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Zimbabwe & Botswana 2013

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Zimbabwe & Botswana 2013 - Page Text Content

S: Zimbabwe to Botswana Africa 2013

BC: Created by Diane | The End

FC: Victoria Falls, Chobe National Park & Chobe Chilwero River Lodge... | Africa 2013

1: Airport Greetings... | Warthog... | Arriving in Zimbabwe Victoria Falls | Fantastic | Warthog

2: Entrance to Victoria Falls...

3: "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page." - Saint Augustine | Carved Statue of David Livingstone...

4: P O I N T S O F I N T E R S T | at | Victoria Falls | On a clear day the spray generated by the Falls is visible from 31 mile away--the swirling mist rising above the woodland savanna looks like smoke from a bush fire inspiring their local name, "Smoke that thunders." The Falls, which are more than 330 feet high, are one of the world's seven natural wonders. The first European to set eyes on the Falls was the explorer, Doctor and Missionary, Dr. David Livingstone in the mid-1850's. After setting out in a dug our canoe guided by the locals, when they approached the falls, they could see the columns of spray appearing in the sky and could hear the roar of the waterfall. Overcome by the experience he named the Falls after his reigning monarch Queen Victoria.

5: Prior to the Victoria Falls bridge being built and completed in 1905 the Zambezi River had to be crossed either by a barge or a steel cable or a dugout canoe. Cecil Rhodes had a vision of a Cape to Cairo railway and hence he started plans for the first bridge across the Zambezi. He was insistent that the bridge should be built in a place that the spray from the falls would fall on the passing trains. This is why the site for the bridge was chosen just a little below the Boiling Pot, at almost right angels to the falls. The canyon is spanned by this magnificent bridge 650 ft. long, with a main arch of 500 ft span. The height from low water level to the rails on the bridge is 420 ft. The famous view of the Bridge with the falls behind it is best seen from the view point just below Victoria Falls Hotel. Today you may well see tourist bungee jumping from the bridge. The Victoria Falls bridge was completed in April, 1905, although this was a brainchild of Cecil John Rhodes he died before the completion. A story our guild told us stated the engineer George Hobson was overseeing the completion of the last two girders to join the bridge from opposite sides and they did not fit. He was so distraught he went to the local bar and later committed suicide. The next day the workers reported for duty to try and fit the two girders which fit perfectly due to the thermal dynamics. That is why it is stated one should always sleep overnight on a problem. | Facts on Victoria Falls Victoria Falls is approximately 1 1/2 mile wide, and varies in height up to 330 feet. It's one and a half times wider than Niagara Falls and is twice the height making it the biggest curtain of water in the world. Iguazu Falls is only 269 Ft High but is wider than Victoria Falls. Around mid-April is when peak flood waters occur. Roughly 625 million liters of water flow over the edge per minute. This huge volume of water produces a spray that rises up to 1650 feet into the air.

6: A view of the Gorge.... | Walking through African Ebony Trees towards the Falls.... | Rain Forest

7: All about the journey | On a clear day the spray generated by the Falls is visible from 31 mi away--the swirling mist rising above the woodland savanna looks like smoke from a bush fire inspiring the local name "Smoke that Thunders". Named a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1989. | The most spectacular view is "danger point' that overlooks the narrow gorge through which the Zambezi River funnels out of the "boiling Pot" -- which are hazardously wet ... | Falls are 330 Ft. tall...

8: View from Livingstone Statue & Devil's Cataract... | The Eastern Cataract Falls (about 101 Meters high)

9: The Devils Cataract... | This is a view of "Dangerous Point"

10: Another view of "Dangerous Point" Below is "Livingstone Island behind the water fall....

11: Walking in Misty Paths On the way to see the falls... | Dr. David Livingstone March 19, 1813 to May 1st 1873 His mission was to open up africa to the gospel in order to stop slavery...

12: Our bags are full. | A pair of Mongoose playing on the trail... | The constant drizzle has created a small rain forest that extends in a narrow band along the edge of the Falls. It is overgrown with African ebony, Cape fig, Natal mahogany, wild date palms, ferns, and deep red flame lilies. Clearly signposted side trails lead to viewpoints overlooking the Falls.

13: Let the journey begin | The Victoria Falls Bridge was completed 1905 in only 14 months with only 2 people killed during construction. Built for the railway, one car traffic and walking. It is a vital link between Zimbabwe and Zambia. Many bungee jumpers take the 65 foot leap in 3 seconds off the bridge...

14: Victoria Falls Lodge at the Victoria National Park | Baboon sitting on the Road | Downtown Victoria Falls | A warm welcome at the Lodge...

15: LIFE IS A JOURNEY | Inside the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge there is a warm reception area as seen above... A wonderful view of the animals in the natural Park as we sat and had our lunch upstairs... Many birds, Hippo's, etc moved about in the large watering hole below us...

16: and Good Food...

17: We arrive at our Lodge | They had an electric fence area outside our Lodge...

