Again, we are up early, 5:30AM this time, and on the road at 6:00AM. The gates have been open 30 minutes. We want to drive along the Crocodile River and out the Malelane Gate. From there it is about 5 hours to the airport. This morning’s drive is not as productive as the last two mornings, but we are not disappointed with what we do see.
We see many birds,some very colorful like the lilac breasted roller.There are also large herds of Impala out this morning with one really nice group getting a drink, a herd of elephant in a dry creek bed, a lone water buck, some monkeys playing in a tree, a first time sighting for us, a small herd of zebbra, a cute warthog another first today,and a few leopard tortoises crossing the road. We don't take as many pictures as some of the animals are further from the road today.
But, the most thrilling thing of our whole Kruger experience is the Cape buffalo sighting. About half way down H4-2 we see several buffalo along the side of the road so we inch along till we are fairly close and start with the picture taking. There is a car coming toward us that has also stopped. There is dense brush right up to the road here so you cannot really see into to it on the passenger side from which the buffalo are coming. Well, before we know it, we are in the middle of a buffalo crossing.The car facing us turns around and drives away. Before we can get too worried, a Safari jeep comes up and stops.So we sit for about 30 minutes while 30 to 40 of these huge beasts walk around the car, crossing the road and grazing! We can reach out and touch several of them; but we don’t! The crossing crowd begins to thin, though we can still hear more buffalo in the bushes, and the safari jeep slowly passes us. We take this as our cue to move on, but what a thrilling experience! By 10:00AM, we are through the Gate having said good by to the sentry crocodile on a sand bar in the River by the bridge and on our way. We stop for breakfast and then drive on to the airport. We check in three hours early. Carolyn had elected to take a 6:40 flight to give us plenty of wiggle room so we wait in the Business Class Lounge until time to leave.
By 10:30PM, we are checked into the Derwent House in Cape Town, sitting on our second floor veranda, sipping hot tea, eating homemade carrot cake, and watching the lights of Cape Town twinkle below us!