Edit Blog Post
Published: June 25th 2017
Geo: -18.5421, 24.5105
After valiantly fighting off a near fatal African upset stomach despite a distinct lack of sympathy from DH, I was ready to take on the rest of our journey through Botswana which was to have a very large elephant focus (pun intended). Our next stop for the night was at an elephant watering hole and our accommodation was one of a number of little cottages that surrounded said water. I love the fact that someone in Africa thought it would be a good idea to surround a watering hole for the biggest land based mammal in the world with slightly shaky cottages filled with relatively tiny humans that these herds would need to navigate around or through as they came and went.
Our stay here was relatively straightforward. We hung out with new friends on a slightly elevated platform that overlooked the watering hole, and every time an angry elephant stopped wrestling with his buddies for a quality spot at the waters edge and wandered over to us, we started whispering in the belief, I suppose, that if he couldn't hear us, he obviously couldn't see us. It must have worked since no one was stomped.
Our final stop
in Botswana was the justifiably famous Okavango Delta and the 120,000 elephants who make the area a home base of sorts (home to the largest elephant population in Southern Africa). The Okavango Delta is a very large inland delta formed where the Okavango River hits an enormous plain (the delta is very flat, with less than 2 metres variation in height across its 15,000 km²😉 and spreads wide and shallow. Seasonal flooding creates the Okavango- the river drains the summer rainfall from the Angola highlands and the surge flows 1,200 kilometres in approximately one month. The waters then spread over the 250 km by 150 km area of the delta over the next four months. All the water reaching the Delta is ultimately evaporated and transpired, and does not flow into any sea or ocean.
A bit unique to see a river that appears to flow in both directions.
We were told that the far north of the park, bordering the Chobe River, has long been renowned for its dense game. The lion are apparently common and nonchalant, the antelope prolific, and the herds of buffalo and elephant among the largest anywhere along with some sizeable hippos and crocodiles. The
birdlife is also excellent, from ubiquitous fish eagles to a myriad of herons and waders. We did both a river cruise and a safari and although the predator animals were a bit scarce, the marshy setting was a first for us. Although we had been spoiled in South Africa where we seemed to be tripping over critters of all sizes, even DH (where the 'D' stands for Safari Diva) gave it a thumbs up although I suspect that DH will never experience a bad safari (of course she was comfortably seated in a stranded jeep waving away flies while I was helping push it through beach-like sand a couple of times- good thing the lions were scarce).
Tot: 2.133s; Tpl: 0.021s; cc: 9; qc: 34; dbt: 0.0245s; 2; m:saturn w:www (18.104.22.168); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb