This week’s FriFotos is “Wood” and I immediately thought of all the uses of wood on my safari in Botswana’s Okavango Delta. I stayed at Oddballs’ Camp, an eco-camp which used solar power and local materials. The various forms and importance that wood plays on safari is evident all day long at camp, on the water and on land in the Moremi Game Reserve.
My tent was elevated for my safety, I guess so that the animals don’t step on me or eat me (good thing). Either way, the wooden steps and elevated platform connected to my outdoor en-suite bathroom. Coming from the city, this was my first camping experience.
A good use of wood for the outdoor bathroom. The floor had to allow the water to pass through for the (bucket) shower and a few times I thought my weight (and big feet) might go through the floor but it was surprisingly sturdy.
My transit to/from camp was via a hand carved mokoro boat steered gondola style by a private guide through the water. There was no motor to quickly escape the hippos on my crazy search but despite the old school style of transit, it was so relaxing, quiet and calm on the water under the African sun.
Once on the water, my guide would use the wooden pole/stick to point out things I might otherwise miss (like the tree frog) as I was lulled by the calm, quiet of being on the water.
Back at camp, the wooden furniture and ceiling with a guest eschewing a tent (I wonder if he had to pay the single supplement like I did?)
But the best evidence of wood on safari in Botswana? The various trees in the Moremi Game Reserve of the Okavango Delta. Walking around there were trees standing, trees that had fallen and trees that stood between me and the animals. Trees play a crucial part in the circle of life here in the Okavango Delta. I saw leopards up in trees, babboons running up & down trees, trees that supplied elephants food that they then knocked over once done. Trees that provided shelter and barriers once down.
Use of wood on safari is varied and crucial depending on the need. The trees play such an important part in the eco-system in the Okavango Delta of Botswana as well as in the economy of tourism and trade (the locals carve wood souvenirs). So that’s my interpretation of wood for this week’s FriFotos.