April 28, 2012
Wow!! Spectacularly wild!! What a natural experience!! Being a former Federal park ranger, interpreter and naturalist, I find it very difficult to describe to anyone back home what I witnessed and experience over the past two weeks. My interpretative and photographic attempt of what had transpired in front of my eyes would be completely unfair and unjust to the curious and interested listener. A wildlife biologist friend simply put it, you have to be there. There is no other way to experience it. You can sit on your couch and watch countless episodes of Nature or National Geographic specials, trying your best to grasp the African experience as a whole, but it would be to no avail. By being there, all your senses run rampantly wild, gathering the panoramic data that passes only a few feet from you. Whether it be amidst a herd of stampeding wildebeest and zebras or the battalion of olive baboons approaching the land rover from behind, only to split into two single ranks as they past alongside the viewer, you are there and momentarily become one with nature. What a thrill!!
So many good memories to cherish and the highlights were plenty…the hikes, sitting in the middle of stampedes. However, most of the credit goes to the guides. They definitely made the safari special. They were extremely friendly, jolly and very knowledgeable about the species, the landscape, plants and the future of the Great Serengeti. I had my two reference books at hand to follow up on their sightings and sure enough their species description were right on. Particularly the birds. I am an avid birder back home and the guides were outstanding in identifying the countless species of birds. Great job guides!! Particularly Derek. Perhaps Thomson should consider an “interpreter exchange program” between rangers in the US Park Service and the Thomson Guides. Boy, would the US Park Service benefit from these kind, gentle, enthusiastic, knowledgeable, hard working guides. They made the safari fun. Several of us were able to pry into their private lives and walked away knowing that we developed very special friendships.
Thomson Safaris is a top-notch organization with an exceptional safari itinerary, great folks and a great concern for the African wildlife and people. The safari was very well organized, great guides, great folks, great food, great accommodations, a great mix of cultural and natural experience. It was well planned from the first email to the drop off at the airport. We were kept up to date with our travel arrangements and the provided travel guide moved things along smoothly. I can see way Thomson Safaris was National Geographic recipient of the Best Adventure Outfitter on Earth. My hat is off to Thomson for putting together a fantastic and extremely well panned safari. What a blast!!
Signature Thomson Safari, February 2012
© 2013 by Thomson Safaris, a Division of Wineland-Thomson Adventures, Inc.