The Serengeti - Part I
From Alamana, we drove into the Serengeti to our home for the next week, a private mobile tented camp that had just been set up for us in a beautiful secluded section of the western Serengeti.  It turned out that our tents (again there should be a better term than tents, perhaps…tented home) were located dead center where the current wildebeest migration was occurring.  Several nights we awoke from our sleep to the sounds of thousands upon thousands of wildebeest dining on the short grasses in the field no more than 50 feet in front of our tent.  The chorus of thousands of wildebeest was startling the first night, and amazing thereafter (we will hopefully be recording it as an alarm clock sound for our home in San Francisco).  A rare and lucky experience to be so well situated to witness the migration.
In the Serengeti, our game drives made us intimately familiar with dozens of different species of wildlife.  We tracked lions at dawn, crocodiles at dusk, wildebeest in the afternoon, giraffes at lunch, hippos at breakfast, and so many others that its best described by the photos rather than words.
Among the highlights was one day we drove close to a dense thicket surrounding an acacia tree where we had seen some movement.  Jay was sitting on top of the car, Shannon with her head stuck out the side window, when we suddenly came within inches of a massive male lion resting in the thicket.  We were so close you could see its chest raising and lowering with each breath.  Shannon quickly closed her window, and Jay whispered to our driver/guide, “should I get down from here?”, to which he was answered “yes”, with all of the implied “are you an idiot, of course” that could come with it.  While the photos of that incident included below are not terrific (we had a long lens on and it was difficult to get a good shot so close), it was a remarkable encounter.
Beyond the wildebeests and the Big Five, our unpredicted favorites were giraffes whose shape, form and gait are like no other animal that we’ve ever seen, ostriches which could not be an odder bird, and hippos which we could watch yawning, rolling, farting, and ear-twitching for hours.
The Serengeti - Part I
June 4th - 7th, 2007
Click on any photo to start a full-size slide show (in separate window)