Archive for April, 2008

Apr 21 2008

Masai Ceremony and visit to Leleshwa Camp

Published by under Masai

Just back from a lightning trip to the Mara. Headed down the road on 19 April with our good friend Annabella Frachescon of Maniago Travel to accompany a group of Spanish journalists/photographers who had flown in to Kenya to publicise our tourist industry. The road is pretty awful in places but the engineers are hard at work resurfacing it so hopefully it wont be long before driving to the Mara is a lot more comfortable. Maniago Travel organise all our international travel tickets and transfers with Henry Mburi doing an amazing job ticketing for us. On this occasion we stayed at Leleshwa Camp (owned and managed by Joe and Gillian Charleson – you can find out more at www.leleshwacamps.com) which is only a four hour drive from Nairobi on the other side of the Mara to the Governor’s Camp area where we film Big Cat Diary.

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Apr 18 2008

Botswana, Namibia – and India – and other travel titbits

We are in the process of finalising details for trips to Botswana and Namibia – and India again for 2009 and 2010! More on this later. We are in the Arctic (July) and Antarctica (Nov-Dec) this year, and next year we will be hosting an Arctic trip in June, and joining Paul Goldstein (Exodus) on an another Emperor Penguin trip to Snow Hill Island in early Nov 2009 (we are on a similar trip to the emperors in Nov 2008 with Quark – just cant get enough of these extraordinary creatures and the spectacular Antarctic scenery).

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Apr 18 2008

Madagascar and Indaba

We are off to Madagascar on Tuesday 22 April to participate in Wildlife Worldwide’s annual Feastival of Wildlife. Having never been to the island before we are very excited about trying our hands at some rather different kinds of photography – macro and flash. We will let you know how we get on. We are leading an extension in Madagascar after the Festival finishes and then fly on to Johburg in South Africa on the 8 May. On the 9 May we fly to Durban for the annual Travel Fair – Indaba – which is being held in Durban from the 10 to 14 May. This will give us the chance to meet with people involved in organising safaris in Southern Africa and to find out more about the camps and lodges in wilderness areas. We have visited Botswana (I lived there from 1975 to 76 – working for Jack Bousfield in Francistown) on many occasions and love Namibia and Zambia too. We hope to lead some exciting trips to these destinations in the years ahead – hence our visit to Indaba.

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Apr 18 2008

Mara 29 March to 2 April

On our return from India on the 28 March I packed up the Toyota and headed down to the Masai Mara to join Paul Goldstein (Exodus Travel and Kicheche Mara Camp) and his group of visitors from the UK. The 5 day safari was excellent – bit tiring mind you and pretty wet for the first day-and-a-half, but then the sun shone and everywhere looked green and beautiful. Kicheche is near Aitong – one of my old haunts from the 70s when wild dogs used to den here in the dry season – and though it is outside the Reserve at this time of the year it is the place to be. The Masai cattle keep the grass nice and short so the plains game love this area. Icing on the cake was definitely Supu the mother leopard with her two 6 month old cubs who gave us an hour and a half of sheer joy – just wandered about in the open between patches of forest playing the fool, leaping all over mum, and though the light could have been better if it had Supu probably wouldnt have done what she did and would have made her move when it was cooler. Also had a
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Apr 06 2008

Oman – in search of the Arabian Leopard

Published by under Oman,Travel Club

When our friends Dave and Judy Willis invited us to Oman in Dec 2007 we knew we were in for a treat. I had first met this intinerant Aussie couple in Kenya’s Masai Mara years earlier while following the lives of the Marsh Lions and the various leopards that Angie and I had come to know. In those days life for the Willis family revolved around their battered old Land Rover which had carried them to many far off places and provided a mobile home for their young sons Mateo and Miguel. Dave is a talented painter who moved with his family to Oman some 15 years ago. Like us, Dave has a passion for big cats – particularly leopards – so when he took up residence in Oman his attentions soon turned to trying to photograph the illusive and critically endangered Arabian leopard; there are probabaly less than 100 left in the wild. The only way Dave could photograph these illusive cats was to use all his ingenuity and dogged persistence and the help of remote cameras strategically placed along trails and near scent posts used by the
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Apr 06 2008

India Revisited

Published by under India,Travel Club

Just back from an amazing adventure in India with our friends Anne and Fred Fisher – both pro photographers. Kenya Airways flys direct from Nairobi to Mumbai so very convenient for us, while the Fisher’s flew Continental direct to Mumbai from Newark in New Jersey, giving all of us the chance to take a few days to acclimatise. The hustle and bustle of Indian cities, so alive with colour and history make a wonderful contrast to the wildlife. First stop on our safari was an old favourite Kanha NP for four nights staying at Tiger Corridor. Our choice was two-fold; the vehicles are more photographer friendly with much more comfortable seats than most of the short wheel based jeeps you see in India’s wildlife parks, and the accomodation is in large air conditioned tents. We love Kanha, particularly the meadows and the bird life is always an added attraction in the daily search for tigers. Dont expect the
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