Wim Reports from Okavango – Machaba: Elephant Landscapes
Having left Maun at around 10:00, we traveled along the northward road to Machaba. The road was clear, the landscape fabulous, and the trip seemed to pass in almost no time.
We arrived at 13:00, and quickly checked in, freshened up, and fixed the brackets to the vehicles, ready for our first game drive.
We headed for Mogotlo, hoping to see the famed conglomeration of elephants around the Khwai River. The area was teeming with game and an amazing variety of birds, so after a few halts for photography along the way we arrived at the river.
The conditions were just fabulous! No wind! A late afternoon golden light suffused the area – and the elephants were there on cue. Huge males were enjoying their afternoon drink and splash. Even better, with no air turbulence, the surface of the water was completely flat. Now we had the perfect setting … lush, beautiful vegetation all around, a glorious sky with puffy white clouds against the vibrant colors, all reflected perfectly in the water. And with the elephants there as well … aaaah! Wonderful!
We could not tear ourselves away and remained until sunset. We watched as large thunderclouds gathered above the horizon, adding yet another dimension to an already incredible landscape.
After sunset we had a quick stop for sundowners, and then started a leisurely drive back to the Lodge. We stopped many times – owls and nightjars. A few times we hopped out of the vehicle to get close to the birds to capture those eye to eye images.
That ended a fabulous start to the safari – with everyone gloating over the successful collection of images on very full memory cards.
Tomorrow we would like to see what animals decide to visit the river frontage …