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cheaper Kruger Pvt camps umlani, africa on foot,kwa mbili 2016


COSMIC RHINO

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lodges now have mini buses to do airport or other transfers ,without the exception of Kapama reserve which is almost at the airport   the police now take the view that game drive vehicles are not p

Well things are over now , I am in the business centre at the Premier hotel, waiting for the return flight to Sydney , the place where my body lives, but not my heart and soul. Except holidays I ha

GUIDES   There are 2 guides Big Amos (as he calls himself) an older black man , and Andy who is 23 yrs old and recently graduated from Eco training. he is friendly,very knowledgeable and explains

Super LEEDS

@@pault sorry about that. I was away for a few days, family wedding, didn't realise a new thread had been started until after I had posted! @@Geoff uploaded the pics into that report I think, I'll add these 3 PDFs to the Lewa thread too. CR didn't provide details in his emails.

 

Thanks for using the space, mate. :D

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COSMIC RHINO

PREMIER HOTEL OR TAMBO

 

A much welcome new feature is a set of large scale airport style digital scales, which have been placed in the entry foyer of the hotel.

 

they are very useful to weigh your luggage , although they were also popular with people weighing themselves

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Super LEEDS

@@COSMIC RHINO sounds like your reports are coming to an end. You've sent a load more PDFs but only 1 says it is for UMLANI. Are they all for this thread? Just checking, I'd rather escape the wrath of @@pault this time.

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michael-ibk

Just wow to the Leopard kill - what a sighting!

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COSMIC RHINO

yes all the pictures are from umlani

 

the white lions were not expected , they just turned up a few days before I was due to leave.

 

recently in the area there had been as changed in male leadership in the lion pride, so the males were going around looking for females , and the females were trying not to be found as they did not want the males to kill their cubs.

 

the white lions mainly keep to Giraffe Farm

 

a leopard had been seen in an area, then it was noticed that it was stalking a duiker, there was a short quick walk ,then the kill was made and taken up a tree.

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Thanks @superleeds and @@COSMIC RHINO for Posting amazing Whites Lion pictures.

Do you nötice her Skin seems quite lumpy like she has a disease?

Edited by Hads
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offshorebirder

Wonderful Leopard photos!

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offshorebirder

Here are some more photos that I have converted from PDF to JPEG for @@COSMIC RHINO.

 

Elephant family group

gallery_47829_1577_162541.jpg

Elephant family

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Elephant family2

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Elephant Eye closeup

gallery_47829_1577_178706.jpg

 

 

Elephant trunk closeup

gallery_47829_1577_18941.jpg

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offshorebirder

Elephants digging For water in a sand river

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Umlani Elephants walking

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Umlani Elephants browsing

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Umlani Elephants drinking

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Umlani Elephant family group

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offshorebirder

Umlanui Big Ele beside Dam

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Umlanui Big Ele walking Dam

gallery_47829_1577_409150.jpg

Umlanui Big Ele crossing Dam

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Umlani Elephant across Dam

gallery_47829_1577_350718.jpg

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COSMIC RHINO

Having no electric power a laundry service is not offered

 

as is my usual practice, I travel with laundry soap and plastic covered coat hangers , hang it in the branch of a tree and things normally dry in a few hours

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COSMIC RHINO

my transfer from umlani to the bush pub

 

the Ashtons transfer take about the time as they advise, you are back at ORITA Johannesburg by 6 pm ,possibly a few minutes early

 

AFRICA ON FOOT

 

This camp in the Klaserie reserve, directly opposite the Timbavati reserve is wonderfully comfortable , a good bush experience with great guides

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COSMIC RHINO

Klaserie reserve began in the 1940's and 1950's with holiday homes established by farmers getting away from the cold of the high veld

 

That is how most of the area still is , the major change is that the visits are year round

 

some people make it their usual residence

 

tourist operation are quiet recent and take up a relatively small area of the reserve

 

as the animals are not that used to people or vehicles they are less approachable and can tend to move away

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COSMIC RHINO

there are 13 lodges sharing a concession of 8,000 hectares

 

having previously been to crowded reserves in Kenya, the wild feel is much better here.

 

In the crowded reserves everyone goes to the same areas and sees the same animals in such numbers that they could come from some casting agency . The number of visitors is no good for the animals.

 

to compare with other things no one would chose to have the cheap and nasty instant coffee , or the no good house wine, both of which are a pretense of being the real thing.

 

at Africa on foot you get authentic wild animals , wonderful wildlands , and a life altering experience. There is no pretense or anything about the place.

 

you are in a position to have a delightful, life changing experience.

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COSMIC RHINO

the transfer from Ashtons arrived in good time at Eastgate airport where I was left as Enoch, the wonderrfull tracker could be seen waiting for someone who was coming down with the flight .

 

I was left here and welcomed back , then had a bit of a chat with Enoch

 

both Enoch and Issac are wonderfull trackers who started life keeping cattle , and now work between Africa on foot and Nthambo tree camp.

 

they are great at finding animals, very friendly and knowledgeable.

