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Porini Lion and Mara Camps Revisited. A welcome return.


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A buffet lunch is provided in camp at 1.00pm. After we which we all head off for some down time.

Personally I like a late morning or early afternoon shower although many prefer theirs at night. I think it takes the pressure off camp staff to take a daytime shower. It must be tough if all guests want a shower before the evening meal.


Point to note: I asked the staff how they had managed during Covid.

  1. They were all vaccinated quite early on and none of their families or villages had been affected.

  2. They all managed to work though the pandemic although the hours were greatly reduced.

  3. Checking out the visitors book there was one period of some months, at Mara camp anyway, where no guest signatures were evident.


So good these tough times are going away. At both camps I visited they were almost full a the time




The camp area was visited regularly by this bush buck family including the male, on occasion. He was noticeably shyer that the girls. He would run between the tents and then get underneath where his horns would often scrape the tent underdeck. This was a trifle unnerving, until I realised what it was.


That afternoon we set of in a slightly different direction, where after seeing a few extra species and loads of plains game....











'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''we found the lion pride. Doing what they do, almost nothing except that the cubs were playful and curious

















We had our non-sun sundowners and later a lovely meal, and at about 9 pm., it was suggested we headed back to our tents quickly as the rain was coming. And it was.


The heavens opened and another massive storm arrived, which seemed to go on for ages. Crashing on the roof of the tent, and getting harder every few minutes, it made me wonder of the tent foundations were as solid as needed, or would I be swept down to the stream to be attacked by the local hippo? Of course it was totally secure and safe, and I finally slept well.


The following morning brought an intense pink sky which was good to see and brought hope for a sunny day.




But the night rains had brought lots of standing water to the tracks................




Today my Cruiser Companions would be heading back for Nairobi and the other family were en route to Diani beach via Mombasa.


As result the morning drive was reduced in time as we would return for breakfast so that guests could make their way to the airport for their respective flights late morning.

On our way we came across a large herd of Zebra. Suddenly all hell broke loose as they winny-ed and brayed excitedly. The guides spotted that a zebra had just given birth to a foal and the herd were excited, and coming up and check it out.

If you are squeamish you may not want to see the next few photographs as the afterbirth is very evident.








Other sightings.......... 







We then made our way to the lion pride, which took some finding after the nights rain. The guides worked hard as a team to locate them.

We had a pleasant time as we watched the cubs try to get into the wildebeest. (I am not sure that going for the lips will achieve a lot). meanwhile Mum was being troubled by flies and kept walking out and rubbing herself on the fly deterrent bush next to our vehicle.












We then returned to camp for breakfast I was offered a morning walk out of camp for after breakfast as the vehicles would all be in use, but on this occasion, I did no feel up to it, so declined.


I was sorry to see my companions go as I had really enjoyed their convivial company.


One of the young men from the other family came to say good bye. We had had several chats about safaris and wildlife and, as is always the case, seeing a newbie’s delight in what they see is infectious. This young man has got the Safari bug and I have made him aware of Safaritalk so I hope we will see him here sometime. Funnily enough I saw him again at Heathrow. I was perching somewhere, exhausted, on landing back and waiting for my bag when he came up and said hello. I hope he makes it to Africa again some time.


Edited by wilddog
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How interesting to see the other Zebra excited by the birth.

After you were not washed away, the ground certainly looked very wet in the morning 

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  • 2 weeks later...

The landscape is so lush and green, the animals prolific and water down right scary!  What a great green season adventure.  You may have recruited another ST member!  Nice job.  I think I recognize some of the cats, and you saw LOTS!

Edited by Atravelynn
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  • 3 weeks later...



As you may have noticed if you have read the trip report so far, I have mentioned the rain frequently. Not only on arrival, but the two big storms we have had since arrival. In addition the video I posted in the last post shows the level and force of the water.


The rains had meant that driving around was often challenging and exhilarating as we crossed various streams where the entry and exits had become very water logged, muddy and slippery. I can only compliment Ben our driver, and Dominic who often jumped out to place a strategic rock to help as get up the slopes.

The rains and rising rivers were to create major problems for the camp staff this particular day and for my new friends as they headed off to go to Nairobi to Mombasa.


When I went up for lunch, as the sole resident at that time, I was advised there seem to be a major problem getting the people departing from camp across the stream, which had now become a raging torrent. They were stuck on the wrong side of the river, as were the new guests who had landed at the airstrip.


From camp it seemed to me that the camp staff were doing everything they could to solve the problem; making lots of phone calls to try and keep their guests safe, looked after and, eventually to reach their final destinations.


Those who were stranded at the airstrip were presumably looked after by the man on his motorbike. They were collected by another camp and taken for some lunch. One family arriving by personal plane flew off to Lion Camp instead.


Eventually the river dropped to a level at which vehicles could cross.


My understanding is that departing guests were able to board a later flight.


I should add that @Dianne, one of my vehicle companions has now joined Safaritalk. She, and her family, were stuck camp side of the river and I hope she will chip in and tell us more about this drama, from first hand experience


The incoming guests were both from the US, aged 90 plus. They finally arried at about 3.45 but, unsurprisingly, really needed to rest on arrival, so they would not be joining me on the evening drive.


Edited by wilddog
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The evening drive was overall uneventful but thoroughly enjoyable. I continued be amazed at the numbers of animals around, who were obviously enjoying the lush green grass and looking supremely healthy.


















