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The Window!
A favorite place in the Mara.

In 2003 Clarissa and I spent a weekend at a lodge in Amboseli. While there we met the manager - Sue Heath. When I explained I was an artist she told us that her husband, Brian, had just established several bush campsites along the Western bank of the Mara River. He had just taken over management of the Western half of the Masai Mara Reserve - locally known as 'the Triangle.' He was doing foot patrols to bring poaching under control, grading roads and making some private campsites for use by fully self sufficient travelers such as Clarissa and I. She suggested that we should look at those campsites as they were in the heart of some of Kenya's best wildlife country.
A few months later we did exactly that. We traveled to the Mara and first camped at the Sand River campsite. After a few days there we moved on to the Triangle and headed for one of Brian Heath's newly established special campsites, each of which was just a small cleared area on a riverbank which you could book exclusively for my own use. Clarissa and I spent a month there and loved it so much it became an annual expedition over the next 14 years. In 2003 there was no cell-phone coverage and very few other visitors so in parts of the reserve one literally had it all to oneself.

1/ : Our camps were very basic. Sand River 2003.
An image of Clarissa Augustinus standing next to a tent and vehicle on the banks of a river with some wildeebeste in the background.
2/ : Our Mara River camp in 2004.
An image of  Clarissa Augustinus unpacking a vehicle at a campsite on the Mara River with elephants in the background.
3/ : Because we were very quiet we had lots of visitors.
An image of  A parked Land Cruiser and the Mess tent with artist Paulm Augustinus standing in between. In the middle ground beyond are a group of feeding elephants. Beyond that is the Mara River.
4/ : Lunch time at our campsite.
An image of Paul and Clarissa Augustinus seated at a small camp table next to their mess tent. The table is covered with canned and boxed food for lunch to be made from.
5/ : No conversation meant wildlife wandered very close.
A Paul Augustinus  image of a washing line with clothes drying on it. A few feet beyond zebra are grazing.
6/ : We really enjoyed the fact that we saw so much wildlife at the campsite.
An image of  Clarissa Augustinus looking out from behind the parked vehicle at some zebras on the open riverbank next to the river.
7/ : Brian Heath (and myself) at the Triangle HQ.
A cheerful image of Brian Heath and Paul Augustinus standing posed at the back of a Landrover.
8/ : I had some very lucky sightings within 5 min of the campsite.
A Paul Augustinus image of a group of male lions dramatically attacking a solitary nomadic lion that has wandered into their territory. In the background a tourist laden safari vehicle observes the events unfold with cameras clicking.
9/ : This was a very special leopard we saw often in the first few years.
A Paul Augustinus image of a big male leopard leaping from one rock outcrop to another.
10/ : A crossing right next to where we were camped.
An Paul Augustinus image of thousands of wildebeeste clinging and hemmed in by a steep riverbank
11/ : Some crossings further down stream were truly spectacular.
An image of wildebeeste crossing a river whit wildebeeste also on the far side and on the foreground bank.
12/ : Digging a new latrine pit every week!
An image of artist Paul Augustinus, spade in hands, digging a small pit for the latrine. It is situated right on the edge of the riverbank with the Mara beyond.
13/ : Campfires are very comforting on cold nights with l ions calling in the distance.
An image of artist Paul Augustinus and Clarissa seated on camp chairs next to a roaring log fire.
14/ : If it looked like it was going to rain we slept in our vehicle.
An image of  Clarissa Augustinus making up a bed in the back of a Land Cruiser Hardtop vehicle.
15/ : Midnight meal on a cold, rainy night.
An image of Clarissa Augustinus making tea while in bed in the back of the Land Cruiser.
16/ : Hanging soaked clothes up to dry in the mess tent.
An image of  Clarissa Augustinus hanging wet cloths up to dry inside a tent.

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