Tag Archives: Crocodile Bridge Rest Camp

Focus

We encountered this male lion and his brother finishing off a wildebeest carcass near Crocodile Bridge in the Kruger National Park. His displeasure at being disturbed is clear to see…

Focus

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge theme is “Focus

Masterpiece

Nature’s beauty is unrivaled.

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We’ve posted this picture, taken near Crocodile Bridge in the Kruger National Park earlier this year, before, but couldn’t resist posting it again in response to this week’s photo challenge.

Nostalgic: The Selati Line

Crocodile Bridge

On the 8th of November 1912 a railway line connecting the border town of Komatipoort with the gold fields at Tzaneen in the north-western Lowveld of South Africa, cutting across the Sabie Game Reserve for a distance of approximately eighty kilometres, was inaugurated. Known as the Selati Line, it played an immense part in the history of the Kruger National Park.

The railway bridge over the Sabie River, seen from Skukuza Rest Camp

In 1923 the South African Railways introduced a nine day train tour through the Lowveld, incorporating the “Reserve” halt at Sabie Bridge on the Selati Line, where the train would park for one night and depart again an hour after sunrise. The stopover in the game reserve quickly became the highlight of the tours (which also included the beaches and night clubs of Lourenco Marques in Portuguese East Africa (today Maputo, Mozambique)), swinging public opinion in favour of the protection of the reserve and its subsequent proclamation as South Africa’s first National Park in 1926.

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Construction of a new railway line running around the borders of the Park commenced in the late sixties, as the number of trains passing through the Park – up to 250 a week – was causing a huge number of animals to be maimed and killed on the tracks. The last train steamed through “Reserve” siding in September 1973.

Skukuza station

Today, Sabie Bridge is called Skukuza, the Kruger National Park’s headquarters and biggest rest camp. The two metal train bridges across the Crocodile and Sabie rivers stand silent witness to a long departed era of Kruger Park’s history. In 1978 “The Railways” donated steam engine 3638, named “Skukuza”, to the then National Parks Board for permanent display at the replica station inside the camp. Hitched to “Skukuza” are three coaches that today serve as the Selati Restaurant – a unique and nostalgic dining experience in one of the world’s most famous conservation areas.

Steam engine "Skukuza"

 

This post was inspired by this week’s WordPress photo challenge: Nostalgic.

A big thank you to my sister Ansie for allowing us to include her great photos of the locomotive and the signs on the platform at Skukuza!

Kruger National Park, April 2013

We recently had another (long awaited) breakaway to the paradise that is the Kruger National Park, spending one night in historic Pretoriuskop Rest Camp followed by four nights in Crocodile Bridge Rest Camp. Both these camps are located in the very popular south of the Park and we’ll bring you more detail on each in future installments of de Wets Wild.

Thanks to two consecutive years of exceptionally high rainfall the Park is lush and green with surface water abounding in all the watercourses and seasonal pans. Of course this made searching for game a little harder but we still had numerous excellent sightings of the spectacular wild animals and birds for which the Kruger National Park is known the world over. The weather also played along beautifully and for six days we could forget that winter is hiding just around the corner here in South Africa.

Click on any of the images below to view them all in a carousel gallery, and have a look at the links provided at the end for some additional photos taken during our most recent trip to heaven.

Birds of a feather

26/04/2013

27/04/2013

28/04/2013

29/04/2013

30/04/2013

Kruger Park 30/04/2013

We’ve enjoyed our final sunset of this Kruger Park visit, and wasn’t it gorgeous?

Krokodilbrug_30042013

Tomorrow we’ll be heading back home to Pretoria, but only after we undertake a final game drive. Will Kruger have one more parting gift in store for us?

Birds of a feather

We’re participating in the online adventure travel and photography magazine LetsBeWild.com‘s Wild Weekly Photo Challenge for bloggers. This week’s challenge is “Birds of a feather” and we’re submitting a collection of photographs of some of the more than one hundred bird species we’ve identified over the last five days that we’ve been spending here in the Kruger National Park.

Blue Waxbill

Blue Waxbill

Pied wagtail

Pied wagtail

Hooded (left) and Lappet-faced (right) Vultures

Hooded (left) and Lappet-faced (right) Vultures

Tawny Eagle

Tawny Eagle

Wire-tailed Swallow

Wire-tailed Swallow

Lilac-breasted Roller

Lilac-breasted Roller

Pearl-spotted owlet

Pearl-spotted owlet

White-crowned Lapwing

White-crowned Lapwing

Yellow-billed Hornbill

Yellow-billed Hornbill

Hamerkop

Hamerkop

Helmeted Guineafowl

Helmeted Guineafowl

Ground Hornbill

Ground Hornbill

Black Flycatcher

Black Flycatcher

Fish Eagle

Fish Eagle

Kori Bustard

Kori Bustard

White-fronted Bee-eater

White-fronted Bee-eater

Bateleur

Bateleur

 

Kruger Park 29/04/2013

What a view!

Today we enjoyed our lunch at the picnic spot high above the Mlondozi Dam, from where we could watch pods of hippos and herds of elephants mingle while enjoying a cool drink ourselves.

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