"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count, it's the life in your years." - Abraham Lincoln

Posted on July 29, 2017 by Sioux under General


I arrived back in SA in the early afternoon and my eldest daughter fetched me from the airport. My two grandchildren were wide eyed with surprise when they saw me and I got loads of hugs and cuddles! I needed loads of those!


I had a week planned at Golden Gate National Reserve for Paul’s birthday and time away in the Pilansberg Game Reserve with my daughter and her family. All much needed time with loved ones and well-earned R&R!


But the away time was still a week away and I couldn’t wait, so Paul & I spent a day at Rietvlei Nature Reserve. Being there made me realise then just how much I missed the sights & sounds of the bush in SA! Pure soul food. Not much to be seen in the way of wildlife, but the bird sightings were plentiful. It was good to be back! 

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Rietvlei Nature Reserve near Pretoria

is perfectly located for a one-day

“into-the-bush” outing. The dam was

built during 1929 – 1934, with manual

labourers were paid 4 shillings

a month and carting soil away by

mule carts! The dam is fed by the

Sesmyl Spruit (Six Mile Fountain),

five fountains (one of which is located

on an adjacent property) and five

boreholes. Originally the dam was not open to the public and 

the nature reserve was proclaimed in 1948. Rietvlei Dam provides Pretoria with 15% of its water. 

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There are a number of buck species, hippo, zebra, jackal, and many bird

species. The reserve is one of the world’s largest urban nature reserves,

covering an area of 3800 hectares and able to support up to 2000 head of game, some of which occur naturally only in South Africa (Black Wildebeest and Blesbok). There are also springbok, ostrich and 3 of the Big Five. Lion can also be seen but privately booked game drives are the only way to visit the lion enclosure. Apparently there are cheetah, and I have spent many an hour driving around looking for them, even with hints and tips from the rangers, with no luck. 

A fantastic day out, with plenty of fab photo results, and some of my longing for the bush had been sated. I would be back before leaving SA again!

Cape longclaw red
Which way is up red


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2 responses to “Home again – part 1 – into the bush!”

  1. Pauline Smith says:

    The bee-eater looks so beautiful…

  2. Pauline Smith says:

    There’s nothing like the sound of the open veld with wild life with the sun rising and falling

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