Safari Day 5 – 07/30/08

We checked out of Seronera and I can’t say I was sad to leave. The hotel really was bad.  This morning there was NO water!. The excuse was that an elephant stepped on the pump – yeah, right.  That certainly wasn’t accurate since as I was returning from breakfast I could hear water running in other rooms!  I think those who complained loudest got water!  This lodge has certainly been very disappointing.  I do try to remember that I am in the middle of the Serengeti, but it is very discouraging to see workers upgrading the lodge and common areas when the rooms are severely lacking.

We went on a game drive in this area, south part of Serengeti before heading more north to the Lobo lodge.  It is run by the same outfit so my expectations are not high.  Just this morning we say 5 lions (two groups) and joined the paparazzi for a leopard sighting.  The leopard was worth it since it was a bit closer to the road and had dragged its kill up into the tree.  The photos are at least nice enough to show people the leopard.

leopard in tree with kill

leopard in tree with kill

male lion walking in grass

male lion walking in grass

There was a fair amount of driving today with no significant game viewing. We always see different types of gazelle  and a giraffe along the road and now we are seeing many more zebras.  We stopped at the hippo pool before lunch.  The light was not great but we saw plenty of hippos an a few crocodile.  I have to admit that the hippos don’t do much for me.  I guess I just haven’t seen the right ones!

Hippo Pool

Hippo Pool - note the crocodile in the background

We checked into the Lobo lodge at 2:3O and were pleasantly surprised to hear that their water system works consistently.  The power is off in the room from 10:00am  to 5:30pm.  The reception staff looked at us funny when we asked if there was water and was it hot.  It looks like this stay will be a bit more pleasant than the last three nights!

We spent a few hours relaxing (I took a dip in the pool for a quick rinse since the power was off and thus there was no hot water).  This lodge is built into a Kopjes and does a very good job of blending into the surrounding countryside.

We headed out for an evening game drive at 4:30pm.  We even had ice for the coolers – a luxury the last lodge could not provide.  There are many more zebras in the area – part of the migration I am told.  Besides the “usual” game of giraffe, zebra, elephants, topi, impala, baboons, guinea fowl and other birds, we also saw three lioness (which our group missed on the drive by while we were looking at the baboons!).  Our vehicle took the lead and we rounded the corner and encountered some elephants in a nearby, shallow ravine.  We immediately noticed on elephant looking at us and heading our way. It came bounding out of the ravine trumpeting and started to charge our vehicle. This is very rare as so far all of the elephants have completely ignored us. Well, this one certainly didn’t and we certainly didn’t provoke it as we were just driving down the road and had not even stopped for pictures, yet.  Our driver had seen the elephants ears sticking out (a sign of a charge) and didn’t waste any time moving along. The elephant did follow us for a ways and was trumpeting.  I don’t think we were in any real danger (unless the car had stalled – but that wasn’t likely). The elephant gave up and went off into the bush.  It certainly was exciting!  The driver said that this family of elephants may travel out of the National Park boundaries and thus may have been shot at before and thus did not like vehicles.

We didnt’ see too much for the rest of the drive but it certainly was beautiful and fun. We got back to the lodge at 6:30pm, gathered for dinner at 7:30 and then had a show and tell of our pictures after dinner.  As soon as my DVD of pictures from today completes burning I am off to bed.  I am really tired today. We don’t do all that much but standing in the vehicles and balancing does take some strength as well as being out in the sun and wind all day. The alcohol certainly helps in making me tired as well. The after dinner Glen Fiddich was a welcome treat tonight!

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~ by Becka11y on August 6, 2008.

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