Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Traffic and crowds at Kafue NP

A pack of vultures chased two cheetahs off their kill, an impala

Last June we went camping with friends at the confluence of the Lufupa and Kafue River and had such a great time we have been counting the days until the road to camp was passable. The Kafue National Park is approximately the size of Belgium and is the best place to spot Cheetahs (besides the Wildlife Center in Chilenge of course) the entrance is about 3 hours from Lusaka, and the camp is another 60 km off the main road through the bush. They opened for the season June 1 and we initiated Alan to Zambian car camping... complete with Leopard prints leading right to the tent.

Car camping here looks like car-camping anywhere else, with the added threat of getting eaten up if you need to go pee in the middle of the night.

Traffic was brutal leaving town....and the crowds... (puku)

There are several different zebra species -- some with shadow stripes, some with no stripes on their tummies, no stripes on their legs, some more mule-like, some with characteristic rump you know what these beauties are? Brushell's Plains? Cape Mountain?

the road past our campsite leading down to the Lufupa River. we were the only guests in the campground most of the weekend and the staff spoiled us. They have a great set up and we'll look forward to our next trip out! We hope we can make it out to the Busanga plains next hot season.

A rough weekend in zambia....On our way to camp we watched as this lion stalked and chased some zebra and waterbuck. It was kind of a half-hearted chase but exciting nonetheless.

We saw lions, leopard, cheetahs, elephant, crocs, puku, impala, kudu and a few firsts -- WILDEBEAST! and for some reason we all got really excited about this...SQUIRRELS! The park is so beautiful and it's pretty easy access (go through town, left on Lumumbwa Road, right onto Mongu road, drive.....turn right after the Hook Bridge.

The trip home is always too long though and coming back through town, through the light industrial area is always a bit depressing -- a little slap in the face after an idyllic holiday.

we went in search of wild dogs and cheetahs that had been spotted nearby, but this leopard appeared in the road instead. It ambled across the road in front of us and into the brush. gorgeous.,

of course there was some birding done as well..... the ever-present blue helmeted guinea hen
and fish eagle, to name a few....

...and back to town:

....see what I mean.\? It's a bit much after such a beautiful, relaxing, stress-free holiday. There is the 'stress' of hippos, warthogs and hyeanas in your camp wimpering and yowling all night, elephants charging the staff, green mamba snakes, etc. Somehow worrying if a leopard is going to eat it's way through your family in the middle of the night doesn't bother me as much as the pile of laundry, the backlog of projects and the imminent travel days.

1 comment:

M and C said...

I can't wait to get out of dodge! I would have like to hang out with you and guys but I guess I'll have to settle for Italy. Save my room for late September!