The Chobe River.
A land of dreams and light.
This adventure promised to be something a little different, even from the already exclusive expedition I host to this destination during the year.
The reason for this is the fact that I was fortunate to be guiding Richard, a return client who has previously travelled with me on a safari to Kenya and wanted to increase his portfolio with the unique images only this destination can provide.
After a comfortable flight to Kasane, we enjoyed a short boat transfer to the Namibian immigration office and onto the great Ichobezi Lodge on Impalila Island. It is situated at the far eastern tip of Namibia, bounded on the north by the waters of the Zambezi river and on the south by the Chobe River – a five minute boat trip from Kasane Immigration.
This was to be our base for the first and last evenings with two nights in between on the luxury houseboat to enable us to maximise what the Chobe has to offer.
We were out on the river by 15h00 and enjoyed a great afternoon shake-down cruise and started off with some great birding , elephant and hippo’s in golden light. After this we enjoyed a incredible meal and drinks at the lodge with great company of Ralph, the owner and other guests staying at the lodge.
Fully charged and excited we slowly drifted off to sleep in our luxury rooms to the sound of rushing water.
Dawn brew with a view
Our first morning was somewhat intimidating due to the rather cool temperatures on the water as we cruised along the main channel about 25 minutes before sunrise. But to make use of the dawn light, we made sure we were already at the floodplains near the Chobe National Park to make use of that golden light. This was going to be the program every morning of the safari and in this case, the early bird sure did catch the worm.
There are a number of activities one can do while the sun is not conducive to photography on a safari in the Chobe with me. One of which is to catch the elusive Tiger Fish. We decided to enjoy this opportunity and also explore some channels for later photographic opportunities. I am glad to say that Richard here had another opportunity for some portraiture with a very co-operative subject .
The next two days and evenings were going to based on the luxury houseboat with an incredibly professional crew. Here they catered to our every need and request and provided 5 star food and of course, ice cold beverages as needed.
After discussing various things with Richard, we set a few goals each day and worked at achieving them and then improving on them the next day. With small groups and even in this case, with it just being Richard and myself, this type of experience can be very rewarding.
One thing that we discussed was exploring the nocturnal photographic opportunities available on the trip. We covered many aspects of methods, equipment and settings. With this, we sat on the fore deck of the house boat with the camera and tripod focused across the river towards Elephant Bay. With no lights and amazing nights skies, we sat and captured a few frames after dinner.
Elephant Bay Nights
We also covered daily discussions of photographic techniques and various pieces of equipment we were shooting with, Lightroom, DPP (Digital Photo Professional) and DAM (Digital Asset Management) were also covered.
With the second night on the boat, we travelled along to the old Serondela Camp site on the river and moored there for the evening. The most incredible sunset and evening of stars and shooting were the completed from the shore (Namibia). It was a most incredible to be able to sit and listen to the sounds of the night while enjoying a cold one with Richard
Here are a few of my favourite images from the trips to date for the Chobe
Thanks for reading this blog and I look forward to sharing the Chobe with you. If you have a group of 4 or more and wish me to lead your adventure, drop me a message from the contact page and we can put a trip together for you
Wishing you peace and light – AA