Jump to content

Roughing it in Selous October 2016.


Africalover
 Share

Recommended Posts

This was my 3. time in Selous and as allways while in Tanzania, with my guide and friend Otto Mlanda. To me bush camping is the only way to really get in touch with the soul and spirit of Africa. Although I respect that other "Africa lovers"have different ways of explore their Africa.

To me bush camping is freedom. Especially in Selous and Katavi since this is one of the last places where you can put up your tent wherever you want. At least if you want to be around big game 24 hours. With Otto I can do whatever I want, when I want and. Like staying as long as I want at a sighting, which gives me a much better experience than the lodge goers. They allways hurry around missing the good stuff, in their persued to see as much so as possible in a short time. We get up very early and often we don't see other people the first 2-3 hours. We usually camp around Lake Manze, which have good game around in the dry season. Another advantage is that it is far away from Mtemere gate, in the middle of the reserve. You don't see people from outside lodges the first 2-3 hours and later in the afternoon you are pretty much alone. It always feels me with sadness when I am Selous. This place was 10 years ago an elephant heaven. Big herds of elephants were everywhere and majestic big Bulls were often seen. Now they are all gone - as you all know, heavy poaching. You have to be lucky to see elephants and they are small in size. But it is still a wonderful place and I will be back in the future.

 

Rufiji river sundown.

post-19633-0-81480100-1477139098_thumb.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking forward to this report @African lover, great start thanks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep, the Selous is beautiful. In 2000, I self drived North to South, coming out at Liwale. Through the photographic and hunting concessions. A fabulous experience with absolutely very few people seen in those weeks. Bush camped most of the way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@@luangwablondes - what a great adventure. Can we do that again :-)

Edited by Africalover
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I stayed at Selous rivercamp before and after bush camping inside Selous. This lodge is great value for money and a fantastic place.

Camp Lake Manze :post-19633-0-70657300-1477165576_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-80014600-1477165622_thumb.jpgpost-19633-0-05938800-1477165837_thumb.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking forward to another great report from you @@Africalover. I'm off to Kenya tomorrow so I'll be a little behind but I should have some nice reading to return too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When bush camping animals are regular visitors around camp. We had giraffe, wildebeest,Impala,elephants,buffalo,baboons, vervet monkeys, ect. At night we had the pleasure of hyenas around the tent. One evening a buffalo stared at us 15m away so for a while we went close to the car- just in case. As always no problem - it went away. Later elephants caused the same action, when we were making food. Bush camping is not for the faint of heart.post-19633-0-31053800-1477166922_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-81452000-1477167122_thumb.jpeg

Otto Mlanda

post-19633-0-66164500-1477167245_thumb.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was pleased to see some eles in your photos after reading your poaching comments and reading all the sobering reports out of Selous. This should be a very exciting adventure to read about!

Edited by Atravelynn
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Meet Lake Manze pride - 1 male, 2 female, and 2 cups, they had killed a giraffe while giving birth, prior to our arrival.

post-19633-0-02782400-1477224723_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-63381000-1477223976_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-40858800-1477224478_thumb.jpeg

The remains of a baby giraffe.

post-19633-0-51056500-1477224189_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-11694600-1477225009_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-29571400-1477225812_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-36044400-1477225949_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-17976300-1477226072_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-40203800-1477226275_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-30506600-1477226592_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-51680200-1477226398_thumb.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Safari is for most people - more or less - finding the cats and enjoy the rest while doing so. It's always exiting when you open the tent in the early morning light, make coffee and talk about where to go - what is Africa going to show us to day. This morning I saw something that I have only seen on Tv. Baboons eating meat - young Impala, there are thousands of Impalas in Selous, with lots of newborn.

- post-19633-0-34277400-1477245578_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-10272900-1477245727_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-56148700-1477245996_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-36563600-1477246126_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-09774300-1477246301_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-20978500-1477246580_thumb.jpeg

Edited by Africalover
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A great adventure, and an interesting description of what Safari is all about - find the Cats and enjoy the rest while doing the first. Certainly quite true for many of us. Interesting Baboon behaviour, I have seen them eating birds, but never Antelope.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@@Africalover really enjoying your TR and admiring your sense of adventure.

