Mabua ktp requested tr





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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Kempton Park
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    66
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    Default Mabua ktp requested tr

    I am no good at writing and therefore no trip reports were posted on our trips to mostly Botswana and Namibia, but what I did was to post short comments when the questions came up supplemented with photos. I did this one via private message and will now edit it to be published on the forum as requested under the current Van Zylsrus thread.
    We left Kempton Park for Mabua 3 nights Nossob -1 night and Rooiputs 3 nights, early morning on 10 December last year using toll road N4 to Pioneer Gate.
    The memory of my Nuvi 710 is fullish with all maps and music being loaded and when the memory is full the software automatically delete the oldest tracks. Therefore no track record and while we are familiar with most of the roads I dont even bother a daily download to the laptop.
    We made use of Pioneer gate border post and may, next time, use a different entry port because they are erecting new buildings on SA side and were very slow, but on Botswana side very professional but also so slow. Maybe it was not that bad.
    On both sides no official looked at our cars and the only things asked were passport and gate pass. It is however better to comply with the legislation of both countries as you never know. See posts under Bots meat import on the forum. My advise is to make your own risk assessment of meat being confiscated. Every border post and every veterarian official have own rules!
    Our objective for the day was to bush camp about 60 kilometers from Mabua main gate on the cutline.
    Last reliable fuel point is Jwaneng before Nossob if you travel the route we did. Each vehicle two Navaras and a Cruiser pick-up carried about 60 liters extra either in jerry cans or extra tanks. Dont know about the Cruiser but the Navaras used about 100l between Jwaneng and Nossob, inclusive of game watching in Mabua. Enough fuel left over just in case Nossob is dry on diesel.
    Shops in Jwaneng are stocked and prices are varying. Some items cheaper other expensive. Meat of good quality is available at BWP 50 at the Meat Market, but avoids the Pick and Pay - expensive. Personally I will make a plan to take boerewors over the border instead of buying from an unknown source.
    From Jwaneng we travelled further with the Kalahari Highway (A2) and took the A20 towards Tsabong at Sekoma. About 10km before Kokhotsa you will see the cutline west of the A20.
    All routes are well signposted and difficult to miss if you are wake-up!
    The cutline is a sandy road with only one track (tweespoorpad). Watch out for oncoming traffic! The sand was not very deep, but April 2010 it was a lot more sandy and challenging. It is corrugated and look out for the rodent holes! So be prepared for the worst.
    We reached our bush camp site about 15:00. Setting up camp was postponed due to heat, biting ants, lack of clear ground to pitch tents or even to set up table for drinks and disappointment with the decision to bush camp. Those ants are vicious attackers!
    We took shade net grondseil and draped it over the long grass and small shrubs, table on top and chairs. J&B spierverslapper soon put us in good mood. Sunset was to say the least spectacular, the bush silence awesome and what a privilege just to be there.
    Bush camping alongside the cutline is transgressing the rules, dont make fire, stay on the unbushed area of the cutline with your vehicle and tent and take all your rubbish with you. You may break firewood which is available in abundance, and which is strictly not allowed in Mabua and KTP.
    Always in the Kalahari pitch your tents to cater for all weather conditions with special reference to roof top tents which are extremely vulnerable to Kalahari thunderstorm winds. Those winds are on top of you before you can blink an eye. The next morning the air was fresh, we picked up hyena spoor which we heard during the night and left in a relaxed manner for Mabua.
    Travel time to Mabua main gate depends on road conditions and your appetite for speed, photos, road conditions etc. . It took us about 5 hours all in all to reach the main gate. Dont go to fast. You may see lions, cheatas, hyenas and lots of steenbokkies, rooihartbeeste. Birds as well. We saw a Marshall Eagle on the ground and on takeoff it lost two of its wingfeathers which we took with us.
    Formalities at the gate are simple. They will look at your booking papers and you will complete the register.
    Roads in Mabua are sandy, rocky and suitable for 4x4 only in my opinion. When you encounter oncoming traffic, be polite according the situation and if the other guy turns of for you make sure he does not get stuck. Some tourists go there with vehicles not equipped with low range (my recommendation is low range only) and when they pull off they get stuck. Branches scratching your car are the worst.
    Camping: All the camps are nice!! We camped at Mabua 3 this time and it had a wonderful view over the pan. Previous visits we camped at Mapalathutwa, Kiding , Lesholoago and Monamodi. Monamodi has no view over the pans but it is very private. We had water at Mabua, but go there as if there is no water. Previous visits we had no water!
    Always be on the alert for predators. Never go far from your car. Dont go for a walk on the pan. Lions, leopards etc may be close. They kept us awake one night and spore were visible every morning. Wear firm footwear at night especially when insects are around for the scorpions; they are big! Stay within the safety of your car/tent during the nights. We use ground tents and we park the car very close to the tent door; just in case. Keep lights, car keys etc where you need them. Be prepared to stay in your car/ tent for long periods; but no food in the tent!
    Secure your tent!. Thunder storms associated with strong winds approach very sudden and they are vicious.
    As for the rest just the enjoy the environment, game, birds, reptiles etc. Dont forget about the plants. Walking within a short radius from your car you will see a lot of plants; some very small but interesting with a beautiful little flower.
