Friday, February 22, 2013

Maasai Mara, part 2

We kicked off our second day in the African bush with a 6:30 game drive.  As the sun crept over the horizon, we were treated to the added bonus of hot air balloons ascending into the morning sky. Available at our resort as an extra excursion, we could have opted for an aerial view.  However, the daughter and I aren't big fans of heights, particularly when you aren't buckled in or have access to an escape route... other than plummeting to the hard packed earth below and landing with a thud.

We spotted more game, with the highlight being a lion and lioness.  Our safari guide told us it was a mating pair that would stay together for eight days to insure pregnancy.  And then like most animal (and some human) dads, he would disappear so that the female was left to carry, give birth to and rear the cubs all by her lonesome.

A bit later in the drive, we saw two lion cubs hiding in the tall grass.

As always, we spotted lots of hoofed creatures.

And birds - can't forget those.  The last bird pic of the vulture proves that this species is just as ugly in Africa as it is back home in Texas.  

Following the stream in search of game, we chanced upon a herd? huddle? 'hole lotta? hippos hanging out together. I wondered if it was the same group that kept interrupting my sleep in the wee morning hours with their grunting and grumbling and splashing right outside our tent.

My, what big feet you have.

On our afternoon game drive, we didn't see quite as many critters.  However, we did chance upon a lone hyena and jackal as well as a pair of cheetahs.

My favorite pic of the day was a pair of young elephants tussling with their trunks.

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