18: Welcoming us with singing after a long day!!!! | Our Pathway to sleep!!!

19: Our Spectacular Bedroom at the Chobe Chilwero Lodge... | Our transportation for the wildlife reserve!!!

20: Wonderful amenities... | They even did our laundry..

21: Our own Indoor Shower.. Hope no one is peeking!!!! | See the Outdoor Shower below!!! | Our unit... | Warning! | Lock all doors & keep the Baboons out!!!

22: Chobe Chilwero Lodge, Botswana....

23: The dining hall, gift shop, etc...

24: Serving afternoon tea and other sweets...

25: The Veranda Area

26: We see the wonderful Chobe River!!! | Entering the Chobe National Park Our first day seeing all the wonderful wildlife!!!

27: I think we really surprised the Hippo and ourselves when we entered the stream on the roadway and he was hiding under all that water!!! | N0, 1 Amazing Adventure | Then he charged us, but stopped!!! | And turned away... | He ran out of the water...

28: He left us to watch... | Boy was he ever big!!!

29: What a surprise to see a beautiful leopard... | Trip Highlight | Adult leopards live alone in well-marked territories. They often take refuge in the lower branches of tall trees. their lifespan is 20 plus year. They weigh up to 198 lb and are about 28-32 inches in height. It is compulsively clean & spends much of the day grooming itself, but is most active after dark...

30: Photo of the Year | She was stalking an Impala...

31: An impala baby enjoying some nourishment.... | The impala is a relative of the wildebeest and is an elegantly proportioned medium sized antelope. They have a chestnut color coat with black & white stripes on the rump & tail. They are very agile jumpers which often jump in all directions to confuse predators.

32: Many impala's grazing on the hillside.... | A new baby!

33: We had a rest stop complete with muffins, coffee and tea....

34: The Chobe National Park is 4,500 square mile of reserve and is the second largest national park in Botswana... It has beautiful views of the Chobe River which is accessible from many areas in the Park... Lots of wildlife drink at the water's edge... | The white headed vulture below have a poor sense of smell but have extremely good eyesight. They have great broad wings which enable them to sour in thermals for hours to spot food. The female lays 1 egg and is incubated for 43 days. | The Hammerkop or Hammerhead is a medium sized wading bird...

35: These are the highly intelligent Velvet Monkey's. They are delightful to watch and is one of the true characters of the African savannah. They live in troops and are constantly engaged in interaction of one kind or another whether fighting, grooming, carrying their young on their chest or clambering around branches in search of fruit.... | Smaller and lankier than any baboon, the velvet has a grizzled light olive or grey coat offset by a black face, white ruff and pale belly, though this rather dull colouration is offset in the male by a gaudy blue scrotum... | Above is the male velvet Monkey...

36: Many, Many, Warthogs... | Beautiful Landscapes...

37: Giraffes : Graceful and Beautiful!!! | The older giraffes are lighter in colour... | The world's tallest land mammal

38: Giraffes typically move in impermanent groups of up to 15 animals, with individuals leaving or joining at will; and a herd may be all- male, all- female or mixed in composition. Males are significantly larger in size than female...

39: They feed on high-grade leaf foliage at heights of up to 20 ft, though it will occasionally eat grass too.. | Females normally have one calf, and give birth standing, with the newborn dropping up to 7ft to the ground and then standing up sucking within 30 minutes...

40: Many Baboons travel up to 4 mile a day . they live in troops of 30 - 75 animals. the female have one baby a year and instantly the baby grabs the mothers hair and hangs on to their chest. Young female babies constantly live bond with their mothers and remain close the rest of their life whereas male's are chased away from the group and forced to prove themselves to another group... | Baboons spend most of their time on the ground searching for food but sleep in the trees at night... | Baboons live & protect each other and if danger is spotted they communicate with loud barks and the male runs to fight while the female and babies disappear into the trees...

41: Baboon troops consist of both male & female's and form very close bonds by feeding, grooming and sleeping with each other...

42: The Baboon who is being groomed has the higher status in the troop. The picture displays this by another female baboon Picking the parasites, dirt on another Mother while she holds her baby close...

43: Impala's Jumping and running... | Impala's Playing on the road...

45: Above Kori Bustard It is one of the world's heaviest flying bird reaching almost 30 lbs. and about 3 /12 feet tall... | Above Helmeted Guineafowl are large, ground birds with spotted white-on-grey feathers and blue heads. the live an average of 12 years in the wild. they walk rather than take flight. | Various views of the Chobe River and all the wildlife...

46: Chobe River... | Elephants... | Our Boat Awaits Us... | More Vulchers...

47: Enjoying the ride... | A Nile Crocodile has about 80 teeth... | A Maribou Stork and An African Fish Eagle... | The African Fish Eagle carries his catch away...

48: A Blacksmith Plover Bird... | Bushbuck's feeding near the river.. | Nyala's grazing on the hillside... | Beautiful trees on the shoreline of the river...

