After our final morning at our Serengeti camp, we hit the road and reached our lodge in Tarangire National Park by nightfall. I always enjoy Tarangire because it has the highest concentration of elephants and baobabs on the northern circuit and those are some of my favorite subjects. It’s chock full of plenty of other wildlife too; I’ve had my best leopard sightings here, lions in trees, large families of giraffe, antelope, and birds. And this time, there were more zebra than I’m used to seeing – we saw plenty of large herds.
Last week’s gallery opening in Arlington, MA was a big success. For those of you who aren’t local or couldn’t make it, I’ll post the images of Paris that I’m showing there over the coming weeks on my Facebook page – be sure to follow me there.
In Photo Tour news, my March 2017 photo safari is now ready and listed on this site and I’m excited that I can offer it at the same price as my 2016 tour. It’s an amazing 11-day, 10-night safari where you will stay at exclusive camps right in the parks. I’ve designed it to put you right in the middle of the action so you can come home with great images.
March is at the end of the foaling season in the Serengeti: you will see young zebras and wildebeest among the herds. The Ngorongoro Crater is lush and green and Tarangire is full of amazing baobabs and elephants for us to photograph. You can find all of the details about this safari here.
Contact me soon if you would like to join the group on this great photographic opportunity!
My new photo safaris in 2016 are ready and now listed on my site. Both are amazing 11-day, 10-night safaris where you will stay at exclusive camps right in the parks. I’ve designed them to put you right in the middle of the action so you can come home with great images.
Both safaris hit the best locations in Tanzania’s northern circuit:
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:
Tarangire National Park in October never disappoints and we had some of the best sightings of our safari here. Our weather was very sunny but we had a small rain shower on two of the three days which led to dramatic skies for photography.
With the dry season in full effect, the animals congregated by the Tarangire river – the main source of water in the park. Tarangire is known for elephants and we saw large family groups bathing by the river. We even had a mother and child right outside our rooms at lunch time. One day we drove down past the Silale Swamp with beautiful views to the east. We caught this line of elephants heading towards a pool for a bath:
This image is one of my favorites from a safari last year and not just for the main subject. One of the things I love about incorporating the African landscape in my wildlife photography is how backgrounds can reveal layers, or stripes, of tone and color.
Using a long lens can amplify the effect as it did here. I used Canon’s 500mm lens with a 1.4x extender giving me a 700mm total and the result is a stacking effect of the different shades of grass from foreground to background. Because this was taken in the Ngorongoro Crater, the foliage in the back extends up and out of the frame. And it helps that the elephant, which is a dark subject, was standing in a lighter strip of grass which makes it stand out.
One of the best places to see elephant in Tanzania is in Tarangire National Park, especially in the dry season as the large herds congregate around the river. We caught this group on an overcast day with the matriarch and her daughters leading their young ones down to the river for a drink.