Ranger Diary

January 2016

Ranger Report

January 2016

Compiled by Bertus Potgieter


On a warm and humid Summer morning I stand at the coffee station in the Lodge bar and wait for the guests to finish their cups of coffee. “They need to hurry up” I think to myself as it is only 6:00am and already the temperature is reaching 25 degrees Celsius outside, (it’s going to be another scorcher). 


Fifteen minutes later the guests are ready to go, and we have our pre- walk brief and hit the road. Going on a walk is so much different than an ordinary drive because when you are walking in the bush you are on “Mother Natures” home turf now, and you better make sure that you have all your wits about you because she can throw some very interesting “curve balls” your way.


 We are about half an hour into our walk and I can see that the guests are having an awesome time, they are using all their senses and it seems as if they are so much more relaxed and at peace than before the walk. Being in the bush does this to a person, it takes you back to your roots and strips you of all the modern stresses and pressures and simply allows you to find your inner peace.


As we walk along the river we hear the screeching calls of Red-Billed Oxpeckers flying directly over our heads, there is a huge flock of them and this indicates that they are moving towards big game or a big number of game. We continue on and as we move around the bend we spot a huge herd of buffalo, we slowly make our way up the old river- bank behind us and take our seats in the midst of beautiful old fever trees. We sit there for a few minutes taking deep sips of our water (its 35 degrees Celsius out here!) and just marvel at these amazing mammals doing what they do best, eat and wallow in the mud.


After some time we decide to start making our way back towards the lodge and as we do this we just realise how alive the bush is. There are noises and smells everywhere and the movement all around us is just incredible, with herds of antelope around every corner and journeys of giraffe peaking down at us from their elevated vantage points. It is pure bliss! Your body goes on such a sensory overload when you walk in the bush and if you add the adrenaline and anticipation which is pulsing through your veins to this equation it equals sheer exhilaration.


Once back at the lodge, the guests indulge in a very well and hard earned breakfast, and whilst they are having their morning meals you can almost see a sense of realisation on their faces. They have just realised that man is such a small organism on this huge planet of ours, yet we have managed to cause quite an impact on the planet (both a negative and a positive impact).


So the next time you want to get back to your “inner – peace” and you want to rid yourself of all the modern day stresses and problems and in the process reignite all your senses, Come to Pongola Game Reserve and let us take you back to Nature, back to the wild.


Until next time,

Pongola Game Reserve and her Team