Kgalagadi Trip Report: Short version

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Cape Town

    Default Kgalagadi Trip Report: Short version

    We, three couples in three vehicles, are back from a short trip to the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park.

    We left Cape Town on 9 August and first took the N7 north, at Piekenierskloof we took the Paleisheuwel road, the first time that I drove the entire road, well worth if you are not in a hurry. Upon reaching Clanwilliam we went east over the Pakhuis Pass, stopped for a beer at Travellerís Rest and then went via the R 364 and the Botterkloof Pass. We popped in at the farm Matjiesfontein just outside Nieuwoudtville for a flower viewing drive. We spent the night at Letsatsi Lodge in Vanrhynsdorp. My second visit there, I even tried the tripe on the menu, it was OK, but not great. The rest of the menu is very good.

    The next day we went looking for flowers at Kamieskroon, we were a week or two too early. We then went via Springbok, checked out the mining town of Aggenys, then through Pofadder, Keimoes and Upington. We stopped to refeul at Askam, had coffee there and also bought wood. We booked chalets at the Kgalagadi Lodge, just outside the park. I enjoyed their lambs neck.

    The next day we booked into the park and drove up to Mata Mata. On the way we saw 4 young male lions sleeping in the shade and then, as was the case on every game drive we took, also saw springbok, gemsbok and wildebeest.

    We stayed at Mata Mata for three nights and saw giraffe, ostrich, leopard, black backed jackal, red hartebeest, a Honey Badger and numerous birds such as the Kori Bustard, Martial Eagle, Bateleur, Chanting Goshawk, Lilac Breasted Rollers, Crimsom Breasted Shrike, sandgrouse and doves and many more smaller LBJís.

    We had a booking for our fourth night in the Park at Nossob, one of the Riverfront Chalets. On the way there we saw a red Hartebees carcass just north of Dikbaardskolk. Three black backed jackals were all over and in the carcass and they were surrounded by white backed vultures. Every now and then the jackals thought the vultures were too close and chased them. All the while a big Lappet Faced Vulture was surveying the scene from a nearby dead tree.

    We did not see much action at Nossob, but on the way back to Mata Mata, where we stayed for the last two nights, we saw a male lion close to the road at Kameelsleep, another three lionesses at Melkvlei and and a battle weary and scarred young male at Dalkieth. The poor chap had the tip of his tail bitten off and had a fresh wound to the side of his face. He moved slowly and took his time drinking water. We stayed with him until we had to leave to be in time for the closing of the camp gates at 18:30.

    The next morningís game drive started with a bang, a lioness on a dune just outside the camp, a brown hyena at Craig Lockhart, but then things quieted down and we went back to camp for a full house English breakfast.

    I must say, we always see that we eat well on trips into the bush, but the food on this trip was something else. We had the regular chops, boerewors and braaibroodjies, then we had fillet with mushroom sauce, baby potatoes and pesto, a very good lamb curry potjie, sirloin steak with pepper sauce, pork neck chops in a cape curry sauce, boerewors and pap and then also salty lemon chicken wings. We baked roosterkoek and vetkoek for lunch and we had a good supply of baby beetroot, curried beans, preserved onions, three bean salad and also fresh salad. I did gain a kilo or two in weight.

    The last day in the park was spent driving from Mata Mata to Twee Rivieren and then Upington, Keimoes, Brandvlei and Calvinia. Dead straight for the last 250 km on cruise control. We booked in at the Ou Lady Inn in Calvinia, I broke my glasses and we had dinner at the Blou Nartjie, lamb shank for me.

    The next day we drove past Nieuwoudtville down to Vanrhynsdorp, had breakfast in Klawer and then decided to go north again, to look for flowers on the Gifberg. We were rewarded, not so much on the plateau, but the flowers were blooming on the lower flanks of the Gifberg.
    We got home just before dark. Twenty years had passed since our previous visit to the Kgalagadi, but we promised ourselves that we will not let that happen again. Viewing animals in the Kgalagadi is hard work compared to the Kruger, but it is quiet and the sky is big and blue and you never feel rushed or crowded. No wonder we met people in Kgalagadi doing their 30th or 40th visit to the Park.

    I attach some photos, all taken with a 30 year old Canon film camera using Fujifilm C 200 film.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Cape Town

    Default Re: Kgalagadi Trip Report: Short version

    And some more film photos
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Walker Bay

    Default Re: Kgalagadi Trip Report: Short version

    Those are excellent Kgalagadi sightings. It appears that the game is still good in spite of the drought!
    Many thanks for posting!

    ďAfrica changes you forever, like nowhere on earth. Once you have been there, you will never be the same." - Ernest Hemingway


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