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Chitwan Day 3 - Saturday morning

Written on: Sunday June 24th, 2007

A journal entry from: Elective

Today was 'elephant day' - up at 5:30am to set off at half 6. We had breakfast, and then headed to the entrance of the hotel. I was assuming we were going in the jeep to meet the elephants, but they were outside waiting for us! They are quite small in comparison to African elephants, but still quite big in comparison to us!! We got on them from a wooden stand - 4 to an elephant, sitting in a box on their back. Our elephant was a 25 year old female.

We set off through the village, and quickly realised that it was going to be a bumpy ride! The villagers hardly bat an eyelid at the sight of the elephants strolling down the middle of the road, but they are so used to it now. We were amazed by it though, and took loads of pictures! We headed for the jungle in the hope of seeing some animals, and we saw some wild boar, deer, and a small Ghardial crocodile which spooked our elephant and scared us all a bit as it backed up quite swiftly! Going down hills was interesting, and wading through rivers impressive, as the elephants took it all in their (very large) stride. If we thought walking in the jungle was a pain, this was worse as we were right at branch level! Lots of ducking and grabbing at incoming branches was at hand! Despite this, we had an amazing time, spending about 2 hours riding the elephants before dismounting and getting some fantastic pictures up close with them. They are very tame, but we were still quite wary as expected. (This went out of the window in the afternoon though, as you will read next!). An absolutely fantastic morning!

 

xxxxx