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Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

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Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:38 pm

I am going to do these properly later but I did say to Giraffey Boy I would post at least a few photos from our recent trip.

We stayed in the north at 3 different camps so away from the Mara. Our first lodge was Sarara in Namunyak where we spent 3 nights. The home of Saiwa the springer spaniel and Sessia the Lesser Kudu (photos to follow later). 4 nights at Joy's Camp in Shaba. 3 nights at Ol Malo in the North Eastern province on the Laikipia plateau (my favourite place in the world). Sarara is magical and for once green after rains so totally different to our visit last September. Joy's camp was disappointing (fantastic for birders) but the camp I would describe as sterile and lacking atmosphere. Ol Malo is delightful and we are definitely returning. Both Sarara and Ol Malo are family run and so it's like staying with friends.

Night time shot of a beautiful leopard which we nearly ran over (hence too close) at Sarara.


The same leopard now on the move, had to make this black and white as the light had gone.


A different leopard at Sarara, and we were talking about tails! Leopard too far away really for my lens but I couldn't resist taking the photos.


Action shot


On the move again


For the first time ever I have seen Wild dogs/painted wolves. A family of 4 (8 cubs originally now only 2 surviving due to lion and hyena) at Sarara


The 4 ran in front of the car chasing a dik dik


Reticulate giraffe at Joy's camp - we saw about 11 as we arrived and then they vanished!








More to follow later.

Lai
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  littlewid on Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:22 pm

What a shame Lai that Joy's camp was disappointing, I too would hate a place to be too sterile, I would prefer something a little more rustic and earthy and friendly too, a place can really set the atmosphere of your stay can't it but as you mention it was a good place for birders so thats one thing I suppose. Lovely that you enjoyed the other camps though and I remember you mentioning before about the Spaniel and the Lesser Kudu, Saiwa & Sessie, really look forward to those photographs Very Happy .

Your photo's are wonderful and tht first Leopard looks as shocked at seeing all of you as you must been of him popping put in front of you, what a beautiful face he has though, just gorgeous. I really like the B&W photo, I think often it brings another magic to the photograph.The action shot of the Leopard is brilliant, I love it and yes more tails cheers How stunning are the wild dogs and I am so chuffed you got to see them, its a shame they lost some of the cubs but that is the harsh life all these animals lead i suppose, reality is tough, I so like both those pictures but the first one is brilliant, he looks as though he is springing long like a little lamb, so lovely.
Giraffe boy is going to love those pics of all those Giraffeys Very Happy they are such gentle looking creatures, in fact I do not know anyone who doesn't love the Giraffe.
Cant wait for the next installment, I have thoroughly enjoyed seeing those Lai, Thanks Hugs

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:19 pm

Thanks Littlewid, glad you enjoyed them. A bit quick to keep Giraffey boy happy when he wakes up Laughing

I've decided to do 3 slideshows, one for each place so that will take me a while but they will be short as I'm just going through my photos and am down to about 500 now.

I think for me the wild dogs was the most exciting moment, so much so I really didn't know whether to watch them or try and take photos. We'd seen them up on the hill watching us so knew they'd move.

I did take my trail cam and left it out on the rocks overnight where the dogs hang out but I got something else, I haven't yet worked out what it is though What a Face badger like but not sure!

I'll also post some individual photos when I can.

Lai Very Happy
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  littlewid on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:30 pm

Giraffey Boy will love them Lai, he will feel quite at home seeing them Very Happy

I would be delighted to see the Wild Dogs in the flesh and I can understand the dilema of do I take photos or just watch and enjoy but I am glad you did take some photos, I love them.

I wonder what you did capture on your trail cam? what kind of Badger animals do they have out there? it will be lovely if you can work out what it is.

Looking forward to the slideshows, the last one you did was amazing Very Happy

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:32 pm

They have Honey badgers but I am not sure whether on the top of the rocks is the right place for them. It's low slung, furry (mmm of course ) and we can only see it running away so no front view. Also as it's dark it is grey looking

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Safariman on Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:22 pm

Sounds as if you had a great time with the exception of Joy's Camp. I think it trades a lot on its name, (like Elsa's Kopje in Meru) and caters to well heeled tourists and honeymooners who are looking for 5* luxury and don,t want to get there hands dirty with the real bush. It is always difficult to know what to expect when its your first visit as you are relying on other peoples views rather than your own. That's why I tend to go back to the same places, some people seem to think that it must be boring but I prefer to know what to expect particularly as the main reason to go is the wildlife.
Lucky to see the leopards, the problem with trying to photograph them is that you always come across them when you least expect it and never have the camera ready especially if they are on the move, but you managed to include the tail!! I have never seen wild dog in the wild, only in captivity, so I am very envious. Lovely photos of them on the move. The reticulated giraffe is my favourite, the markings are far superior to the Masai giraffe and really stand out. The rains in the north have certainly changed the landscape and it is great to see it all green and bright instead of its usual parched look.
Look forward to seeing the slide shows when you have had a chance to sort all your pics out. I am still going through mine!!

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 5:28 pm

Thanks Safariman and I agree re visiting the same places but I just wanted to try a new one and in a new area. Still we enjoyed the wildlife and the birds if not the camp, although the food and sundowners were lovely.

We were surprised and delighted that Joy's camp was also green and beautiful rather than arid as expected, funny how the rains have changed.

Really looking forward to more of your photos - I've just been totally ruthless and am taking no prisoners with mine this time.

Slideshow 1 on it's way just waiting to upload it to Youtube.

