Day 4 - Mohlabetsi

Our second day in the Kruger dawned bright and early, with the majority of the team heading out for a second early morning game drive - technically, a game walk for some of the team, as they were on foot on this occasion. Unfortunately, the merriment of the previous evening had taken at least a 60% casualty rate (Ben, James and Gareth, and to some extent Pete) who had enjoyed the previous night's entertainments too much, and failed to set an alarm, or wake up to the morning knock on the door.

The game walk thankfully didn't result in any casualties, although Hamilton, one of the park rangers, did manage to attract some lions closer by using himself as bait...

Breakfast was once again fantastic and late enough so that the stragglers from the morning could meet up with the rest of the team. Lots of fresh fruit and omelettes, excellent fuel for a day spent relaxing in the heat of the day (up to about 35 degrees). Rick, Gareth and Mick decided to take advantage of the massage service offered in the lodge to relax even further. Comparing their experience afterwards, Gareth declared that the best part of his massage was the head - and he didn't even have to pay extra...

The afternoon game finding excursion was focussed on one objective - to find the elusive elephants we hadn't been able to see the day before - for such a large animal, they seemed to be particularly difficult to find. Thankfully we didn't have long to wait, as we came across a herd of about ten individuals within 15 minutes of setting out - that makes four of the big five in two days, pretty good going by all accounts. As a bonus, we also came across a pride of lions getting ready to go out hunting for the evening, one of whom was no further than five yards from Iain, and seemed to be trying to work out whether his jaws were big enough to fit entirely around Iain's head, obviously reaching the conclusion that they weren't, as we still have a captain in one piece.

Evening dinner was served in the Boma, outside around the fire pit, with the accompaniment of a pretty impressive thunderstorm, thankfully some distance away. Dinner was followed by a slideshow session of the first couple of days photographs (oh look, another animal!) with Jon winning the prize for the most photographs taken during the day (about 450). The pictures were accompanied by a soundtrack devised by James along the theme of the tour, although some of the links were somewhat tenuous (the inclusion of Seven Nation Army by the White Stripes because it's on the album Elephant was a particularly low point.)

And so to bed, where this diary should conclude, if it weren't for two events that occurred after people had retired. The first was Pete being woken up by the sound of animals around the lodge, which turned out to be baboons that seemed strangely drawn to the nocturnal calls being produced by Gary in the bed next to him. The second was also animal related, with Chris believing that a concerted attack was being mounted by a troop of monkeys, thankfully turning out to only be James' nocturnal attempts to move around the hut.