Home from the green season of Botswana.

Reply

Apr 8th, 2006, 07:15 PM
  #21
santharamhari
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Johan,

Like your experience....must hv been awesome.....

Daddog,

Any cheetahs around chiefs or do they talk of any or is it really very rare thesedays that the lion and hyena population is really high?

Thanks
Hari
 
Reply With Quote
Apr 8th, 2006, 09:00 PM
  #22
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Hi Hari,
We did not see any Cheetahs. We did find a Hyena den with 2 young pups left alone playing with each other. The Mombo Boys and their pride was very close to the den.......Let just hope they can survive....... We found the mother hunting a distance away...I got some real nice photos of the pups.
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 8th, 2006, 10:47 PM
  #23
johan_belgium
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Daddog,

Doug is the man who's working with the elephants.

Greetings,

Johan
 
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 12:50 AM
  #24
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 993
Hi Daddog,

Great report so far. I have been wondering if Stanleys and Chiefs are the same camps I was at in Sept 2001. I think they are and I am surprised at the gameviewing you have had, because at that time, it was just above average, and in those days I thought they were A & K camps. The saving grace was Doug and Sandi and their 3 eles at the time, Jabu, Marula and Thembi. We spent a day with them and it was fantastic. Doug with the eles was amazing - I have done a bit of dog training, and the obedience levels of the eles was incredible. I for one, was pleased to see that you are not allowed to ride on them but you watched their day to day life.

Certainly the general gameviewing was not the best I have seen. We saw no leopard in Botswana, and we also went to Chobe Chilwero. A few people have been mentioning Chiefs Camp, and I haven't been able to believe they meant the same camp, but it must be that things have changed dramatically.

Kind regards,
Kaye
KayeN is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 01:50 AM
  #25
johan_belgium
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Kaye,

Chief's camp is great at certain times of year but I normally wouldn't visit it in September. I would never go to Chief's when flood levels are high because of the limitation of roads they can drive on and the location of Chief's camp (drier part) versus Mombo (fertile part).

You should give it a try in early December or late March/early April. Some of my best shots of predators were taken at Chief's and sightings were abundant when I was there.

I agree with you that Doug is really great with its ellies. Stanley's/Baines can be great or just average. It has a lot to do with flood levels and abundance or lack of water. I was at Baines in June 2005 and gameviewing was superb! But there are camps in the delta that offer better general gameviewing like Kwara and Little Vumbura.

They are still A&K camps. But they use the name "sanctuary lodges" nowadays.

Greetings,

Johan
 
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 05:04 AM
  #26
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Johan,
Ok, yes Doug and the Elies were the next morning I will follow up on my Report .........He was one heck of a devoted guardian.
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 05:16 AM
  #27
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Hi Kaye,
Johan nailed it right on the head, although having the right guide helps as I explained ......Our guide TT is a 4th genaration tracker and can almost smell where the animals are.... That leopard outside Baines was very relaxed and he might have been their as we passed in and out of camp
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 05:26 AM
  #28
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,481
Great report, daddog. Great leopard story.
sundowner is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 06:33 AM
  #29
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
Thanks for the report, Dadog, and glad you did not experience the heavy rains that appeared earlier in the season.

Do you happen to have any information on the elephant walks that can be done from Baines and Stanley's? I realize you dids not partake in this activity, but just fishing for info on what looks to be a unique experience.

Johan, your lesson on bringing adequate film is a good one and can be generalized to adequate batteries, memory cards, etc. for the digitals. Like the boy scouts' motto: Be prepared. Ironically, one of the sights most etched in your mind will likely be the mother and baby leopard, for which you had no camera. I've noticed that I remember those missed photo opportunities very well.
atravelynn is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 06:53 AM
  #30
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Hello Lynn,
I indeed did do the Elephant Experience.......here is my report.
Regards, Daddog
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 08:03 AM
  #31
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
We woke up early in the Am........to be driven a short distance away where we were greeted by Doug Groves and his family of three adorable Elephants.This is one amazing experience....... Anyone who has the love for Elephants and wants a close encounter....this is a must. You actually get to touch every part of their body from their feet, by the way they are cushioned like shock absorbers to their Ears. I was fascinated by the way they responded to his soft spoken tone. He would praise them with horse pellets......yeah thats right horse pellets. I really would like to give him credit for devoting his life to these wonderful Animals. Let me give you his Web sight so I don't forget....www.livingwithelephants.org .. You do everything from walking with their trunk on your hand. on your shoulder, learning to interpirt the various sounds they make with their trunks....to tricks like pulling your hat off your head..... We wound up with a fantastic picnic....as they ate their lunch close by..... . Doug admired our safari jackets with the various patches from diffrent camps through out Africa.... I quickly asked if he had any patches to sell...he told me sorry no then he thought for a minute and told me that he an old shirt with his logo embossed on it...would you like it maybe you could make a patch out of it. The next day on a early morning game drive we spotted Doug and his Elephants. He noticed us and said is that Larry and Lucille I was going to drop off the patches to you at Stanley's but its nice to Give them to you in person ... I told him I would be proud to wear it... It was sad when eventually we had to leave and his orphaned elephants.......as our vehicle was getting ready to leave,Dougs Elies Raised their trunk for a final wave good bye.
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 08:18 AM
  #32
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
You did the the elephant walk. It was coming up next! I must learn patience.

