Monday, July 28, 2008

Tuningi - A New Start!

It’s Monday morning and Adele, Gizmo and I are going through the motions of packing house and getting ready to move to Madikwe again... finally!

Now I suppose the city is not such a bad place but once you have experienced the life in the African bush the chances of you actually choosing traffic, smog, sirens and radios over the tranquillity of natures booming silence, lions roaring and sunsets that make life stop for a few seconds there is unfortunately (or fortunately) no turning back.

Since leaving Royal Madikwe earlier this year we have been freelancing and relief managing at various lodges in Madikwe. Some amazing lodges such as Nkurru, Morukuru, Kukama and Tuningi. As if by destiny we started chatting with Gavin and Heidi (glass of wine included of course) at Tuningi and to make a long story, which includes interviews and job offers at many lodges from the Sabi Sands all the way up to the northern Botswana, short – Adele and I will be starting our new positions at the 5-star Tuningi Game Lodge in Madikwe later this week.

We are very excited about this move as not only have we grown very fond of Madikwe as a reserve, but the team at Tuningi are the kind of people that we look forward to working with. Professional (yes, I said it!!) great friends and the lodge runs at quite high occupancies! Gotta love the buzz! You will meet and get to know the team at Tuningi as time goes on so stay tuned. Here are a few initial images of Tuningi and a map of Madikwe (which in the region of 70,000 hectares so a LOT of space to play in the wild!!) that shows where we are situated but I will be sure to add more images as time goes on. Click on the logo to visit the website for more details (or to book to come and join us on safari!! Bring your camera!)

On a personal note, I am also very keen to join the two professional (yes, I said it again – read the previous Blog if you not sure) field guides at Tuningi, Gavin and Grant. Those of you who have been reading the Blog and viewing the images on Photo-Africa you will know that Gavin and Grant are two of the contributing photographers on Photo-Africa and also write articles for this Blog. I am sure that by combining our love for nature and obsession with wildlife photography we will be able to not only bring you more amazing images from Africa but through the Blog also entertain, educate and keep on giving you your daily does of Africa on your pc! Make sure to subscribe to the Blog so that you receive all the new Blog posts via email and as they say watch this space!

I have been out of the bush for almost a month now and am very much looking forward to getting back into the field for some new wildlife & nature images. For me I think it was a good thing as I have been reading a lot of books and photography blogs (check them out in the Blogroll) that gives you different ideas, inspiration, photo tips and things you want to try so bring it on! Can’t wait!

Another I want to try and do once we are settled is to keep more of an online diary from Tuningi with short (or hopefully long) updates and images as they days go by. With the amount of images we gather it will be a tough call so I will attempt to upload our Game Drive Diary twice a week. The Weekly High Five will still be posted around Friday of each week so make sure to check on that and keep leaving your comments!

To end of with I have included some of my very first ever wildlife images taken a very very very long time ago. I think this was wear my passion / obsession / love for photography started and it’s kind of nostalgic to think back of how I was shooting everything that moved, literally, with my little Sony Cybershot PS150. Apart from my Nikon D300 I still use a small Sony T100 as well which I carry around everywhere. Adele is still using the PS150 and it’s still producing great quality images!

Have changed camera since then and I would like to think I have improved since these early days but we all had to start somewhere and I am still proud of my first efforts!

Zebra at the water hole at Kwa Maritane Lode in the Pilansberg Game Reserve. Spent a lot of time here when i was younger.

Waterbuck butts. Gotta love their 'follow-me-signals'!

Elephant at the Kwa Maritane waterhole.

Reed Coromorant drying himself early in the morning.

Close up of a Black Backed jackal.

Hippo reflection in the Kruger National Park.

Anyway, time to finish packing. I might be a bit quiet for the next few days, until we are settled, but will be back with stories, updates and of course more wonderful images from our beautiful piece of Africa in Madikwe!

As always I look forward to hearing from you!



Mike - Fenphotography said...

Looks a stunning place Gerry, somewhere that is on my list for the future to visit.

Michael Palmer said...

Best of Luck on the move - What a adventure!!! and you get paid for it!!

AmandaLii said...

Sorry to hear once again that WildEarth.TV is not in your immediate plans. But! It sounds like you are going to a wonderful place. I just went through all 117 photos of the wild dogs -- I can see a few more I would like! Thanks for posting the map of's great to "see" where you are.

SAPhotographs said...

Congratulations!!! What wonderful news!! Those are wonderful pictures of the lodge, I am sure the two of you are going to enjoy it and look forward to seeing more pics soon.

Photo-Africa said...

Thank for the comments!

We are staying in touch with WildEarth and there is a very good chance that we will go through to Djuma on some of our breaks to go and do some guest presenting!!

Will liaise with Graham ans surprise you one day! :)

Sandpiper (Lin) said...

Have fun, Gerry! It looks like a great place. I like staying in lodges like that. There is something about them that is so relaxing. Your pictures are terrific - especially like the cormorant and the overall mood of the image. I loved visiting Pilanesburg. A peaceful place. Looking forward to your next post.