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  gregrowlerson on Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:55 pm

Yes, Giraffey Boy is Very Happy

I very much like the leopards eyes in your first picture, and the highlighting of the tail as he/she climbed down in pic three. But the best pics are clearly the giraffes. Absolutely stunning my albino pal!

Thankyou for sharing so much so quickly.

And it sounds like you may have discovered another mythical creature with this badger thingy. We'll add it to the list of Great Tamu and Foxrobin Razz

If I ever went on safari I don't think I would want to stay in 5 star accomodation (in fact anywhere in the world I don't feel a need for that) either, but perhaps not the most 'in the wild' living either! Something in-between.
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Sun Jan 13, 2013 6:46 am

Thanks Giraffey Boy - the giraffes are very handsome I must admit and so regal looking and they are large so easy to photograph!!!

I'll add the mystery animal link shortly and you can all make suggestions please - shame I won't be able to say yes or no though scratch Laughing

I feel I have been a tad rude about Joy's camp - I guess some people love it, but we won't return. Shaba National Reserve is great though, very diverse and more on that later.

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  whitestarling on Sun Jan 13, 2013 12:58 pm

Brilliant photos of the Wild Dogs Lai, they really are one of my favourite animals. They are so intelligent, and the pack co-ordination when they hunt is unbelievable. They are also really family orientated, and live for their young, I hope they survive, and increase in numbers. Lovely sequence shots of the Leopard, and that black, and white ones great. Nice to see the Giraffes, which reminds me GR when you wear your onsie thing are you Maasi, or Reticulated ? ( scratch sounds a bit like a medical problem )

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Sun Jan 13, 2013 1:04 pm

Thanks WS glad you enjoyed them. I agree re the wild dogs, and am sure they will continue to expand, another pack had also been sighted in the area so that's really good news.

Love your comment to GR - he could also be a Rothschild Giraffe (endangered) and very special ! Don't start on the medical stuff I am sure you and GR will get going with wit and humour now ...........

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  gregrowlerson on Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:17 am

My doctors tell me I'm very special. I didn't know they meant Rothschild Razz

I think this is me:



A young male masai giraffe. Isn't he handsome!
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:59 am

WOW that's very handsome looking Masai giraffe, I love the purrfect tufts on his horns, he looks likes he's been using hair gel - he looks in fine shape though.

Comparison to giraffey boy scratch must find that pic of your in you Onesie suit Very Happy

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  gregrowlerson on Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:45 am

Laughing Those little horn tufts look like little dusters Laughing

I didn't even notice them. I was more looking at his beautiful mane (those bristles on his neck).

I am imagine myself wooing my female giraffey via some gentle caressing with this asset! It's kinda like a mohawk too! This giraffe is a bad boy!
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:22 am

Look Giraffey Boy how could you miss those cute tufty horns? You are def in need of WS's binos.

A mohawk for sure, very neat one as well Laughing and he looks young and handsome no battle scars yet.

:tmi: re you and the new giraffey lady - ROFL

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Doogs on Mon Jan 14, 2013 1:58 pm

WOW great leopard shots and I love the 'action' one Cool

Such a shame that the Wild Dogs numbers have declined due to lion / hyena. Here's hoping mum & dad have more pups and the numbers increase again. Also good to read your later post Lai that there's another pack in the area, that is good news

Ooooh my favourite Giraffe - Reticulated and what lovely shots Lai. They have such stunning markings I loved looking at them during our couple of visits previously to Samburu.

Such a pity when you pay the money you do for these camps and they are disappointing. We are the same as Safariman and return to what we know and love when in the Mara - 5 times we've been and every time to the same camp.
Very handsome picture of that Giraffe GR Very Happy
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Mon Jan 14, 2013 2:22 pm

Thanks Doogs. Glad you enjoyed them. I do agree about the camps and we do return to ones we love but I just had to try a couple of new ones and so 50/50 isn't bad as a return !!!

Posting these here as I realised they are photos and shouldn't be with the slide show. Just been sent 2 of Saiwa, Sessia and me and thought they were fun. The first one shows the stunning view and backdrop.



Saiwa waits patiently for me to throw the stick back in and Sessia decided the mat is for her to stand on not for me to lie on.


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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  gregrowlerson on Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:01 pm

Lovely additional pics Lai. You've gotta love that Sessia!

If I had this creature and was a primary school teacher, I'd take it into class for show and tell, leave the room briefly, then acuse the children of drawing with chalk all over it Laughing
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  littlewid on Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:56 pm

Saiwa is a typicl spaniel isnt he, obviously loves the water and bless little sessie, standing on the mat was obviously far more comfortable for her I love you those are two lovely additions Lai and that certainly is a beautiful spot.

You would be a very cheeky teacher GR

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  gregrowlerson on Tue Jan 15, 2013 2:37 am

"You would be a very cheeky teacher GR"

Oh yes indeedy Very Happy
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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Laikipia on Tue Jan 15, 2013 7:35 am

GR - That's so funny and spot on! Saiwa is indeed a typical spaniel and keeps up the game all day! Guests have to take it in turns to keep him amused.

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Re: Sarara, Joy's Camp and Ol Malo, Kenya - Dec 2012/January 2013

Post  Doogs on Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:59 pm

They are two great additional photos Lai and totally agree with you re the backdrop, looks stunning Very Happy Lovely to see that Saiwa & Sessia don't mind each other - do they interact at all ? Laughing loved how Sessia pinched your mat.

I applaud you trying different camps Lai, after the disaster we had in the Ngorongoro Crater and the amount of money we paid we've decided to just stick to what we know. I must admit though I do fancy trying the Mara but outside the 'reserve' just to see . . . .

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