• Ranger Diaries & Press
    Ranger Diaries & Press

Ranger Diaries

The Seasons of Makumu: Best Times to Visit for Different Experiences

Posted on Fri May 24, 2024 in Ranger Diaries.

Nestled within the enchanting wilderness of the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve lies Makumu Private Game Lodge, a haven for safari enthusiasts seeking unparalleled wildlife encounters. Each season paints a unique canvas of experiences, making every visit to Makumu a journey filled with wonder and adventure. Join us as we unveil the secrets of the seasons and guide you to the best times for different safari experiences at this remarkable destination.

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Sustainable Tourism at Makumu: Our Commitment to Conservation

Posted on Tue April 23, 2024 in Ranger Diaries.

Makumu Private Game Lodge can be seen as one of Africa’s luxurious safari sanctuaries where authenticity and conservation intertwine seamlessly. Our commitment to sustainable and responsible tourism guides us in every aspect of our operations. With that being said, let’s delve into Makumu's unwavering dedication to conservation and how each guest becomes a vital part of our journey towards a greener future.

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Safari Etiquette - Respecting Wildlife and Nature at Makumu

Posted on Mon March 25, 2024 in Ranger Diaries.

Embarking on a safari adventure is a thrilling experience that allows you to connect with nature and observe majestic wildlife in their natural habitat. Makumu Private Game Lodge offers an unparalleled opportunity to witness Africa's diverse ecosystem up close in an unfenced location. However, amidst the excitement, it's crucial to uphold ethical standards and practice respectful behaviour towards the environment and its inhabitants. Let's explore the essential safari etiquette to ensure a memorable and responsible journey at Makumu Private Game Lodge.

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A 7 Step Guide to Safari Photography: Capturing the Wild Moments at Makumu

Posted on Wed February 7, 2024 in Ranger Diaries.

Embarking on a safari adventure of any kind is a thrilling and anticipating journey for any visitor attending Makumu Private Game Lodge. But for wildlife and nature photographers specifically, it takes on a whole new meaning…
The location of the lodge in the beautiful Klaserie Private Nature Reserve, is where untamed landscapes and diverse wildlife converge, presenting a unique opportunity for photography enthusiasts to capture the raw beauty of the wild.
In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into the intricacies of safari photography, providing you with essential tips and tricks to immortalize the mesmerizing moments that unfold in the heart of the wilderness.

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DECEMBER 2023 WILDLIFE REPORT

Posted on Wed December 27, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

Summer has arrived at Makumu! This month we started to truly feel the heat. We started our summer strong with a two-week heat wave that didn’t stop the viewing of animals. Here is a look at our sightings so far.

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NOVEMBER 2023 WILDLIFE REPORT

Posted on Tue November 28, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

The season started well, rain very early on and good amounts of soft rain. We were all so excited as the lightning storms out here are spectacular. What was to follow no one was prepared for, heat wave after heat wave.

All the small pools and wallows all dried up, animals ducking and diving for shade as early as 07:00 in the morning. The bush is still dense even though one can see that the grass is suffering. We all know that there is some importance to drier seasons. The bush can be harsh as it is natures way of controlling numbers and eliminating the weak with good mating seasons to follow, the only question is how long will it last. Guess only time will tell.

With all the above said, sightings have been really good, forcing animals out to water sources, playing, sleeping and wallowing in the shallows to cool down.

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OCTOBER 2023 WILDLIFE REPORT

Posted on Thu October 26, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

As the mornings grow warmer, tans deepen, and the pool becomes a constant hub of activity, the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Game Lodge are buzzing with the latest updates.

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SEPTEMBER 2023 WILDLIFE REPORT

Posted on Tue September 26, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

Summer is here. With temperatures rising to 38’C, our guests enjoy splashing around the swimming pool with a cold beer. What better way to enjoy the endless views at Makumu? Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will cover some of the exciting things we encountered over the last month.

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AUGUST 2023 WILDLIFE REPORT

Posted on Mon August 28, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

As stated in previous reports, this year we experienced substantial rainfall that extended into the later months. Even now, the Klaserie River maintains a modest yet picturesque flow, meandering through the reeds and over rocky terrain with its crystal-clear water. This period marks our windy month and the season for controlled fires, a crucial practice when executed correctly. Essentially, it serves as a surface exfoliation, while we remain concerned about the uncontrolled fires beyond the reserve during this dry season with scorching winter days thus far. Fortunately, our game reserve remains unaffected, bearing only a distant smoky haze on the horizon.

