MANYANE CARAVAN CAMP, PILANESBERG TO JOHANNESBURG (THE RV DEPOT), SOUTH AFRICA—Thursday, March 27, 2014


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Published: September 3rd 2014
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Manyane Caravan Camp, Pilanesberg to Johannesburg to the RV Depot. (196 km (122 miles) Thursday, March 27th.

Rained in the night.

As we left camp at 7:15, the baboons were raiding the garbage cans of the food stuffed inside from everyone cleaning out their units. We drove to the Center again to have breakfast, since we had given our food away and to see what was going on there in the morning.

A troop of vervet monkeys was all over the building roof-tops, both mothers and babies. Not many other animals out this morning but, we did see a Crimson-breasted Shrike, which is a beautiful bird. One of our group said that when they drove up in their RV, we had monkeys all over the top of our RV and they were trying to get into the vent.

Left here, and decided to drive out of the Park through a different gate that the map showed then curved back and went through Sun City (a Las Vegas type place) that we thought might be interesting to see. We thought the road would make a loop back to the way we had come up. Along the way out, we did see two different kinds of antelope and some interesting rocks and cliffs. Also passed alongside a couple of dams. When we got to the gate and exited we came to a T with no signs giving any direction. Valerie thought we should go right (I thought left), so went right down the hill, and found ourselves on a really nice 4 lane highway, but not really sure where we were. Sun City was no where to be found.

We came to a large T-intersection, again with no signs, and asked some police officers on the corner what direction we needed to take to get onto the N-4. They directed us to the right.

Shortly after this, still on nice roads, we came to a police check-point and got waved over. We stopped and the policeman asked us for our ID cards and we just looked at him strangely, and asked what kind of ID he needed?? Once he understood that we were not South African (our blank looks might have been a clue), he asked for Valerie’s driver’s license and then proceeded to chat with us. Very pleasant man who then directed us toward Rustenburg on the N-4.

When we finally got to the N-4, we realized we were about 47 km west of where we really wanted to be because the road we had traveled previously to get to the Park, had been at an angle or the long side of a triangle. We had then driven the other two sides of that same triangle to get to the original point on the N-4. Well we saw things we hadn’t seen before and traveled on much better roads, so all was well.

We then made our way through heavy traffic and fought pouring rain with lightening on the way into town and to the RV Depot near the airport, to return the unit. Made a stop at the nearby gas station to top off the tank and purchased some drinks. We needed to be at the Depot by 2:00 and then they would check the RV all over and inventory the items inside like, towels and sheets and pillows and dishes, etc. They didn’t do that much of an inventory, but they did note the damage done to one corner of the fiberglass on the passenger side. It was a 5-6 inch rip that happened somewhere at some time, maybe when we pulled over on a narrow dirt road in a park to let a car pass, or maybe a rock hit the underside, or maybe an animal ripped it with his teeth–-nah, don’t think so. Think it started to rip and it got worse as we went along. Anyway, the insurance covered all but a $50 deductible and we felt that was a good enough deal. So Valerie signed all the forms and called it a day.

There were three units that had to pay because of damage. As rough as we used them on the roads that we traveled on, I am surprised that all of them didn’t have some damage to the fiberglass molded body.

We all loaded into the bus and then checked into a hotel with REAL beds--ones with real sheets that stay on the bed and thick mattresses. As soon as we could, Valerie and I headed for naps as we were really beat. We are off early in the morning to tour Johannesburg all day, which we expect to be tiring. Saturday, we will fly to Victoria Falls in Zambia.


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