Serra Cafema is still in the heart of the winter and the fog fills the Hartmann valley most mornings. This beautiful blanket of fog gives the area a feeling of being on top of the world with the huge Angolan Mountains peeking over the top. Early morning drives reveal that this fog moves well past the camp area and hides Himba villages kilometres away.
The warm east wind blows during the day and settles as night bringing in cold air that descends from the mountains causing a rush of air that rises in temperature as it heads west - a common event that takes place around this time of year in the desert.
A western-barred spitting cobra was spotted eating a smaller tiger snake. The awesome snake likes thick dry bushy areas as they hunt for prey like lizard, mice, small birds and even other snakes. It has a reputation of being an aggressive snake and is feared by many people. But like most snakes it is afraid of humans and move moves off quickly to avoid contact with anyone.
Our local and infamous crocodile has been seen along the river. The monster can weigh up 5ookg or more and has a huge appetite for oryx, cattle and donkeys that often roam close to the water.
The birdlife along the banks of the Kunene has long been a drawcard for birders. Some birds like the African darters are regulars along with the goliath heron, Egyptian geese and many species of weavers, but to be able to see a black crake and a purple swamphen is a real treat! If you listen carefully you might hear the elusive black crake as it makes its way through the thick, tangled undergrowth with its specially adapted long legs and big feet. Along with brightly coloured beak, bright red eyes and legs and glossy black feathers this is an awkward looking fellow.
Meerkat sightings have become a regular occurrence, with more than three different family groups identified. These sightings happen early mornings and late afternoons as they take shelter from the desert sun.
Petrus Gaseb has been a driver at Palmwag Lodge and with Wilderness Safaris since 2004. He has driven the roads between the old Hoanib River camp, Skeleton Coast Camp and Serra Cafema arguably more than anyone! He has made sure that supplies make it to these camps month in and month out and has finally decided to take it easy and tend to his business on his farm. From all at Serra Cafema, Ou Petrus you will be missed! Josephat will be taking over from Petrus from August onwards and we welcome him to the family!
“Namibia is about landscape. Known Namibia is well photographed and documented. Serra Cafema and this Marienfluss Consession is out of this world. When I first arrived I forgot that I was in Namibia due to the epic-ness of the surrounds. This was further complemented by great staff effort, fantastic guiding and delicious food. The camp capped off an unforgettable holiday with my family.”
Newsletter by: James McCulloch