During this time, we're treated to absolutely breathtaking sunsets, offering our guests the chance to capture iconic photographs for their bucket lists.

From a wildlife perspective, this month has been one for the books. Despite encountering a couple of cold fronts, animal sightings have been abundant. The sparse vegetation has simplified the process of locating and trailing animals.

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July 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Thu July 27, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

It’s the height of winter meaning we are having very cool mornings and chilly afternoons, we’re fortunate to have relatively warm middays to keep us warm. Along with blankets and a nice fire in the boma. The days are short and chilly, but with the bush thinning out as the leaves fall, we can still find some amazing things this time of the year. A few giraffes appeared to have made their retirement home near the lodge, allowing us to see them close to everyday even from the lodge deck. Zebra, impala, wildebeest, duikers, steenboks all make great use of the waterhole in front of our lodge. This month has been another great one with some incredible sightings.

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June 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed June 28, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to a super “Cool” update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the thrilling sightings that happened during June 2023.

Winter is here in full force. Which means it is that time of year where we pull out the hot water bottles, blankets, gloves and a nice warm tea, coffee, or hot chocolate to start our mornings off. Most of the trees have dropped their leaves, the grass has thinned out. But surprisingly the bush still has a lot of greenery left for the animals. But non the less, the days can still get hot with temperatures rising till 30’C.

Game Drives have been spectacular, with the bush that has thinned out, it makes game viewing a little easier. Waterholes have been quite productive. This will serve as a great water source in the winter as the little wallows and puddles have dried up. The Klaserie River still has a narrow stream of cold clean water, making it a great spot for game viewing.

We have had many different visitors around the lodge from baboons, vervet monkeys, impala, zebra, giraffe, elephants and even lions and leopards. The Hyena’s have also been very busy and mischievous. They have been making themselves at home stealing our dustbins and pillows

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May 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Fri May 26, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

Winter is coming. This month we started to truly feel the cold mornings and chilly evenings. The changes from summer to winter have been noticeable for a few months, regarding the bush density opening, the seasonal grasses dying out and most, if not all, migratory birds have gone. Blankets, hot-water bottles, and plenty of hot drinks are quite necessary to stay warm. We can truly get excited for the winter season ahead. Our local pans, such as Malembeni and the pan just in front of the lodge will start to see more and more activity as water sources will be scarce. Even our lodge swimming pool will get some more visitors. We have already had some elephants come by and enjoy a drink. Let’s get into some of our amazing sightings over the last month.

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April 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed April 26, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

We are moving into that time of year when the grass is all yellow and the leaves are just starting to change colour. Animal paths are forming all over and watering holes are getting busier. I was pleasantly surprised to see how quickly the bush has changed after returning from my off days and according to Shelley I say this every year. I just find it crazy how quickly this happens, but I have to say we have had a few very warm autumn days. The mornings and evenings are cooling down nicely though.

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March 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed March 29, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

Even though the cold weather is slowly moving in, we are still lucky with a luscious green bushveld after the big floods in February. The water dams and rivers are still full and flowing strong. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last month.

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February 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon February 27, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

February has been a rather interesting month. I have not seen so much rain in a very long time. We had nearly 360mm of rain in less than a week and just over 400mm in less than a month. The bush is beautiful, so lush, so green and the river has been flowing from one bank to the other. We even had 3 or 4 days where we could not even cross the drainage at the lodge or cross the river. With all this beauty comes its challenges, like limited areas to drive, and vehicles getting stuck. We had 6 vehicles stuck in our traverse area in two days, including a tractor. For the genuine bush lovers, this did not stop them, they were still out there with us enjoying what nature had to offer, even though sightings were a little slower than what we are used to. There is just so much water at the moment in the bush and small drainages, no animal is forced to go to the river or a watering hole.

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January 2023 Wildlife Report

Posted on Thu January 26, 2023 in Ranger Diaries.

The bushveld is blooming in the summertime. Loads of beautiful, colourful flowers. The water dams and rivers are full and flowing strongly. And there are plenty of wildlife babies. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last month.

