Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe December 2011 and January 2012

Tell us about your recent trip. Please add some photographs.
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Witblits
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 3:25 pm

A spider bite, which conventional medicine can only treat with antibiotics for secondary infection, almost ruined the long awaited trip, but herbs came to the rescue. See viewtopic.php?f=146&t=23354" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

This was a tour in 3 parts:

(1) With tour group led by Kalbas Nell, in Botswana, camping - Khama Rhino Sanctuary, Lekhubu Island (Magadigadi Pans), Okanvango Delta, Moremi National Park.
(2) Planned, on our own, in Namibia, Zimbabwe and Botswana, lodges - Ngepi Camp (Western Caprivi, Namibia), Mazambala Island (Central Caprivi), Kasane (Botswana) visiting Chobe National Park and Waterfront, Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe).
(3) Unplanned, our route back on our own, lodges - From Kasane through the Chobe north to south to Ganzi (Botswana), via Gobabis (Namibia) and gravel roads to Sossusvlei, via gravel roads to Fish river canyon and home.

We (SWAMBO and I) crossed no less than 7 borders, without any hassles at all. Picture of the route below. Other pictures to follow.
00 Roete.jpg
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Witblits
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 3:42 pm

We left Koringberg one afternoon and progressed to Loeriesfontein. Had a great time with the locals in the pub of our accomodation, but regretted it in the morning. Then on to Upington (Dessert Palace Hotel) via gravel to Brandvlei. Next morning to Mafikeng (Protea Hotel had a great special on). Next day we crossed the Botswana border at Ramatlabana and slept in Serowe in the Serowe Hotel. Great little place, but try to miss it on a Friday night - they have a braai for all and sundry with very loud music till early morning.

View from Van Rhyns pass
01 Uitsig vanaf Van Rhynspas.JPG
Quiver trees on the way to Loeriesfontein
02 Kokerbome vir Afrika oppad na Loeriesfontein.JPG
To rember the headache
03 Oorslaap en oordrink by Boesmanland op Loeriesfontein .JPG
Golf course view
04 Kameruitsig Desert Palace Hotel in Upington.JPG
05 Serowe hotel in Serowe Botswana.JPG
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:13 pm

Botswana in December, but that's hot and wet!!! - said many a person. True, but during the day one is travelling in an airconditioned Hilux, then in the late afternoon the rain cools everything down, making for a comfortable sleep in a tent. But, yes, in the parks the roads can become troublesome, we had just enough rain for the roads to be fun. They call it the "secret season": All the insects, birds and animals have little ones, everything is green, green with a veritable carpet of grass and the camp sites and lodges are not overrun. From what I have heard the winter time is dry, bleak, dusty and busy, but you do see more game as they are concentrated at the water holes.

So off to the Khama Rhino Sanctuary from Serowe. Meet the tour group and crew. What a lovely place. Good camp sites and ablutions. Shop and toilet at entrance gate. Also some super looking luxury accomodation. We only stayed one night and did some game viewing the next morning. Lots of game we saw, from rhinos to giraffes to zebras. Would have liked at least 2 nights here.

Meeting the crew
06 Khama Rhino Sanctuary ontmoet toerleier en manskappe.JPG
Camp ready
07 Khama Rhino Sanctuary kampgereed.JPG
Feeding time, all the time
08 Khama Rhino Sanctuary neushoringvoel voed kroos.JPG
Rhino family
09 Khama Rhino Sanctuary renosterfamilie.JPG
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:38 pm

Very nice, specially the rhino family :thumbup:
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:33 pm

Then off to Lekhubu island on the Magadigadi pans. This time of year the normal entrance route is not always do-able. If not (consult the guy at the gate), there is a long way around. We were able to do the normal route. Had great fun on this slippery slide, one or two 360 degree turns, but no damage other than very dirty vehicles and wipers working really overtime. Lekhubu island itself is amazing. Nothing but an unsavoury long drop though.

