How wonderful it is to be back here at Elephant Plains in the Sabi Sand reserve. After checking in, a delicious meal, and a quick briefing we were more than ready to get going. There is always that sense of anticipation about the bush. Nature is always so very unpredictable and the forthcoming days could deliver … well, what? So it was with hope and anticipation, and cameras at the ready we set out for our first game drive on this safari –
We followed tracks belonging to Anderson, that huge dominant male leopard, but no, there was no sign of the actual animal. Then two more sets of leopard tracks taunted us and we followed each set until they also disappeared into long grass.
Just then, to our delight we found Salayexe, that indomitable female leopard that has become a familiar sight over the years. She had a kill that she dragged up into tree where it was barely visible. She flopped down to lie under a nearby Marula tree. We remained with her, taking dozens of photographs – until it was dark, when we took out our spotlights to capture more images of her, this time in the eerie dark of the night.
Hyenas arrived, and we thought OK, now for a confrontation! But Salayexe is a wise old lady and she retreated to a tree from where she gazed down at the frustrated hyenas below. It was a leafy tree, and wasn’t the best for photography, but we managed some decent stuff nonetheless.
In addition, we saw herds of elephants, and a very stately Kudu Bull that stood on a termite mound, looking around at his surroundings, and looking oh, so handsome.
We also saw the biggest Monitor Lizard that I have ever seen. We looked, blinked, looked again – surely that was a crocodile? But no! It was a gigantic Monitor Lizard! Wow!
Now we are back at the Lodge, enjoying our predinner drinks and thinking that we really should check on more leopard tracks again in the morning …