantern on, Brilliant! Daytime you can come and go as you pleased
keah05 is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 05:23 PM
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Rizzuto,

Funny....that Lion incident i refer to was at Lebala 2006 on my final night and recall seeing you at the lion sighting later that morning!

Cheers,
Hari
HariS is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 06:32 PM
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Dumb question that there's probably an obvious answer to - why don't these predators ever attack people in the tent? Surely they can smell us and that a cloth tent isn't going to stop them. I'll be going on a safari in September and this has been on my mind.

Steve
saridder is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 06:38 PM
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I think it's the same reason as they don't attack safari vehicles...the shape of the tent/vehicle doesn't resemble any type of food. get out of the vehicle or exit the tent and the story changes. there is a tale about a guy sleeping in a small tent with his feet sticking out and he was dragged out and eaten, so keep all body parts inside the zipped tent!
matnikstym is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 07:48 PM
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It works this way, you ignore their advice to wait for an escort and then one of us posts the newspaper article link about your death and we all make comments.

Seriously, if a dangerous animal is about you may also be told to wait for an escort during the day but that is not common.
tuckeg is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 08:29 PM
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I stayed at Ilkeliani in the Mara. At nighttime a Masai (with spear!) was assigned to each tent. They stayed outside our tent all night. When we decided to go to dinner the walked with us. They waited outside our dinner tent and when we wanted to go back to our tent to sleep they were right there with us. I was glad to have them. People did hear lions and hippos at night.

At the permanent lodges it was not required but there were a couple of times I was wondering if we should have had them. In Amboseli Sopa our hut seemed to be miles from the main house and the path was dark.

I have heard rumors of big animals wandering up to the grounds of some of the Serenas and Sopas.
waynehazle is offline  
Jul 18th, 2007, 10:44 PM
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Several buffalo on the grounds during the day at NCL between the cottages and the gift shop. I had to turn around and find someone to assist. They said one of the buffalo is known to be mean. Someone will take you there in the golf cart if necessary.
Clematis1 is offline  
Jul 19th, 2007, 06:50 AM
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Imavolio, Thanks for this post. My husband and I will be in Africa in ONE MONTH!!!! This post just sent the excitement level up several notches. My husband has been dreaming about being eaten by Lions, so of course I immediately sent him this post.(Mean?...no just fun) Seriously though, it definitely makes us aware of the dangers that can be in store for us and reinterates the reality of going to Africa and how you must be aware of your surroundings at all times. I can't wait to hear the sounds of Africa at night!

ndonna is offline  
Jul 19th, 2007, 07:50 AM
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What I was told about the buffalo at NCL is that there are some residents who are use to people and are not a problem. There are also some who are passing thru, going or coming from the crater. They are dangerous. The problems arise when guests think the visitors are the locals and get a big suprise. I don't know if Clematis1's buffalo was an orny local or a visitor.

At Ngala tented camp I walked passed the two resident warthogs, who are the size of small hippos, and a guest told me I was lucky as one had chased him up on his porch. They were large enough, that I would not have wanted to tangle with them (apparently they felt the same way about me).
tuckeg is offline  
Jul 19th, 2007, 07:53 AM
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Sorry that should have been ornery, sun is so bright on the beach here in Cabo I can't see what I typed.
tuckeg is offline  
Jul 19th, 2007, 09:18 AM
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Tuck, what they told me is that the mean one went after one of the employees a couple of months ago. So I got the impression it was a resident, but the one difficult one. One of the women who worked at NCL was a sweetheart and she and I held hands and walked in a different direction until we found someone had shooed the mean one back in our direction. She was quite nervous herself. I ended up just letting someone else go to the gift shop later for me. Decided it wasn't worth potentially getting gored for a trinket. Your warthog story is interesting as we walked by them many times at Phinda. You never know...
Clematis1 is offline  

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