Approaching the slippery slide
10 Magadigadipanne die glybaan leg voor.JPG
Approaching Lekhubu island
11 Magadigadipanne Lekhubu eiland.JPG
Weather games on the pans
12 Magadigadipanne weerspele.JPG
After the night's rain
13 Magadigadipanne na die nag se reen.JPG
The road out
14 Magadigadipanne die pad uit .JPG
Right next to the road between the pans and Maun
15 Reg langs die pad tussen Magadigadipanne en Maun.JPG
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:18 pm

Dit lyk lekker, wens ek kon ook daar wees :thumbup:

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Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:49 pm

Nice Andre!

Who's cruiser was that?

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Andre du preez
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 9:50 pm

te, mooooooiiii.................!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Thu Jan 26, 2012 9:52 pm

Baie mooi. Dankie vir die lekker deel.
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Fri Jan 27, 2012 8:19 am

Mark - That's Kalbas Nell's cruiser.

From Lekhubu island to Deltarain Sitatunga Camp, just outside Maun for an overnight stop, some lovely showers, Hilux wash and re-stocking.

The Hilux getting some tlc at the best equipped facility in Maun.
16 Bestoegeruste motorwassery in Maun.JPG
Then off to Sepopa Swamp Stop, Sepupa, on the banks of a channel of the Okavango Delta. Ablutions in a sorry state. Electricity not working, but my solar panel did the trick. Mokoro ride, embedded/propagandised in my mind as thé experience in Botswana not to miss, but it takes a 3 hour boat drive to an island, transfer to mokoros, half an hour mokoro ride, then some game viewing, half an hour mokoro ride back, finishing with another 3 hour boat drive back to camp. Very tiring, very expensive. There must be a better way?

The group on a sunset cruise
17a Okavango Delta by Sepupa toergroep bootreis.jpg
On the channel
18 Okavango Delta oppie kanaal.JPG
Croc hiding spot
19 Okavango Delta spietkop.JPG
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Fri Jan 27, 2012 8:28 am

Some more Okavango delta pics.

Breakfast in progress...
20 Okavango Delta Omeletontbyt in proses.JPG
Bird
21 Okavango Delta vogel.JPG
Another bird
22 Okavango Delta nog 'n vogel .JPG
Multitasking with book, camera and binoculars!!
23 Okavango Delta ontspan met boek, kamera en verkyker.JPG
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Fri Jan 27, 2012 9:22 am

Nice :thumbup: Keep 'em coming :wink2:

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Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:50 am

Next we camped for two nights just outside of the south gate of Moremi National Park. The camp site is called Kaziikini and Shandereka. Great camp, with neat, clean and working ablution facilities. We also had the use of a lapa there. Moremi was certainly a highlight for us. Lots of water to negotiate, especially back to the south gate from fourth bridge. SWAMBO had great fun driving this part and was rewarded by many a handshake from the men drivers. We lost our front number plate in one of the pools of water, but fortunately one of the following passengers in the convey noticed it floating and picked it up for us. Thanks to Herman Engelbrecht's bushmechanic course our toolkit include a battery powered drill, drill bits, a pop rivet gun and rivets, making repair a breeze.

Moremi sunset
24 Moremi sonsondergang.JPG
Ant hill
25 Moremi miershoop.JPG
Dark gifaffe
26 Moremi donker kameelperd.JPG
Frog's eggs in a white foam nest, with the pool nature has provided, waiting to receive the tadpoles.
27 Moremi paddaskuimnes .JPG
Flame lily
28 Moremi vlamlelie.JPG
Lechwe
29 Moremi lechwe.JPG
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Sun Jan 29, 2012 5:49 pm

Some more pictures from Moremi National Park

Spreading wings
30 Moremi sprei sy vlerke.JPG
Well striped
31 Moremi goedgestreep.JPG
Dangerous dance
32 Moremi Dans van die prooi en jagters.JPG
Fourth bridge
33 Moremi vierde brug .JPG
Concentration
34 Moremi poelepadkonsentrasie.JPG
Road of water pools
35 Moremi een vannie poele.JPG
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Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:07 pm

BOTSWANA ROADS:

The most interesting, people built bus stops - picture of the best one we encountered, below.
Lots of cattle, donkeys, goats, people beside and on the road and potholes in the roads. We had one very close encounter with two calves.

