Sunday, May 15, 2011

Elephants in Hluhluwe (pronounced: "shloe shloe") Park

As we were driving past one of many river overlooks I got a glimpse of an elephant and so we turned off the road, parked the car, and walked to the viewpoint where we could look down into the river valley.

We were absolutely blown away by the sight below us. There was a large heard, at least 100 elephants, crossing the river and meandering along the banks towards us.

We watched spellbound for nearly an hour as they cavorted in the water, played, and fed on the riverside follage.

Click any image to enlarge

wingssail images-fredrick roswold

We had other encounters with elephants as we drove the many trails in Hluhluwe. Sometimes they appeared in the bush near the road. Other times they were crossing the road and we had to stop. Sometimes they came right down the road towards us and we had to reverse away fast particularly when they acted in a threatening manner, and believe me, there is no mistaking that!

This little guy chased us too.

At another river crossing the elephants were on the near bank out of sight from our safe vantage point in a clearing above them. Suddenly they came into view and a leader emerged and started up the road towards us, quickly!

As George popped the clutch to get away I was leaning out the window to get a close up but I couldn't quite frame the bull as he trotted towards us. In our rearview mirror we saw the herd charge across the clearing where our car had just been parked and into the bush.

Somehow I just couldn't get him framed as we jounced up the road.

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