    We got up before sun rise with coffee enjoying the morning colours and game movements over the pan. Did not do a big breakfast but enjoyed main dish over midday braai etc leaving the evenings again with something light to eat and drink, snacks. Sun rise and sunset is for coffee and sundowners; not for preparing food and washing dishes. Night light is from lantern or no light.
    The second night we experienced a vicious wind, thunder storm again (first one was on the bush camp but this one was erg!). One ground tent was almost flattened, poles bent etc. We were just back in bed when we heard the Lions approaching us. Me, my wife and son had previous experience in this regard and called the rest of the group to their cars when we decided that the roars was too close for ground tent comfort, far enough to get in the cars safely (cars were parked close to tents max 2meters) and that they are approaching. We could not pick them up with torches etc but a lot of hyenas, jackal, springhares etc. About an hour before sunrise/daybreak they were silent, we made coffee and drove out to look for them. Found the most beautiful young Lion pride of 11 I have ever seen at the waterhole which is 800m from Mabua 3 campsite and about next to number 1 which was vacant. They entertained us for about 3 hours; magnificent!
    Our neighbors at number 2 were blown out of their rooftop tent and also enjoyed the roars from their cars.
    We also found a Leopard at the water hole.
    Towards sunset that evening Wildebeest walked onto the pan, that same lion pride chased them from the one side to the other, later lost interest and left and we were relaxing in J&B spierverslapper style watching a movie!
    From Mabua we travelled the 180km to Nossob via the so-called Boso trail. I think they call it Boso trail because the start is at Bosobogolo Pan. The road is bad, corrugated, and sandy at places with some dunes. Again two way traffic on a single track; watch out for oncoming traffic. Travelling from Nossob the first two dunes exiting the Nossob valley is tricky so much more when towing a trailer (during winter and spring before the first rains I will not recommend a trailer from Nossob to Mabua; maybe the other way yes. For me personally no trailer but that is me). The corrugation may be tough on your tow bar as well. We did it in one day but preferably one should sleep over at Matoppi.
    One Navara with 18 000 km had to replace shocks under warranty when we were bac and those of the Cruiser also looked suspicious. My Navara is fitted with full Iron Man suspension and even after the second time on that road still looks fine. Remember you are travelling at 40 degrees C and those shocks at 50kph is going up and down how many times per second? All the cars handled the corrugation extremely well.
    We found Hyena eating a Gemsbok carcass close to Matoppi. For the rest no wildlife, but the veld in Mabua and this section of Kgalagadi was burnt severely. On previous visits however we encountered an abundance of wildlife this time round the evidence of veldfires was striking.
    Nossob camp is always a treat and well documented so not a lot more about it.
    From Nossob we travelled the main Nossob - Two River road. If you are booked at Rooiputs you may use the Botswana road to Two Rivers else the lower dune road towards the Auob river should be used. The main road is closed for reconstruction.
    Rooiputs is like any Botswana open camp. The afdak, toilet, etc and that is it, in the wild, no water. So much more to offer than the more popular over crowded, noisy Twee Rivieren. We sneaked in for a hot shower and a swim; it is only 20k from Rooiputs. Game viewing is according to the standards of the Kgalagadi. Nothing spectacular like Kruger with Buffels, Elephants etc but a lot more special with a different kind of variety, if you think you will not like it; stay away. It is after all a desert! The dunes and river beds together with the Kameel trees is enough for me.
    Need to highlight two sightings: The most beautiful group of reuse ooruile found in a tree next to the Auobriver and only a kilometer away a mother and father bakoorjakkals (cape fox) and their 2 children in their den. Both stayed there and whenever we felt like it we travelled the odd 12k north from Rooiputs and just watched them!
    After three nights we left via the Botswana gravel road to Boksputs and from there with the new tar road to Middelputs border post towards Hotazel and Kuruman for home in one day. The road from Boksputs to Middelputs and even further towards Tsabong is a great tarred road and following the Molopo riverbed is a scenery that every traveler should see. We have a special thing for the Molopo because we followed it over years (since 2002) from Mafikeng right through where it runs into the Orange River (Missing about 50 odd kilos just south of Boksputs and the eye at Mafeking) at Riemvasmaak.
    A few photies may follow

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    32
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    Thanked: 132

    Default Mabua KTP TR

    Hi Williepiet

    Thanks for the trip report and very useful information!
    Looking forward to the pics.

    Regards
    Martin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Kempton Park
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    Default Mabua ktp photos

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Kempton Park
    Age
    66
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    Thanked: 66

    Default Mabua ktp photos

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Kempton Park
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    66
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    Thanked: 66

    Default Mabua ktp photos

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    Nou is ek klaar

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Pretoria
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    Thanked: 132

    Default

    Williepiet

    Nice photo's - thanks a lot! Wonderful memories, for sure?
    The itch is back!

    Regards
    Martin

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