Close encounters of the ellie kind

I always say that Addo is probably the best place in the world to watch wild African elephants in their natural environment and to get fairly up close sightings.  Its not because these elephants are tame, not by a long shot.  Over the years they have just gotten used to vehicles and as long as you don’t intrude on their space and they don’t feel threatened,  the chances are often good that they would walk right by your vehicle.  I visited Addo twice during SA National Parks week and snapped this shot of them walking past a small bus at Hapoor waterhole.  

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  1. Desiree

    I can well imagine the adrenalin rush this must have caused. I was a little girl when my parents, sister and I visited the Victoria Falls National Park for the first time in the late 50s, very early 60s. We had a similar experience and our elephant bull looked even more gigantic to me, since I was still so little myself. I remember my Dad telling us in a very soft, low voice to sit perfectly still. The elephant eventually decided we presented no threat and moved off into the bush.

  2. It can be quite scary when they are so close. We got chased by a bull elephant in a game reserve in Central Africa. My father did a brilliant job or reversing at top speed!! Diane

  3. Gaelyn

    What an awesome experience. I found it exciting and heart-pumping scary when the elephants and lions at Kruger where within 20 feet of the pickup truck. I sure hope your visitor took photos of that close encounter.

  4. Nat

    Amazing experience and well handled by you by the sounds of things!

  5. Tami Weingartner

    Oh my!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That sounds wonderful….I know scary but still WONDERFUL!Fantastic photos of them in their element. (sigh) I love Ellies!

  6. Gaelyn

    It is amazing to have a close encounter with elephants but looks like those buses should have backed of a bit. Don't want to miff off the Matriarch.