If you are going to be doing bush walks on a regular basis, then you need to have a proper hand-made stick. I have one that was specially made for me, but I discovered this one on the bumper of the vehicle as we drove to the start of our walk.
Depending on the number of guests and the fitness levels, the walk can either start and end from the camp or as in our case, we drove to a point, did a circular walk and then returned to camp for breakfast.
But not before enjoying a warm beverage and some risks in the bush prior to our return.
And this was where we started our walk. No hippos or crocs in the dam and unfortunately the viewing platform on the far bank was off-limits to us as it was privately owned.
But a great place to take a moment to enjoy the sunrise and to prepare for the adventure ahead.
Time to load up and move off. The rifles are there as a last resort, given that the walks are conducted in Big 5 territory.
Our professional guides took safety very seriously and there was a thorough briefing before we set off.
Silence and single file are watchwords although if there was explaining to be done, then of course talking was allowed, but in hushed tones.
It looks like Craig is trying to explain to us HOW to walk, but that was not really the case.
I seem to think that this was part of the safety briefing. Or perhaps I pushed the shutter button by accident?
It could have also been an African take on the John Cleese Silly Walk sketch (for those who know it)
Single file and keeping eyes and ears open. These walks are not about time or distance covered, but more about turning it into an immersive experience to be enjoyed by all the senses.
And it can be difficult to try and walk and NOT look at your feet constantly.
“Can YOU identify this poop”? This is part of what the walks are designed to teach. To identify objects that might be missed when on a game viewer and merely driving past a rhino midden.
When you are on foot you can pick it up, seeing that it is only vegetation, and smell and feel it. Obviously, you don’t want to do that with fresh poop (as it will be too wet) and you certainly do NOT want to be handling any predator poop.
We were tracking one of these that had crossed the road that we were walking on several times. Luckily, or unluckily, we did not find it on this occasion.
An elephant ‘vending machine’…
And you have to be wary so that you do not run into one of them partially hidden amongst the trees.
This cannot be done if you are in a game viewer. In this instance, an international guest had not seen a Shongololo before and wanted to get up close with this particular individual.
Garden gnomes out on a bush walk?
Not really…Yours truly and John Dixon. It was almost like looking in a mirror.
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