The question of “What makes a photo safari different?” popped up a couple of times during this weekend’s Durban Road Trip.
Apart from having a dedicated photographic guide who hosts and provides in the field tuition and guidance, the main differentiating factor is the fact that we tend to spend a lot more time at sightings.
This particular instance was a good example where one of our vehicles spent most of the afternoon with this pair of mating lions in the Masai Mara. Often just by spending time in a sighting one is treated to incredible photographic opportunities, moments which would otherwise have gone un-documented.
Think of a film crew focussing on a specific species. Without fail the crew will stick with and spend as much time with their subjects as possible in order to capture those illusive moments of magic – that moment when a lioness first introduces her cubs to the rest of the pride, the moment a leopard pounces on an impala, or that moment a cheetah dashes across the open plains after a gazelle.
If you’re relying on luck to simply pull into a sighting and be there for that pivotal moment, chances are you’re going to need a lot of luck!
For me, what makes a photographic safari so special is that our groups of like-minded individuals are happy to sit in one location and spend time with our subjects, waiting to capture that moment.
Even if that means sitting with a mating pair of lions in the mid day heat.
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