Amazing Amboseli

I dedicate this post to my lifelong friend Mike Condy who sadly passed away a few days ago from complications with Covid. He loved and cherished his time in the bush. I will carry many vivid memories of him as I continue to wander through the African bush and will, with gusto, share his bush stories around the camp fire. Onto your next adventure! Travel well shamwari!!

This is the last post from my Amboseli trip with photographic safari specialists, Wild-Eye. From here we moved to Lake Nakuru further up the rift valley in Kenya. Amboseli has wonderful photographic backdrops in the form of Mount Kilimanjaro and the verdant green marshes and vast open grasslands which are home to a large variety of mammal and birdlife.

“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” ~ Rachel Carson

This post shows a gallery of images which give a sense of the vastness and variety of wildlife in the national park. It hopefully also shows the dramatic skies which are created in the “long-rains” period from late March to early June each year.

“One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, “What if I had never seen this before? What if I knew I would never see it again?” ~ Rachel Carson

Excellent well drained gravel roads through the marsh areas.

The shallow marsh waters attract vast numbers of Greater and Lesser flamingoes.

Moody afternoon skies heavily laden with rain in the background with a breeding herd of elephants foraging on the grasslands in the foreground, accompanied by many cattle egrets enjoying all the insects disturbed by the elephants.

Despite the “long rains” phase, we were fortunate to get periods of cloudless vistas onto Mount Kili.

“Nature has introduced great variety into the landscape, but man has displayed a passion for simplifying it. Thus he undoes the built-in checks and balances by which nature holds the species within bounds.”~ Rachel Carson

Waders like Pied avocets were abundant at the marsh water edges.

Dedicated and patient mothers looking after their ravenous cubs.

Crowned in gold, beautiful grey crowned cranes descending from dark rain-laden skies to forage in the grasslands.

Titans walk these plains. One of the many larger tuskers which can be seen moving from breeding herd to breeding herd. This giant was in full musth.

“Giant beasts have ruled Africa for coast to coast for over 50 million years as they migrate to water for their families They are masters of the universe, architects of their world. Joyful young play securely as they are one of the most caring families in nature. They have haunting rituals, great wisdom, care and compassion. Their story is about far more than statistics and ivory.”~ Dereck Joubert-Soul of the Elephant

Wonderful moody, evocative light in the early atmospheric morning just before a thunderstorm.

A Thompson’s gazelle fawn haloed in the late afternoon fading light.

A Greater flamingo strolling through golden waters in the last light of the day.

“The eye is always caught by light, but shadows have more to say.” ~Gregory Maguire

This Yellow-throated spurfowl joined the dawn chorus.

A male Painted snipe, one of the more exotic waders gracing the marsh waters’ edge.

“Nature is the dream and I am her wanderer.” ~ Angie Weiland-Crosby

A family of Dwarf mongooses had taken up residence in this anthill, warming themselves in the early morning. Both alert and inquisitive.

A massive vista looking west past Observation Hill toward a relatively cloud free Mount Kili.

Once the lion pride had moved on to a new hunting ground, a coalition of two male cheetahs began scouting the area for their next meal.

Obliging clouds and elephants create an iconic scene with Mount Kili in the background.

“But perhaps the most important lesson I learned is that there are no walls between humans and the elephants except those we put up ourselves, and that until we allow not only elephants, but all living creatures their place in the sun, we can never be whole ourselves.” ~ Lawrence Anthony

A flock of Glossy ibis flying toward their feeding ground alongside one of the marshes. The soft substrate suited their beak shape perfectly.

A juvenile Martial eagle scouring the grasslands from a dead Tortillis tree. Judging from his already large frame he will grow into a very large raptor

A sense of scale.

Rain-darkened late sunset skies paint mauves and golds on marsh waters.

“Light and shadow are opposite sides of the same coin. We can illuminate our paths or darken our way. It is a matter of choice.” ~Maya Angelou

Africa’s largest mountain demands your attention.

A playful pair of carefree male elephant calves chasing and pushing each around under the watchful eye of their large mothers.

A massive big tusker following a breeding herd, there was a very large female too.

A lone hyaena scout resting in a puddle on the side of the gravel road.

Another big tusker making his way towards a breeding herd.

“Seven tonne giants in full sail. Their movements are a meditation. Their eyes shine with a deep intelligence.” ~ Dereck Joubert ~ from the Soul of the Elephant

A view across a shallow marsh lake toward Mount Kili.

“May your choices reflect your hopes not your fears.” ~ Nelson Mandela

Colourful afternoon skies over the grasslands with clouds building for the late afternoon downpour.

One of nature’s ballerinas dancing on golden waters.

“Wandering through nature opens up possibilities that free your imagination and ignite your senses.” ~ Mike Haworth

Dark heavily rain-laden skies create visual drama in what was a sublime, balmy and calm view across one of the many marsh lakes.

After a productive, colourful and fascinating five days in Amboseli we transferred to Lake Nakuru for the next leg of our Kenyan adventure.

“Life is a matter of choices, and every choice you make, makes you.” ~John C. Maxwell

Explore, seek to understand, marvel at its interconnectedness and let it be.

Have fun, Mike

One thought on “Amazing Amboseli

  1. Good morning Mike, Wow I realy enjoyed this Blog Post. You have the format nailed down for sure! What I enjoyed most though was the way you shared the diversity of Amboseli in your photography. The Blog has it all. Beautiful landscapes and intimate nature stories showcased with great photography and editing. Superb job Mike. Well done.

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