Photo's -Mara-Mahale 06

Sep 22nd, 2006, 10:23 AM
  #1  
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Photo's -Mara-Mahale 06

Here's a few! Hope you like! Masai tribe shots still to come...thomas

www.wanderlust06.shutterfly.com/action/
iggy5858 is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2006, 10:47 AM
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Wow Thomas - many nice ones but I am especially enamored with some of your chimp shots and sunsets. Looks like you had great chimp sightings. How long did you get to hang with them?

Thanks for posting!
Sharon
cooncat3 is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2006, 02:44 PM
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Awesome pics. Thomas. I as well, would love to hear about your chimp experience - your pics. of them are fabulous - it appears that you got close enough to them to capture their soulful eyes and humanlike hands. How close were you and do they sit still for long?

You had so many great wildlife and nature photos that it's hard to pick any favorites.
Thanks for sharing;
Sherry
cybor is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2006, 05:02 PM
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Super shots starting with that adorable lion cub and then the rest of the pride. The "2 of us" baboon were precious. What's the story behind that croc mouth closeup? Even with a telephoto zoom, you had to be fairly close. Great hyenas. Your final shot was an beautifully innovative take on the obligatory sunset photo.

The excellent chimp photos are a good indication of how successful your chimp outings were.
atravelynn is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2006, 05:57 AM
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Thanks, I only put a few on to give you a feeling of our trip- The Chimp were wild and moving alot of time in the darker areas-so many great shoots were missed/out of focus/dark. Mainly I had to hold still-decide what I was going to go after-because so much was going on around us. Sometimes we would be in a path and they would get on the path and we would have to move over to let them go by.I tell you I would go back to camp feeling excited & depressed [how could I have missed so many amazing shots] Many of my Chimp shots I brightened in my photoshop program. They hit the ground and hoot loudly and sometimes charge you -it's really hard for your hands not to be sweating wet and shaking from the excitment.Several times I used a monopod
but that woud sink into the dirt and not hold firm- also when you're shooting you miss so much seeing/feeling/enjoying the experience. [but I love shooting]-thomas
iggy5858 is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2006, 07:21 AM
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I am sure that the chimp photography was a challenge to say the least, but you ended up with good results. They are not easy subjects nor is their enviornment conducive to good photography.

Do you recall if your guides indicated you had a typical chimp outing, unusually successful, etc?

Also can you refresh my memory on how many chimp treks you did?

Finally, were you able to take photos when the chimps came into camp?
atravelynn is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2006, 09:07 AM
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Challenge is a good word for it-but we were lucky. The group before us weren't as lucky or the folks after us I heard. One morning as I set down to enjoy my eggs Beat the camp director tells the table that a large male was eating lemons from the tree in front of my tent #3 -I was the only one that droped his fork and ran-[and again I messed up many shots in the excitment] but i did get a few!
We stayed 5 days 4 nights at Nkungwe
- One major trek per day, but many times they also came into the back of the camp behind tent # 11 [in the tree] Once we were in the raised lounge area when 2 [mom & baby] came walking by from the back looking up at us. My big rule is -you can't shoot if you don't have your camera-I did. We followed them down a path in the forest and I got some nice shots and another traveler got video.
We also had shy yellow Baboons come drink from the lake each day and a Wart hog as well. They said it wasn't typical-we were LUCKY...thomas
iggy5858 is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2006, 09:24 AM
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Oh about the large Croc, we were looking for the Wildebeests to cross when we spotted him on the egde of the water mouth open . I pulled myself to the top of the roover and shot into the reeds.He was so close to us. Later another smaller croc swam by behind him -WOW what a sight!-thomas
iggy5858 is offline  
Sep 24th, 2006, 07:19 AM
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iggy,

I can't believe you were the only one to interrupt your breakfast to see the male chimp in camp. I can get eggs at home but certainly not see a chimp. I wonder if he found the lemon as sour as we would.

Your experience is a good lesson to always bring the camera. Even for evening meals in the dark, I tote mine along. You just never know!

With that croc shot, you probably caught him unaware because they usually submerge.

So you did 4 treks? I recall some of your highlights of hunting chimps and mating chimps. Did you see the chimps on each of your outings?

I would think the time of year you went would be a good time. Did the guides mention anything about an optimal time of year to do the chimp tracking?

Can you describe your transportion to and from Mahale?

Five nights is a nice long time. How did you decide on 5? Was there any thought along the lines of "we can do 5 at Nkungwe for the same cost as 3 at Greystoke?"

Will you return to to Africa to hunt forhyenas? I am trying to think of the best place to see hyenas. The Mara comes to mind. I've also seen lots in the Ngorongoro Crater. Since they are nocturnal, anywhere that offers night drives should increase your chances.

Thanks for the info!
atravelynn is offline  
Sep 25th, 2006, 05:24 AM
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Hello, Well the 15 seat plane to Mahale was a small one but not full - then we took a good size boat for about 1 hour [which was much longer since we waited for another plane of 2 delayed travelers] The view of the lake as you arrive is spectacular! The CLEAR BLUE color- the vastness- awesome. Since we were Lucky we had more than one sighting a day - not counting the Chimps coming into the camp each day-the only trek we didn't see Chimps was the day we left,which turned out to be one of our nicest times in the forest. The forest at Mahale is wonderful and we have been in jungles all over the world- it's so fresh and alive- trees so tall- but sadly branches so low- the first day I took my backpack which kept getting caught on low hanging branches I bent to get under.[after that it was camera in fannypack or around my neck-forget my other lens]
The Croc was found near Mara Safari Club it was a huge one who knew we were there and just didn't care- he was going to sun and forget about the pests taking pictures- this guy was BIG!
The dream trip I want to go on sometime in the future- and keep putting it off because no one goes... is GABON. Everything is there, [Loango the premier national park protects Hippos,forest Elephants,Nile Cros,Leopards,Gorillas & Humpback Whales]I'm not sure if they have the Hynea or the Honey Badger -but that would seal the deal. In Dec. we are going to Jordan-which should be very ,VERY interesting.-thomas
iggy5858 is offline  
Sep 25th, 2006, 04:24 PM
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Thanks Iggy for the followup! I'd love to receive any of your Gabon research you care to share. That's on my list too.
atravelynn is offline  
Sep 26th, 2006, 07:36 AM
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GABON-
Dec-Jan is listed as monsoon season-to occasional rain[definitely the season for the light rains-but they say it's good to see game but bad for flight delays & washed out roads] Game viewing is best from June to Sept. [it's the dry season, humidity is at it's low]

Start with...
http://www.operation-loango.com/

I do have files of magazines on Gabon but the above link is the best way to get started.

Also...
www.gabonnationalparks.com
www.wcs.org
and www.ecofac.org

Gabon tourist office in NYC
212 447 6700
also houses an AIR GABON office

For vaccinations and medications
www.cdc.gov/travel

you can contact me at
[email protected]
for more help if you need it.
-thomas
iggy5858 is offline  
Sep 27th, 2006, 12:07 PM
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Great Gabon info, Thomas. Thanks for the email. I'll return the favor when I start getting serious about a departure.

Maybe I'll see you there.
atravelynn is offline  
Oct 6th, 2006, 06:36 PM
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iggy--can you elaborate at all on how you chose Nkungwe over Greystoke, and if you have any info/feeling about the two after having been there?
thanks
jenack is offline  

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