It was hard not to hear the theme song to "The Lion King" in my head the whole time. Our group fit into three SUVs with the hatch tops open so that we could stand in the truck, heads through the roof, and see and photograph the beauty of the park. In my SUV was Steve Hudson in the front seat, Mark and me in the middle seat, and Tom and Patricia in the back seat. The list of animals that we saw was amazing. It included antelopes (called Jackson here), oribi, giraffes, elephants, cape (the national animal of Uganda), waterbocks, baboons, monkeys, jackals, fish eagles, hornbills, so many varieties of birds, termite mounds (upon termite mounds), crocodiles, and hippos.
The morning light was gorgeous!
Here's Steve, Patricia, me (yes, I know that my hat looks like a lampshade. Enough already.) and
Bubba Mark standing in front of the river where the hippos were hanging out.
The cute little cape - the national animal of Uganda.
We came across this group of elephants.
We were there for a while before one of the females broke away from the pack with the baby and two juveniles in tow. We never saw them before they broke away. The big bull elephant was flapping his ears and blowing dust onto himself trying to distract us from the others making their getaway. Very cool.
About the time it was getting really warm we were heading back to the lodge. We had time to eat lunch and rest for a few minutes until it was time to head to back to the River Nile for a river cruise to Murchison Falls.
The Paraa Lodge as seen from the river boat.
Hippos tiptoeing through the water hyacinths.
This big fellow was rooting through the marshy area.
When you looked close to the cliffs you could see all of these holes drilled into them. There were birds nesting in the holes.
Papyrus growing along the River Nile.
BTW, the fellow who greeted us before the boat ride had on a name tag that said "Moses".
I bet that all of the employees wear that name tag.
The big crocs
The falls are 21 meters high and only 7 meters wide. Since the River Nile isn't some lazy flowing river, this is a significant flow of water through the gorge. Even though our pontoon boat motor was pretty powerful it was straining against the swirling currents of the falls. We hung out there long enough to drop off the folks on our cruise that were hiking to the top of Murchison Falls and to give the remainders a chance to snap a few pictures. Then we began the slow cruise back to the dock. The equator sun shined upon us and we were so hot. The moving boat created somewhat of a breeze, but it was a very hot breeze. Something like being in a convection oven, I imagine.
This was a lazy, slow-paced cruise.
The only thing that was fast was the exchange of wise-cracks.
What a handsome guy!
After returning to the lodge we cooled off in the pool again. I love this group. We had such a good time talking and laughing until we cried! After a while it was time to get cleaned up for dinner. Oh darn, another shower! Later that evening Mary, Mark, Mike, Tom and I sat in the lounge and watched soccer. One more night in a real bed before starting the long journey home.