 

Wild camping in the Selous surely offers some close-up wildlife experiences.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This young male and his brother woke me up several times doing the night. I always count the sighs after the first big roar to figure out how far away the lions are. These lions had between 10-15 sighs, not that far away. The next morning we found them a few hundred meters away from the tent.post-19633-0-87666900-1477411647_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-04188500-1477411362_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Selous is a very beautiful and diverse place - lots of palms, plains,forest, lakes and Rufiji river.post-19633-0-58871300-1477413175_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-39920200-1477413356_thumb.jpegpost-19633-0-69025600-1477413529_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-08259800-1477413679_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-21001000-1477413765_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-31245900-1477413933_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-77265700-1477414091_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-30248600-1477414528_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-60254900-1477414841_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-01240400-1477415023_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-80335200-1477415241_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-75918000-1477415343_thumb.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One morning we headed towards Beho Beho - western part of Selous. We found a pride of lions, warming up in the sun. We followed them walking through the bush and plains, for about two hours trying to hunt. We were all alone with them and had a fantastic time with them, until we lost them after a failed warthog hunt. What beautiful creatures the are.

post-19633-0-74668800-1477502187_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-08157800-1477502314_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-00272400-1477502494_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-16830200-1477502603_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-79875600-1477502731_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-10551600-1477502858_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-55506000-1477502972_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-85567900-1477503083_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-18851200-1477503264_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-91323500-1477503692_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-92052500-1477503836_thumb.jpeg

post-19633-0-04378500-1477503973_thumb.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@@Africalover - so, so tempting & super images.

 

Is one really allowed to pitch up one's tent anywhere at all in the Selous? Did you pick your locations randomly and what are some things to watch out for when picking your camp site (other than having a great guide like Otto, of course)

 

Very happy to see even a small herd of eles. Counting lion sighs to judge distance is new to me also - how exactly does that work?

 

Looking forward to reading the rest of this excellent adventure. Thank you for sharing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@ Sangeeta - thank you for your kind words.

Yes you can pitch up your tent, where you want. It is of cause necessary to find a place away from game roads. I choose lake Manze, because of game activity and it is around 30km away from Mtemere gate - eastern gate. That means you have more or less everything to your self, since the day trippers from outside the gate are first seen after 8-9 in the morning. And they leave early afternoon. Many of my pictures are taken without anyone else around. As lake Manze is more or less in the middle of the photographic area, you easily reach all corners of the park. If you go towards Beho Beho - western part - in the morning you can drive around several hours without seeing other vehicles.

 

Normally you have to bring a ranger while on bush camping in Selous. This is special for Selous - don't know why. You don't have to bring a ranger in other parks. All though I paid for a ranger- 25$ a day, he didn't show up in camp. But we didn't care, we don't need him/her. That's Africa.

 

As you properly know lions can be heard up to 8km. away, depending on weather conditions.The closer to your tent the louder the sighs are after the big roars and the more you can count. A guide in Botswana got me aware of that some years ago.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Especially if you have to leave you tent in the night for different reasons, it's good to know how far away the lions are. Although I am aware that there are more dangers than lions.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Normally you have to bring a ranger while on bush camping in Selous. This is special for Selous - don't know why. You don't have to bring a ranger in other parks. All though I paid for a ranger- 25$ a day, he didn't show up in camp. But we didn't care, we don't need him/her. That's Africa.

 

I can hear your relief that he didn't show up :D Since they allow this type of wild camping, they must have made this ranger rule for the safety of the people who don't come accompanied with excellent guides.

 

Thank you for the other explanations. I had never paid attention to the number of sighs - now I will :)

Edited by Sangeeta
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@@Africalover

Thanks for your nice pics from Selous. It brings a lot of memories back.

Where is the water in the Rufiji River? It looks terrible dry. What's happened? We were in the late October 2013 but never saw a dry peace like you show us.

 

I don't think that self drives would be allowed wild camping everywhere in Selous. I believe that's only for specialised companies in the south possible.

The rule with the ranger isn't new. Normally for the Tagalala Campsite you have to take one too.

 

Looking forward for the next part.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Selous looks really great! I just wrote at another TR (about Busanga) that it's one of the places I really want to visit and the same goes for Selous. Your TR is making me more enthusiastic about it. Self camping looks like a great adventure, must be a wonderful experience and it looks like you had a great time out there.

 

The baboon eating the impala is really a great sighting! Only something I've read about, don't even recall it having seen that on tv/youtube.

Edited by LarsS
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@ Sangeeta - I am almost sure that everybody may camp wild - the ranger will stay in camp, while on game drive. In Ruaha, Katavi, Ndutu and Serengeti I never had a ranger. I don't think that it is less dangerous there, than Selous. Although there are certain areas in Selous for example kinyanguru in the northeastern part of Selous - very remote - as Otto says more poachers, too dangerous if they encounter us at night.

@ Botswanadreams - I have been to Selous 3 times, I know it is not new with having a ranger.

The Rufiji is changing its way of running - I talked to other guides about the low water level. The lakes are as you know filled up with water from the river.

I am only talking of camping in northern part of Selous - photographic area. About 2500 km2.Most of the rest of Selous to the south is as you know hunting blocks. About 50000 km2.

.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Safaritalk uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By using Safaritalk you agree to our use of cookies. If you wish to refuse the setting of cookies you can change settings on your browser to clear and block cookies. However, by doing so, Safaritalk may not work properly and you may not be able to access all areas. If you are happy to accept cookies and haven't adjusted browser settings to refuse cookies, Safaritalk will issue cookies when you log on to our site. Please also take a moment to read the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy: Terms of Use l Privacy Policy