Sunday, 13 May 2012

Into the Wilderness - The 1st Safari at TATR

Day 2 2nd May 2012 - 5.30 am

The next morning we were ready by 5.15 and waited outside the MTDC Canteen with many others for the Gypsy. The driver, a fantastic local young lad, Roshan, picked up on his blue gypsy at 5.30 am and we were on our way to the Moharli gate, just 1 km away from MTDC. Our guide, Mr Bantu, Ravi's younger brother, was waiting for us at the gate with all the paperworks ready, so we embarked on our journey straightaway.

Immediately we took a detour and entered through the narrow path and encountered tiger pugmarks!!

Bantu advised that these were almost 30 mins back when the big cat crossed the road, so we followed to the direction the tiger set out his venture, a thrilling experience that was.

We saw some curious and amazing things on our way, which we could not even dream about in the urban households; the crocodile tree is one amongst many.

Various trees with different shades and shadows provided a cool ambience in the morning.

Our guide pointed out at a distance, a bunch of beehives of hanging from the trees.

Suddenly through the bushes, we spotted a silhouette of a bison (Indian Gaur).

A monkey sat with her baby, the motherhood is universally similar across the planet.

We drove through the jungle hoping for a big cat, but it eluded us so far.

Another amazing wonder of the jungle – a ghost tree, which changes color with the change of season!

....and a closeup.

The color of the jungle looked as an amazing landscape.

There we saw a ‘Red Wattled Lapwig’ from very close. It was beautiful to look at from a close distance.

We stopped at a place where a waterhole was nearby, where a horde of spotted deer were quenching their thirst.

We moved towards another waterhole where another group were present. They were so peaceful that we did not dare disturb them, just the clicking of the cameras were audible.

Then came a group of sambar deers.

Moving on, another group of spotted deer who were grazing just within 15 feet of our gypsy.

The day became warmer gradually. We set out towards the Tadoba lake, the panoramic lake were too good to see. A cool breeze was certainly needed. The lake was almost full even in the scorching summer with greeneries all around.

Too many birds were also satiating their thirst and hunger at the same time.

A group of cranes called as Asian Openbill (the black and white ones) and an Indian Black Ibis at the background (the black one) –

A couple of Indian Pond Herons –

A white eyed buzzard, like a person who dipped his feet in the water, with his trousers pulled up –

A deer kid was crossing the road at a distance, perhaps seeking its parents.

Crossing the lake, we also saw a crocodile resting. The lake definitely provides shelters to everyone, in their own ways.

On our way back, we spotted a rare bird, a crested serpent eagle. Bantu and Roshan they were really fabulous and I was surprised how they could spot a bird at a long distance or a tiger pugmarks from a moving car, now that’s  experience!

A monkey was too thirsty –

A long shot of an Indian Roller –

A desolate and dilapidated ruins of an ancient temple –

A broken and non-operational machinery –

Returning back at around 9.30 am we saw a group of people enjoying the elephant safaris.

Here a couple of gypsies were waiting for something. We also queued up, expecting a big cat. No one was disappointed for a leopard was there to be seen, but not for long enough to be shot, shot by camera that is. So we captured its gorgeous presence in the camera of our minds till it disappeared like a lightning into the dense jungle. One in one!

Some shots taken by my wife:

Tadoba Lake, a panoramic view:

The road on our way back:

Amazing colors:

Next: The Second Safari

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