I checked the website, thanks.

Here's an interrogation for you. Answer as many questions as you wish.

How many guests went on the walk and do you know the max allowed or min required?

Were there people from both camps or are there usually?

Is it easier or better to do the walk from Stanley's or Baines?

How long was the walk in time and distance?

What was the terrain?

What did the eles do when you were together--walk and graze and eat horse pellets?

How did the handlers direct the elephants? With the horse pellets? Who knew?

Where do the eles stay when they are not walking with guests?

Is this done daily? Twice a day? Couple times a week?

Could you do an am walk, then leave for another camp or home later in the day?

Would 2 walks in a 3-day stay be reasonable, advisable, overkill, too expensive?

They WAVED goodbye!!!???? Wow! This has to be a highlight of the trip!

Thank you.
atravelynn is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 12:10 PM
  #33
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Hello Lynn,
Here are the answers to your Questions
The is a max of 10 and a min of 6
There were people from both Baine's an Stanley's. This is booked in advanced
Both camps are very close, about a 15 minute drive.
The terrain was high grass, trees , and holes from different animals. we were fortunate not to have any rain.
The Eles walked with us by our sides for most of the time also they stoped to munch on leaves .
The Elephant experience is done once per day around 8:00 Am
Doug had another handler escorting him. Actually the horse pellets were used only for rewards and once in awhile for a treat. These Eles were better behaived than my kids.
The Eles are contained at dougs camp at night. During the Day they roam free. Doug told us he spend as much as 10 hours with them although there is alway somebody keeping a eye on them.
You can do the elephant experience and manage to go to another camp in the same day. I think you could leave for home after its over around 1:00 PM.
I found that doing the experience once was ok....but I have a itch to do it again.
The cost is about $300.00 US and beleive me worth evey penny.
You sound very interesed. You won't be sorry. If you get the chance do it.
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 12:17 PM
  #34
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Lynn,
I forgot to tell you.....lots and lots of photo to take with this trio.... They are very photogenic
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 9th, 2006, 07:04 PM
  #35
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Afternoon Gamedrive.................
We left the Camp around 4:30 with our guide TT...Very excited and felt great joy about the time we spent with the Elephants...
We hopped on our vehicle and introduced ourselves to the other couple who would be traveling with us..... We did not get any answers........OH No..... I don't believe my eyes.... This guy is wearing a BRIGHT RED JACKET AND, HIS WIFE A CANARY YELLOW JACKET......Lets get real you don't go to Africa on Safari wearing these colors.....
Our guide went through the general rules ......but there was no reply...
It turned out they could only understand a few word of English .....Now I understand why people hire private vehicles..... Anyways it was kind of quiet as far as gameviewing although on our way back to the camp we did see a African Wild Cat eating a Scrub Hare ......We probably stuck out like a flashing light...... After the game drive I went to the camp manager and asked if They could please go on another vehicle next time....
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 10th, 2006, 01:19 PM
  #36
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
Thank you Dadog for the elephant walk details. Looks fabulous.
atravelynn is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 11th, 2006, 04:32 PM
  #37
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 50
Morning Game Drive Stanley's
Good things at odd times.
We requested a 6:00 am game drive since we had to fly to Chief's at Noon.
Our guide TT was excited and there was talk about a pack of 16 Wild Dogs.....
We actually heard some yupping last night....We were not sure what animals were making the sounds.... We were off and it was a little chill in the air.
We headed for a area where the dogs were spotted a while back... TT noticed
lots of tracks but no dogs....It looks like they might be
headed back into the Moremi Reserve .......No he said they are moving toward the airstrip. He noticed
that the tracks are turning directions...
We were off moving rather fast TT's
head moving up and down, one eye on the tracks another on the road... We couldnt
believe our eyes just outside the airstrip...... It's the Pack..... We were so excited. TT quickly got on his
radio to the camp, with a smile on his face.... we followed them as the moved out into a area that was not possible to travel.... I can tell you they moved
as a group folling the alpha male.
This was a special Morning....and a very nice memory...
daddog is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:27 PM.