30th June 2017
Up at 4am to find a recovered student thanking us for taking care of him last night. I don't think I have ever been so happy to see a student in my life!
We'd packed up our tents, in the dark, in good time for breakfast at 5 before leaving at 5.30 to head of to the Ngorogoro Crater. We climbed and climbed - topping out at the ridge of the crater at 7,562ft.
We passed giraffe on the way into the crater - one of my favourite animals. As far as I was concerned anything else was a bonus.
And what a bonus! We saw springbok and Thompson's gazelles, we saw wildebeest, warthogs and warthogs, elephants, hippos and black rhinos. And we saw lions! So many lions! Our first sighting was a pride with three males and many females and cubs. They had just killed a buffalo (we saw lots of those too) and were enjoying the fruits of their labours!
We saw two other groups of lions, it was an amazing day, so much wildlife (hundreds of zebras) birds of many different breeds, including Corey Bastards and Secretary birds. I've been on safari before, but this was truly amazing! The crater has plentiful water an the natural barrier of the ridge means that the animals do not migrate.
After our safari we headed of to Monduli Juu and a campsite where we will be based for the next four nights. We are at a height of 5596ft and we will trek higher from this base to help us aclimatise for Kilimanjaro.
The campsite is basic, long drop squat toilets and no showers, but we were provided with an excellent evening meal, and have arranged for breakfast and supper to be cooked for us each day. Bit miffed at the lack of a shower - my hair is covered in dust, and the drying effect lead to lots of it breaking when I tried to brush it.
I'm hoping that some trekking tomorrow will help me sleep better. I just don't think I've done enough physical activity to wear me out!