From Moremi we went a little bit south to Sehithwa, then north into the western Caprivi to Ngepi Camp via the Muhembo border post.
Bus stop.jpg
37 Botswana paaie met beeste kalwers donkies bokke mense en gate .JPG
38 Botswana pad edele dier.JPG
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Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:10 pm

Magties, ongelooflike nice fotos
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Mon Jan 30, 2012 7:41 am

Lekker, waantoe van hier af?

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Mon Jan 30, 2012 7:47 am

VEHICLE TROUBLES:

Glad to be able do say the Hilux gave no mechanical troubles during our 8 000 km trip. Apart from the number plate which we had to re-attach, the front window pane of the African Outback canopy fell to the inside of the canopy on the Namibian gravel roads. Again using our battery powered drill, rivet gun and rivets that could be fixed in a jiffy.

Most satisfying story came on our way to Botswana, between Olifantshoek and Sishen. Here we encountered a Uno standing beside the road with a shredded tyre and the driver making frantic pump gestures. Turned out the spare tyre was not only flat, but had the offending nail still embedded. So we removed the nail, put in a plug and inflated. What a good feeling to be able to help your fellow man and receive his gratitude.

After Moremi PART 2 (planned, on our own) of our trip commenced. First stop - two nights at Ngepi Camp, Caprivi, Namibia. We stayed in one of their tree houses, overlooking the river - stunning. Much to do here: Swimming in the croc proof pool, fishing, river rafting, mokoro rides, boat rides, etcetera. Super camp sites.

Tree house no 12
39 Ngepi Kamp Westelike Caprivi Namibie ons boomhuisie op die oewer van die Okavango.JPG
Croc proof pool
40 Ngepi Kamp krokvrye swembad.JPG
Commons
41 Ngepi Kamp gemeenskaplike area.JPG
Waking up view
42 Ngepi Kamp wakkerworduitsig.JPG
Breakfast at the bar
43 Ngepi Kamp kroegontbyt.JPG
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Mon Jan 30, 2012 8:30 am

baie pragtig dis seker nie al photies nie
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Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:54 am

Thanks for all the encouraging and positive comments, much appreciated.

From Ngepi Camp we travelled to Mazambala island, just past Kongola, about in the middle of the Caprivi strip. Noticeable in the Caprivi, as opposed to Botswana, are the crops cultivated on small pieces of land by families. Wonder how they cope with all the elephants?

Hilux was parked in a guarded parking space and we and luggage had to travel to Mazambala island by boat.

The road (Kwando river) to Mazambala island.
44 Oppad met die Kwando rivier na Mazambala eiland in die sentrale Caprivi.JPG
Bungalows, well equipped, stunning central bar/dining room area, great food
45 Mazambala eiland blyplek.JPG
View from the deck
46 Mazambala eiland uitsig.JPG
Caprivi elephant, alarmingly close
47 Caprivi olifant skrikwekkend naby .JPG
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Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:30 am

Baie Mooi

Keep it comming

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Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:34 am

From Mazambala island back into Botswana via Katima Mulilo. We based in The Old House in Kasane for 4 nights. The Old House is in town, right on the river.

The Old House lapa
49 The Old House lapa ontspan.JPG
Playing in the Old House garden
48 The Old House Kasane Botswana speeltyd in die tuin.JPG
Sunset from The Old House
50 The Old House sonsondergang op die Chobe.JPG
Obligatory game drive in the Chobe National Park one morning:

Game drive in the Chobe 1
52 Chobe waterfront vanaf die oewer.JPG
Game drive in the Chobe 2 - hippos peeking
53 Chobe loerelaai.JPG
Game drive in the Chobe 3 - traffic
54 Chobe verkeer.JPG
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Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:45 am

Glad that was the only 'traffic' was animals... :lol: :lol: :lol:

Could you perhaps add some co-ords to the places you stayed at? Makes life a bit easier should someone venture out that way :?: Will be great if you could :thumbup:

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Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:51 pm

Shall give available co-ordinates at the end, Mark.

