Sunday, August 3, 2014

Murchison Falls

Early on the last Saturday of July, the GSSAP team awoke and boarded two vehicles with pop-up roofs to travel to Murchison Falls Game Park. We were all extremely ecstatic to travel and see the elephants, giraffes, and (if we were lucky) lions. When we arrived at the game park my expectations were far exceeded, but in a way that I did not anticipate. Growing up in America the only material I was exposed to pertaining to African wildlife was either on Discovery Channel or Lion King. Therefore one of the sources influencing my expectations for this journey involved sensational action shots of giraffes fighting and lion kills with dramatic commentary. The other was retelling of Macbeth, featuring cliché animation and festive music. Don’t get me wrong - we were lucky enough to see a lion stalk and kill an antelope, and it was amazing to see such a powerful animal up close. In the end, however, the game park was so much more than my preconceived notions. While we were riding up on top of our jeep, I found a certain kind of peace about the place. The scenery was absolutely breathtaking and the mood across the park fell into perfect harmony. I felt this strange sense of serenity while surrounded by these powerful creatures. It gave me a greater appreciation for the wildlife I continuously saw portrayed on television as well as a whole new perception on what a game park is. I learned an important lesson this weekend; no matter how well made TV or movies are, they can never hold a candle to being there in person.
Giraffe walking across the grassland

Lion tracking

Hungry, hungry hippo

Solitary elephant 

Lion on the hunt!

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