Day twelve and final morning


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Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » Paterson
July 31st 2010
Published: July 31st 2010EDIT THIS ENTRY

Our final full day here, a drive this morning again to the south of the reserve and again a spectacular trip: leopards again, copulating this time. Our guide didn’t believe how lucky we were, as he had never seen it before. Many visitors don’t get the chance to see leopards at all. He was so excited that he took us back there. We also saw black rhino, sightings of which are also very rare. In addition we saw lots of other animals and birds.

Another drive in the afternoon now the “big five” had been seen our ranger got into more detail, hippos, plants, birds, tracking and all of the other animals.

Now another highlight: a night drive. As soon as we left the camp we saw the most amazing stars. Jacques claimed not to know much about astronomy but then proceeded to point put dying stars, the southern cross, the false cross, Mars, and galaxies that you can see with the naked eye. We saw the moon rise across the veld: a moving experience as it silhouetted the trees across the hilltops. And we saw an aardwolf, sightings these are very very rare and Jacques had only seen one once before in his time at the reserve.

The final morning: this part is being written in the airport waiting to catch the first flight. We went out this morning looking for the bird life and we were able to spend more time out of the vehicle walking around. Jacques kept disappearing into the bush looking for sightings normally closely followed by Meg but he did have his rifle with him in case, although that did leave the rest of us wondering if we could find our way back. (Note from Meg: it seemed sensible to stay close to the rifle, especially when it was accompanied by the one with all the knowledge!) When he reappeared he was running around pulling up rocks pointing out venomous spiders and centipedes and scorpions. But he had saved the best vistas for our final stop before we had to return to the camp and leave for home.
We said goodbye to new friends: Marty, Yvonne, Kev, Carrie and Emma with whom we had shared experience and sightings for the last few days and are just starting their South Africa adventure, and finally to Jacques who now gets a well deserved break for a little while.



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6th August 2010

Wonderful
Last night in SA and we have enjoyed your blog, hope the UK wasn't too much of a come down, look forward to speaking with you both again soon. The Newman Party, your companions in Shamwari xx

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