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December 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue December 20, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

I will be covering all the sightings we had during December 2022.

We have reached the end of 2022. We’ve had a great year and we feel privileged to end it off in this beautiful place called home. We’ve had our first good rain this season and with it being so hot and dry, animals have been everywhere, especially around Makumu. All the waterholes have abundant wildlife and birds lurking around on these hot summer days. We just went to go and sit around the waterhole and wait for the animals to come to us. The lodge watering hole was also extremely busy with animals and guests are being kept busy the whole day with animals coming and going, from tons of giraffes to big groups of elephants, even rhinos! Lets’ look into some crazy wildlife sightings below…

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November 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed November 16, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to another exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the exciting things that happened over November.

Summer is here in full force with temperatures rising to 38’C. We received some amazing rainfall this past month and you can see the results in the luscious green bushveld. And this is only the beginning.

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October 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue October 25, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

I will be covering all the sightings we had during October 2022.

Where to start with this report, it has been an epic month sighting-wise. With September and October being 2 of the driest months and temperatures rising it always provides good sightings. The bush is extremely dry and thinned out, the river system is hardly flowing, a small narrow little stream at best, waterholes are pumping with the game and then the odd chance of a spectacular lightning storm as we approach our rainy season. Days are long and nights are short as we leave quite early in the mornings the catch the beautiful sunrise and later in the afternoons to avoid the heat of the day.

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September 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon September 26, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to another exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the exciting things that happened over September.

The winter season is slowly fading away and the hot summer air is moving in strong with temperatures rising to 35’C. But we can still enjoy our winter bush, which is still dry and clear for a few more weeks before the rains move in.

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August 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue August 23, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

The mornings are chilly, AD and I have been wearing 2 shorts and gloves for the morning drives, it does however warm up very nicely within the first hour. We still advise our guests to wear a nice warm jacket in the mornings and to tuck the hot water bottles right under the jacket, almost cuddling with it.

The days are pleasant though with temperatures still reaching mid to high 20‘C which is a beautiful summer day in most European countries, some guests are even starting to spend their days around the pool and in the pool. The night sky is breathtaking as always, sitting around the boma fire in the evenings is an absolute joy, chatting away, listening to the evening sounds and appreciating the still quiet beauty nature has to offer while enjoying a drink. Game drives have been great and the bush has thinned out a lot.

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July 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon July 18, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to a chilly, yet exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the thrilling sightings that happened during July 2022.

We are right in the middle of winter; the mornings are crispy cold. The sunrise and sunsets are beyond spectacular with their orange rays over the winter bushveld. Most trees have dropped their leaves, and the grass has thinned out, even though there is still plenty of food and water around. The days are pleasant as we still average temperatures in the low to mid 20ᵒC.

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June 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue June 28, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

I will be covering all the wonderful sightings that happened during June 2022, and what a lucky month we have had.

The mornings are very crisp with the late rainfall we had in May, with lots of dew when we start our game drives, yet AD and I are still wearing shorts :-) We did however layer up and do advise the guests to be prepared when going out on game drives. The days are pleasant with temperatures still reaching mid 20‘C which is a beautiful summer day in most European countries. The night sky is breathtaking, the Milky way so bright it almost looks like a white cloud above us with the crackling wood fire warming our feet and hands as we sit around the boma fire enjoying a glass of wine.

Game drives have been great and the bush has thinned out a lot with lots of prominent animal pathways all leading to different water sources. We have started with bushwalks again.

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May 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed May 25, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to yet another exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the thrilling sightings that happened during May.

We are heading into winter. The mornings are chilly, which means it is that time of year where we get out the hot water bottles, blankets, gloves and a nice warm tea, coffee, or hot chocolate. The bush luscious green is slowly fading to a rustier brown and yellow winter colours. The days are pleasant as we still have average temperatures in the low to mid 20ᵒC.

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April 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon April 25, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

I will be covering all the wonderful sightings that happened during April 2022.

The mornings are cooling down, it is crisp, with beautiful dew drops on the grass and spider webs. The days are pleasant and the evenings just perfect with the breath-taking sky as we sit around the bush TV (Fire) chatting away, listening to the Hyena calling in the distance.

