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Day 10 -11: Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park [Twee Riviren] – Upington (252km) and Upington – Johannesburg (781km)

It was time to leave the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park behind and begin the journey home, back to civilization. We staid overnight in Upington to enjoy the city a bit, only to find out that we were to tired to do so. The long road back to Johannesburg took us 11 hours because of a puncture. Now it is time to wrap it all up.

11 days in the Green Kalahari:

Here is some trivial facts of our trip:

  • Distance traveled: 3413.40 km
  • Overall diesel consumption: 8.9 liters / 100km towing a trailer.
  • Overall average speed: 53.9 km/h
  • Total time in vehicle: 63 hours 16 minutes
  • Photos taken: 2726

Was it all worth it? Every second. But next time I will be going in a Landrover Defender 110, a 4×4 is a must even if the Peugeot held it’s own.
The higher than usual diesel consumption can be accredited to 2 things. one the state of the roads and second the trailer. 

Day 9: Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park [Twee Riviren Rescamp]

The day we took it easy, we went out for 1/2 a day and ate at the restaurant.

We crossed path with a "troop" (about 16) of Suricate.

Dunes are part of the deal, and so is the sand…

With wildlife photography one of the major component is patience, and this secretarybird ruffled my feathers. He would not drink… And then… 

 

I like motion in my photos, just like these…

More photos are available here.

Day 8: Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park [Mata Mata Restcamp – Twee Riviren Restcamp]

The day I found out that the Giraffes comes in plantations and that there are some serious predators in the park…

The giraffe is, after all, a truly amazing animal. But also a truly adaptable one. It, as seen bellow, also grows in trees.

I also found out that Ground Squirrels, common in the park, hate each other… I found that rather strange since they are generally vegetarian.

We also stumbled across the King of the jungle, I don’t know what this lioness had to drink but it must of been good…
Or maybe it was something else…

More photos are available here.

Day 6: Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park [Twee Riviren Restcamp to Nosob Restcamp]

We were lucky that there where some cancellations at Nossob Restcamp. You must understand the Kgalagadi was the "highlight" of my trip, photo hunting grounds of the mystic Kgalagadi that I had heard of for so many years. I was finally there! And was not to be disappointed at all… Like all reserves, I go in knowing that nature will decide what to dish me out in it’s own time and place. It’s really like going on a stroll around hoping to see something but expecting nothing. But within an hour I would be satisfied with what mother nature dished me out. A mindful Black Backed Jackal was over looking a (Pale Chanting?) Goshawk. An unusual sight to say the least… But why?

We decided that this was as good as any other place to take a rest, and so we began to observe this unusual behavior for both animals. The explanation never came but I can only assume that what followed had something to do with it… I apologize for the quality of the image but I had to digitally enhance it, something I do not do often (unlike cropping) but I was stuck with a 200mm zoom.

You can see the head of a Ratel (Honey badger) sticking out on the bottom left, it was the first time I saw one of these elusive animals. And what a sight it was… We watched him digging his den for a while. I must say I missed my 500mm Zoom just then…

 

And we were to be spoiled a little more… look at this galloping Red Hartebeest… I swear I was watching a show horse trot…

More photos are available here.

Day 5: Augrabies Falls National Park – Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park [Twee Riveren Restcamp] (381km)

That was to be a fateful and expensive morning, my camera (a Canon EOS 300D) fell hard with my 170-500mm Sigma lens on it. The results were rather painful. With my arrival to Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park imminent and no camera, I was ready to return to Johannesburg there and then. Luckily I am insured and I must say that Outsurance outdid themselves for me, they allowed me to buy a equivalent replacement camera and promised to refund it to me as soon as I sent them the receipt. Highly unexpected and highly appreciated. Unfortunately, the day was wasted looking for a replacement camera in Upington. I eventually found one at Game. And now it was time to learn how this new camera worked, a Canon EOS 400D. As far as the zoom was concerned, I would have to do with my 70-200mm EF Canon lens until I get back to Johannesburg. I was to be rather impressed by the combination… Unfortunately, we also arrived late at Twee Riveren Restcamp. And I will also mention that the last 37 kilometers to the park are not tarred as advertised. But I will tackle that in another entry. The only photo’s I got that day were of the sunset…

In the back is Botswana…

More photos are available here.