A day in Pilanesberg: Hour 5

We’ve just been commenting on the scarcity of giraffe sightings so far into our day at the Pilanesberg National Park when we find ourselves in the middle of a giraffe roadblock on Tlou Drive.

It takes a bit of patient waiting before the giraffes clear the road for us. We turn off into Tshukudu e Ntsho Road to go and see what Makorwane Dam has in store for us. There’s a huge crocodile and a pod of hippos in the water, but a group of very noisy humans in the hide are spoiling the experience for everyone else and we don’t stick around for longer than necessary to use the ablutions. The view from the bridge over the stream feeding the dam is much more serene.

Back on Tlou Drive and then right on the Nare Link, there’s more wildebeest, red hartebeest and giraffes to see, and then…

“There they are! There they are!” Joubert sees the cheetahs first, some distance away from the road but thankfully out in the open and clearly visible despite the pouring rain. A female cheetah known, fittingly, as “Rain” and her three almost fully-grown cubs. We last saw Rain about 5 years ago, when she was still the only adult female cheetah in the Pilanesberg and already raising a litter of cubs. Since then the Park’s cheetah population has grown considerably, in no small part due to Rain’s success as a mother.

As we are watching the distant cheetahs this very wet black-shouldered kite is keeping an eye on us:

Soppy Black-shouldered Kite

If you’d like to follow along as we explore the Pilanesberg, a map may come in handy (for a large format version click here)

Tlou Drive to Nare Link via Makorwane Hide

If you need to catch up on our drive through the Pilanesberg National Park, you can read all the previous posts here.

To be continued tomorrow.


27 thoughts on “A day in Pilanesberg: Hour 5

      1. Cal Butler

        I have been very fortunate to spend a lot of time with new cheetah cubs. Must be one of the cutest things to see. Hopefully you get lucky on the next litter


  1. sustainabilitea

    A giraffe roadblock is one tall roadblock (or in this case, two). Lovely to see them but I love cheetahs as well. The kite looks a bit bedraggled, but he’s doing a great job as lookout. 🙂 Another excellent day.



  2. H.J. for avian101

    The giraffes are such towering beautiful creatures. The cheetahs are gorgeous cats with athletic bodies. And the poor kite, soaked and heavy with rain water. Not so optimum for hunting. Great post, D. 🙂



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