Fall 2014 African Photo Safari – Notes from the Ngorongoro Crater

by Dave Burns | Posted in Trip Reports | Tags: , , ,

The Ngorongoro Crater is a special place and although we only had one and a half days there this Fall, it treated us well. The weather was cool and crisp in the mornings and sunny and warm midday.

We were off to a great start by coming upon a male lion and his cub almost immediately after descending the access road. Very difficult to photograph well since they were staying in the long grass. We saw a black rhino mother and her calf in the distance but they tend to avoid coming too close to the roads. Photographing them at such long distances is tough because, even though you have them in focus, you tend to get atmospheric refraction which gives you something like a “mirage” look.

At our picnic spot by the water, a bull elephant gave us a rare show by partially submerging himself and then swimming past the resident pod of hippo as he made his way to the soft grasses on the bank:

Elephant Swimming in the Crater
Elephant Swimming in the Crater
Canon 5D3, 1/500 at f/5.6, ISO 100

The rest of the day we saw plenty of other wildlife like baboons, hyena, zebra, and wildebeest. The following morning, as we crossed the Crater floor, we paused to watch a very large herd of buffalo coming down to a stream to drink:

Buffalo in Line for a Drink
Buffalo in Line for a Drink
Fuji X-T1, 1/220 at f/5.6, ISO 200

Then, in late morning, we ascended the opposite side of the Crater and began our trip out to the Serengeti.

— Dave

About Dave Burns

Dave Burns is a wildlife, travel, and landscape photographer whose passions range from the beauty of the African savanna to the streets of Paris. He created Dave Burns Photo Tours to share his favorite places with other photographers, help them capture unique images, and learn more about photography and digital work flow. His next trip is an African photo safari to the Serengeti in February 2021. Dave’s images are in private collections and galleries. To contact him, use the contact page on this site.

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