When we were putting together the autumn issue of Wild, the notion of “Wilderness” was our inspiration. We visited remote places where the tourism footprint is slight, places where eight best friends can book out the camp, and places where rare animal sightings are likely.

Richtersveld Transfrontier Park

Beyond the rugged and remote campsites and chalets, a jaw-dropping world awaits. Make the most of our finest wilderness destination and venture where few have gone. Scott Ramsay shares his pick of hiking trails, 4×4 tracks and viewpoints. Wild26-Autumn-2014-PAGE

Cape Road Trip

Measuring only 120km from end to end, this small pocket of the southwestern Cape incorporates five very diverse Wild Card parks. It’s fun all the way on a week’s road trip to Vrolijkheid, Grootvadersbosch, Boosmansbos, Bontebok and Marloth.

Adventure

  • Hike Venstervalle in the Richtersveld Transfrontier Park
  • 4×4 in Mapungubwe National Park

More adventure

  • When next you offsaddle at Karoo National Park, make a reservation at Afsaal, a century-old shepherd’s cottage. Then wait for the surprises.
  • At Sondzela Backpackers in Swaziland’s Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, you can enjoy tolerant game in one of the most scenic hostel settings in Southern Africa. All you need are a few days and a tank of fuel.
  • In the Garden Route National Park, plug in to life and plug out the devices. Our pick of easy day trails will put a spring in your step.

Animals

  • Wild goes in search of the elusive brown hyenas of Mountain Zebra National Park.
  • Antelopes essentially developed horns for one reason – for males to fight each other. While the girls don’t usually get into brawls, they are sometimes equipped for combat.
  • With their XXXL girth and colossal size that dwarfs even elephants, the most impressive silhouettes in the veld belong to the upside-down trees known as baobabs.

Birding

  • People use the term ‘bird brain’ to imply someone is not very clever, but recent studies have shown that some birds are at least as intelligent as chimpanzees or dolphins.
  • Not all swallows and swifts pack their suitcases as summer comes to a close. Several species are practically resident throughout the year.

Photography

  • Kgalagadi’s many waterholes are the setting for plentiful wildlife interactions and offer excellent opportunities for predator and prey photos. Even when there is no obvious action, keep an eye on the birds – they are ever alert to danger.
  • When a cold front moves in, and raindrops start falling, don’t pack up your gear. With a little prep, you can still take award-winning images.

Click here to read Wild 26 online.