Friday, September 27, 2019


This is the largest national park in Africa...larger than the Masai Mara and the Serengeti combined...and IT IS A DESERT.  The only water to be found is at waterholes.  Everything except for crocodiles and hippos survive and THRIVE in this harsh environment.  It was simply amazing.  We reached the park boundary in the late afternoon and then drove another two hours to our campsite on the far eastern plains of the park. In route, we stopped by a waterhole for our first viewing. Wow! 
 Two lions having a drink...just a few feet from our truck windows.  Interesting to watch all the other critters waiting...a good distance away...for their turn.  It was as if there was a waterhole rule...don't eat each other while drinking.

 The jackal pranced around with no fear.
 We arrived at our campsite and set up our tents.  While Vincent was preparing dinner we walked to the nearby waterhole, lit at night and watched the spectacle.
 A juvenile lion walked through but did not drink.
 Mama rhino and baby advanced cautiously, drank, and then retreated a bit before advancing again.  She was obviously alert to something.  I hung around for about an hour before heading back for dinner.  It was a hot day and we were tired.  Some of the group went back and stayed well up to midnight for more of the display.

 Early in the morning we opted for a smaller open-sided vehicle and enjoyed a full day game drive using some of the smaller trails the truck sould not handle.  We were no disappointed.  Our first sighting was a Servil...almost a leopard!

 More jackals.
 Giraffe eating what leaves they could find on the acacia trees.

 Mountain zebra. First time for me.  Notice the brown stripe in between the black one.
 Hawks on alert.
 The Etosha Pan.  It's huge and takes up more than half of the park.  One giant salt rain for three years.

 Elan and waterbuck.
 Sharing the waterhole.
 And then the elephants arrived and everything else quickly retreated to the side.

 We ran into Nina halfway through the day.

 And the HIGHLIGHT FOR ME...Oryx...and lots of them.  Just beautiful.  First time I've seen then in the wild.

 A big boy blocking the road.

 A lonely squirrel...YES, a squirrel.
 Springbok crowing into the shade while a raptor stood guard.
 More pretties.

 Golden mongoose. He was pretty active.  Hopping around looking for a snake.
 AND, more elephants.  What do they eat...???

 Another black rhino.  Rare and so special, indeed.
 And to end our day, the king resting after a drink...springbok nervously walking by just 30 yards away.

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