Game drives have exceeded expectations and the bush has thinned out quite a lot with lots of prominent animal pathways starting to form. We had some late rain, which pushed a few greens through all the browns, it is truly beautiful.

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March 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Fri March 25, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

The cold temperatures are slowly moving in. Which calls for late night gatherings around the fire with a blanket and hot chocolate. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last month.

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February 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Thu February 24, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

I will be covering all the wonderful sightings that happened during February 2022.

It is the end of our summer period; we are moving into autumn. Temperatures are still high and days still warm, this one of the advantages to our location. The bush is still lush and leaves still green, even though you can see that the grass is slowly starting to fade. Soon our migratory birds will start moving and day by day their numbers will go down to none, to “see you next year.”

Game Drives have exceeded expectations with the thick bush right throughout the traverse. Once again patience and persistence were key and paid of with really good sightings.

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January 2022 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue January 25, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

Summer is still in full force with hot temperature, regular rainstorms, luscious greenery, and flowing rivers. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last month.

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December 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon January 3, 2022 in Ranger Diaries.

The bushveld is blooming with beautiful flowers, vegetation, full water dams and loads of wildlife babies. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last month.

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November 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon November 29, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

I will be covering all the wonderful sightings that happened during November 2021.

It is summer, we had a few thunderstorms already and the bush is starting to change, beautiful fresh green leaves all over, short green grass is starting to show and so many flowers. Truly a beautiful time of the year with the sights and sounds of our migrant birds that has returned and also our very interesting little dung beetles, that you can sit and watch for hours.

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October 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed October 20, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

“I bless the rains down in Africa”’ - Toto. Summer is here and we can’t be more excited for what’s to come. Beautiful, green, lush’s bushveld and African rainstorms. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last 2 months.

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September 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Fri September 17, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to another exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the thrilling sightings that happened during September 2021.

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August 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed August 25, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to another exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the exciting things that happened over August…

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July 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon July 26, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to a chilly, yet exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the thrilling sightings that happened during July 2021.

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May/June 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed July 14, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

Winter is slowly approaching, which means early morning coffees, hot water bottles and late night fires around the dinner table. Welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last 2 months.

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March/April 2021 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue May 4, 2021 in Ranger Diaries.

After a very wet and green summer, autumn has finally arrived, March is still way greener than last year, but there are small changes, like the cooler nights and the crisp cool mornings out on our morning drives, welcome to another update from the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge, your home away from home. I will be covering some of the exciting things that we encountered over the last 2 months.

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October/November 2019 Wildlife Report

Posted on Wed November 27, 2019 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back to another exciting update on our adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. I will be covering all the exciting things that happened over October- November.

We are at the start of summer, and already have we reached temperatures in the low 40’s (degrees Celsius). Apart from the heat this, must be one of my favourite times of year (as spring moves into summer) with that first bit of rain and all the green starting to pop up all over, giving some colour to the still-existing winter browns and yellows.

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August - September 2019 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon September 30, 2019 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back for another update from the beautiful Klaserie Private Nature Reserve and Makumu Private Game Lodge!

It has been very dry, and this is causing the most amazing sunrises and sunsets. Due to the dust gathering within the atmosphere, it causes the glare of the rising or setting light to reflect red as you look over the horizons.

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June/July 2019 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue July 30, 2019 in Ranger Diaries.

A warm welcome back to another update on our exciting adventures here in the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve. It is an absolute privilege to call this place, with all its amazing views and rolling hills, HOME!! I will be covering all the exciting things that happened over June- July…

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April/May 2019 Wildlife Report

Posted on Tue June 4, 2019 in Ranger Diaries.

Welcome back for another update from the Wild West of the Klaserie Private Nature Reserve!! I will be covering updates from April and May in this blog entry…

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March 2019 Wildlife Report

Posted on Mon March 25, 2019 in Ranger Diaries.

A wonderful welcome to all of you reading our first wildlife sightings report! This will be a regular instalment which Matt and Morné will alternate writing.

Please keep following our blog for other great features and updates from the bush and of course the lodge and kitchen as well!

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Makumu Video Feature

Posted on Fri February 1, 2019 in Ranger Diaries.
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