Hello everyone, having spent much of our last trip to South Africa, in 2015, in the cold of a Karoo winter failing to see Aardvarks, for our next trip, in February this year, Jane demanded one thing above all else. Hot weather. We decided on February to also allow us to escape part of the English winter and egged on by several tremendous trip reports on this very forum, and our own knowledge of San Parks very good value accommodation ,we plumped for the Kruger, a new place for us save a three day trip 20 years ago. 9 nights and then a trip to Houts Bay, the Karoo national park and the Overberg.
Although we could have booked everywhere ourselves, we again went with Lawsons, a South African company who we see every year at the British Bird Fair, and who can provide a lot of valuable tips and as much birding knowledge as our poor brains can take in. In fact on this trip they also offered to meet us in Nelspruit and lend us a rigid coolbox, emergency tea and coffee, an industrial sized flask and a whole container of home made rusks! Hurrah for Lawsons!
We then spent an anxious time looking at the San Parks forum and praying for rain to end the terrible drought the Kruger and elsewhere was experiencing.You only have to see the contrast between @Hads fine report and that of @Tdgraves to see what a difference a month makes!
Driving the 4ish hours to the Kruger straight off an overnight flight in ecomomy is not ideal but to us English folk, driving in South Africa is a pleasure. Even a lap around the airport as we couldn't find the exit did not dampen our spirits. In fact a friendly policeman setting up a road block took pity on us and pointed us in the right direction. We met several road blocks to check vehilces on our trip and at each one we were met with at worst politeness and mostly friendliness.
We asked for a 2 x 4 to have a bit of height and ended up with a toyota Hilux 2 x 4 but with 4x4 capability. It was a fine beast but it was only after we were mildly chased by a Bull Elephant and teased by a curius black rhino that we relaised it might be they were objecting to the number plate