Allow me to re-introduce myself.
My name is Marlon du Toit.
Just messing with you 😉
I almost feel like this is needed. I have been away from blogs for such a long time and finally managed to get back to it – be prepared for some great fresh new content!
I wanted all of you to catch up with the main safaris I have guided in 2016 – just in case you were not following along on social media.
I absolutely love spending time in the field, seeing the reaction my guests have to the incredible sights that await them on safari, sharing in their joy when they capture incredible moments on still. That is where the reward lies, to guide people across a wild experience, to change their lives along the way.
I started my safari year with an unforgettable trip to the Serengeti. I co-hosted a safari with Gerry van der Walt and to say our guests all had the most unbelievable time would be a complete under-statement.
When you get a moment go read the FULL Safari Diary by clicking HERE.
I have been to this region – Ndutu – with our 2015 Wild Eye Safari group of guests. Knowing the area a little bit better the second time round opened up a whole new world for me and we were absolutely blown away by the abundance of the area as well as the quality photographic opportunities.
We enjoyed fantastic sightings of cheetah hunting on the open plains, no doubt making the most of the abundance of baby wildebeest.
We also enjoyed some time in the picturesque Ngorongoro Crater – what an experience this is! Its one of those bucket-list encounters, the kind of place you simply have to see with your own eyes in order to believe all you’ve heard.
A great welcome & surprise was a lion pride within the Ndutu woodland, adjacent to the 2 large lakes. They would habitually climb trees in order to escape the heat of the day, biting insects & to gain a view over the dense undergrowth. Naturally this allowed our guests the opportunity to get incredible imagery!
A moment all of us will remember is the sighting of the 2 young lions up a tree, framed by a rainbow – picture perfect indeed.
Wild Eye Seminar – Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve
In April we took the whole Wild Eye team out to the iconic South African Game Reserve, known as the Sabi Sand.
Offering arguably the best Big 5 viewing experience, this area is hugely popular between photographers & nature enthusiasts as a whole.
Our Seminar hosts about 15 guests and across 6 days the Wild Eye team share just about all they know on getting the right shots & making sure it looks good all the way through. Daily lectures from Gerry van der Walt, Andrew Beck, Johan van Zyl & myself offered new insight into popular subjects such as low-light, exposure & artistic photography.
The sightings were fantastic, to say the least!
Our guests enjoyed many intimate moments with a mother leopard & her young cub, and even witnessed lions hunting buffalo after dark, getting caught up in the drama & action of it all.
The time spent with the Wild Eye team , the daily lectures & one-on-one sessions and much more meant that equipped with more knowledge, the guests coul apply this out in the field and gained incredible images in the process.
There’s very few occasions where the entire Wild Eye team is in one location at the same time. Travels demand alot of our time. Getting together like this is a fantastic place like Sabi Sabi’s Bush Lodge was an amazing experience for us all, and being able to share these experiences with our guests is very special indeed.
We will host another Wild Eye Seminar in November this year – be sure to get in touch if you would like to join the entire Wild Eye team on safari!
The Timbavati & Klaserie – A privately hosted family safari
My most recent safari took me to a favorite area in the from of Greater Kruger.
I was born in the area & have such a passion for it – it’s beautifully diverse & the sightings often leave you speechless, incredible variety.
I guided a family of 5 from Holland – they were fantastic company and I loved spending time with them. They all – young & old – had a love for nature & loved every moment on safari.
How could they not? We had amazing moments!
We enjoyed several great sightings of leopards. It’s no secret that I have a distinct love for these spotted cats, and to spend quality time with them out on safari is an amazing thing, something very few people get to do.
In fact, one of my the guests mentioned that their friends have been on 6 safaris, and they are yet to see their first leopard!
Something I had always wished to see in the area – yet something that always eluded me – were the infamous White Lions of the Timbavati.
This time though we struck white gold and got see to see them on 2 consecutive days. On the first day we found them feeding on a buffalo carcass. The entire pride lay around the area but what drew our attention most were the 2 snow-white lionesses. They were breathtakingly striking!
Apart from Singita Kruger National Park – not far from the Timbavati – I am not aware of any other destination in Africa where one can spend time with wild white lions. To see them like this in their natural habitat is incredible, such a strange sight indeed.
My guests also enjoyed sleeping out one evening at the Umlani Tree Hide. A night under a canvas of stars left them with a deeper appreciation for the beauty of the African bush.
Coming Up Soon
In a few weeks time I leave for another private safari – this time for a single gentleman from Canada. Our journey will lead us to South Luangwa National Park for 8 days of photographic bliss!
Few places in Africa excite me as much as South Luangwa does. The wildnerness feel, the beauty of the landscape & the sheer abundance of the predators all make for a life-changing safari.
Our website is in the process of being updates & I am sure you will hear from the Wild Eye team more regularly.
Thanks for your time, look forward to bringing you more news from the field & tips on capturing great moments out in nature!
Till next time,