Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sly, Shy, and Sneaky

By far, the BEST part of Samburu was seeing the GORGEOUS leopard! The leopard pattern was absolutely beautiful to see in person! Before we left for the safari, I knew my favorite African animal was the giraffe, but I also was curious as to what else I would like. Of course, I was really looking forward to seeing the big cats- the lions, cheetahs, and leopards. It didn't take long for me to decide that my new favorite wild animal is the LEOPARD!! They truly are sly, shy, and sneaky animals as they live and hide up in the trees. The leopards really don't like it when vehicles pull up next to them and will often jump down and run to hide in the bushes somewhere...this was very unlike the cheetahs and lions, as they don't mind if you pull right on up to them. We found a leopard on the ground and tried following it for awhile, but the sneaky little thing crept down so low in the tall grass and we lost it. I was pretty shocked that we couldn't find it considering we were only about 10-15 feet away from it. Searching for a leopard became a fun game and was one of the highlights of our trip. We were pretty lucky to see so much within two days!

We got to see it:


Climb and move around...

Sit and rest...

Even go to the bathroom...haha.
And believe it or not, when it was finished doing its business, it covered his mess up with dirt, just like cats!

We also got to see its lovely food hanging from the tree...
If you look closely, you can actually see the leopards food (a gazelle) hanging from the left side of the tree.

Here is a closer look...

Pretty sick, I know...but you must admit that it is pretty cool too! It amazes me how the leopards carry their food up the tree and hang it. They do this so that the lions and cheetahs won't still their kill from them, because they are stronger animals. He will feed on this for a few days and then attack again! 

Just thought I would share my love for the leopards! 

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Our 3rd stop was to a place called Samburu, which is known to host Africa's "Special 5". Here are pictures of 3 out of the 5. 

#1) Gerenuk...eats standing on their back legs. It was pretty interesting to watch.

#2) Vulturine Guineafowl 

#3) The Grevy Zebra...I had never even heard of this type of zebra, but it was so pretty.
I honestly don't remember what the the other 2 "special" animals were...ha! Oh well.

Out of all the places we stayed, this was definitely the most commercialized-which was good and bad. The food was delicious, but any other activities cost extra money, unlike the other places we stayed. Our tent was really nice though and the service was great.

One thing we did enjoy was the pool...and it was FREE :) Micah hadn't been in a pool since we left my parents house last year, so it was so fun to get him in. Aunt Blair played with him for a long time and taught him how to play on the steps. He loved it!

And the big boys enjoyed it too...

This sneaky guy joined us for dinner every night. 
Micah actually noticed it first and pointed it out saying "cat, cat, cat". It got up really close to us and definitely freaked me out just a little.

And we got to see Zazu!

Malibu Stork...aka ugly, scary, big bird!

Monkeys are so fun to watch and never cease to entertain me.

And here we are viewing one of the BEST animal experiences throughout the whole trip...
Stay tuned till next post and I will disclose exactly what we were looking at... :)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Rhino Country

Stop #2 was our shortest stop, but well worth it. We went to Ol Pejeta, also called "Rhino Country". Out of our four stops, this was our best chance to see multiple rhino's. However, we did end up seeing some at other locations too.  There are actually two types of rhinoceros', the Black and White. The actually are both grey in color, but the difference comes with their horns and lips. The White Rhino grazes on grass, while the Black Rhino eats trees and shrubs. We were able to see both types, but were surprised at how shy they were. The rhino is considered one of Africa's Big 5, along with the lion, leopard, elephant, and buffalo. Obviously, they are some of the biggest animals, but they also are the most dangerous animals. We were blessed to see the "Big 5" throughout our trip...and actually saw lions everyday but one.

After landing at the airport

Heading out to begin our safari for the day 

Pumba and baby Pumbas!! We loved watching them run as their tails go up and they stop because they forget where they were going. 

My favorite!! Micah calls them "tall talls" because of a song that we learned at church in his Baby Bible Class.

Taking a lunch and rest break before heading out for our afternoon safari.

White Rhinos grazing on grass

Taking a drink break while watching the sunset (aka "sundowners")

My wonderful parents!

Micah-man sitting in the front seat and leading the way

Aunt B taking Micah for a ride...

...And Gigi doing the same!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Other Favorites

Here are a few of my other favorite pictures from our first stop in Amboseli. We seriously have about 5,000 more, but I had to pick the highlights.

Working the you understand why we had over 11,000 pictures :)

The girls minus my Mom. My Dad and Mom got really sick and had to skip this game drive.

I love Paul...and also the acacia tree in the background!

Posing under an acacia tree before heading to breakfast.

Our picnic breakfast-it was pretty fancy for a bush breakfast!

Precious picture of Micah-man

We were so blessed to see some gorgeous sunsets!

Now on to stop #2...finally!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Masai Village

On the second day of our trip, we had the opportunity to go see a Masai Village. It was an awesome cultural experience for sure. They are one of the few tribes in Africa that still practice their traditional ways, and it was so interesting to see how they live their everyday lives.  We felt very welcome as they welcomed us with singing and dancing. Communication was difficult with most of them, but they had sweet smiles. Many of them (especially the children) were shy-as they probably are not used to seeing white people. They are nomads who own tons of cattle, and it was amazing to see how they build their small, mud huts whenever they move. I cannot even imagine living that way and it definitely made me realize how blessed I am!

The Masai men greeting us with a song and dance

The women joining the men in welcoming us to their village

Showing us how the Masai dance and jump

My brother-in-law fit right in! Who said that white men can't jump!?! :)

Showing us how they start a fire with no matches

Precious faces 

Their mud homes...the entrance to every home faces the same way to keep the wind from blowing inside.

The inside of their homes-this is actually a picture of their bed. It was so dark inside as they have no electricity and only a small window to let light in. 

Setting up their Masai market for us to buy things. 

Their shoes are made from old rubber tires.

Micah joining the Masai children sing and dance. They were fascinated by a "white" baby.

Kissing a new friend