Moremi Game Reserve and the Mopane Tongue
After finishing lunch and getting back onto the road we headed toward what would be our camping destination for the next two nights, Xakanaxa (pronounced zakanaka). Xakanaxa is situated in the lush northern region of the Moremi Game Reserve, a unique area made up of permanent delta waterways, vast floodplains, a lagoon and dry woodlands.
The reserve consists of a network of waterways surrounding two large land masses: Chiefs Island in the centre of the Delta and forested Mopane Tongue in the east. The area’s diverse ecosystems, riverine woodland, floodplains, wetlands with reed beds, mopane woodland, and dry savanna woodland, broken only by the occasional jeep track, are all packed with game. We would be spending the next two days on the Mopane Tongue of which Xakanaxa is at the eastern tip. The Tongue gets its name from the Mopane Tree, which has very distinctive and beautiful butterfly like leaves.
Mopane Tree and Mopane leaf
On our drive to Xakanaxa we came across a large herd of elephant and for the first time on our trip had the opportunity to get close to these magnificent beasts. We watched mesmerized as these two tonned behemoths ambled through the grassland. Cows ripping huge junks of native grasses from the earth with their trunks to feed on, while calves suckled at their breasts. Cameras, binoculars, video cams went into action as all 12 of us safari participants lost ourselves in what was a galvanizing moment.
After dinner at the campfire