Isaac is largely responsible for the success of our trip so far. He is an old-fashioned guide who refuses to use the radio to find out where the game are. Instead he watches for poop and tracks and will say things like "I can see that 4 lions recently crossed here" and then proceed to find them. Today he perfectly timed our visit to see the wildebeest migration, a vast sea of animals of all ages who are moving north instead of south as I said yesterday.
In this beautiful bend of the river are at least 8 crocodiles and an equal number of hippos, any one of which could prove deadly to a human. As other cruisers arrived and the clients jumped out, Isaac told us that it is illegal to get out of your car, punishable by a huge fine for the driver. He also told of saving a foolish couple from a charging hippo after they had ventured out of the safety of their vehicle.
Isaac told us that on some safaris the guides guarantee success of seeing animals right by the road by planting meat in trees or nearby. We talked about how this seems almost like a zoo where the animals are fed by their keepers. His approach means that sometimes you must look through binoculars, but we were never disturbing or manipulating the animals.
The above photo is a grim reminder that death is part of life's cycle. The crocodile skeleton was not far from the living croc below.
Some people choose to come to the western Serengeti by plane. This is the airport with its dirt runway. Isaac said that sometimes the wildebeest migration makes it difficult to land the small planes.