Sante River crossing, Mud obstacles and Ziwani Lodge - Nov 5th.
After a rainy night, we awoke to clear skies with hope for a dry day! We were headed towards Zawani Lodge, where we would enjoy a day of rest before continuing southeast. A southern ground hornbill was calling while we packed up, which we originally thought was coming from the local village - a very low, almost drum-like, call filled the air. We soon saw this large bird in the trees next to camp - impressive indeed!
A herd of giraffes, about 15 in total, watched us leave camp. There definitely seems to be a giraffe theme to the days we have spent in this area. We also saw Kudu and Dik Dik in the area.
We should also let you know that when Kathy and Bev awoke this morning, they discovered muscles in their legs that they never knew existed. Apparently walking 16 km’s with approximately 5 lbs of mud attached to each shoe is the next great workout!!
Today, we soon encountered some of the deepest mud we had walked through so far. Barbara decided he would counter the mud with his own firestones fashioned from elephant dung, which, if anything, softened the weight and provided some moderate absorption.
Our last obstacle was the Sante River, which needed to be crossed. The boys crossed with the camels leaving Bev, Kathy, Simon, and Barabara to complete the crossing. Hand in hand, we took our first steps but suddenly sank thigh-high into the mud below! After several very tough steps, we reached better ground and were able to scamper to shore.
At last, we reached our destination - Ziwani Lodge. Here, Rory, Bev, and Kathy will enjoy some rest and refuel while the drovers and the camels do the same! The lodge is nestled next to a dam that is filled with hippos, crocodiles, and monitor lizards, with many monkeys on the shore to keep things interesting. This dam sources the river we walked across earlier. Bev mentioned to Barabara that crocs and hippos were in the water after we crossed the river - he exclaimed “are you serious?” A great moment to laugh about after the fact!!
We will now enjoy a day's rest before venturing further south along the route once completed by Joseph Thompson!