Quote of the Week: Eric Vermilya

As you said it would be, the trip was wonderful. Both [our guides] were great and Uli and I were amazed with the scope of their knowledge (and their eyesight). We both like to sit patiently and watch to see what develops and were very happy with both of our guides, in that they didn’t seem to mind at all. I can only imagine the frustration we would have felt if we were in a vehicle with a larger tour group.

A perfect example of how having a private tour paid off, was a leopard kill that we came across in Tarangire. There were numerous other vehicles parked along the side of the road with the kill was in one tree close to the road and the leopard in another about 500 feet behind it. It was clear the leopard wasn’t comfortable, but the leopard stayed put in the tree that was far away because vehicles came and went (with some of their passengers particularly noisy). However, after about 1 ½ hours we were the only vehicle left, and we sat there in silence for a while and eventually the leopard came down (funny — we saw it come down, lost sight of it and then all of a sudden it appeared at the base of the tree that had the kill in it). It climbed the tree and started feeding — and Uli got quite a few shots (however, the day was overcast and the light was bad).

Also I wanted to let you know that we probably sighted close to 100 lions, including a female & 4 cubs about 15-20 feet from us that we sat and watched for 2 hours with nobody else in sight. We also sighted a couple of more leopards, including a female and her cub that was testing out its climbing abilities on a fallen tree, several cheetahs, and a even a Serval out hunting in the middle of a very hot day (we were driving at high speed from the Serengeti to Ngorongoro and Uli just happened to spot it). [Our guide] tried to stop as quickly as possible, but he backed up, located it again and Uli got a couple of shots.

So thank you too, for representing such a great company. We’ll definitely send out a finished testimonial and some sample photos (out of the 2500 Uli took) when we get them all downloaded and are able go through them.

Eric Vermilya
October 2009

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