My Kenya Adventure Diary

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Aug 16th, 2011, 01:48 PM
  #61
 
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ttt for pat c
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Aug 16th, 2011, 05:15 PM
  #62
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Thanks Karen!
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Aug 17th, 2011, 01:18 PM
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Oh wow, I just came over to poke around for a much needed visit and I found your report and pics...fabulous time spent reading and looking. Youall packed quite a bit into your trip; sounds like excellent guides and fun experiences.

Oh how I yearn to return!

Tx for sharing - and you started with Dom P...I knew the rest of the pics would be captivating!

MB
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Aug 17th, 2011, 05:31 PM
  #64
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Thanks moneyburns and yes a lot of fun on safari and a lot of Dom on the way there and back!
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Sep 4th, 2011, 01:29 AM
  #65
 
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I know how you feel when there are inconsiderate tourists. I had a similar experience while out on a balloon safari over the Massi. We had landed and were on the way back to camp when we parked up next to a rock to see a male lion who proceeded to jump up on the rock less than 5ft away. The couple in the lr with me (not my group who were excellent) kept squealing and I and the driver had to turn round and tell them to shut up. The lion could quite easily have jumped them and me and their noise was only going to attract his attention.

I went with Kuoni and thankfully our driver/guide never broke the rules, indeed our group told him we would rather miss the shot than drive where we were not allowed. Thankfully I still managed to get some amazing shots http://www.depicus.com/africa/wallpapers/ and fell in love with Africa. Off to Tanzania this year and already planning the next trip.
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Sep 4th, 2011, 08:44 AM
  #66
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The guides could had done a better job IMO but by trying to enforce the rules or regulations it could harm their income, especially their tips.

My wife and I enjoyed our time around the isolated Sala's camp very much as it felt as if we had the whole Masai Mara to ourselves.
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Sep 4th, 2011, 08:48 AM
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Based on Depicus's account, I think we must institute a new safari rule.

If a lion is sitting on rocks above your vehicle just a few feet away, participants within said vehicle should not squeal like a wounded prey.

This could be inserted right after the rule about not petting the hyenas.

Those jeep climbing cheetahs seem to be a trademark of the area around Little Gov, one generation learning from the previous. How nice you could witness this behavior, Hanuman.
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Sep 4th, 2011, 09:06 AM
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atravelynn,

The cheetah was being harassed by a couple of hyenas and it just climbed to the top of the jeep and then jump down. I had hope that it would do the same to ours and perhaps for it to just sit there for a while. That, would had been awesome!

Back at home and "perusing" youtube videos of leopards and lions I realize how very dangerous these wild animals are. I am grateful for such close encounters with them but the next time I would not be so brave! Look at this video of a leopard attacking a Kenyan park ranger in his vehicle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPEFMMqXfow
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Sep 4th, 2011, 02:05 PM
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It's not at all unusual for cheetah to look for the high-ground. They don't hunt as do the lion and leopard. Why the flat grass plains are ideal and thus a termite mound or vehicle suite them... being able to see 360-degrees for their next meal.

We've been fortunate to have a Duma jump on our vehicle and stay for probably 40/minutes, till dark. Surprised the bejesus out of us... it was awesome as we were only separated by the windscreen... us looking out and she staring back. So relaxed that not even movement within the vehicle phased her. And, as dark fell and she went on her way, to learn next day from guests in another vehicle and staying at another camp where we wound up, she caught a Tommie for dinner. So, there are we heading back to camp and run into her consort, just strolling along the road... and a mile farther, there are four Simba just out for an evening hunt; lots of aware eyes could be seen in the dark. Great dinner conversation that night!

... we were on the Mara North Conservancy, only 3/vehicles and sure enough, next day... she was back though atop another vehicle. When she did jump off she had in her sights a Tommie about a mile away that we tracked, but she never went for it; and the Tommie didn't have the foggiest during the hour we watched... maybe she had a full tummy! Lucky Tommie!

Another visit, out on the plains on the eastern side of the Triangle with no game around, I figured there must be a predator about, to which my guide agreed. Then, about half-mile ahead I see a termite mound and a flicker of white... could that be an "ear?" Well, as we moved closer, it sure was, but not Duma, rather Chui.

Not discounting that Twiga is my favorite animal, Duma is my favorite cat, but to come upon Chui during daylight just enjoying the sun... someone was smiling down on me that day and not another vehicle anywhere... anywhere!. There he was (too big to be girly), just sitting and posing as we clicked, and clicked and clicked. What an afternoon!

