Halai: Day 6 at Etosha National Park
Day six of Gordon Donovan’s journey back to Namibia’s Etosha National Park. I am not having much success at the Halai Camp. This was the best camp during dry season last October. Now it is wet season and it’s a total miss as far as finding predators.
The second day at Halai was a total bust. I had left just as the gate opened and was hoping I finally see some lions. The Goas Waterhole was very quiet as well as Nuamses. I considered going back an hour and half in the other direction to Olifantsbad. I ended up on Eland Drive and saw a camera shy martial eagle, a few birds and chameleon on the road. I drove to Etosha Pan Outlook and took a few photographs. The pan looked like it had water in it at some places from Okondeko. It was bone dry.
I was determined to get a shot I wanted, so back to Nuamses I went. I was told a leopard and her two cubs frequented the hole. One of worst roads in Etosha, Nuamses will test your patience. I did see giraffes eating along the road. I parked there at 11:30 thinking I would stay until 1:30. Then I would give it another 15 minutes or when I ran out of water. Well I gave it 15 minutes, 24 times.
The temperatures soared to 43 Celsius (109 Fahrenheit) and I did run out of water but still stayed until 6:30. I sat and enjoyed the quiet, wonderful breeze and fed the bugs while sitting there, reading letters from friends. Finally impalas showed up around 4:00 PM and I hoped for a kill by the leopard. The impala where followed by kudu and no leopards.
Before leaving a herd of giraffe I saw eating on the earlier came to drink. With the sun at my back and pool in front I got some great reflective shots. I left when I could not go on anymore and drove back to Halai camp to see if lions would show up at Moringa Waterhole. I packed my gear and no animals at Moringa. A few nice sunsets images and that is all. Feeling ill at this point I realized I over did it and perhaps got heat stroke.
I was not hungry and polished off two liters of sparkling water. Despite having the air conditioner on my room, I was hot and had trouble breathing that night. Headaches and dizziness made it a tough night’s sleep.
Photos taken Jan. 22, 2013 using a Canon EOS-1D Mark IV Digital SLR with a EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Standard Zoom Lens, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM Telephoto Zoom Lens, a Sigma Telephoto 500mm f/4.5 EX DG APO HSM Autofocus Lens for Canon EOS with/without a 1.4x DG EX APO Teleconverter.
Photos taken today: 478
Total photos taken: 3783