The Bangui Buzz

news from the middle of everywhere

Gorillas, Elephants and Tourists – Oh my!

On return from Cameroon, we had one day to pack up and hit the road once more.  This time to Bayanga, for something we never imagined we would do while within the borders of Central Africa – a bona fide, touristy vacation.

We drove 15 hours to Dzanga-Sangha National Park on the Sangha river and stayed at an old hunting lodge in the middle of pristine rain forest.  The roads were brutal but it was totally worth it.  We waded through a swamp full of elephant poo and braved swarms of sweat bees to see forest elephants digging for salt.  Later, we followed pygmy trackers and spent some time with a gorilla family in the wild.  And we ate the best food I’ve had to date in all of Central African Republic.  Even got a few good pictures as well.

Love to all,

 

jnj

Over, around, or through?
Over, around, or through?
Road hazard.
Road hazard.
Rest stop.
Rest stop.
What a hut!
What a hut!
What a view! Just no A/C, curtains, or wall.
What a view! Just no A/C, curtains, or wall.
Free pest control with every room
Free pest control with every room
Lazy brunch.
Lazy brunch.
Into infinity.
Into infinity.
We're off to see some elephants!
We're off to see some elephants!
They dig for mineral salts in this clearing.
They dig for mineral salts in this clearing.
Some just cool off in the water.
Some just cool off in the water.
And some just play.
And some just play.
Calves learn from their mothers.
Calves learn from their mothers.
They blow the silt off the bottom first.
They blow the silt off the bottom first.
Beautiful eyes.
Beautiful eyes.
Forest elephants are only about two-thirds the size of savanna elephants.
Forest elephants are only about two-thirds the size of savanna elephants.
On the viewing platform.
On the viewing platform.
Whole families come together.
Whole families come together.
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110701 - IMG_3748.JPG
How to get through the swamp?
How to get through the swamp?
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110701 - IMG_3789.JPG
Peaceful pirogue.
Peaceful pirogue.
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110701 - IMG_3803.JPG
It was very dark and we were shooting through 30 feet of leaves.
It was very dark and we were shooting through 30 feet of leaves.
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110701 - IMG_3828.JPG
The silverback, Makumba. 350 lbs of grace, power, and beauty.
The silverback, Makumba. 350 lbs of grace, power, and beauty.
Jes and Makumba
Jes and Makumba
The pygmy trackers know the forest well.
The pygmy trackers know the forest well.
He let us observe them for a while.
He let us observe them for a while.
It was an unforgettable, spine tingling experience.
It was an unforgettable, spine tingling experience.
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110701 - IMG_3937.JPG
Diner!
Diner!
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110701 - IMG_3976.JPG
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110701 - IMG_3999.JPG
Bat trail and Southern Cross
Bat trail and Southern Cross
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110701 - IMG_4005.JPG
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110701 - IMG_4011.JPG
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110701 - IMG_4022.JPG

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