But for when at Sala's Camp last year, seeing a small wildie river crossing, with no one but us around... I'll take my cat experiences any day.
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Sep 4th, 2011, 07:02 PM
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That's a nice account of some of your adventures sandi. You are right that if the animals are not around Sala's then it could be bit boring.

Sandi - do you have your photos online somewhere?
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Sep 4th, 2011, 07:35 PM
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That was quite the video. Don't go poking leopards with a stick before releasing them. Yet another safari rule.
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Sep 5th, 2011, 02:40 AM
  #72
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atravelynn,

Very good rule but while looking at our home video I counted the leopard that we saw, roar or threatened to jump at us 4 times. Luckily the lioness hung around and the leopard didn't dare come down the tree. Probably will have a nightmare soon with the leopard jumping into our jeep!
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Sep 5th, 2011, 06:14 AM
  #73
 
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Photos online. I guess so, but haven't looked at them since last June. When time allows will look-see and try to post, at least Chui! He was oh so beautiful! Have patience though... asante!
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Sep 10th, 2011, 09:59 PM
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Thank you for a very informative report of a first trip to Kenya, Khun Pook. Seems you were well prepared and benefited from it. Excellent. You have a really nice photographic record of it too... loved the frightened young lion and your wife's star jumps made me laugh. I never expected to see the (in)famous star jumps in the Mara. A sure sign your wife is enjoying herself - is she hooked? Pity Kenya Airways were fully booked - a night in a 5-star hotel is available anyday, but an extra day in Africa is worth its weight in gold.

The crossing story is like a big black cloud on a sunny day, but it has to be told how it was and it's really great you maintained your dignity. I can see I'll need to take a monopod out with me if I go again in high season - used to only need it to keep the damn vervets and baboons away in camp, but times change it seems.. very effective club with a solid ballhead on, and ability to vary its length could be helpful with Americans on the jeep. ;-)
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Sep 11th, 2011, 01:19 AM
  #75
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Thanks kimburu and I'm glad that you like the report and photos!

Yes my wife enjoyed herself very much and we were very lucky and got to see everything that we wanted to. My brother and his family plus 30 odd friends travelling in a large group few days after us didn't have it so good in term of sightings but they still enjoyed themselves.

Regarding Kenya Airways, my brother flew with them and he said that it was the worst airline he has every flown. I've flown on some bad Russian airlines which he hasn't so I don't think he knows what he is talking about. You are right though another day/night in Kenya would had been nice but going to Dubai and staying at the Armani hotel was nice as well!
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Sep 11th, 2011, 05:07 AM
  #76
 
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I flew Aeroflot and Tarom Bangkok to London back in the late 1980s, so yes, your brother is spoiled! Kenya Airways is definitely in another class entirely to Thai or Emirates, especially in economy class, but it's not that bad and only 9 + hours to Nairobi. Win one way, lose another I guess. Business class is actually very good as long as you only want to sleep.

A group of 30+ from Thailand? Amazing - usually people here (Bangkok) want to go but never quite get around to doing it once they work out the cost, see the level of "luxury" and compare it with the Maldives or something. Interesting!
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Sep 11th, 2011, 06:44 AM
  #77
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kimburu,

คุณเป็นคนไทยหรือเปล่า? Yes 30+ from Thailand and they are all recreational diving friends going on a safari together. However, they chose to visit multi national parks vs just the Masai Mara in our case hence they only had 3 nights in the Mara. Around 6 of them flew in business and they were the ones who complained!
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Sep 11th, 2011, 10:28 PM
  #78
 
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No Khun Pook, I am not. But my wife is, and I have been here since the late 1980s.

They must have expected good food and service in business! Or maybe traveling a lot makes one hardy and less demanding - just give me a sleep! To be honest I preferred Kenya Aireays business class to our Thai flight to Johannesburg (haven't done other Thai flights in business though) just because of the flat beds. My wife strongly disagrees.
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Sep 11th, 2011, 11:55 PM
  #79
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kimburu if you have been here that long then คุณเป็นคนไทย
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Sep 27th, 2011, 11:15 AM
  #80
 
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Pook, How did I miss your report??!! Your photos are fabulous!! You did an exceptional job with the 70-200 with extenders. Just reading your report is having me rethinking our next trip (Guatemala--maybe during holy week) and saving up for another Kenya adventure. (We went with our kids 25 years ago and went to Tanzania by ourselves in 2007.) You saw SO much and so close up and great activity. Hmmmm. Very enticing. Thanks for the excellent report.
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