49: The Hippo's live in small herds of 10 to 20 in a group which comprises of both male and female with one dominant male.... | A Hippo on land can reach a top speed of 30 miles an hour. They eat mostly at night and can consume as much as 100 lbs of vegetation a day. it uses its head as a battering ram. It stands about 5 feet high at the shoulder & weighs between 6,000 & 9900 lbs. They are not good swimmers but spend most of its life in the water. they have four webbed toes on each foot that helps them to move on slippery banks. the female Hippo gives birth once a year during the rainy season & some calves are born in the water and ride on their months back. They are totally weaned by 18 months. They remain with the herd for up to 6 or 7 years... | The eyes, ears & nostrils are on the top of the hippo's head which allows them to still hear & breathe when they are under the water....

50: The Hippo is actually one of Africa's most dangerous animals. the most common threat display is the yawn, which is telling you to back off... | Never get between a Hippo and the water.... | The Hippo has an enormous mouth and can open its jaw 150 degrees showing the eye teeth which can measure up 20 inches...

51: We watched the sunset from our Boat... | A Monitor Lizard enjoying eating it's prey... | They are excellent swimmers & enjoy fish and crocodile eggs...

52: Notice how the giraffes drink water by folding and bending over at the knees. Notice the other giraffes watch for predators while one is drinking... | the Giraffes above are running along the riverbed before stopping for a drink...

53: The waterbuck with the horns is a male... Herds consist of up to 10 individuals and the male will defend his territory & mating rights with vigorous aggression. They can weigh up to 529 lb and can be about 4 ft 3 in height. | these are the Common Waterbucks....

54: The White Head Vulcher... | And now our cruise ends as we disembark our boat.... | More Baboons near the water...

55: More Bushland inside the Park.... | The Lilac-Breasted Roller Bird It's colour was very striking when it flies...

56: the Zebra Traditional Dance Group | Music - Dumalong... | Stomping, whistling & Chanting...

57: The African elephant spends up to 15 hrs daily chomping some 440 lb of vegetable matter. It drinks up to 44 galls daily or spraying itself. It is the largest land animal with a height of 10 - 13 feet and weighs up to 10,000 lbs. A female gives birth to 220 lb calf every 5 to 10 years. It takes about 22 months once impregnated and is raised communally. Unlike their female kin, males are generally booted out of their birth group in their early teens. Most have a lifespan of 50 - 60 years. Elephants flap their ears continuously in hot weather to cool circulating blood below the thick skin....

58: The bird is a immature crested francolin... | A "Steenbok" was lying in the brush until we scared it and it ran away for a distance. It then stopped and looked back at us once it thought it was safe.... | A Steenbok is a small antelope. The name Steenbok is Afrikaans for stone buck. | It has very pointy Horns...

59: This little red flower is poisonous... | This is the remnants of the kill the lions had the night before. Our guide said that likely the hyena's would eat whatever the lions left... All we saw was a piece of bone & a partial hoof--he thought might have been a zebra... | He has a scar over his eye!!!

60: Lions are the most sociable of cats & generally live in prides of 5 - 10 animals, including an adult male. Females usually stay with their birth pride but young males are forced out eventually. | Lions spend 20 hours a day at rest & go long distances at night... | Hunting is normally a team effort undertaken by females, who rely on stealth more than speed. A common strategy is for one or two lionesses to herd their prey in the direction of other pride members lying hidden in tall grass. Males seldom take part in the hunt but are quick to exercise their feeding rights once a kill is made. | Below is a young male who has already been in a fight. Our guide suggested he would likely soon have to leave the pride...

61: They were very docile as we moved our vehicle closer for a better look. the Lion above stayed in the same tree all the time we were at the site and just peeked down through the bushes at us as took our pictures. There was a total of six lions in this pride which had made the kill the night before so their bellies were full and they were very lazy. | We made very little noise -- only the clicking of cameras...

63: The lion finally climbed down out of the tree... | She couldn't get comfortable as she tried several different positions..

64: You can see how close we were with the vehicles surrounding the lions--we had a total of three vehicles.

66: A Red-billed Hornbill Bird... | Africans working in their yards... | Yurts style homes just outside the Chobe national Park ...

67: Africa's Wild Dogs are the 2nd most endangered species... | Also known as the"Painted Dog" with it's uniquely spotted coat,. | Exciting

68: Jack giving our guide a quick "thank you" at the end of our safari... | This is a view from the veranda of the Lodge and the many hippo's in the distance...

69: The Baobab Tree It is a huge, deciduous quirky-looking tree that grows throughout mainland Africa. It almost looks like it grows upside down with the roots sprouting out the top. Known for storing water in its trunk, the baobab lives in dry regions & can live up to 400 years & sometimes up to 1,000 years... | Several families riding in the back of a truck on the way to the airport in Zimbabwe... Boarding our plane to Johannesburg...

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  • By: Diane S.
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  • Title: Zimbabwe & Botswana 2013
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