Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Camping on Safari

This past weekend, I took my Guides and Pathfinders to camp at African Lion Safari!
What an amazing experience for everyone who attended.
Friday night, I got to the private campground around 5pm and began setting up tents. Normally, I would wait for the girls to arrive before setting up the tents; but, there was a break in the rain and I wanted to take advantage of being able to put up the tents without getting totally soaked.

The girls began arriving around 6pm and we were able to get a small fire going before it began to drizzle again.

By time all the girls had arrived it was time for our snack, or "mug-up" as it's referred to in the Guiding world. Pizza and hot chocolate were perfect snacks to warm up our damp bodies.
For the first time in my history as a Guide leader, all my girls were asleep by 10:30pm on the first night of camp. I'm still shocked!

Despite the early bedtime, I couldn't sleep and ended up starting my morning earlier than planned. Hearing the lions roar as they began their day was quite amazing.

Saturday turned out to be a perfect fall day. The sun was shining and the temperatures were perfect. After a quick breakfast, the Safari crew picked us up and took us over to the park. Our first adventure was the bus through the animal reserve. Turns out that being the first bus through was lucky as all the animals were out and ready to be seen.

This little brown Zebu (above), was born the day before we arrived at Safari. While a little unsteady on his legs, he got a kick out of chasing the baboon!

This giraffe wasn't afraid of our bus tour at all. In fact, he was quite curious about us coming up to the bus and lowering his neck to look in the windows at the girls; which of course sent them squealing with delight!

The KING of the jungle, cleaning his teeth after his morning meal.

After our trip through the compound, we took to the park and explored EVERYTHING.  The girls had a great time in the discovery centre, learning about endangered and extinct species (earning their Endangered Species badge along the way).  Here two of the girls check out giraffe skulls.

We then ventured out on the scenic railway tour and were fortunate to see some animals along the way.  Say "cheese"

The girls burnt off some steam in the obstacle course before we went for lunch and the elephant swim.  Afterwards, we continued our day by attending all of the shows Safari offers.  A few of the girls decided to end their day at the park with a once-in-a-lifetime, elephant ride!

Overall, we had a fabulous weekend.  It was the perfect way to start a new Guiding year and get to know the girls.  I can't wait to see what adventures lie ahead for us.

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