Careful in the veldt! Mapungubwe

Beware of things lurking when out for a carefree stroll in the veld.

Outside Mapungubwe in October 2013 I spotted a male lion running free on the tar road. As I got closer he ducked under a little bush. Amazing how I would never have spotted him had I not seen him dive under it!

The can in the foreground of this picture is on the edge of the tar road, the bush is at the bottom of a steep little bank – about 3m down.


He’s there, believe me! A full-grown lion is under that little bush. A short while later he bolted and ran along the fence in the opposite direction to where I was going on my way to Limpopo-Lipadi in Botswana. I was too slow with my phone camera. (this story repeated – more or less – here).


The stay at Kaoxa was great. When I told hostess Virgeenia I’d been sent there by my friend, young David Hill, she exclaimed:

Hau, that one he makes us laugh!

I had the camp to myself and prepared an elaborate bachelor’s supper, mainly liquid: A Black Label beer, then a couple G&T’s with ice & lemon, biltong, crisps and tomato sarmies. Made with old-style slice-it-yourself white bread.

Next morning the ants had tried to hijack a stick of biltong, but had only moved it about 40cm. A few thousand of them put a thin stick on their backs for a getaway, but they were too slow.

The chalet was clean, comfortable and had a lovely porch overlooking the valley. The communal kitchen was well-equipped and the fridge was cold with lots of ice. I enjoyed a magic sunset and sunrise. I watched distant eles in the valley for supper, the Mocking Chats woke me on the thatch roof, squirrels scurried along the branches and I had a klipspringer in full sunlight for breakfast:

Mapungubwe Kaoxa (26).JPG

Later I checked out the Drifters mobile safaris camp on Kaoxa land. What a special site, ensconced in the rocky hillside among huge boulders!

Mapungubwe Kaoxa (38).JPG

Interesting sights were an ele looking tiny next to a baobab and a giraffe looking short next to a massive free-standing boulder, miniaturising these large beasts.


On 2013/11/07 David Hill wrote:

Did you stay at Kaoxa? How was it? Let me know so I can let Duncan have some feedback. We were up there for his 60th beginning August - twenty five old conneko's - beautiful.
-----Original Message-----
From: pete swanepoel home: 
Did I tell you I saw a beautiful male lion running along the fence on the tar road outside Kaoxa? Obviously escaped from the De Beers reserve, he was as worried as hell! When I drove up next to him he dived under a bush and wouldn't move, even when I put my foot out and rustled the grass. 
See the picture I took. I'll be even more wide awake walking in the bush now when I see how little cover a big male lion needs! 


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