BootsnAll Travel Network



Kruger National Park

Kruger NP (47).JPG

We unhappily left our cool double decker hut and decided it was time to head out of Zimbabwe before we had to get more money. That entailed a bit of a drive and a stop in my most favorite town (just because the others hated it, Crap forgot the name.) There we found out that our ultimate plan of screwing over the government was not going to be a complete success. Zimbabwe owes so much to other governments and their dollars are pretty much worthless, so they have to pay everything in foreign currency. This means that anytime someone changes money, the government takes ownership at that point and there is no way to get at it. Therefore, no changing the dollars back even with the receipts. Bummer. After that, it was a shopping spree for me since I still had a good wad. I just bought a bunch of food that I am still eating. We drove all day and crossed the border that night. The original plan was to either stay in Krueger National Park, or close to it. We were pretty beat so we stopped at the first border town that we could find.

The next morning we hit Krueger and this is what we saw.

The trees were still pretty full of leaves so it made for a colorful scenery, but difficult to see animals.
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Right off the bat we ran into Mr. Leo.
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Next was this big guy taking a shower and drinking.
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There were wild fires all over the place and a lot of burnt out areas. They weren’t fighting them, so I guess they just treated it as mother nature would, let it burn. I guarantee it was dumb ass smokers. Losers.
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Up close and personal without zoom.
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We came up on a herd feeding next to a river along side the road. I saw that they were looking like they were going to leave so I told Andrea to move up a ways to where I thought they were going to pass. My original plan was to just sit there and get a real close view as they walked by. Unfortuneately my guess on where they would come out was dead on and the leader saw us and would not go any farther. I could tell he was a bit agitated so I had Andrea back up 15 yards and kill the motor. The big one felt it was enough and walked across. He gave us a menacing glare and then kept walking. Next I saw a group of females surrounding two babies. Thats when I got nervous. They were spooked which in turn got the other spooked. This young male from the back came running up and started the ear flapping and stomping around. With Andrea driving there was no way we were going to start the car and back out of there. I figured that she would get nervous, put the car in first by mistake, look backwards, pop the clutch, we would leap forward, the elephant would get pissed off and start coming after us, she would panic as we started to panic, then she would be smashing the accelerator which would make the motor scream, the elephant would figure we were about to charge, it would scream, we would scream, and then it would mash us into the pavement like cars run over the bowling ball piles of elephant shit. And there the blog would end. Instead, I whispered to them both to be absolutely still even as the elephant was doing his dance of death. Daniel took a photo and then started to drop his hand with the camera. I could see the elephant get agitated at the movement and hissed at Daniel to not move anything. I just kept whispering “calma, calma.” Finally, the big guy got the point across and trotted away. We sighed a collective breath of relief and laughed out loud. That was sweet. We were up north where I guess not a lot of tourists go because later when we got down south where 95% of the tourists are taken, elephants would be on the road and you could drive right by them and they would not even bat an eye.
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I felt a lot more comfortable with these things on the road than elephants.
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Scary cows. Buffaloes.
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We spent a long time driving in the park because it is huge. You are supposed to get into the camping parks before sun down, but we were a little behind. When we finally got to the one we wanted, we found out that they did not have camping there. Crap. We ended up paying for a bungalow. It was a nice place, but a little pricey. Great view off the porch though.
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Can you see it?
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How about now?
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We got extremely lucky and saw this leapord while it dragged a kill up into a tree. A group of hyenas were waiting underneath for a chance at any leftovers. Now I can officially say that leapords drag their kills into the trees to protect them from other animals.
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At one of the camps, they had a elephant museum. One of the display had the big “7” which were the 7 largest elephants in the park. When they found the bones they would recover the bones and put them in the museum. They gave the history, where they lived, characteristics, and how they died/where. Pretty interesting.
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The rest of these are just miscellaneous beasts that we saw on the way. I think you can figure out what they are.
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