15 November 2017 – Punda Maria
Today we took our leave of Shingwedzi and set off to Punda Maria. It’s a distance of 70 km. The packing up process went off with hardly a hitch – it gets easier every time – and we were off by 7:30.
It was a clear, hot morning and soon the temperature hit 32 degrees C. Our first creature today was a buffalo. He had a yellow-billed oxpecker grooming him.
We also found some ground hornbills – this time walking on the grounds. There were two adults and a juvenile.
It’s always fun to see zebra and today they were in a frolicking mood.
What a delight to come across a huge herd of buffalo under the trees.
Don’t you just love the waterbuck? We have seen so many on this trip in Kruger. Their bottoms sport a white circle that resembles a target! This serves as a following signal so that when they run through the bush those behind can see the white ahead and prevent them from becoming separated.
We arrived at Punda Maria before 10 am and went straight to the campsite.
We found a suitable site and unhitched the caravan. We have a perfect view of the waterhole on the other side of the fence. There is also a hide where one can sit and watch whatever comes to drink.
I went to reception to check in and when I returned The Earl had started setting up. With just a tiny bit of help from me the rest of the canopy was up within 20 minutes. We’d forgotten to fill the tanks with water but I located a staff member and asked is we could borrow the camp hose. Not a problem. The Earl joined it to his and the tanks were soon filled.
Now all we had to do was relax and wait for our friends Tony and Pat to join us later in the morning. Earl had a nap and I sorted photos in cool of the caravan aircon!
Pat and Tony arrived at lunch time just as thunder and lightning warned that it would soon rain. Some young neighbouring campers did not hesitate to step in and help to get the job done quickly before the heavens opened. Then we sat under our canopy to have a drink and a snack. The rain didn’t last too long but the thunder and lightning continued. At 3:30 we set off on an afternoon drive and although there was some rain we had a very productive afternoon. The rain caused the temperature to drop to 22 degrees C which was a welcome relief.
In the evening we had a braai and were in bed by 9.