Kenya and Tanzania Backwards Trip Report

Old Nov 8th, 2008, 08:02 AM
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Great report & photos, hats off & thanks to all of you who manage to do such detailed reports.
By the way, cybor, still waiting for the next episode of yours!
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 10:46 AM
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Cybor, I have a photographic record rather than a photographic mind. No notes - my wife took some for when she creates her scrapbook, but I haven't used them since my memory has managed to fill in the gaps between the photos (so I say - I probably forgot something). But I helped her write up her notes every day, so that reinforced things I guess. I also wrote the report up over a few weeks, so there was time for things to come back to me, and until the last few days it didn't get obsessive. I probably forgot some stuff, but never mind!
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 10:52 AM
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Kimburu, I saw your Mara and Ruaha pictures when you posted them, but was too busy to comment anything. I think the trip report kind of captions is a great idea. I still havenít written a word under my photos. All your Mara photos are irritatingly good, but most irritating of all is that there are so few topis, just a jogging one. It also irritates me that you saw zorillas that Iíve never seen and Iím not too happy about the cobra. Then there are far too many cubs.
You really saw a pangolin and a baby hippo in pink bootees in Ruaha! Interesting park!
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 12:01 PM
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A little run down and managed fairly haphazardly

Sounds very much like Lion Rock. Hard to complain given the cost though and I'd go back.

I'm very jealous of your dog sighting. That wasn't Marcus that cut you off, was it?

I think your oryx in East might be a fringed ear.

I miss Tsavo.
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 01:25 PM
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Kimburu, you have some very interesting observations on wildlife, people and Mrs Kimburu. I think I have to re-read what youíve written about the Tsavos and I definitely have to go back.
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 01:57 PM
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The Tarangire mongooses look like dwarf mongooses to me, and Tsavo East looks like a place I should return to. My guess is that the darker agama in Tsavo West is a flat-headed rock agama (Agama mwanzae) thatís usually found in the Mara and the lighter one is a redheaded rock agama (Agama agama). The dogs look sensational even with idiots around
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 03:24 PM
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Thanks Patty. I'll check out that oryx again. Does Marcus drive a white van with Nairobi plates? Yes, it was okay at Ngulia Bandas, but I don't think I'll get Nam Wan back there. She was totally unimpressed. I'll try though.

And double thanks Nyamera - I thought they were dwarf mongooses too, but the guide insisted in a way that made me think he should be right. How do you know? Well done with the agamas too - you've obviously moved one grade above me into the reptiles. I can now update the caption to appear wiser than I am.

Actually, three thanks and a sorry for being so irritating. I really did try to avoid seeing these things. And I have more topi photos, but I didn't get a special one. I will process some more nand redress the imbalance in the gallery. Near Serena they all turned their backs on me when we had the good light. Even the jogging topi was supposed to be a topi on a termite mound, but it started to come down off the mound so it could turn its back on me as soon as I got the camera set. I had to make the best of it that I could. Later, when we were sharing a vehicle, the other people and the guide wouldn't stop for topis - they considered that ate grass too boring compared to lions and cheetahs. I was outvoted. And I think next trip report will be photos with captions only - I wasn't sure I would, but I like it too now.
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 03:28 PM
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And now I need help with the eagles. Everything is being identified by me as "probably a Tawny Eagle", which makes me sound like a really bad guide from Nairobi.
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Old Nov 8th, 2008, 04:17 PM
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No, Marcus most definitely does not drive a white van.

Don't think you can get away with just photos and captions next time Your reports are far too entertaining.
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Old Nov 9th, 2008, 06:33 AM
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Kimburu, I donít know about the mongooses. I just thought they were so cute that they had to be dwarf. I googled for images and some slender are looking exactly like your mongooses and some dwarf as well Ö Dwarf mongooses live in packs and the slenders are solitary. How many adults were there? I havenít moved anywhere, as there are still black holes in my mammal knowledge. I just happened to be involved in a game with agama lizards on another forum.

Iím looking forward to a better topi balance in your gallery.
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Old Nov 9th, 2008, 02:20 PM
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Nice and very informative report and amazing collection of pictures in the 4 galleries.Really difficult to pick a few,there are so many good ones.
Next year i would like to do a combination of Selous,Ruaha and Tarangire.I wonder haw where your connections between ruaha and Tarangire?

Paco.
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Old Nov 10th, 2008, 07:40 AM
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Hi Paco.. The flight is Arusha to Ruaha, daily, so no problem except for it leaving around 8am from Arusha! We were allowed to board at Lake Manyara with no extra charge. Sometimes you can board at Tarangire without extra charge too. However, if they have to land just to pick you up there will be a charge for that - they call it "inducement" - I'm afraid I do not know how much but was told it was not too bad. If you go back to Arusha you basically have to overnight there. And the schedules seem to change every year so keep an eye on Safari Link and Coastal schedules for next year, if that's when you plan to go. Both are online but you have to ask them to be sure. An asterisk (*) or two will probably mean "inducement only". Coastal Air and Safari Link both have timetables and prices on their Web sites and are quick to answer questions.
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Old Nov 10th, 2008, 02:55 PM
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Beautiful Ruaha photos. The cheetah posed so nicely and they didn't even share your bed.

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Old Nov 10th, 2008, 03:03 PM
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I forgot to comment on the perfectly lit pangolin shot. I must have gotten sidetracked by my jealous rage.
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Old Nov 13th, 2008, 05:36 AM
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kimburu - enjoyed the combination of your sense of humor and your wonder and appreciation of the wildlife and scenery that comes out in both your narratives and your photos.

I'm always looking for places a bit more off the beaten path where I can spend a week or longer in one place. From your experience would Ruaha fit those criteria?
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Old Nov 13th, 2008, 11:00 AM
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Greendrake. Everyine has their own thoughtss, but from your question, I know I can say "to a T". Read my resonse to Hari, but if that does not turn yoi off, YES. That;s it, exactly.

Lynn. I do not wish to sleep on the floor, so any cheetah in our bed is not welcome. And thank you.
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Old Nov 14th, 2008, 05:51 PM
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Thanks for the Tsavo report and photos. What an eccentric hippo who has his schedule mixed up.

The red soil of Tsavo was striking. I didn't realize that was one of its attractions. The dogs on the red soil make for unique photos. Your last moon shot and the sunset giraffe were outstanding.

You were too lenient on the guide who disrupted the dog viewing.

Your comments about the late start to maximize viewing are something to note to prevent conflicts or frustration.

Tsavo East gets very little attention so thanks for shedding some light, Kimburu.
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