Your afternoon drive yesterday was another great game viewing experience. Shortly after you left the camp the tracker picked up leopard spoor (footprints) and the search was on.
It is amazing to watch how the tracker and guide work together. The tracker sits very still but his eyes are constantly moving, looking for tracks or trying to pick up movement. I have found that most trackers are men of very few words and they bond with their guide and work closely as a team. I have yet to come across a female tracker although there are many female guides. It is amazing when you are out in a vehicle and all you can see is grass lands and trees yet the tracker will indicate that he has seen something. Next thing you know the vehicle has travelled 100 meters and the guide is pointing out the 15cm tall Scops owl sitting on the branch. It is when you see sighting like this that you really start to appreciate how good the tracker and guides are.
Once again, the team did not disappoint and as the vehicle came to a stop you could see the female leopard up a tree, but this time she is having her dinner and there are two cubs in the bushes just below her. What a wonderful sighting. The cubs are running around and playing whilst mum remains up the tree munching away on an impala carcass. She is ever mindful of our presence and of her cubs but continues to chomp away at her kill. The cubs completely ignore the vehicle and have fun playing together, jumping on top of each other, biting ears and just being cubs. Suddenly the leopard makes a move and is on the ground and just as quickly one of cubs is up the tree and having a feed. You never want this moment to end but as the afternoon is slipping away it is time to move on. Fortunately, you have your photos and memories.
Just before sunset the guide will stop the vehicle so everyone can get out and stretch their legs whilst drinks and nibbles are prepared. This is an opportunity for you to experience an African sunset with glass in hand amongst friends. It is a tradition that goes back many years and it is special to be on the ground knowing there are animals out there but feeling safe with the tracker and guide around.
Yingwe – is Shangaan for Leopard