Day 7: Caprivi Strip – now known as Zambezi Region

‘Hot water is a blessed thing!’  These words had new meaning for me when we stayed at Ngepi Camp in the Caprivi area of Namibia in mid-winter.

It was June and we were staying in reed huts on the banks of the Okavango River.  Ngepi Camp is very eco friendly and uses solar energy,  however in winter the sun does not reach the solar panels until about 11 am so there is not much time for the sun to do its work.  Also the solar panels were covered with dust which blocked the rays of the sun.  A bucket of water tossed over them improved matters vastly………….

On the morning of  13 June 2012 we visited the Mohango Game Reserve.  A few startled kudu darted across the road.  This park is known for Roan and Sable antelope herds and has four of the big five.  Over 300 bird species have been recorded.

We stopped to admire an enornmous baobab in the park.

Baobab trees can live for thousands of years.

While Vermaak, our chef,  made us a hearty brunch under the trees, Marion and I explored the river bank and saw an African Jacana which is sometimes known as the ‘Jesus bird’ because it appears to walk on water while it trots over the lilies, its long toes and nails spreading its weight.

We were lucky enough to see the rare Reedbuck.

Later that afternoon we travelled back to Bagani to find the site of the old pont that had been the only way over the Okavango before the Bagani bridge was built.  We were told to make enquiries at the local clinic.  Les had been stationed here with the South African Police during the late 60’s and was keen to re-visit the site.

This photo of the old pont was taken by Les in the 1960’s.

Trenches were dug by the SAP members to protect their camp.

They had to guard the pont as this was the only way across the river.  Here is a young Les in uniform.

The pont was guarded as it was a strategic crossing for the military and local community.

There was lots of time for fun and the pont made a good diving platform.

Anyone watching out for crocodiles?

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The remants of the old pont can still be seen on the opposite bank.

The SAP camp was under an enornmous tree in this wooded area.

This was the local shebeen or ‘kuka’ shop.  We gave our kind guide a lift back to the clinic and thanked him for showing us where the old pont had been.

Back at Ngepi Camp we studied the board showing the many activities that are available.  If you are a keen bird watcher there are many birds in grounds of the camp so there is never a dull moment.

These upside down mokoros make wonderful seats for sitting around the pub area.

At night a fire is built for guests.

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