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Our latest Kruger Trip Report for Your Enjoyment plus some Kruger News and an Update on Duke

June 2010, Issue #002

In this issue:

1. Our latest Kruger Trip Report - Boulders Rocks!

2. Some new check-in and check-out information for visitors to the Kruger Park

3. The latest news on Duke, one of the Kruger Park's Big Tuskers

4. The benefits of displaying your photographs on the internet

"Everything in Africa bites, but the safari bug is worst of all!"

- Brian Jackman

1) Kruger Trip Report: June 2010

We spent a relaxing 4 days in the Kruger Park at the beginning of June 2010. We stayed just at Boulders Bush Lodge.

We think that Boulders Bush Lodge is the best-kept secret in the Kruger Park! It is affordable (R2000,00 per night for up to 12 people - under R200,00 each per night) and you get Privacy, Peace and quiet plus a Panoramic view!

Here is the link to the Boulders Trip Report

2) Latest Check-In and Check-Out news for visitors to the Kruger Park

The check-in time for camps in the Kruger park have been changed by two hours, from 12h00 to 14h00 while the check-out time has been extended by one hour from 09h00 to 10h00.

Many Kruger clients are NOT HAPPY about this two-hour delay for checking in and the fact that SANParks did not survey clients to get their feelings. The reason given is so that visitors can have more time to enjoy their breakfasts and then after the complaints started coming in the reason given was 'to be in-line with industry standards'.

My opinion is that the restaurants are not doing as good as they could be so this could be a way of trying to encourage people to have breakfast there. Jenny and I do not enjoy the food or the service at the camp restaurants so we will NOT be having breakfasts there! The food and service were much better before SANParks outsourced this function.

We do not approve of these new times and neither do the majority of SANParks forumites - have a look at the 19 pages of concerns of unhappy visitors on this SANParks forum thread…

SANParks forum thread on check-in times

The check-out process at Kruger camps has also been changed.

As from 1 June 2010, overnight guests will be required to check-out at the reception at their last stay-over camp on the day they are leaving the park, or on the afternoon before their departure date, if they would like to leave early (before reception opens at 7 am) on their day of departure.

Here is a copy of part of the memo that was sent out...

"You need to ensure that you receive an exit permit when checking-out, which will be attached to your travel document (permit). This must then be presented at the gate when you depart.

It is your responsibility to ensure that the information displayed on the permit is accurate and correct, namely

Departure Date

Vehicle Registration Number

Total number of Persons in the Vehicle

Should you decide to leave on a date other than what is displayed on your exit permit, or the number of passengers in your vehicle changes, remember to request a new permit at reception and ensure that the correct information is captured on the permit before attempting to exit the park.

In case of any queries, please contact the Hospitality Services- or Duty Manager/s of the respective camps."

We don’t like extra ‘red-tape’ but feel this check-out process is GOOD as there have been some security incidents at the Kruger, from the park gates being robbed, hi-jacked cars being driven through the park to Mocambique, to the Skukuza shop being broken into at night - so extra security measures are good for our own protection.

A visitor to Pretoriouskop camp had a thief steal their handbag from their bungalow while they were having a braai at 20h30! Read Pieter's comments on the Wild Card blog.

3) Duke - latest update

Duke is one of the Kruger's 'Big Tuskers' and he is found mainly between Crocodile Bridge and Lower Sabie camps.

He has broken both his tusks and these are some photographs, supplied by Paul Mnisi, the manager of Crocodile Bridge camp, of Duke being collared so that SANParks can monitor his movements and habits as not much is know about these 'Big-Tuskers'.

4) The benefits of displaying your images online

Over the past two years we have sold about thirteen photographs - we don't advertise or market ourselves other than for our website kruger-2-kalahari, which is an information-sharing website.

Publishers looking for pictures search on Google and find us. We have been paid up to US$175,00 for each photograph so we encourage you to display your photographs on the web. If you don't have a website you can share your photos on our 'Share Your Stories Pages' for each park.

If your photo catches the eye of a publisher they will make contact with you and request a high resolution JPEG of the photograph and send you your cheque, it's that easy!

Check out the June 2010 issue of Martha Stewart's Whole Living Magazine for Jenny's photograph of a Devil's Claw plant and seed.

If you would like to display some of your images on our website you just need to click on the Your Kruger Stories button on the black navigation bar (or the 'Your Kalahari Story', 'Your Etosha Story' or 'Your Pilanesberg Story' buttons) and follow the prompts to upload your photo and story.

There are also pages for you to display your photos under each specific camp in the Kruger, Kgalagadi and Etosha parks. You choose what will best suit you.

Until the next Lion's Roar!

Mario and Jenny

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