Bush Beat No 25

September 2012

Spring is here after an amazingly mild winter in Zululand. Life at Amakhosi as been far from quiet this year, we had a good start to the year with a succesful Indaba, it was lovely to see some of our old friends and pleased to say, made many new ones too. As you may have heard we closed Amakhosi straight after Indaba in May for refurbishments and reopened at the end of July to a lodge full of guests who were having a family reunion after 20 years, this was a wonderful way to reopen our doors and welcome our guests back. Many of you followed our progress on Facebook and twitter and we thank you for your kind words of encouragement, it inspired us even more , to present you with a new and improved Amakhosi and I hope that you will visit us soon so that you can see the changes.
Regards Ben ter Huurne - MD



Meet the Team
Well many properties boast about their many return guests we at Amakhosi can say not only do we have many return guests but return staff! A year ago we welcomed Sean Bissett back and this year we welcome Sonya back, Sonya will be heading our reservations department as well as sales support ... So welcome back Sonya ... This is her Story..!

I started out in the hospitality industry in 1997 in the beautiful Waterberg and worked at a Lodge for five years. In this time I met my husband who worked as a ranger and we were married three years later. As the lodge grew we were both privileged enough to be exposed to every position and most situations the hospitality industry has to offer. By now the reserve had grown from one lodge with 44 beds in the beginning to four lodges and over 100 beds. We had been married for one year when we left to start working at Amakhosi which had at this stage been operating for just over a year. Managing Amakhosi together for eight years were some of the best times of our lives, we grew with the product and the staff and made this our home where we also had our two beautiful girls, Emma and Ine, who are now 6 and 7 years old. When we decided to explore a new adventure, it only kept me for two years and I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to return to Amakhosi after my wonderful venture further south into Kwazulu Natal.
Not many people are privileged enough to return to their dream lodge after leaving it. Well, I have been afforded the opportunity to do this and am very excited. I cannot wait to catch up with everyone again. We have such a spectacular team together and even more exciting activities and plans for the next coming months, so keep in touch for regular updates. I look forward to stepping back home!




Bush News
Much has changed here at Amakhosi in the last few months; new roads have been built, new animals have been introduced, this has given us more accessibility to the amazing environment that surrounds us and given us great opportunity to follow and track the animals better. The addition of a coalition of 3 new male lions has also spiced things up and regular sighting of these fabulous looking animals is really a huge highlight for guests and rangers alike.

” It is not every day you see lions mating, so when after following the sounds they were making for about an hour on our morning game drive, we managed to locate them and knew straight away this going to make for a fantastic sighting. Three male lions had caught up with one of the lionesses and had all been moving together on and off for some weeks now but this morning proved to be slightly different. In the peak of a females oestrus period a pair of lions will mate every ten to fifteen minutes for 10 seconds at a time non stop for up to four days. Soon after we arrived the lioness got up and seductively waived her tail and rear end towards the males head, this was obviously his cue, he was soon mounting her and this in itself was very impressive and a hugely vocal affair. Every time he had finished he would roar and as he dismounted she would snarl up towards his face, this would in turn trigger his 2 brothers to start roaring at full steam. We sat for an hour and watched the most raw and wonderful scene play out in front of us, it was truly one of the most amazing things I have personally seen and heard in my nearly ten years of working in the bush. “ by Nick Hindson


The elephants have found a few favorite places of their own and finding them regularly has not been a problem. Although this elephant herd are veterans to our reserve we were concerned that all the changes going on around them would affect them negatively in some way, this has not happened in the slightest bit and they remain arguably the best viewable elephants in Zululand with sightings of them frolicking in muddy wallows and watering holes or just carrying on with their day to day feeding, 4m from the vehicles full of guests as if we weren’t even there.

The recent expansion of our traversing area has given us access to some exceptionally beautiful areas including an extra 4kms of river frontage, we cannot wait to see this new area after the rains have arrived. One other especially lucky thing about the new area is that it incorporates 35 more buffalo to add to our already 85 as well as numerous other game species including 25 Giraffe.

With the onset of the rainy season just around the corner let the rain birds sing and call the rain and let the beauty of the winter be replaced by the birth of many young animals in the springtime and colors, sounds and smells of summer thereafter.

Interesting bush fact
A lionesses gestation period is approximately 110 days. Females in a pride will often try and synchronize their births as this allows them to take turns nursing and looking after the cubs, allowing other lionesses time to rest or hunt.

Looking forward to seeing you here at Amakhosi!
With Fondest regards,
The Amakhosi Guiding team.




Bush Telegraph
What our guests had to say since we reopened!

Legg Family Reunion
Amakhosi you surpassed our every expectation - all we can say is that the Lodge, Staff and Food were stupendous and you all worked so hard to make our Legg Family Reunion special - thank you sincerely - we will be back!


Nico & Andrea
Johannesburg
27-29 July
Wonderful!! Great food, people and sightings.

Kristoffersen Family
Norway
3-6 Aug
The stay here has been an out of this world experience. Thank you so much for this adventure you have given us.

Goedegebuure Family
Nederland
8-10 Aug
The best game lodge experience ever, and we’ve had a lot! Thanx so much!

Bregeon Family
France
8-10 Aug
A real paradise!!


Bush Treat
By popular request - we are going to share our rusk recipe!
Many a happy guest have enjoyed this treat on early morning game drives with a cup of hot chocolate or our Amarula coffee.

Ingredients:

1250g Self raising flour
5 Cups all bran flakes
1 cup raisons
2 Cups mixed seeds ( sunflower, sesame, pumpkin, linseeds)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 tsp baking powder
500g butter
1 ½ cup sugar
2 cups yoghurt
2 eggs

Method:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees
Melt the butter and sugar together. Add the eggs, yoghurt and vanilla essence, beat well. Mix in the dry ingredients and seeds.
Press into oven trays
Put the oven trays into the oven and bake for 1 hour.
Take out, cool down the baked rusk mixture, cut into rusk fingers.
Place the fingers back onto the oven tray and place them into the oven for 12 hours at 80 degrees.

Take the rusks out and you are ready for dunking.


Bush Special
Not only do we want to celebrate our reopening but also the fact that Spring is here !!
So here is our wonderful spring special


PAY ONLY R 1890.00 per person per night sharing, fully inclusive:


Rate Includes:
- Accommodation in our luxurious River Suite
- 3 Meals excludes drinks.
-2 game drives per day with qualified guides

VALID TILL 22 September 2012 , for NEW bookings only, min two night stay subject to availability and to BLOCK dates do apply . T&C apply
Amakhosi Safari Lodge - Pongola - South Africa Phone 034 4141157 -
Email: info@amakhosi.com
www.amakhosi.com