A highlight of our visit was the Elephant Plains Game Lodge tour guided by Tusk Photo. Elephant Plains is a private game lodge and is the “go to” place for leopards. It sets on the edge of Kruger National Park and it shares its wildlife with the park. So, aside from the leopards we saw a lot of other wildlife on that part of our adventure.
We did an early morning and a late/afternoon game drive each day. We traversed the bush in open 4-wheel drive vehicles on rutted dirt roads. We had a tracker who sat on a jump seat attached to the front bumper who, along with our driver, looked for tracks and other signs of animal life. When leopard tracks were spotted or another tour group reported a sighting, we went off road with the vehicle to find them. It was fun and exciting.
It’s hard to describe the awe of our first wild leopard sighting and the wonder of seeing 14 month old Tiyani walk to within 5 feet of our car while her mother looked on. The wildlife is acclimated to humans and their tour groups. They went about their business as if we weren’t there. But, if the guides sensed that the animal was disturbed, we’d back off and leave them in peace.
It was an amazing adventure. I’d go back in a heartbeat. I hope you enjoy these images.
Note: Click on image to see in larger size.