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Namibia - A Midsummer Tourist's Dream


Fischwife

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Fischwife
13 minutes ago, Atravelynn said:

However, we felt like we’d had a trip of a lifetime that exceeded all our expectations.  What more could we ask for?

 

It's wonderful to have this feeling at the end of the trip.  The animals just kept parading through at Erindi.  Thanks for the info on this intriguing place.

 

Is Sir Spot your creation or is that what the cheetah was called?  Isn't it exciting when the eles come thundering in to a waterhole?!

Sir Spot was my creation, as I was writing the report. 

Oh, yes! The eles coming to the waterhole was so exciting and funny!

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Loved the report @Fischwife and especially the varied referenecs from Kipling to Kelis and to have your own pelican escort must have been great fun. And I agree Elephants rushing to a waterhole like big kids is splendid fun.

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Atravelynn
On 7/21/2017 at 6:00 PM, Fischwife said:

Sir Spot was my creation, as I was writing the report.   You are to be commended!

Oh, yes! The eles coming to the waterhole was so exciting and funny!

 

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buddy4344

I really enjoyed your trip summary.  Well done. Also thanks for such candid sharing of things you liked and areas where improvement is needed (such as your airplane flight experience). This will really help me and others during our future trips to Namibia.

 

Regarding Erindi, I have also visited Erindi. I did this at the start of the trip to break up the long drive north and to ease my friends/fellow travelers into Africa as they had not been on safari before; however, I like your guide's idea of stopping on the back end as this is a reasonable jump to Windhoek airport and and afternoon flight back from the trip. I will have to keep this trip in mind as I plan my 2018 visit to Namibia. When I visited Erindi in October 2017, the regional drought conditions made life harsh for the wildlife and the reserve personnel were supplementing the natural grass and foliage with hay/straw for feed to the animals. Also several of the waterholes were at very low levels and almost dry. Did you note this? The feeding of the herbivores really took away from our game drive experience. I am hoping that with rains, the foliage has returned and the dams are full.

 

Regarding the airplane trip, I was hoping to fly over Soussvlei as part of my 2018 trip. I am a photographer and early morning or late evening shadows could be quite dramatic. Your experience now has me investigating aircraft and companies much more closely.

 

Again, thank you so much for taking the time to share your photos and your experiences.

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Fischwife

Many areas of Namibia experienced a lot of rain this past season, and the rains lasted a bit later into the season than usual, too.  So, there was still some green around, and waterholes were quite full.  Therefore, as far as I know, there was no supplementation occurring.  I saw no evidence of this.

 

The downside is that there may have been fewer animals and less diversity of wildlife at the waterholes while we were in Namibia.  For instance, I've seen pictures of waterholes at Etosha where there were dozens and dozens of different types of animals at a waterhole, and that was not our experience.  However, I'm very glad that it rained more this year, and the animals and farmers were having an easier time of it.

 

There are flights over the dunes out of Sossusvlei Lodge. If your main purpose is to photograph the dunes and the pans, that might be a better bet for you than a flight out of Swakopmund (although I believe the Sossusvlei ones are more expensive).  It's not that the sights aren't beautiful. They are.  I just found it rather long, but that perception may have been affected by my bad mood, too, as well as the fact that we had already spent part of the day driving from Sossusvlei to Swakopmund.  And there's nothing to say that you would get such a rude pilot or co-passengers if you went with a different company.  One thing to be aware of is that the windows can be quite badly scratched up on the airplane--ours were--adding to the challenge of getting good photographs.  The problem was especially acute when the sun was shining on the window.  If you are aware of this in advance, you may be able to take steps to minimize the issue (e.g. try to sit on the side that will be away from the sun during the portion of the flight when the sun might be a little lower in the sky, and use manual focus or a "glass through" setting.)

I agree that our guide did really well with his planning to maximize our time and select lodges we would enjoy, and stopping at Erindi worked brilliantly to that end.  In some cases, his choices were dictated by availability, as, apparently, Namibia has become more popular, and some places book up very far in advance.  But I would happily go to Erindi again, and I thought it was a lovely way to cap off our trip.

Enjoy your next visit!

 

2 hours ago, buddy4344 said:

I really enjoyed your trip summary.  Well done. Also thanks for such candid sharing of things you liked and areas where improvement is needed (such as your airplane flight experience). This will really help me and others during our future trips to Namibia.

 

Regarding Erindi, I have also visited Erindi. I did this at the start of the trip to break up the long drive north and to ease my friends/fellow travelers into Africa as they had not been on safari before; however, I like your guide's idea of stopping on the back end as this is a reasonable jump to Windhoek airport and and afternoon flight back from the trip. I will have to keep this trip in mind as I plan my 2018 visit to Namibia. When I visited Erindi in October 2017, the regional drought conditions made life harsh for the wildlife and the reserve personnel were supplementing the natural grass and foliage with hay/straw for feed to the animals. Also several of the waterholes were at very low levels and almost dry. Did you note this? The feeding of the herbivores really took away from our game drive experience. I am hoping that with rains, the foliage has returned and the dams are full.

 

Regarding the airplane trip, I was hoping to fly over Soussvlei as part of my 2018 trip. I am a photographer and early morning or late evening shadows could be quite dramatic. Your experience now has me investigating aircraft and companies much more closely.

 

Again, thank you so much for taking the time to share your photos and your experiences.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
Dave Williams

Excellent read with some good tips thrown in too. Thanks of sharing.

Must admit, not flying over the dunes was something I wasn't too bothered about when we went and having read your opinion is now something I wouldn't even consider in the future either. Mind you when your other half doesn't like flying and the price is pretty high it makes the decision easy!

 

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  • 1 year later...
Fischwife

Just an update to add the website for Tracking Namibia Safaris, as I forgot to do this as soon as it was available: http://trackingnamibia.com

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Tom Kellie
On 7/6/2017 at 7:23 AM, Fischwife said:

Francois picked a little bit of what looked to be a dead plant. He put it into a water bottle that had a bit of water in it and told us to look at it after a couple of hours.

plant1.JPG.0922b584131b9f767acebfe3921cab6b.JPG

 

plant2.JPG.6f67a1aa3072d59de7e5001d2ac0e016.JPG
 

 

 

~ @Fischwife

 

That's an impressive pair of images.

 

The before and after contrast is remarkable!

 

What a powerful visual demonstration of water's role in life.

 

Thank you.

 

Tom K.

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Fischwife
1 hour ago, Tom Kellie said:

It was amazing. We expected to see some little signs of life after a couple of hours, but we weren't expecting anything like that!

~ @Fischwife

 

That's an impressive pair of images.

 

The before and after contrast is remarkable!

 

What a powerful visual demonstration of water's role in life.

 

Thank you.

 

Tom K.

 

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