 

I can't remember which one of them mentioned to me a number of years ago that he was just about finished with being a tracker, and intended to go back and just look after cattle. well nothing has happen , they both continue to be amongst the best trackers.

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COSMIC RHINO

Africa on foot began as a simple camp and remains so

 

it is a great place to stay at

 

over the years there has not been that much change here

 

a noticeable addition is having solar electric power and pedestal fans available in the rooms

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offshorebirder

Thanks for this @@COSMIC RHINO - I am planning on staying at Africa On Foot when I safari in South Africa in a couple of years.

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COSMIC RHINO

the camp is unfenced , does not have any artificially made paths and no lighting except a few lanterns outside the cabins and in the central bar, lounge and diner area

 

after dark people are escorted by a ranger when moving around

 

there is a boma for night time fires

 

there is a small swimming pool with a wooden decking

 

the basic activities are a bush walk in the morning and a game drive in the afternoon, usually there will be a staff member at the bar between times if anyone wants to ask questions.

 

there is a solar powered charging station around the dining area

 

there is a raised platform some considerable distance from camp where people can arrange to sleep the night there, people are driven to it after diner.

 

the area is very dry, the talk is that it was the worst drought since 1992

 

most of the dams are either dry or with a very low water level

 

few of the dams are artificially pumped with water

 

the dam outside Gomo Gomo lodge has for a longtime been nothing more than a small puddle and a bit of mud.

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COSMIC RHINO

HIKES

 

The basic activity of the morning is a bush walk. This being said there are 2 major exceptions

 

  • under Sth African law organized hikes in game reserves are not allowed for anyone under 16 years of age. Bookings for familes with children are accepted and they are given a morning game drive in a camp vehicle or one from the nearby Nthambo tree camp which has the same ownership
  • if it is too windy . wild animals can only be safely approached down wind , they do not like the small of people, it is not safe to approach animals if the wind is going in multiple directions and unpredictable .Also strong wind makes it impossible to hear elephants breaking tree branches and the calls of oxpeckers which are important signs of wild animals being nearby . if the wind is too strong a camp vehicle will go out and do a game drive

 

The bush walks are done in relatively small groups of up to about 6 ,in single file, with people wearing neutral colored clothing and remaining quiet. there is a guide or tracker with a point 458 rifle for safety.

 

if there are more people around 2 separate groups go out walking

 

the walks begin at 0630 am and come back at around 0900 am

 

about 1/2 way through the walk there will be a stop to rest and drink water

 

the walks are done at a relatively slow pace to allow people to closely look at the bush around them

 

they either begin at camp or people are taken in the vehicle to a place and begin hiking from there

 

the emphasis is one the small things trees, tracks, termite mounds and dung . the guide stops from time to time to explain things , and the person at the front of the line goes to the end. the stops are frequent , a great deal is explained , each guest usually gets 2 or 3 turns at being at the front of the line.

 

animals may be seen ,but not always and it will not necessarily be close up.

 

wild animals do not like to encounter people on foot, they can hear and smell them and easily move away

Edited by COSMIC RHINO
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COSMIC RHINO

the feel on foot is distinctively different and it feels great , you notice a whole lot of things that are missed with a vehicle

 

I have a powerful attraction to the land

 

the walks are Africa on Foot are the best I have done , they are great at explaining things, everything is very professional and the way it should be

 

the guide carries a mobile radio hand set and listens in to get so they know where the animals are ,with a view to not accidently walking into an encounter which would be unsafe on foot

 

 

seeing the promotional photos of the very expensive operators in Zambia , I am very unimpressed that all the guests are dressed in white

 

I hope that the Tsavo west hike in Kenya has improved since I did it in 1984, with everyone spread out and talking , the guide who was keen on climbing have the guests climb the big rocky hills which could have been walked around ,so you get little knocks here and there , the combined effect of which was going into maneaters camp I ended up with a pronounced limp from soreness in one ankle , and I was walking at least 150 meters behind at the end . I got over it by at the end of the trip in Mombasa basically lying down for 2 days .

 

this was perhaps not the worst thing of the hike when the group I was with came across a lioness with cubs within meters of us, both the ranger dropped the rifle on the ground, ran into the bush with the guide and left the guests standing alone together to look after themselves.l

Edited by COSMIC RHINO
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COSMIC RHINO

the hikes at Africa on foot are well conducted and the guests follow the rules

 

if 2 groups are out at the same time they go by different routes

 

on the walks there were some giraffes seen reasonably close up but not that close

 

one morning towards the end of the walk as the group was about to go back to camp , we came across a large male elephant , who we spent a while observing him from a safe distance

 

people eat breakfast then he came to the edge of the camp

 

generally wildlife keeps well clear of camps, wishing to avoid close contact with people, so the nearby vegetation is less eaten.

 

the same large male elephant was around eating from the trees and a bit later drinking out of the swimming pool

 

the guests viewed him supervised by a ranger from a safe distance .

 

wharthogs could be seen at the edge of the camp occasionally , although they are not regular visitors as can be seen in some other places.

 

at night from time to time honey badgers were seen around the kitchen after the staff had gone to their housing , with guests allowed to view them in the company of a ranger

Edited by COSMIC RHINO
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