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Published: November 27th 2019
We said a sad goodbye to our friends at Ebony Lodge at noon and took off on the 12-seater plane to head east to our final lodge, Lebombo. This lodge is located within its own private concession which lies within the Kruger National Park. This lodge has a very modern design and our suite is beautiful but that’s no surprise since it’s a Singita property. We did have several stops on the flight here and we enjoyed listening to the pilots perform their duties as we sat right behind them.
Upon arrival at Lebombo, we were greeted by our new guide, Gary, and his tracker, Sully. We were also teamed up with a young couple from Brooklyn. We unpacked, freshened up and headed out on our first game drive. The terrain here is more rocky that Sabi Sands and high cliffs mark the border of our lodge with Mozambique which is a 30 minute drive away. And unlike Sabi, the impala females have mostly dropped their lambs which dot the landscape everywhere. The little ones are what Jonty called “snackalopes” because they are just little snacks for the lions, leopards and cheetahs. Many of them are hours old when we
see them and if we are lucky we just might see one born.
We paused in the Landcruiser and looked up at the cliffs when Gary pointed out four cheetahs, which we had yet to see on safari, cliimbing their way to the top. Gary said cheetahs never climb like this and was amazed at the sight. We watched them get to the top where the land flattened out again and drove the Cruiser up there. We found the cheetahs walking around, standing on small hills, looking out for impala. They turn their head in every direction. Two jackals waited in the distance in case the cheetahs made a successful kill so they could get the scraps left behind. Cheetahs are at the bottom of the predator hierarchy. They run very fast but are not really muscular and as powerful as leopards and lions ...who top the hierarchy. Impala also run very fast so the cheetahs lie in wait for an unsuspecting impala to get close and then they snag their prey. We watched them for awhile but they didn’t make a kill and that was just fine with me. They are beautiful cats and these were four brothers
who will most likely spend their lives together.
From there we drove on to see a lioness trailed by seven lion cubs. She was meeting up with the rest of her pride and was in charge of all the cubs. We didn’t get a great view of them as we couldn‘t drive on to the fragile new grass in the meadow to where they were heading.
We continued to drive around and saw elephants, zebra, giraffes, lots of birds and another relative of our tortoise, Coop. After a wonderful dinner (I dined on kudu tartare) accompanied by lovely South African wines, we walked back to our suite to retire for the night.
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