On with the game drive in the Chobe National Park.

Chobe game drive 4
55 Chobe nog verkeer.JPG
Chobe game drive 5 - old grumpy
56 Chobe nors verby.JPG
Chobe game drive 6 - baby on board
57 Chobe baba aan boord .JPG
Chobe game drive 7 - pampers
58 Chobe pampers.JPG
Chobe game drive 8 - view
59 Chobe uitsig op die waterfront.JPG
Chobe game drive 9 - National bird of Botswana
60 Chobe nasionale vogel van Botswana.JPG
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Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:26 pm

That will be greatly appreciated, tx!

Love Pampers.... :thumbup:

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Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:41 pm

Fantastic pics and report. Looking forward to the rest.

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Wed Feb 01, 2012 11:07 pm

From Ngepi Camp we travelled to Mazambala island, just past Kongola, about in the middle of the Caprivi strip. Noticeable in the Caprivi, as opposed to Botswana, are the crops cultivated on small pieces of land by families. Wonder how they cope with all the elephants?
I spent more time along the Zambezi than I care to remember in my military days. At one time the old police fort at Kongola close to the Kwando 'river' was home for about 6 weeks ...... wonder if it's still there? :think: At the time the Kwando wasn't infested with crocs, but they were there and we had to be vigilant .... often ran into ellies and hippos on our patrols. The locals often had little 'kraals' that were 'fenced' with branches and sticks and used for cultivating crops.

Would like to go back and visit all those areas to see how they've changed.
When your road comes to an end ...... you need a HILUX!.

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Thu Feb 02, 2012 7:50 am

In Kasane the stop streets ain't for humans only.
Picture1.jpg
The Chobe Park extends into the river, so one has to go on a river game cruise as well. One of the anti-poaching units is situated on the banks of the river. No pictures allowed. Apparently they are deadly (!) serious about poaching in Botswana.

Chobe river cruise 1 - lightweight
62 Chobe rivier liggewig.JPG
Chobe river cruise 2 - checking you out
63 Chobe rivier check jou uit.JPG
Chobe river cruise 3 - fish eagle
64 Chobe rivier visarend.JPG
Chobe river cruise 4 - water monitor
65 Chobe rivier likkewaan.JPG
Chobe river cruise 5 - near enough?
66 Chobe rivier is dit naby genoeg.JPG
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Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:57 pm

Back, went camping at the river. Here's a photo, just to wet your appetite. Then on with the trip.
Picture1.jpg
From Kasane in Botswana we took the short trip to the Victoria falls in Zimbabwe.

Tourist trap
70 Vic valle Zimbabwe toeristelokval.JPG
71 Vic valle.JPG
72 Vic valle sproei.JPG
73 Vic valle perspektief.JPG
Romantic 5 course dinner on the Chobe
74 Chobe rivier aandete.JPG
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Mon Feb 06, 2012 6:01 pm

Te pragtig :thumbup:

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Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:24 am

And that was the end of PART 2 (on our own, planned) of our trip. PART 3 (on our own, unplanned), our trip back to Koringberg was about to commence. Initially we thought to go back on tar through Botswana via Nata, Francistown and Gaberone, but were informed that this road was well potholed, under construction before Nata, even more populated by animals, had many slowing down villages, and, the final straw, had many speed traps! Then we considered going back via the Caprivi and then down south in Namibia. After 3 rainless days in Kasane, we decided to rather go through the Chobe National Park, from north to south, and sleep over in Ganzi.

