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Recently visited Kaziranga and Kanha!


Guest kuduuu
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Guest kuduuu

It was a truly magical experience! 13 days in India, first half in the marsh lands of Kaziranga in search for Asiatic Rhino, herds of wild Asiatic Elephant, Otter and Greater Hornbill. The other half was spent in Kanha where Tigers, Sloth Bears, Jungle Cats, Leopards and tons of birds welcomed me. See below for highlights of my trip!

 

Kaziranga:

 

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Kanha:

 

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If you would like to see more of my wildlife photos visit www.dannynovalphotography.com. And feel free to ask me any questions about my trip! Ill be posting some of my Tanzanian safari photos soon, and keep your eyes peeled for a North American Safari!

 

Thanks so much!

 

Danny

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beautiful photographs; I particularly enjoyed the rhino images. Thanks for sharing.

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Wow! you certainly saw some amazing animals sloth bear & an Indian leopard on the same trip. Beautiful photos and good to see more pics from Kaziranga a truly spectacular place, thanks for posting :)

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Wow!!!

Superb sightings and a fantastic series of images!

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Wow, welcome to Safaritalk Danny, and to echo the other comments, fantastic pictures. Who organised the trip?

 

Look forward to more of your contributions, Matt.

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Guest kuduuu

Thanks so much everyone! I look forward to sharing more photos as I continue many of my next adventures! This particular trip was organized by &Beyond. Although a truly memorable trip, the next time I visit I would not go through them. The were sort of the middle man and really didn't have enough experience, in my opinion, in the Indian Safari field. Next time I will probably go with Natural Habitats. I do have some great images of the lodges I stayed at though, should I share those as well?

 

Also, if I wanted to upload images my North American Safari, where should those be uploaded to?

 

Thanks!

 

Danny

 

PS: As I look through the images I STILL cant believe the amount of animals that I saw in one safari, truly blessed!

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Fabulous sightings but the standout for me is that peacock in the tree, love that photo.

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The more photos the better. Feel free to post away...

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FANTASTIC set of photos, some truly stunning sightings and great images.

I too love the peacock in the tree!

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Awesome Danny - weclome to ST. I really liked the rhino pics. It's interesting to compare them with their African cousins - they look like they have layers of armor. What is the small cat on the log?

 

Also, thanks for your comments on &Beyond. I've used them in Kenya and SA and was happy with them. It seems that &Beyond has teamed with Taj hotels for Indian safaris and we've thought of giving them a try in India. Can I ask that you post some details of your itinerary (camps/number of days). Also, look forward to seeing a Tanzania trip report/photos. I hope that you got to the crater.

 

Cheers,

 

PT123

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Guest kuduuu

Thanks so much everyone, I'm glad you are enjoying them!

 

@PT123: That's a Jungle Cat. I saw two of them while I was on safari in Kanha. The Serengeti has them as well. Gorgeous cats. Details below on my lodges, but feel free to ask questions about anything else, I really documented everything!

 

DIPHLU RIVER LODGE

 

A gorgeous location with thoughtful execution sprinkled through out this oasis. It still needs some tweaks though.

 

Loooooooooved the Assistant Manager named Jyoti Das. He really went above and beyond to make me feel comfortable. Friendly and eager to learn about the USA. The wait staff, cooking staff and cleaning crew were friendly and most of them spoke english which made it easy to get whatever I needed. In terms of the actual space all the western comforts are here including Air Conditioning. The food was "meh". A few things that they would serve with an Indian twist were: Pizza, Chicken Kiev, Spaghetti and Meatballs, Fried Chicken, Lasagna etc.. I was not impressed, but I wasn't there for the food, know what I mean? I was their for animals! The staff at Diphlu did set up an elephant bathing session which was a HIGHLIGHT of my trip (pics below). The elephant morning rides to find rhinos were also really breath taking. What really bugged me about the Diphlu River Lodge were their guides. The guides would drag out long conversation in Hindu, laughing and joking, which at times made me feel uncomfortable. They seemed to be uninterested and were uncomfortably unengaged with me. After 4 hours of this I played a game with my driver and my guide and said "First person to spot a Horn Bill gets $5." They woke up and started to participate, I made a game our of the safari. It was a shame that I had to take that path but I wasn't going to just be trotted around for a ride. SO after about $50 I had seem pretty much everything I had wanted to see, including Otter, Asiatic Rhino, Asiatic Elephant and Greater HornBill.

 

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The Entrance

 

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Our open Safari jeep

 

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A rice paddy field is tuck right in the middle of the lodges was my view from my lodge

 

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My Lodge

 

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The bar/lounge

 

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The cafeteria, all food is served buffet style

 

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The Elephant bath

 

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SHERGARH TENTED CAMP

 

Comfortable, enchanting, clean, adventurous, romantic, safe, fulfilling, and charming are just a few of the words that come to mind when I think of Shergarh. The staff’s magnetic and marvelous way of making you feel like family was beyond my expectations. Their amenities held up firmly to western standards, and they really do think of every little detail, from the fresh flowers in your room to the hot water bottle for your lap on chilly mornings. The food was by far the most creative and gentle of all of the different lodges I had eaten at while I was in India and was consistently yummy. On top of all of this was the spectacular wildlife viewing! Out of all of the other lodge guides, Shergarh’s guides felt like scholars, their passion and enthusiasm for nature was truly inspirational and their keen sense of sight was like something out of a superhero movie, incredible! On my 3 ½ day safari with Shergarh I saw everything from Tiger (5), Leopard, Sloth Bear to Sambar and even a few Jungle Cat’s! Some of the Tiger viewing was even on magnificent Elephant back, a dream come true! If you want to experience a true Rudyard Kipling style safari while not having to surrender any of your western style comforts I highly recommend Shergarh, their intensions lie deep with eco-friendliness and true human/nature connection. I will return.

