After our time in Hazyview and the KNP, we set off for Magoebaskloof, a relatively short journey, but with some good stops along the way. These were Graskop, where we walked at God’s Window, Bourke’s Potholes, and then our real objective; a stop near the J G Strydom tunnel to search for the Taita Falcon. We found the local guide there and he first showed us a Mountain Wagtail and then we searched the cliff face for the falcon. It was quite an effort, but we eventually saw it; no more than a small speck against the cliff, but one could see that it was a falcon! This was lifer number 4 for the trip!
When we arrived at Magoebaskloof we had to find Robin Birder’s cottage. Luckily we had good directions from the owner, as it is situated at the end of a very narrow and winding road through the forest. It was worth the effort as it was a wonderful place to stay and we had every comfort, including an entire bathroom in the forest outside our bedroom. There was also a very small pool and a garden full of bird song and birds.
From there we explored the region. looking for forest birds. I had the impression that it would be a doddle to get a big list in the area, but we soon learned that birding is very difficult in such dense forest without a good knowledge of local bird calls. In the end our two days there only netted us a total of 60 species!
Our next destination was the Polokwane Game Park and we spent a good few hours there managing to find the elusive Short-clawed Lark, along with some other ticks for the trip list. We also tried the Polokwane Bird Sanctuary, but this was a complete failure. The sanctuary is based on the sewerage works and must at one stage have been okay, but it was a foul mess and we left after a cursory look.
We proceeded Westwards to the Waterberg, where we were to spend 4 nights at the Waterberg Game Park. This was a very good spot as we were able to walk wherever we wanted to and we really enjoyed our stay there. We had some really heavy rains during this time and these were most welcome as it had been extremely dry.
Whilst at the Waterberg we did a trip to Nylsvlei, a renowned birding spot, but there was absolutely no water at all, so there were no birds and our visit was in vain!