Wednesday was another warm and humid day, but it was yet another great day at Motswari. I headed off to track down the seven Western Pride lions from where they had been yesterday, and not 10 minutes into the drive, we found tracks heading east along our northern boundary, but the tracks headed north, and we followed up on foot, and not 200m later we located the pride sleeping on the boundary road. We got to spend some time with them before they moved north across a small wedge of non-traversable land, and we opted to carry on, and try again on the Motswari property a little later. There were elephant tracks everywhere in the north, and we eventually located a small herd and spent time with them before going to check the northern sections again; impala and waterbuck were around, as was another herd of elephants. Passing them, we found that there were lion tracks coming back onto our property right where we thought they would come back, and another ten minutes of tracking led to us finding the pride resting in the Sohebele riverbed, right where they had been sleeping a few days back! As it was late, we decided to go have coffee at Argyle Dam, and found a herd of elephants playing and swimming in the water, as well as a load more elephants in the area – after great coffee, we headed back to the lodge. Ntima male leopard was still on his kudu kill near Java, and Robynne found Xiviti male leopard on a male impala kill in the east.
In the afternoon, I decided to go and see if we could have luck with Xiviti and his kill, and passed through the east seeing kudu, impala, wildebeest, hippo and zebra to begin with, but then it went quiet. Xiviti’s kill had been dragged into a bush, but it was now invisible, and there was no sign of the leopard, despite us having checked on the area several times. We found a skittish buffalo bull before having a sundowner and once more returning to the area where the leopard was, but it was the same story. We then decided to pursue some male lion tracks that had passed through the same area, but it was almost dark, which made it tough, but Difference is not one of our best trackers for no reason, and having determined where the tracks were heading, told me to check on one last riverbed crossing, and there we found them some 150m away…but how to get there! I thought that I could make it over a rock in the riverbed, but i then heard the grinding sound of rocks hitting the bottom of the vehicle. We got stuck. So, everyone had to get out and we jacked the vehicle up and pushed our Land Rover off the rock and luckily we could still see one of the males drinking in the river, but by the time we got around, they had moved off, and our tracking effort began again. The tracks went into a block, and we couldn’t find them coming out – so had to take a chance and follow the game path we speculated they would be on, and after some hectic driving, we found the two males resting on the game path! It allowed me to relax, and enjoy these two impressive males! We were very late, so had to then make our way back to the camp, but with happy guests that were glad we had persisted in the area!