Saturday, February 02, 2008

Heading South

Well, we've blown our final chance for Tigers.
Aftre leaving Delhi we decided to head straight down to Ranthambhore NP, via a quick stop at Agra for brief views and record Happy Snaps of the Taj Mahal. We also passed through the legendary town of Bharatpur but thanks to another failed monsoon, the lack of water in the reserve meant it wasnt worth stopping at.
We arrived at Ranthambhore late at night after a 'complicated' journey from Delhi and managed to book on a safari the next evening.
Unfortunately we were allocated zone 5, which basically was total shit, and this combined with a bunch of typically noisy indians on our truck meant that we never really stood a chance. Still, i got good views of the parks 'key bird species' Painted Spurfowl, and we just spent the entire safari having a laugh at how excited the other english tourists were getting over dross like Spotted Deer.
Today we just wandered around the Acacia woodland bordering the park, whihc was very rewarding, with good views of Nilgai and Chowsingha. Chowsingha being a cool little antelope thing and Nilgai an awesome beast, something like a cross between a Giraffe, a Sambar deer and a Horse. We also picked up a few good birds including Barred Buttonquail, Ashy-crowned Sparrow-lark and Bay-backed Shrike, plus it was nice to be enjoying the sun and 30+ temperatures.
Anyway, got to go. We're catching an overnight train down to Mumbai in a few hours, where we'll stay for a day, and then head on down to Goa for a week or so of proper Package Holiday slobbishness and a few Western Ghats endemics. Ta-ra

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