Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Addo and Mountain Zebra National Parks

Addo the second time around really showed itself off. Mom and I got there in time for a long afternoon game drive. It was hot and the animals were a bit scarce. We did see some fun black backed jackals and some elephant moving thru the dense trees. The night drive was fun as always. There is just something so exciting about the possibility of seeing some animals that only come out at night. We saw the usual hares and jackals and also got a family of bat eared foxes and a black rhino! A true rarity in the park and I've seen it on both night drives now.
The next day we went in to the park again for a morning drive and had both lions and close encounters with elephants! The lions had killed a kudu during the night and were snacking on it near a waterhole. Two males and a female. Too bad we missed seeing that on the night drive but I never expected to see lions in Addo. Then right down the road elephants materialized out of the bush and walked so close to our little red car that I thought they were going to stick their trunks into the open windows. They eyed us a bit and then kept ambling along towards the water hole. I bet they were surprised when they got there to find lions...

Our next park was Mountain Zebra Nat'l Park about 200km north of Addo. We saw some new animals here like the springbok, white tailed wildebeest, blesbok, and gemsbok. The real beauty of the park emerged after driving way way up to the top of the flat topped mountains where a secret world of plains and waterholes existed. Tons of animals were seen in big herds. The cheetahs proved too elusive but we kept a keen eye on the tall yellow grass just in case. Little ground squirrels plied the fields and gemsbok hid almost out of site in the trees. It would have been a great spot to spend a little more time but we are on a whirlwind tour. Next stop, Golden Gate Nat'l Park before heading into Kruger.

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