After a somewhat sleepless night we rose bright and early to continue on our way. We were only 50 kilometres from the lodge that we were headed to but we knew it would take several hours.
Two of the young boys (about 15) from the village came with us. We all drove in the car until we came to the river. Then we headed off road. The two young lads walked in front of the car searching for a new place to cross the river.
(Yes that is the bonnet of the car at the base of the picture).
Periodically Gorgeous Man would get out of the car and walk with them scouting for the best path to take. He still managed to find time to bring Gorgeous Girl this fantastic creature to look at.
It’s a velvet mite. It had a velvet like skin – hence the name. It was probably the coolest bug we saw all trip.
Eventually we came to a place where the water had not yet come to. It had been used the night before by elephants.
The two large mounds on the right of the river bank (towards the bottom of the photo) are fresh elephant dung.
Gorgeous Man and the two boys levelled out the sides of the bank with a shovel (the hire vehicle came equipped with jack, tow rope, shovel etc) and then Gorgeous Man drove across.
Then we all drove until we rejoined the road. I thought that this would be an easier part of our journey, but the young men told us that there was another washed out crossing that was very bad and they would accompany us to that as well.
We continued onwards. We did get stuck in the mud once, but some fallen branches placed under the tires soon got us out of that mud puddle.
When we got to the river crossing that had been washed, away we were pleased to see that with the redistribution of some rocks and stones it would be passable.
We said our very grateful goodbyes to our two guardian angels and continued on our journey.
Not long after the second river crossing we encountered good graded road again. We were blessed to see the first elephants of the trip, much to Gorgeous Girl’s delight as this was her first elephant sighting.
There was great excitement on Gorgeous Man’s part as well when I spotted this bird out of the window.
This is a crowned crane and has been on Gorgeous Man’s life list for some time (he is a keen birdwatcher). They are huge and truly magnificent birds.
Just before mid-day we reached our destination. It had taken 5 hours to go 50 kilometres. When the workers at the lodge heard which road we had taken their eyebrows raised and they said “And you got through?!” Seems we had been very lucky, as this was a dry season only road and we were just at the beginning of the wet season. We booked ourselves into a cabin, had a shower and retreated to the restaurant for a cool drink.
Gorgeous Girl’s cat came along with us.
Cat was made by Gorgeous Man’s sister and he had lots of his own adventures on safari.