5 January 2018
Yesterday’s scores were as follows – Simon in the lead with 70 points. Grandpa has 64 and Shannon 55. Grandpa was annoyed as at first we scored him the higher score but Si reminded us that we hadn’t entered the Walk points which pushed him ahead. Grandpa hadn’t done the whole walk but he did score for creatures he saw first before he went back to the caravan and none were scored after that!
Today we moved to Skukuza Rest Camp. It was a beautiful day with temperatures into the thirties. Packing up the caravan and tent was fast and efficient and we left Berg en Dal at 6:20 and made our way quickly along the tar road arriving at 8:30. We did not stop much along the way.
Check in at Skukuza was quick and efficient. We found a campsite next to the swimming pool and an attendant came to help us set up. We were done quickly and then walked to the shop for ice cream. It was really hot! We decided to rest and swim and only to go out after 1 pm. We were pretty sure the animals would be sleeping in the shade and not showing themselves in the middle of the day.
After the kids and I swam and Grandpa napped we set off to see what we could find. Today turned out to have long stretches with absolutely no sightings – not even a bird! Of course there were some interesting things and we were thrilled to get the following:
Usually it’s okay to do the distance but today it was really hot and the ‘dry spells’ of no sightings began to work on the patience of the un-caged kids in the back seat. Concentration was lost, giggling and high jinks took it’s place. How much longer became the plaintive cry. And then — up ahead a traffic jam. A naughty tourist was sitting on the roof of her car – Her binoculars were trained on something in the distance. We were next to a river with a rocky bank. “There are supposed to be lions here,” she said. “But I can’t see them.” Well if from her vantage point she couldn’t, what chance would we have. We asked some others and they too said they’re here but out of sight.
Grandpa tried to maneuver the car into a better position and then he said, “What’s that walking toward us!”
All attention went from the elusive lions to what suddenly appeared and we were the first to see him!
We watched this magnificent creature of the wild nonchalantly walking past the cars. He stopped to sniff and spray and mark his territory and the excitement caused was phenomenal. It was 15 minutes to gate closing time so once we’d absorbed the sighting we made our way quickly back to camp. What a great way to end our day.