Sometimes in the African bush, you can be blessed with some pretty magical moments. Today was one of those days…
The skies were still dotted with stars as we left the lights of the Buffalo Thorn Lodge behind us to head into the Pilanesberg National Park.
It was deja vu as we found yet another Black Rhino in the road. This time a cow with a adolescent calf. They were trotting along a Tamboti tree line along the road.
As we followed them around a bend, we stumbled into the two dispersed male lion brothers lying in the road. What a start! They had walked more than 7km from the spot from we had seen them yesterday.
The lions were very sleepy and, as there was no way of us passing or going around, we decided to turn around and head back in the direction we came from.
A call came on the radio that had us all beaming with excitement. A pride of 4 lions was seen 1km from the lodge. We quickly went to investigate and found them lazing around some yellow thatching grasses.
Then another call on the radio. Could our morning get any better! 3 Cheetahs were were found lying on the entrance road to our lodge. Amazing!
We arrived as they began to stir, yawning and stretching, before they noticed a herd of impala drinking at the lodge’s waterhole.
They got into stalking positions and the intensity was palpable. However, they soon lost interest and gave up their intent of stalking lying down to enjoy the shade of a nearby Shepherd’s Tree. We called it a morning.
After yet another delicious brunch, we concluded our 3rd Wildlife Photography Essentials Workshop before heading out into the Park again for a longer drive.
Plentiful white rhino and Elephants were seen, but still the elusive leopard kept eluding us. We headed back towards the lodge at roughly 18h30. As our spotlight shone through the thickets, a white and yellow flash of something caught our eye.
“Leopard, leopard, leopard” was the call and our guests all immediately grabbed their cameras and started shooting away. A moment of superb spotting and shear luck!
The male leopard eventually moved closer to the road until it was less than 5 meters away from us. Our guide informed us that the leopard was known as ‘Sepoko’ (meaning Ghost in Setswana).
We spent 15 glorious minutes with this stunning and relaxed cat and our guests managed to get crystal clear images of him in the spotlight, using the technique we had taught them earlier in the day.
All of the big cats, cheetah, lion and leopard, in one day! Astonishing. Our guests were ecstatic, as were we, that they were all able to get some amazing images today.
We finished the evening off with a traditional South African braai under the stars.
If you’re keen to take your Wildlife Photography to the next level, find out more about our upcoming Workshops to this incredible location. Click here for more info or email firstname.lastname@example.org