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Better late than never - Porini Camps October 2018


wilddog

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wilddog

The route to the view point was comparatively uneventful. Huge wide open spaces with animals scattered across the landscape. The day was now pretty hot and sunny, so many, may have gone to locate some shade.

The viewpoint was pretty spectacular and we stopped up there to eat our packed launch.

 

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We stopped on our return north to watch the pelicans who were having a pretty big feast on the fish in the lake.

 

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As we were about to leave the park 3 cheetah were spotted lying near the track. They did not seem overly happy with our presence as they soon moved away but we managed to get a few pictures. Personally I was delighted as Cheetah were very much on my 'need to see' list.  It is a long time since I  last saw Cheetah

 

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We drove back tired but happy and just to finish off the day we found 2 of the 4 lions who had been noted earlier. They were only youngsters but at least they were a massive improvement on the earlier sighting.

 

The Utah couple were becoming increasingly happy, as we all were.

 

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A good day all round.

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Amboseli October 4th   The second day in Selenkay we were scheduled to drive down to Amboseli  National Park for a full day of game viewing and a picnic lunch. We had breakfast before we wen

The route to the view point was comparatively uneventful. Huge wide open spaces with animals scattered across the landscape. The day was now pretty hot and sunny, so many, may have gone to locate some

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Kitsafari

Is that the lodge by the lake? It looks massive.

 

great to see that many elephants. The poor lion looks old - my heart always goes out to the older ones.

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Hi @wilddog a very enjoyable report. I visited the Selenkay Porini camp in 2005 soon after it first opened so it is fascinating to see that it already had a very successful formula as it has been changed very little in the intervening years. We also had a visit to a Maasai village which they called a "cultural village", a place set up to show to tourists and not where they actually lived. We had been driven from Nairobi and arrived late so the visit was very cursory which suited me as I'm not a big fan of such things.

 

I saw very few predators, just a couple of male lions on a night drive but lots of elephants. It's good to see the elephant numbers back up after the drought years.

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@wilddog, you must have been pleased to see cheetah so soon into you trip. Didn’t climb up to the lookout on our last visit, need to do it this time.

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offshorebirder

I am enjoying this trip report @wilddog.

 

It is nice that Amboseli produced Lions and Cheetahs for you and the other guests in addition to elephants and game.  

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wilddog

Certainly the cheetah was a bonus.

 

I had hope/expected that I would see them at Mara and Lion camps but not Amboseli. So a good start to the safari really.

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wilddog

I am afraid this TR is on hold. My PC seems to have crashed...

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Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

 

:)

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Fingers crossed for a return to health.

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michael-ibk

Oh no, please go and save your PC quickly Linda, I want this report to continue soon! Love the landscape pictures from the viewpoint, what a spectacular scene.

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Have never ever seen such a bad beaten (still alive) Lion. 

Cool. 

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monalisa
On 1/24/2019 at 10:16 PM, wilddog said:

I am afraid this TR is on hold. My PC seems to have crashed...

 

Oh what!! This is like the cliffhanger at the end of my favourite show. I need to know what happens!

 

I will be waiting and watching with great interest.

 

Like everyone else, I was relieved that Utah couple eventually got some lions. To leave Africa without having seen one is really missing out.

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wilddog

How kind @monalisa. Glad you are enjoyng the report and apologies for the delay.

 

New PC arrives Thursday so Ihope to be back with last full day at Selenkay early next week.

 

Thanks for sticking with me.

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Amylovescritters

Fingers crossed for a speedy and successful delivery... Eager to hear more!

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wilddog

Morning of 5th October. Last full day at Selenkay

 

Early coffee and biscuits delivered to our-tents at 5.30- 5.45 as requested and up and out in the jeep for an early morning drive. The plan was that this would be a comparatively short drive as some would need to be dropped off at the airstrip late morning. For those of us remaining we would be able to do a bush walk while the airstrip transfers were took place

 

The morning began well as we found a very obliging Lion. Perhaps not the biggest, most mature lion but certainly the best so far.

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One thing I forgot to mention earlier is the viewing platform at Selenkay camp.

 

This is often used for lunches or sundowners and, as it over looks a pumped pan, is a very good place to sit/stand and watch the wildlife at the pool. Some of the pictures from Day 1 were take there, particular the elephant shots, and some of those were at ground level behind the protection of the vehicle.

 

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Near the platform there were Wollynecked storks. Not often one gets the chance to see these close up, so a good opportunity for a few shots.

 

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We then headed out a bit further from camp. Several sighting were of interest including of course the Geranuk.........................

 

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and later this breeding/nesting pair of Tawny Eagles.

 

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One of the Tawnys attempted to take this branch up to the nest but I think it was actually stiill growing out the ground; his consternation at not being able to take it with him was quite evident.

 

Then one of the birds went to rest in the tree where the nest was being built and provided a few, in some cases comical, pictures.

 

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wilddog

We had several other good sightings that morning..................

