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Foto Fair Post your photos for friendly, non-critical feedback. This is the place to show pictures if you aren't yet ready for full-blooded critique, or simply want to share an interesting picture with other e-group visitors.

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  #16  
Old 7th November 2018
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Gate Keeper Gate Keeper is offline
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Re: An impala, a leopard and a patient hyena

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Originally Posted by Melaka View Post
South Africa is said to be the only country south of the Sahara where you can walk into a room, flick the light switch and not be surprised when the light comes on! The same applies to the roads where even the dirt ones are well maintained. When I last drove in Kenya in the early 90s I often needed a Land Rover on the main roads.

There are 2,400km of roads in the Kruger of which 800km are tarmac. There is a speed limit of 50kph on tarmac and 40kph on dirt but that is to protect the animals rather than save the vehicle's suspension. Speeding is so common there are mobile speed traps. It's a far cry from having self driven in the Mara, Tsavo etc.
2 different countries entirely. Kenya is 3rd world and South Africa isn’t and is predominantly controlled by the whites. We have a small farm of 500 acres in the western cape and a small holding on the outskirts of Nairobi. We will be in ZA periodically to check on the farm as we have to ensure the fire breaks and the control of alien vegetation is maintained. There is some safari upmanship in South Africa over Kenya which I tend to ignore. I am back in Kenya for 6 months early December and over Christmas and New Year, we are going camping in a tent out in the bush. We will be doing our own catering and game drives, roughing it, driving off road..... might take the Landy Each to their own, eh?
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  #17  
Old 7th November 2018
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Re: An impala, a leopard and a patient hyena

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We have a small farm of 500 acres in the western cape and a small holding on the outskirts of Nairobi.
Interesting - an old university friend of mine has a stake in a farm in the Karoo. We haven't yet made it there, but will soon.

Let's hope SA stays in the developed world (or, what passes for it, these days internationally).

Two out of the 3 lodges/camps we stayed at in Botswana were entirely off grid: solar and generator power only, no internet or mobile phone access and quite frequent power outages. Bliss, as long as you were prepared with plenty of batteries, several different chargers and an organised frame of mind.
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  #18  
Old 7th November 2018
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Re: An impala, a leopard and a patient hyena

Superb pics and blog Mark...its on my bucket list, but as the song goes..there's a hole in my bucket..... So looking at these pics and others on my 4k screen I see no difference at all to those on Canikon sites, so I imagine you scored heavily on the weight of kit side of things....the mobility to point and shoot is another huge advantage, that's why Olympus scores so well for me.

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  #19  
Old 7th November 2018
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Re: An impala, a leopard and a patient hyena

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Interesting - an old university friend of mine has a stake in a farm in the Karoo. We haven't yet made it there, but will soon.

Let's hope SA stays in the developed world (or, what passes for it, these days internationally).

Two out of the 3 lodges/camps we stayed at in Botswana were entirely off grid: solar and generator power only, no internet or mobile phone access and quite frequent power outages. Bliss, as long as you were prepared with plenty of batteries, several different chargers and an organised frame of mind.
Thank you I agree with everything you have said. Those off grid places can be quite expensive and moreso when there are hardly any facilities at all, but there are people in the world who will pay the extra, for having the experience of living on very little with no comforts at all out in the bush, to be at one with nature and the animals.

On the farm in the Western Cape, we have our own water supply which comes to us direct by gravity to a spring from a mountain. The water temp is cold all year round and it tastes lovely. It always looks clean and so far it has not made me ill. I have it tested now and again at a public health lab. I expect a Microbiologist would still be able to terrify me with.....stories But for our needs, I use a sand filter to clean the water before it comes into the house. Everything is drinkable and the water from the mountain supplies the vines. We use solar for the internet, lighting and we have a back up mains supply for our electric fences and electric gates. We use a wood burner for the cold nights and we have a septic tank.

Living on the mountain can be challenging and we have had to learn to be reliant for everything ourselves. We went through a bad spell of robberies with people trying to kill us and had to fight them off in combat. Our neighbours were murdered for being farmers, so during an attack the stakes are high etc,

A shot of the house to the right of the photo (phone - sorry), which I took last November. The vines are doing well and everything was greening up nicely and not too hot.




It is a side of South Africa fortunately the tourists rarely encounter.

I have flown over the Karoo many times flying between Cape Town and JHB. As you know the Karoo has its own beauty, with dry landscapes and mountains. I admire the farmers and the people who live there. I imagine it must be a peaceful way of life, with the communities being helpful towards each other.

ZA is a beautiful country, diverse in culture and history. I sincerely hope it is heading in the right direction and when I am in South Africa, I keep out of the politics of the country, but we do have to keep to their laws and regulations.

Have a fantastic trip for your next visit, wherever it is going to be. I have not had the pleasure of Botswana, but it is on my wish list. I enjoyed seeing your safari photos immensely.
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  #20  
Old 8th November 2018
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Re: An impala, a leopard and a patient hyena

We went to South Africa in July with Titan. Four different lodges (three nights in each) in different locations topography-wise, all with excellent drives and guides. Fantastic experiences and well worth the (expensive) price.
I wouldn't want to do anything other than an organised tour like ours. Couldn't fault Titan.
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  #21  
Old 8th November 2018
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Re: An impala, a leopard and a patient hyena

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Originally Posted by Gate Keeper View Post

Living on the mountain can be challenging and we have had to learn to be reliant for everything ourselves. We went through a bad spell of robberies with people trying to kill us and had to fight them off in combat. Our neighbours were murdered for being farmers, so during an attack the stakes are high etc, It is a side of South Africa fortunately the tourists rarely encounter.
That's a horrific experience. We were running late into Dundee from the Kruger about ten years ago and narrowly avoided an ambush as we came off the N11. I spotted the ambush party at the bottom of the slip road but in the dark failed to notice the rocks in the road. We hit one with a terrific thud and I looked nervously at the oil pressure warning light as we went up the slip lest the sump had gone. Fortunately it hadn't and there was no obvious damage - well done VW. We're now much more careful about arriving in daylight! We didn't have GPS then and it was a time/distance miscalculation.

I guess cost and convenience are the main reasons we return to the Kruger. Those whose buckets don't extend to the high cost camps can have a lot of fun there.
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