It’s Springtime in The Cape! And I’m on my way to guide a marvelous group of people for a couple weeks of unimaginable splendor and dramatic big game!
This includes visiting South Africa’s newest national park. Well, that’s not wholly correct. Rather, it’s a translocated park.
Vaalbos National Park was a little visited gem near Kimberley that stretched for a longways beside an usually dry river bank. Large numbers of plains game and many endangered species were found there. The dry river more or less marked the border between the Kalahari midveld and the higher more fertile ground to the east.
But in the late 1990s someone made a land claim for the Vaalbos. The still unknown claimant said that diamonds existed there. Not so likely, and besides, that alone is not sufficient to terminate a national park.
We don’t know the whole story and the most scrumptious rumor is that the area was needed for the nuclear waste South Africa produces from its Koeberg nuclear power generators … or worse, waste accepted from other places.
That’s unconfirmed, but so is the new owner of the old Vaalbos National Park about 35 miles north as the crow flies from its new iteration, Mokala National Park.
In the ensuing ten years following the successful claim more than 1200 animals were moved, a massive undertaking. New facilities were built including cabins and parking lots and administrative offices. It now functions just like most of the country’s fabulous big game parks.
We start in The Cape and next week spend 5 days in the fields and fields of giant wild flowers in the world’s smallest and most unique floral zone just north and west of The Cape! I scoped out the area last year as I wandered in a rent-a-car driving through a Monet mural! I just had to bring people back!
Then I’ll guide the group through Cape Town city, my second favorite city in the world. We then visit the wine country, then off to Mokala and finally to Botswana. Some in the group continue to VicFalls.
Stay tuned! I’ll post as often as I can!