 

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and we stopped for coffee at a small pan with masses of quelea plus other small birds all swarming up and down for a drink. I separated myself from the rest of the gang and edged diagonally to a bush opposite, where I squatted and got a few pictures until a disturbance somewhere sent them all flying away.

 

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On our return we went to a bush walk. We set of for the platform on foot with a guide and an armed ranger it was a pleasant leisurely walk but on arrival at the pan there was a large elephant bull in residence.

He was not happy about or arrival. As I have mentioned earlier most guests were first timers and were at this point scattered across the track leading to the platform. This made the elephant more anxious and so with haste everyone was encourage to get together, behind the guide to minimise our appearance and walk backwards, slowly.

 

The elephant was pacified.

 

On return to camp the next contingent had arrived from the air strip. This In included @Ginny with whom I had been contact prior to traveling. It was great pleasure to met her and her husband. They were following the same itinerary as I, so we would meet again regularly on my last day in the camps and their first

 

 

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Edited by wilddog
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Great that you have a working computer again and are able to continue your report.

Excellent photos, I love the Gerunuk

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 @wilddog, hopefully it wasn’t your hardrive that packed in as it’s no cheap to recover files from it. Comical but slightly worrisome that first timers are oblivious to possible danger. Do like the photos of the quelea.

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wilddog

Sadly it was the hard drive :(@CDL111   so I had to pay for a data rescue, external hard drive to backup to,  plus a new PC. Rather expensive week  but it had to be done.

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wilddog

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Evening drive

Our evening game drive was filled with lions and elephants, all in the vicinity of the platform and pans. With both sightings the sun played the game by providing wonderful colours and, in the case of the elephant, some nice back-lit pictures.

 

These four fine young lions, one of which we had seen that morning, were all out together at the smaller pan. These guys will be a force to be reckoned with.

 

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Once the lions had left the pan this very fine, but ear-tattered, bull elephant moved in preferring the large pan. he enjoyed a good drink a bath and a dust bath.

 

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That night at dinner the tables were full with many of us moving on the next morning so some group photographs were taken.Tomorrow we would catch our flight to Nairobi and onward to Porina Mara Camp in the south of Ol Kenyei conservancy.

 

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The One I Missed……………..

 

During this last day at some point our guide had shouted ‘Striped Hyena’. I have never seen a striped hyena. I looked to my right and saw this blur of fur disappear into the bush at the side of the track  that it was traversing. No time for anything and it was gone. I am not sure this even counts as a sighting, I noted no detail at all. Let’s hope there is a next time.

 

Edited by wilddog
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Pamshelton3932

I'm enjoying your report.  The striped hyena non-sighting would have been a bit frustrating to me, but at least you "saw" one!

 

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Loving your photos. The viewpoint is especially scenic and the cheetah was a great find!

Poor old battered lion though, hope he lived to fight another day.

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wilddog

October 6th Porini Mara Camp - Ol Kenyei

 

Up and out early for our flight to Nairobi and onward. The direct flight from Nairobi was overbooked so I joined a flight via Naivasha, which then went on to Ol Kenyei. The air strip was at the Naivasha Country Club, which I had visited many years ago, but by road.

 

I always find the view from the plane fascinating. It is a sharp reminder of how different Africa is from our homes. Huge wide opens spaces with very little in sight but also poverty stricken conurbations. Such a mix.

 

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Camp accommodation was very similar to that at Selenkay. My own tent was the last of a line and had a lovely view from the balcony. This spot was regularly visited by a semi habituated female bushbuck and her youngste,r as well as Rock Hyrax.

 

Further in the distance I would often see Zebra and Impala n the clearing ahead and a not uncommon site were the, ever-hopeful, vervet monkeys.

 

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Our first afternoon game drive introduced us to the area. Our guides were George and Geoffrey.

 

One of our first sightings was this lovely female cheetah with 3 cubs. I believe her name was Bahati. We watched as Bahati slept and the cubs played.

 

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The open areas provided some good sightings of a range of species including a chance finding of a newly born Thomsons Gazelle which had been left hiding in a track-side, drainage ditch while Mum went off to graze nearby.

 

The numbers of young were increasing as the days went by, although, to date no rain.

 

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We then found 2 large male lions. One had been in the bush and wandered out yawning frequently and the other ensconced on a flattened termite mound, also yawning.

 

Being a male lion is clearly exhausting. No doubt they would soon be off patrolling their territory and hoping for a meal en route.

 

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We just enjoyed watching these 2 for a while and then went off for our sundowners. A lovely start to our stay in Ol Kenyei.

 

Jenny and Margaret were with me in the vehicle, this time; Sue and Graham, with whom I had shared a vehicle with at Selenkay, were off to another camp but we would all meet up again at Lion camp later.

 

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Edited by wilddog
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wilddog

@AfricIan would you mind checking out the cheetah movie now in the last post, inserted directly form PC? Not sure if it is playing correctly.

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@wilddog, the movie plays fine for me on PC using Chrome.  Great Cheetah encounter!

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