IRON MAN

In June 2000 five staff waited for the two new owners to arrive at their small simple camp in the Northern Masai Mara. They had nothing to fear. One of them stood out straight away as he towered over the others and indeed some of the nearby bushes and trees. Shy, almost painfully but clearly with a burning desire to impress and a level of kindness and consideration almost unmatched anywhere, Lenye didn't take long to become an institution.

Mating Game

'Busy morning with mating leopards' were Bernard's and Mika's casual drawls on their seismic morning drive. No animal raises the pulse more than a leopard, but this was a far harder spotted currency. Figlet is one of our own and she was with the monstrous Mkubwa - almost twice her size - turning a forested area in Naboisho into a Balanites boudoir for hours.

Raising the Bar

For a drink that was once unkindly called 'mother's ruin,' gin has undergone a posh renaissance over thelast 10 years. It used to be a green bottle, ice and a slice and a bit of tonic..... not anymore. Cucumber has found itself into the frosted tumblers and tonic has become a feverish and thirsty game of one-upmanship. Gins have changed too, so, with that in mind we give you 'The Bush Camp Gin Bar'.

Light…wait

Even the humblest African author tries to do justice to its extraordinary light. A thousand adjectives and prose acres are willfully sowed daily, yet few (Including this) do justice to this remarkable phenomena, yet it performs every day, especially in East Africa.

Migration Movers & Shakers

Each year, with homing beacons on full charge over a million ruminants cross North from Tanzania to their dry season fertile stronghold in Kenya.

Game of two halves

You know the feeling: you wake up a little late with the bronze sunrise long departed and the day already bright. You almost miss the kick off but are hungry for some action but over-commit in attack and suddenly you are outflanked by some buffalo wingers. 

On the Game

Currently down under the English Lionesses are trying to go one better than their better paid male counterparts. Well seasoned Kichechians Rachel Chapman and Ros Gray decided to do a vets tour to the Mara. They brought along Rachel’s 18 year old niece, Lucia Baynes on debut, but, as the fabled Charlton once said -'if he/she's good enough, she's old enough'. Lucia had never fastened her pumps onto the hallowed stadium of Mara North and she'd never even held a DSLR camera. By day two she was shooting with the clinical skill of Lauren James.

Black & White

'There is no better place to see or photograph rhino' is a recent comment from a Kicheche Laikipia alumni. She was right. Virtually every game drive delivers these armoured browsers and grazers. Kicheche Laikipia's conservancy, Ol Pejeta has been so successful in protecting this endangered species that it is easy to become complacent over their future.

Tough Old Bird

When you film or photograph wildlife, you yearn for originality over everything else. With no hyperbole, a leopard hunting a Lappet-faced vulture - Africa’s largest, with a nine-foot wingspan - is a first. Anywhere.

The Great Gestation

When the radio crackles gently and the Maasai missive includes the word Chui, Duma or Vichwa, the pulse rises. When the feline phrase is tailed by toto, the heart rate elevates into dangerous territory. This week's Spot is a natal update from our three Mara Camps.