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South Africa, Farewell Kruger

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Jun 12th, 2012, 11:56 AM
  #1
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South Africa, Farewell Kruger

As I leave my bungalow at Satara Lodge, I realize that my time at Kruger National Park has been too short. However, I don't feel cheated as I have gotten a good bang for my buck and saw a lot of bucks along with my bang.

Although I did not see all of the Big 5, the experience was still well worth it. I spent my last night on safari where we spotted one of the park's rare animals a Serval along with an African Wild Cat. A different experience as the first thing you spot are sets of green or red eyes staring back at you.

I leave the Satara Lodge gate one last time headed for the Crocodile Bridge Exit of the park. Another four hour drive that I am sure will take me eight to ten hours to complete.

Down dusty gravel roads with stops at a few well built and protected hides I enjoy many of the animals I have seen before but from a new perspective. At one point, giraffes stroll gracefully across the road in front of me. At another, I sit silently and watch Zebras horse-around with each other.

My drive from the park becomes a reflective time to just stop at many places and watch the animals as if I had all the time in the world to do so. At one point, I am watching a huge elephant in a distant field out my driver's side window unaware that I am being watched from the passenger side of the car.

With a sixth sense I look in that direction and another huge elephant is less than twenty feet away from me. It seems like a “Gentle Giant” not disturbed but just curious about my presence. I hope it sensed my awe and admiration.

My route from the park brings me to a Kruger Park historical marker. I am at a location where in 1903 a solo night horse rider was attacked by two lions and managed to survive. Harry Woulhuter was one very lucky man and park ranger.

A lunch stop and I find myself eating a Kuduwor Roll. Yes, it is made from real kudu meat and I would say it tasted a lot better than the wildebeest jerky I had earlier in the trip outside of Cape Town.

The sun is again painting the park with it's golden orange paintbrush as I approach the Crocodile Bridge Exit. I have spent my last few hours in the park watching pods of hippos keep cool near a dam as a herd of elephants cross downstream. I have watched as a crocodile patiently waits for an unsuspecting visitor to show up at his favorite watering hole.

From a high elevation I have seen the plains and distant lands that make this place special for many. It is one of the more fascinating places on the planet and I am glad I got to make it a part of my travel experience.

Thanks, KNP.

Video:http://youtu.be/EBaqB3XdVGw
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Jun 13th, 2012, 08:02 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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What memories you're bringing back to me! I can almost smell the Kruger air. Thanks for these wonderful reports.
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Jun 13th, 2012, 10:02 AM
  #3
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Celia,

You're welcome. To look at my pictures and write about my travel experiences keeps the memories alive for me too.

Travel is so fascinating, especially when you visit places like SA and Kruger National Park
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