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My Best Cat Photo

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Is this:



The story is somewhat interesting.

When I was in college, I dated a young woman from South Africa. She would go home every few years to see her grandparents and after we graduated, I had the opporunity to go with her.

We stayed in Krueger game reserve for over a week in some of the government-run camps. We had an AMAZING rate of something like $25/night (compared to $500/night for local safari ranches). The rand (South African currency) had been vastly devalued which meant our money could buy lots more than it would here in the U.S. Since she was South African, we could do everything the way that locals would do it -- instead of the way tourists would do it -- and could get cheaper rates.

One night we went on a night drive and had a spectacular experience. First, we came upon more than one pride of lions. This picture was taken from the top of a running, shaking truck, using a flashlight for light. It's amazing the photo is as sharp as it is.

Further along on the drive, we saw [what we thought] was a rhino. The "rhino" turned out to be a baby elephant, and we slowly came to the realization that we had driven into the middle of a large group of adult elephants with their babies.

I'm not sure if most people know what elephants look like in Real Life (instead of zoos), but African bulls are amazingly HUGE.

Well, we interrupted this group and we had multiple elephants, on both sides of the open-roof truck -- in the pitch black -- charge us. Huge branches snapped in the dark and it sounded like all Hell was breaking loose as the elephants trumpeted as they charged. There were some German tourists with us who nearly soiled themselves out of fear. Everyone fell back in their seats as if the truck surged forward, but it was actually still. This was only a mock charge, and the elephants moved on.

We saw [smelled] hyenas on the same night trip, so it was quite a full trip. I also spent some time in Sodwana on the eastern South African coast diving in shark waters and nearly got stung by a poisonous lion fish... ...but that's another story.

Unfortunately, it's extremely remote and dangerous in some places there, so I kept my cameras pretty low-key.

But I did get a few shots like the image above.
post #2 of 24
AWWWWWWWSOME!!!
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
Now that I'm thinking about it, if I can find the original negatives, there were a few frames with lion cubs in them. (Even more rare to see on a night drive) But the truck was vibrating so much, I think the pictures were too blurry for much use. I should see if I can find them.
post #4 of 24
OMG Scott that picture is AMAZING!!!! Looks like something out of National Geographic. I have to say, you have lived one of my dreams, that is going to Africa and seeing the wildlife in their natural setting.
post #5 of 24
It sounds like you had quite an exciting trip, and that picture is soooo cool!

O.T.
I occasionally watch some of the nature programs on Animal Planet, and it's amazing how close to the lions some of the people who are filming can actually get, especially when the lions are eating a kill.
post #6 of 24
Amazing!

Spotz
post #7 of 24
Stunning!
post #8 of 24
Beautiful!
post #9 of 24
Oh man, that is awesome! Please do share the other photos and tell us of your experiences. I would love to hear about it!
post #10 of 24
OMG what a amasing story and what a awsome picture WOW
I hope you can find the other pics , I sure would love to seem them .
post #11 of 24
Thread Starter 
Well, it was a big few years for me.

In the span of about 2 years, I spent six weeks in South Africa and also six weeks in Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize. This was the first few years out of college, and I basically worked TONS of overtime at my job, save my money, and spent it on trips.

The coolest experiences were the diving experiences, but I don't have many photos. I'm going home for Easter, so I'll see what I can grab while I'm there. I know I have many more photos from Africa.

Here I am (on the right) with a friend in Tikal, in Guatemala.

post #12 of 24
Wow, great shot!!
post #13 of 24
WOW-what a beautiful kitty!
post #14 of 24
Wow, that really is an amazing photo. Nice photo of you to!

Thanks bunches for sharing.
post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott77777
Is this:


We stayed in Krueger game reserve for over a week in some of the government-run camps. We had an AMAZING rate of something like $25/night (compared to $500/night for local safari ranches). The rand (South African currency) had been vastly devalued which meant our money could buy lots more than it would here in the U.S. Since she was South African, we could do everything the way that locals would do it -- instead of the way tourists would do it -- and could get cheaper rates.

I love the Krueger game reserve and would love to visit it one day. A couple of years ago I was searching the internet and came across a site called africam.com which would stream live video of various African animals in their natural environments. A guy by the name of Kim Walhunter was doing a documentary of a leopard named Tjololo in Mala Mala Game Reserve. I was able to watch the live steaming video as he shot his documentary for close to a year! It was amazing! I just did a search and here is the final National Geographic video: Tjololo - Tracking The Leopard.

Every day I would log in and follow 'Tjololo' on his daily activities. Kim's video camera fed directly to the internet and I saw everything as it took place in real time. It was the most awesome and educational internet experiences I have encountered to date. Plus, I was able to chat with Kim and his wife on the forums daily since he would spend an hour or so each day answering emails. Kim is the grandson of Krueger National Park's first game ranger - Harry Wolhuter.


You were very lucky to have visited one of the most amazing places on this earth! I hope I will be able to be as fortunate. For anyone who is interested, here is a good website on Mala Mala: Mala Mala

post #16 of 24
I am very upset because I can't see Scott's pictures!! This format has changed also. Does this have something to do with it?
post #17 of 24
Wow great pictures!!
post #18 of 24
awsome pics Scott! Very well done.
post #19 of 24
Scott the cat photo is just stunning, as everyone has said. I think the story makes it really sensational though, it's awesome to hear why you were there, and what was happening when you took the shot. Sounds like you've been very lucky to do so much traveling. My fiance and I are hoping to take our honeymoon in South Africa, and are so looking forward to visiting Krueger.
post #20 of 24
Thread Starter 
A few more photos...including a very rare cheetah photo with cubs (not quite National Geographic, but we weren't there for months...)

The first photo shows the valley behind Cape Town and Table Mountain, which is the South African wine region.





This one shows rush hour at Krueger, which can be grueling. Needless to say, there are no traffic wardens there to give you the right-of-way, and a good-sized water buffalo can do a bit of damage to a compact VW.



post #21 of 24
Thread Starter 
And another Guatemala:

post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by hissy
AWWWWWWWSOME!!!

Hissy has stole the word right out of my mouth!!!

It is an awsome picture!!!

Ooops just noticed the other pics....they are awsome as well!!!
post #23 of 24
WOW , I really have to to agree awesome pictures . I think there is no other word for it
post #24 of 24
Love the pic. How beautiful and stunning.
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