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||Thursday ~ October 15
Up at 6:15, still dark outside, and went to breakfast with the group at 7:00. I left my dirty clothes for the laundry, to be picked up upon our return this evening.
We left the Lodge at 8:00 to drive down into the crater in six-passenger Land Rover, 4-wheel drive trucks. We went down a very steep, very narrow dusty trail to the floor of the crater.
We drove all over the 10 mile by 12 mile crater floor, mostly just following tire tracks. We saw elephants, about 8 rhinos (with 2 young ones), about 10 lions, buffalo, zebra, wildebeest, monkeys, baboons, many antelope types, two pools with about 12-15 hippos. We ate a box lunch overlooking a hippo pool, with kite birds swooping down to grab some of our lunch. The birds did get some from two of the women, but not from me.
We drove back up the escarpment face about 4:00. I picked up my clean laundry, and went back to my room to rest before dinner at 8:00. I had zebra to eat, with the tour group. Watched a video tape in the lounge about wildebeest migration, a year long cycle. Went to bed at 10:00, set the alarm for 6:30 AM, and turned out the lights at 10:30.
||Friday ~ October 16
Up at 6:15, went to breakfast at 7:00. Had the bags out by 8:00. We drove out from the Lodge into the Serengeti Plains.
We saw hundreds, perhaps thousands of zebra, wildebeest, and giraffe. We also saw more than a dozen lions. We looked for leopards in trees, but found none. We drove on dirt roads which were fairly smooth, to Seronera Lodge for lunch.
After lunch, we continued the drive through the Serengeti, looking for leopards, but not successfully. We saw the beginning of the wildebeest migration coming south out of Kenya. We found a hippo pool with 6-8 hippo and one crocodile.
We stopped at Oldivai Gorge, where Dr. Leakey discovered remains of pre-historic man, back millions of years.
The further north we drove, we saw many more elephants (15-25), including some very young. We had our firs rain shower on the trip, and then again at night at the lodge. We arrived at Lobo Lodge in north Tanzania (near Kenya border) about 5:30 pm. Cleaned up for dinner with the group. I had Cape buffalo. It was more tender than the zebra last night.
Watched a video tape about the Serengeti Cheetah in the
lounge, but back to my room by 9:30. Set the alarm for 5:45, went to bed
to read. We had heavy rain, with lightning and thunder.
||Saturday ~ October 17
Up at 5:45, had coffee, then out for a game drive at 6:30. We saw lions, elephants, buffalo, zebra, wildebeest, and many antelope. Back a the Lodge for breakfast at 9: 00. We had to check out at 10:00, which we did, and left for another game drive, looking for leopards. We came back to the Lodge for lunch (fish) at 1:00 pm.
We left the Lodge to drive to Seronera Wildlife Lodge, still part of the Serengeti. We looked for leopards again before arriving at the Lodge and SAW one, plus a small (6-8 month old) cub in a tree. The mother was lying on a branch, and the cub ran down out of the tree into the grass, but then climbed back up to feed on the kill which was in the tree (a baby antelope). I took many pictures, but the light was bad, and we couldn't get very close. Arrived at the Lodge at 6:00, checked in and had a shower (cold water), then went to dinner at 7:30. I had fish again (Nile perch)(from Lake Victoria).
No video tape tonight, went back to my room and read until 10:00. Set the alarm for 6:30.
On Saturday, while at Lobo Lodge, we saw these hyraxes.
These small brownish-grey mammals are the closest living relatives to elephants.
||Sunday ~ October 18
Up at 6:30, packed my bags, and went to breakfast at 7:00. We then left the Lodge for a game drive, going back to the Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge at the top of the crater rim for a sort break, then down the outside of the escarpment going to Gibb's Farm, a coffee plantation, for lunch.
We left Gibb's Farm at 2:00 to continue our drive to Lake Manyara Hotel, on a very rough road. We arrived about 3:30. After I checked into the room, I went swimming in the hotel pool, which overlooked the Rift Valley.
For dinner I had tomato soup, lamb, beef, and ham. I came back to the room at 9:15, set the alarm for 6:00 AM, and read in bed until 10:30.
Monday ~ October 19
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