We had a wonderful experience in Africa! After arriving from various locations, our group of fourteen trekkers joined Reed and Michelle for dinner at the Safari Club South Africa in Johannesburg, followed by a brief opening session to help us make the most of our adventure.
Our travels took us to three different lodges for two nights each – Chobe Game Lodge, Leroo La Tau and Camp Okavango. Each of the camps had different ecosystems. In all locations, we went for game rides on boats and trucks with wonderful guides. Our accommodations went from rather like a hotel complete with air conditioning to a cabin with a thatched roof and ceiling fan to an upscale tent with a desk fan. The later two lodges did not have air conditioning and had mosquito netted beds. We experienced wonderful hospitality at all of the camps and found each evening a fun cultural experience with food and song.
The animals we encountered were fantastic, and we were rewarded with sightings at all of the camps. One of the most exciting yet bittersweet experiences we had was during the very first game drive when we saw a pair of lionesses take down a kudu. Seeing lions is unusual, but seeing them kill is so rare our guides were even taking photos! We saw numerous other animals, including elephants, African buffalo, hippopotamus, giraffes, impala, baboons, puku, black-backed jackals and even a leopard and a sable antelope. In addition, we found ourselves photographing many birds, including African fish eagles and both red and yellow billed horn bills – affectionately nicknamed the flying chili pepper and flying banana. And none of us will forget the numerous and colorful bee eaters!
Reed was very gracious and helpful, and hosted two formal reviews as well as a couple of informal ones. He was great about reminding us to check our ISO and to work with exposure compensation. And ALWAYS get tight! He certainly helped me to improve my photography, and he is also a great travel resource for adventure travel.
This was my second trek, and will not be my last. Once again, I had a wonderful experience with a great group of people. I look forward to my next adventure!