Through the Chobe
78 Chobe deurrit gevlekte familie .JPG
Through the Chobe - Waking up
79 Chobe deurrit opstaantyd.JPG
Through the Chobe - highway
80 Chobe deurrit snelweg .JPG
Through the Chobe
81 Chobe deurrit nog bokke.JPG
We used the Kalahari Arms Hotel in Ganzi (got the last available rondavel). Neat establishment. Next morning we crossed the Nam/Bot border at Mmamuno/Buitepos. From Gobabis we travelled gravel (Leonardville, Stampriet) to Marienthal. Looked at the map and decided Sossusvlei was not too far off our route.

Near Gobabis - Namibian highway
82 Naby Gobabis Namibie snelweg.JPG
Sossusvlei lodge - a bargain out of season
83 Sossusvlei Namibie blyplek.JPG
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Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:20 pm

what a trip, awesome pictures, makes one smile sat at their desk - mmmn like today :alvarin: , some GPS co-ords would be great !!!
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Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:38 pm

Awesome trip & pics! Makes me want to get in my Hilux right now and head out! :D:

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Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:24 am

Sossusvlei accommodation
84 Sossuvlei blyplek.JPG
Sossusvlei lodge menu
87 Sossusvlei spyskaart.JPG
Bad moon rising
88 Sossusvlei maanopkoms.JPG
And setting
89 Sossusvlei maanondergang.JPG
Sossusvlei oryx
90 Sossusvlei gemsbokke.JPG
Sossusvlei highway
93 Sossusvlei snelweg.JPG
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:05 pm

From Sossusvlei we decided a visit to the Fish River Canyon was a must. Then, sadly, we had to return home.

Our accomodation at the Canyon Lodge
94 Canyon lodge blyplek.JPG
Sun setting, moon rising from lodge
95 Visrivier skeurvallei park maanopkoms.JPG
View of the Fish River Canyon
96 Visrivier skeurvallei.JPG
Home in Koringberg
Picture1.jpg
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Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:30 am

Wonderlik :applaud: :applaud: :applaud:

Daie dankie, die einde het so bietjie vinnag gekom..... :lol: :lol: :lol: Toemaar ek weet hoe dit voel.... :wink2:

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Niel
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Sat Feb 11, 2012 8:16 am

sommer lus en pak die bakkie en ry

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jacques kotze
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Sat Feb 11, 2012 8:28 am

Ek sit ook nou hier en somme maak om te gaan. Nice :thumbup: :thumbup:

Rudi J
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Thu May 24, 2012 1:36 pm

Stunning rit verslag Andre.....jou foto's vertel van n wonderlike vakansie :-)
Live life simply and do what you like more often...

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ThysdJ
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Fri May 25, 2012 8:10 am

Baie nice!! :clap: :clap: :thumbup: :thumbup:
Thys de Jager
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Family_Dog
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Fri May 25, 2012 8:23 pm

Excellent report, Andre, many thanks!

I love the pic of your home too, reminds me of my Gran's house in Standerton!!


-F_D
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White Fang: 1999 2.7i DC Raider 4x4
Bull Dog: 1987 4Y-EFI 2.2 DC 4x4
Pra Dog: 1998 Prado VX 3.4
Hound Dog: 2000 2.7i SC 4x4


One Staffie, One Jack Russell, One Ring Neck Screecher, 17 Fish of questionable heritage


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Witblits
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Sun May 27, 2012 11:52 am

Sounds about right Eric - Victorian house, more than 100 years old, built with local slate and clay. Oregon pine floors, windows and shutters.
ImageImageImage

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Family_Dog
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Sun May 27, 2012 12:07 pm

I seem to remember the walls very very thick as well and the ceilings may have been metal with patterns. I think there was wood-panelling along the walls up to waist height, but not sure about this.

Gone are those days, houses built nowadays just have not got character like the older homes.


-F_D
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White Fang: 1999 2.7i DC Raider 4x4
Bull Dog: 1987 4Y-EFI 2.2 DC 4x4
Pra Dog: 1998 Prado VX 3.4
Hound Dog: 2000 2.7i SC 4x4


One Staffie, One Jack Russell, One Ring Neck Screecher, 17 Fish of questionable heritage


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