We're a group of Western Washington University students traveling to Tanzania to ask big questions about geography, nature, and culture.

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Friday, August 16, 2013

On Safari-Lake Manyara

Hi everyone, we all did a great job of packing up before breakfast and loading the safari vehicles to make it through Arusha before traffic got bad! When I first visited Arusha it felt a lot smaller, much like Moshi today. But now Arusha is so large it even has traffic lights at major intersections!

After a box lunch along the way (both burgers and chicken for the non-vegetarian choice) we made it to Lake Manyara National Park by early afternoon. We saw a good deal of game though we missed one common animal, the giraffe, usually a common sight at Manyara and a popular favorite among our group. 

Here are a few animal & human highlights of our safari so far. Please note that we travel tomorrow to Lake Natron where there is not any cell service so we will be out of contact for the next two nights; the camp we stay at does have a satellite phone for emergencies but we won't be able to post any kind of updates until we are in Serengeti in three days. 

On the road to the parks, the Eastern Rift scarp in the distance:

The group at Lake Manyara National park with driver-guides Joseph and William:

A baboon up close: 

Some frisky zebra: 

A Grey-headed Kingfisher:

In competition for the "ugly five" of Tanzania animals, the Marabou Stork: 

A somewhat recently deceased hippo being picked over by vultures:

Animal babies are almost always cute but perhaps baby elephants are cuter than some:

And finally, our home for the night in Mto wa Mbu, Migunga Tented Camp:

Dinner tonight was a potato salad, pumpkin soup, choice of lamb stew or yellow lentils with rice and a passionfruit tart. Not bad at all! The students are taking these hardships in stride.

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