Thursday, 29 January 2015

The Epic Journey Continues - Part 7

After catching up on some washing, the past few days, and taking some pictures in Windhoek and surrounds, we headed out latish.
See the nice, oversized piston to your left?

A map, just for consistency

Funny: German City names in the middle of nowhere :)

Because we were only going to travel to Stampriet, there was not a rush to get going.
In Stampriet we again asked for a space at one place, which was full, but found a room at the Historical Guesthouse.

They had a lot of parrots, but even more importantly, they had a porcupine. A baby, mind you, but a porcupine nonetheless. They are quite grumpy, but funny.

After taking a dip in the pool, ordering cocktails and an amazing dinner with tipsy tart as dessert, we just fell into bed.
Such is holiday and life :0
The sunset was beautiful.

The next morning, we decided to book into Kgalagdi, since we had a feeling that they were going to be full. We found a place at Nossob. So, off we went to Mata-Mata, but not before we saw some of the beautiful Kalahari sand and some Giraffe along the way.

At the border post we then were told, that we had to book two nights if we wanted to get into South Africa at Twee Rivieren - nobody tells you this! Anyway, we were just going to take a chance.
We had a good laugh at the Police officer, who was quite surprised at our vehicle and said: "You are going to struggle with your car - it is Kalahari Sand!" Lucky for us, both of us could drive sand, he (and we)  needn't have worried. The main roads are all very drivable with a sedan, even one as small as a Hyundai Atos.
Our travels inside the park:

We had this lovely companion for both Kgalagadi and Augrabies. The maps helped a lot, as well as the tick-boxes for all the animals you have seen.

On our way to Nossob, we were still quite trigger happy when we saw Ostrich, Oryx, Hartebees, Wildebeest and Springbok, but towards the end, not so much. We saw quite a few Secretary Birds, Kori Busterds and Goshawks (which they apparently call the Kalahari chicken because they are so common).
It must have rained a few days before, since there were quite a number of puddles (well biggish puddles) on the roads. The other 4x4 drivers all did a double take when we arrived in our little Atos. :D
In Nossob the electricity goes out at 10h00 and there is no cell phone reception. Ahh what bliss.
We tried to view a few things at the waterhole but there was that one person that would not shut up, so the chances were quite slim.We left after about 30 minutes.

The chalets are well kitted out, even with braai stands and all cutlery. All you need is food and you can go.
A few pictures from the first day...

See, completely doable roads with a Sedan....

If you look closely you will spot the Korhaan
And here you will spot the Hornbill

Teesy-tiny Tree Mouse at Nossob Restcamp.
 Moths at the waterhole spotlights.
 A few videos from day one:

Monday, 26 January 2015

The Epic Journey continues - Part 6

Day 6 -8
The Ai-Ais breakfast was awesome! As with all these places, the buffet is not to be sneezed at.
We then headed into the outdoor pool - at least 35 Degrees. That is our kind of temperature. We spent quite a while inside and then tested the ones inside. They were colder :)!
Packed our things and headed out. The road was scenic and empty.

 We met some tiny wildlife (spot the lizard)

 Something that could be wildlife but wasn't ;)

 Someone who definitely wasn't wildlife :)

 A few dustclouds from fellow travellers


At the Roadside cafe we had a coffee and an Amarula Cheesecake. Yummy
 I also almost ook this piece of "wildlife" with me :)

Heading into Keetmanshoop we had it on "Mommy authority" that the Quivertree Forest and Giant's Playground was something to still see, so we made the detour. We spent quite a bit of time in the forest in the lovely heat

Then we watched the feeding of the cats (BIG pussy cats!).
To prove it they are pussy cats, here is a purring video:

The feeding included petting the kitty cats :) (Sorry, I was not quick enough to shoot the pic, so no evidence).
The twins arrived like this:
Other pictures from the feeding:

The photo below would be my proudest moment, however my camera decided the background needed to be in focus, rather than the beautifyul animal.

Because it was a little late for us to travel further and find a place to sleep, we took the owner up on  the offer to sleep over - we got a bungalow all to ourselves. The option with dinner and breakfast was well worth it.
After a dip in the pool and an awesome home-made Sprinbock Ragout, we went to the look-out and did some stargazing. When all the lights were out, the starry host did not disappoint.

Next day we travelled this route:

Rising early, to catch the sunrise, we headed into the Forest, where we took some real postcard pictures. Including the yawning Dassie.

After breakfast then, we were treated to the Meerkat feeding - what we were hoping for in Kgalagadi only, but we got them :)

Since the Giant's Playground was also on the list, we took in that one as well, at about 9h00 in the morning. The shadows were not as stark, but the penetrating sounds of the Cicads were.

Some two-legged dassies were also spotted :)

 And this is the photo that was taken.

At around 10 or so we then took the road up to Windhoek. We were stopped by the cops, who just wanted to show superiority. Unfortunately my back number plate was not readable any longer, and his attitude really was like: "Please come here. What do you see wrong here?" "Must I give you a fine now?" Lucky for me it was a series of Public Holidays and there was no way that I could have had it replaced, so I pasted my number in the window :) He did not get the Christmas Bonus he was hoping for.
Headed for the pool but a lot colder than Ai-Ais. We then saw a thermmometer on a shelf, that had a little Penguin at 20 Degrees C, a Sun at 25 and "ideal" at 30. (probably a baby bathing thermometer) And so, when we were cold or when the pool was cold, it was Penguin :)
Since it was Christmas Eve (German Christmas), we said that we were the Christmas Presents - hence this lovely picture.
 Spent with my mom and dad.

A the next day was a public holiday and we had time to spend with Mommy and Daddy. We showed our pictures up to that point and they were very impressed.
Lots of chatting.
On the 26th we then tried to see which shops were open, but not much. We took a few pictures and then did a car wash. Not that it lasted, since the next day, we headed out onto the dusty roads again.