South Africa, September 2005 − Travels − Captain Tom

South Africa, September 2005

Something special. EMA Vector Workstream in South Africa within a game reserve.

We booked a complete luxury lodge. We did our work there but aside we enjoyed South Africas wildlife. It was very exhausting but a wonderful experience. Our agenda:

  • journey over night (Tuesday evening 7:30 p.m departure to Zurich and then to Johannesburg arriving at 8:30 a.m. next day, then a 6 hours bus drive)
  • conference
  • evening game drive
  • dinner
  • 6-8 a.m. game drive
  • 9 a.m. -5 p.m. conference
  • 5-8 p.m. game drive
  • dinner
  • 6-8 a.m. game drive
  • 9-12 a.m. conference
  • journey back with bus to Johannesburg und flight back over night to Zurich and Berlin

I tried to pick the best out of more than 500 photographies but there is quite a number to show.

Participants were
  • Wolfgang, Germany (Workstream Leader)
  • ohn, South Africa (our host)
  • Debbie, South Africa (Workstream Project Manager)
  • Chris, UK
  • Thomas, USA (originates from South Africa)
  • Jennifer und Andrew, USA
  • Arnaud, France
  • Marc, France
  • Ronald, Netherlands
  • Philip, South Africa
  • Michael, Germany
  • Eva, Sweden
  • Tom, Germany
  • Emma, UK
  • Yvonne, UK
  • Ranger John D
  • Ranger George
2 Journey

Departure in Berlin-Tegel to Zurich. Wolfgang joins us there for the flight to Johannesburg where we meet the rest of the group. Then we go to the lodge by bus.

Michael ist ready for take-off
LX 288 in preparation for the flight to Johannesburg in Zurich
Wolfgang has joined
Next day
Flying Swiss International Airways
Views while descending to Johannesburg
Round fields
More fire
Closer look to the round field
Bush airport
Simultaniously approaching Johannesburg
We are in Johannesburg
View from the bus. We are in South Africa obviously
Short break (Andrew, Phil, Debbie, John)
Shanty town on the roadside
We get to the game resort Madikwe
The Big Five are the five most dangerous to hunt animals: buffalo, lion, leopard, elephant, rhino. We will see all of them except leopards.
We change to offroad vehicles...
... and start spotting animals
Lilac Brested Roller
Arrival at the lodge
3 The lodge

Lodging is at Jaci's Safari Lodge in Madikwe Game Reserve.

The lodge is separated from the game reserve by a moat and a fence. Access is given via a ropeway.
Rooms are called tents and are semi open lodges with all comfort.
Unusual showers
Conference area
Breakfast area
The pet of the lodge is a banded mongoose. It gets some eggs sometimes.
4 The game drives

First game drive into the dusk. There does not seem to be so much to view. But we spot a group of elephants with a baby elephant

Dinner with camp fire in the lodge

The next game drive in the morning
Wofgang tries to wake up...
...and others do so as well.
Leaving the lodge...
... getting into the vehicle...
Crested Barbet
We spot a pack of wild dogs. They get spotted very rarely. So we have much luck. The wild dogs are confused due to the alpha dog has been killed (probably by a lion).
Later we meet the baby wild dogs left behind.
Meeting during the tour

Next game drive in the evening is very impressing. We spot a huge herd of buffaloes and follow them to the water hole. Using red light (buffaloes do not notice red light) we come very close to the animals and watch them drinking. But before sunset we see even more.
Yellow Hornbill
Lilac Brested Roller
An Elephant's carcass
Elephant's mandible
Suddenly giraffes appear
The other group watches Impalas
Then they need to change a tire and use this opportunity to watch the sunset
We go to a stream and watch lions and elephants in the dusk
Phantastic evening light mood

Dinner takes place in the game reserve but very civilised on a long table

Last game drive at morning
We spot two male lions on the way to the waterhole and follow
We find another group of lions (two female one male). A female lion eats from a kill.
Purple Roller
Yellow Hornbill
Praying Mantid
Crested Barbet
10 The flight back

Flight back via Zurich to Berlin

Swiss airliner in Zurich
Waiting for departure in Zurich
The jet in front of us takes off while we turn into the runway
Last view to the airport
Alps in the morning fog
Bodensee lake in a distance
Approach to Berlin starts
Berlin in a distance
KW and Berliner Ring Autobahn
Krüpelsee lake close to KW
Krossinsee lake, Seddinsee lake, Zeuthener See lake
Müggelberge mountains and Müggel tower
Müggelsee lake and Friedrichshagen in the upper left
B1 country road close to Dahlwitz-Hoppegarten
Mahlsdorf, in the lower left city train station Birkenstein
Combined heat and power station Rummelsburg in the upper left and combined heat and power station Lichtenberg in the middle
Mehrow close to Berlin
Animal shelter Berlin in Hohenschönhausen
View over the city to Airport Tempelhof
Center of Berlin with TV tower, Planetarium on the left and International Trade Center at Friedrichstraße Railway Station on the right.
Center of Berlin. To the right Max Schmeling hall
City train station Bornholmer Straße
Humboldhain park
Schäfersee lake
View over the city just before landing