We paid another visit to Spot who was up the tree again but there was no evidence of any remaining carcass.

She did not really play ball, photography wise, burying her head between the branches. As the light faded her normal scavenging attendants, including a shouting jackal and young hyena.






Apologies for the last horrific photographs. I was on the wrong setting.:wacko:








At the end of the drive Ben and Domenic said their goodbyes as the were both leaving camp first thing in the morning. I was sorry they were leaving as they had been amazing. My guide for tomorrow, and transfer to Lion camp,, would be Geoffrey. We both remembered each other from my visit in 2018, when we experienced the ‘never to be forgotten’ python incident. It would be good to be guided by him again.



Edited by wilddog
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Spot is a really good name for a Leopard :)
It is nice seeing the animals on a lush green background 

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 @TonyQSpot is so named because she has a non rosette i.e.a spot on her right shoulder. You can see the spot on the top on of the last 2 pictures of her.


Thanks for reading my TR.

Edited by wilddog
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always love a leopard sleeping in a tree, and always love a hyena cub. 

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and more hyena cubs to come from Lion camp.....

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@wilddog- I have some sad news ....... I saw on instagram that Entito the cheetah mum is missing in Naboisho and her cubs are now by themselves and unable to feed on their own.  I hope she's okay. no one has seen her for the past few days.

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Thanks for the update Hari. Not good news at all. 

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Hi Hari,


I spoke to the ranger at Naboisho yesterday and he said that the herders near the village had seen a cheetah mother and three cubs a couple of days ago. It is likely to be Entito. I will try and get more information.



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33 minutes ago, loafer247 said:

Hi Hari,


I spoke to the ranger at Naboisho yesterday and he said that the herders near the village had seen a cheetah mother and three cubs a couple of days ago. It is likely to be Entito. I will try and get more information.




How you doing, Dhruv - great news!!!  Keep me posted, please ..... 

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Hi Hari - I'm doing great. Been following your thread on Namiri Plains. Sounds like your trip was awesome. Did you have a a Private Vehicle?


Spoke to the ranger this morning and unfortunately he found the cubs in Ol Kinyei without Mama Entito. However, he did say that the cubs are looking well fed and that they are capable of hunting by themselves. He is now fearing that Entito is no longer.

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Thanks Dhruv - really sad about entito …. Hope she pops up one day ! 

namiri was fabulous , thanks …. Yes, PV 

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Not good news in the end  except that they can probably hunt for themselves now. 




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The rain was your constant companion.  Though it was probably an inconvenience, I had to laugh at this situation:  Those who were stranded at the airstrip were presumably looked after by the man on his motorbike.

Worrying about Entito.  Wishing the best for her and her cubs.

Edited by Atravelynn
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  • 1 month later...

@wilddogI have really enjoyed going through this TR, experiencing your sightings and the rain with you - and so glad you had a great time!

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  • 1 month later...

I have been very remiss at completing this report, so my apologies to those that were following along. I will keep this fairly brief but include lots of images


My last morning at Porini Mara was greeted by a really clear sunrise, at last. Perhaps the rain would remain at bay for the rest of the trip.


However, the rains continued to show their impact with a stranded tanker and the still high, but now passable, river. As we drove across we could see large branches scattered some fifteen feet from the edge of the bank where the flood had deposited then at it’s height


We had a pleasant morning drive, seeing a variety of species. The herds of wildebeest seemed in frisky mood but this may have been due to the fact that 2 bulls were trying to retain their harems which were in close proximity to each other.


We were also able to have a final sighting of Spot, and then we came across another cheetah mum, Kasara, with her cubs.




















Someone had a rough night




































Edited by wilddog
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The view down from the hills at the edge of the conservancy always amazes me. Just the vast open plains to which my photographs cannot really do justice, but that sense of vast distance is music to the soul.










When we reached camp I was greeted by the camp manager.. Lunch would not be long so I was taken to my tent to settle in.


During Covid, Gamewatchers had refurbished some tents (including the one I had) and built a second ,family/ double tent.


Firstly My tent

















River near my tent



The refurnished L- Shaped dining area and terrace







The Boma/Lounge area with the remnants of the Covid restriction signs, which were no longer applicable at the time of my visit




The Comms/Charging tent  





The new double tent with two separate sleeping areas and shower rooms etc and a central lounge are with large veranda. The older double tent has the same layout etc

















Edited by wilddog
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Ah, brings back such great memories...

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My guides, whilst at Lion camp were Bill Kupai and Little John. Both were very knowledgeable and pleasant to be with me. My first evening I was the sole traveller so we set off to meet some of the local predators.


And meet them we did. The lion pride (the Fig Tree Pride) was living reasonably close to camp so we would see them regularly over the next few days


The first sighting was of this healthy female and then as we moved to the other side of the brush we saw several of the pride resting with a Zebra carcass under a bush. Of course the grass would not play ball so photographing the cubes was a bit of a challenge.
















We then moved on and found this cheetah mum with cubs. I do not have a note of a name (fi she had one).


It is NOT Selenkay who I saw 4 years ago, although she was still around at the time of this visit.


















Finally my sundowner session was very luxurious and personalised as sat alone in the back with all the goodies I front of me






A fantastic first afternoon at Lion.





Edited by wilddog
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Lovely cheetah mum and cubs, @wilddog- This is in Naboisho? 

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