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   Tanzania Safari
August, 2007

Serengeti,  Ngoro Ngoro Crater,  Lake Manyara
 
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    click on images for a bigger view.
  

We spent three nights on safari, camping in tents at night, riding around in a Range Rover all day.

On board we had the driver/guide, the cook, two young English women, one Korean woman, plus Sarah and Matt.

On our way up to the ridge of the Ngoro Ngoro caldera, a tribe of baboons begged for food by the side of the road.

This guy was the boss.

  

We pulled over for photos.

They got disinterested pretty quickly when it became apparent that we had no food handouts.

  

Mama and baby

  

A lodge on the ridge above Ngoro Ngoro. Our guide said it costs more than $600 per night to stay there.

Looks like a village, but you can see the place is too clean and perfect to be real.

  

By contrast, here is a real village on the north hills, between Ngoro Ngoro and the Serengeti.

  

  

  

When chameleons get freaked out, they do a really funny disco dance.

  

  

Vultures at a trash pit by the Serengeti Visitor Center.

  

Vulture on lookout.

  

The roof of our land rover was open most of the time.

  

Thomson's Gazelles are small and they all have black stripes on their sides.

Grant's Gazelles are bigger, and they often do not have a black side stripe.

Now you know.

  

This one time, Ngoro Ngoro volcano collapsed and spoojed molten lava all across the Serengeti.  The lava cooled into the World's Biggest Rock Pancake.

  

The soil over top of the rock pancake is ony inches thick, so only grasses can grow.  But where cracks appear, foliage can access deeper water and soil, thus trees pop up.

Also, that is TOTALLY a cheetah.

  

This is a topi.

  

Topis are sweet.

  

This is a colobus monkey.

Yes, he is masturbating.

  

African Water Buffalo.

  

Early morning of our second day.

The air was frigid.

  

Baboons are still sleeping.

  

A Bevy of Hippopotami

  

Our guide spent a good hour bouncing along on various dirt roads, triangulating an intersection with the cheetah.  Eventually his backtracking and zooming around paid off.

  

Lions

Right by the side of the road, even.

Holy CRAP!

We were one of four land rovers to stop and gawk.

  

Our guide said that these lions were a mating pair, which means they Do the Deed twenty to forty times per day.

But in this shot, the girl lion is pretending not to be interested.

  

He got angry and roared really loud at the car behind ours, which was making too much noise.

  

And then he stuck his tongue out.

  

  

  

Hyenas are cool.

They have the strongest jawbones of any animal on the Serengeti.  They need the jaw strength because they crunch up and eat bones.

  

The hyena's stomach acid works overtime to digest bones, which process creates tremendous heat.  When digesting, the hyena chills out in a puddle to keep from overheating.

Water-cooled hyena.

  

Elephants

  

  

  

  

Ostrich

  

Ostriches

  

Cokes Hartebeest

  

A rock island in the plain is called a koppe.

It happens when volcanic activity pushes lower rock up through the lava plate, thus creating fissures for water access and deeper soil.

  

Sarah and a tree.

  

Tent City

At the end of day two, we camped on the ridge overlooking Ngoro Ngoro.  So did about a hundred other folks.

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