Distance: 101km (Cumulative: 2 078km)
Moving time: 03:44
Average speed: 27km/h
Road surface: 100% Sand
Jack's Pan - R50 p.p
Amazing view over pan with trees for shade, no facilities
As we were packing up a Dutch couple drove past the campsite. Hugo ran towards them and striked up a conversation. They were camping at Khiding Pan and had lions in their camp last night, but by the morning they had left. We decided to exit via Mpaya Pan and drove the sandy corrugated road for the 5th time. On our way there we chatted to people who also had lions in their camp at Mpaya at night and then nothing this morning.
As we’ve been told we encountered no lions at Mpaya, just what looked like the same herd of Springbok and Wildebeest.
We then went to Mamelodi pans. Driving around the one we saw Kudu, black-backed jackal, Ostrich, Springbok and Oryx.
By 11:00 we made peace that we won’t see any lions in Mabua even though it felt like everyone else did. We signed out at reception and headed north on the cutline.
The road started out as a graded road, but then turned into soft sand again after 15km close to the Khotso cutline. We continued to the corner of Mabua and then took the North East cutline next to KD12 WMA.
We had the GPS on, but still missed the turn off to Jack’s Pan. We had to circle back driving close to the edge of the cutline to see the small semi-overgrown two spoor track turn-off.
The 5km winding road took us to a beautiful spot on the dune on the South edge of the pan. Unfortunately (or fortunately) there were no lions waiting in the camping area. There were however big lion footprints crossing the campsite.
We had avocado sandwiches for lunch and then just lazed around looking out over the pan. Caro started preparing bully beef pasta quite early. By the time the sun started to set Caro had us all fed and washed and ready to go into the rooftop tent. Caro was already in when she gave a shriek and told Hugo to quickly get in. She thought she spotted a lion on the edge of the campsite, but it turned out to be a brown hyena. We watched it from above as it circled our camp and then disappeared into the bushes. We played some cards in the tent before going to sleep (or starting to read in the case of Hugo and Jaco).