Lower Zambezi National Park
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Canoeing Safari in Zambia negotiating the Kazungula Channel & being charged by elephant
If you have not been to the Lower Zambezi National Park in Zambia then you simply have not been exposed to one of the finest safari experiences on the planet. And to explore it by canoe is the ultimate way to get up and close and personal with the remote landscape, its magnificent wildlife and this majestic river. Guided by one of the finest guides of his generation, Gavin Ford, my wife Sacha and I spent a few adventurous days canoeing down the river with a special mission to navigate the infamous Kazungula Channel. This particular section of the river is where the river guides choose to spend their days off … always a good sign. And it certainly did not disappoint. It was hair-raising, as hippos slid underneath us and grazed the canoe as they plunged from shallow areas of the river to the safety of deeper channels. And lo and behold, around one bend we heard the most incredible battle being fought by two large herds of elephant right in the middle of the river. As we tucked into the reeds to watch from a distance, imagine my shock when a bull elephant charged us from the bank, bellowing and roaring his displeasure at having his afternoon siesta disturbed. To this day, I remember being astounded by the size of his toenails (which were at eye level to me in the canoe) and the smell of his breath as he roared expletives at me from such short range!
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