 

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Our open Safari jeep

 

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The "Lobby"

 

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My tent/lodge

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Danny what camera do you use? Do you shoot in manual? Are the ones you posted in RAW. I love the hunting Tiger. Pen

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Guest kuduuu

Hi Pen! I used a Canon Rebel XSI with a 300mm lens. I shoot everything manual. The ones I posted are not RAW, the files would be way too big for that. Thanks so much for the compliment on the stalking Tiger!

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Wow you had amazing sightings! When did you go?

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Ah that's good to know. Thanks. I am planning to be in India around that time next year. :)

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Guest kuduuu

Make sure you guys do the Elephant rides in Kazriranga, spectacular!

 

TIP: Ask for the smallest of the elephants, you'll get better photographs.

 

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Kaziranga will have to wait for another trip as I am doing Gujarat and Tadoba. :)

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  • 1 month later...

The morning Elephant Ride in Kaziranga was one of my highlights and I highly advise everyone to do it if you can. Its the closest that you will ever get to the rhinos that's why. I suggest only doing it once though, that is all you need, spend the rest of your time in the jeep searching for other mammals/birds/reptiles as you will encounter rhino through out your adventure, promise. It's about a mile and a half ride and you really do get up close, the whole experience lasted about an hour and 20 minutes. The scenery is gorgeous and because you are up at the crack of dawn the lighting is absolutely perfect as the sun comes up. You'll have a chance to even photograph baby rhinos since mothers are not as cautious around elephants as they are around the trucks so get your cameras ready. Another HUGE bonus for me which is still one of the biggest memories that I took away from this experience was getting so close to a baby elephant, lets just say it was my facebook profile picture for about three months I was so happy;) Below I attached some photos so that you guys can see what the process is like getting on the elephants and so that you can also see how close we really do get to some of the last asiatic rhinos on the world.

 

TIP: Wait and choose the smallest elephant so that you can get photos closer to the rhinos. Also, tip your guide in the beginning $20, not the end. I find that if you tip them well up front, they tend to get you closer to the animals and also listen to your directions much clearer ;)

 

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Thanks so much ihgreenacres! Seeing that Sloth Bear was quite a special day for me, I had not only seen the bear, but I had also seen a jungle cat, a leopard and a tiger. Magic.

 

Looking for Tiger is sooooooooo different than looking for lion. In the Serengeti, I notice my guides looking for dark spots in the Savannah, or even the tip of a lions tail sticking up above the high grass. In India, you rely on your ears more than anything. From afar in the distance you can hear the spotted deer AKA Chital sound its alarm, or sometimes its a Langur from up in the trees! A few times we looked for peacocks up in the branches, since they usually peck at the ground, their would be no reason for them to be up there except for safety ;) Below are two videos that I recorded on my iPhone (excuse the shakiness. But turn up the speaker and turn your tv off. They are about a minute long each. One is the spotted dear call and the other is the Langur.

 

Spotted Deer Chital Alarm Call

 

Langur Monkey Alarm Call

 

So lets say you find the Tiger, but its from the help of park rangers. These rangers/mahouts/elephant drivers get up super duper early in the morning, find the cat and then radio in at a station where you wait or periodically check in until about 9am (which is when they stop looking). The station area looks like this:

 

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Once you get your numbered ticket (first come, first serve) you get your chance to see a real live wild tiger! Now, through out the day you will have your chance to find tiger as well using the alarm calls that you just heard above. This is just an extra little thing the park rangers do to quench wildlife enthusiast thirst for adventure. Its a nice back up plan that made me feel secure that I was going to see a Tiger, I mean, these guys are really trying. Once you do get your turn to see the tiger though its on amazing elephant back, so much fun! I found that if you tip ($20) the mahout/elephant driver before the initial "take off" they will do their absolute BEST to get you up close to a tiger, they also linger a bit longer around the tiger as well to make sure that you are satisfied. They normally give you about 5-10, tops. I was extraordinary lucky. I saw 5 tigers on my 4 day safari in Kanha through Shergarh Tented Camps. Below is a picture taken of me by Katie Bhujwala (owner of Shergarh) while I was on the elephant back taking pictures of a huge male Royal Bengal Tiger.

 

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Then, here is a quick video I took to give people a sense of how close you do get to a tiger on elephant back. Again, excuse the shakiness, it was all done on my iPone,

 

 

Then below are just two nice images I took of the male tiger while I was on elephant back.

 

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Again, it was an amazing experience and I can't wait to go back!!!!

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  • 6 months later...

Sorry wrong thread :unsure:

Edited by Super LEEDS
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  • 11 months later...

Right thread for SLOTH! BEAR! WILD! CAT! Even that squirrel was interesting. Now that Kaziranga is a possibility I have looked at this in a new light.

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