After being in the Kalahari for a couple of days it was time to move on.
We traveled to Moremi after stopping in Maun for groceries.
The roads in the park weren’t nearly as bad as we expected. It was sandy in some parts, but nothing major.
We found our campsite at Third Bridge. The night before we arrived a girl that was sitting at the campfire was attacked by a hyena, so I made sure I was sitting with my back against the car, so I nothing could sneak up on me out of the cover of darkness.
The boyfriend was sitting on his knees trying to start a fire when I saw something moving in the corner of my eye. I was shocked to see it was a very cheeky hyena that was moving towards my boyfriend at an alarming pace. He passed right in front of me, not even looking at me; he was obviously completely focused on the butt cheeks of the boyfriend. I am not usually afraid of hyenas, but this one was very bold and I did not like the way it was acting. Not knowing what I to do since the hyena ignored my presence, I just started shouting and tried to shoo it away. Luckily this alarmed my boyfriend, who stood up to see what the noise was about. This apparently made the animal realize that the piece of juicy meat was a bit too big and alert, and it ran away in that typical galloping-hyena-way.
After enjoying Moremi for 2 days we decided to move on to Savuti.
The first thing I noticed was that the park was incredibly dry. The elephants we saw along the way did not look all that happy with the drought. The waterhole near the campsite was nearly dry and the elephants were digging to get to the water.
The campsite at Savuti was fully booked, so we used the overflow camping ground around the ablutions. After dinner I fell into a deep sleep…..for a while that is.
We woke up by a cacophony of animal sounds. We heard lions, elephants, jackals, and hyena’s, all at the same time. We could hear the elephants were quite angry and we were wondering if the infamous lions of Savuti (the ones that hunt elephants) were the cause of their distress.
After a while it went reasonably quiet again, until I could hear something rustling our tent cover that was on the hood of the car. And then I heard a rumbling sound and something breathing very close…..
I knew what it was instantly, it was an elephant sniffing our car. God I was scared. I know this is completely irrational, but I have an absurdly strong fear of elephants since I was charged by one while I was in a car that would not change gear. That elephant outside our tent must have known I was scared witless, cause he seemed to enjoy standing there for a long time. My boyfriend was laughing his ass off, because I was shaking with fear. I could hear people on the overflow campsite opening their tent zippers to check what was going on. I am glad someone enjoyed that show!
But the next morning all I could think about was how awesome that night had been. Sure I was scared, but I never felt more alive or closer to nature.
The elephant killers of Savuti
We hopped in our car and tried to find the direction the noise had come from during the night. It didn’t take long before we found them, it was indeed what we had thought.
It was so sad to see that such a majestic, intelligent animal had died this way . Of course this is natures way, but I love elephants as much as I fear them, so I did have to choke back some tears.
We looked around in the area for a pride, since we expected them to be around somewhere, but could only see jackals, hyenas and vultures waiting for their share.
We spent some time with the two killers and then moved on, feeling a bit down.
From Savuti to Kasane
After a few days in Savuti we were off early in the morning to Kasane to do some shopping. I was still half asleep in the car when I noticed the road we were on was blocked by a car. It was a couple from the UK that was stuck with the chassis of the car on the sand and had spent the night there.
We tried to dig them out to no avail. We did not dare pass them to try to tow them out, since the road was so narrow; we could not pass without damaging both cars. After a while a South-African in a brand new Audi Q8 arrived. He was not as cautious as we were and he just passed, scratched his car severely doing so. But he did succeed in towing them out of their misery. Strangely enough he did not seem to care about the big-ass scratch on the car. I am guessing his insurance was quite good?