Landscapes of Tanzania

A few notes before you wander through the images. Arranged by Ray Kelso, founder and director of the Pleistocene Foundation in Ridgecrest, California, the safari started out from Arusha, Tanzania, in three Toyota Land Cruisers.

The pictures are in no particular order. With a few hardly noticeable exceptions they were taken either in the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area or two National Parks: Tarangire and Serengeti. Our mob consisted of sixteen souls. The highest priority for everyone, including me, were the fauna. But this being my second photo safari to Africa, I determined to capture the flora. I’ve separated the landscapes from the flowers in order to show the vastness of Africa. I grew up reading Edgar Rice Burroughs’s tales of Tarzan of the Apes and before my first trip imagined that Africa was all jungles, and traveling consisted of floating down crocodile rivers or swinging from tree to tree on vines.

Well, maybe I’m exaggerating just a bit. But I really wasn’t prepared for the vastness of the land — even after watching NatGeo migration videos about the Serengeti. Piloting a Cessna Skylane over the Kalahari was my first exposure, but that’s a different story.

In the pictures that follow: if terrain rises in the background and stretches from one side of the picture to the other, it was taken in the Ngorongoro Crater. I’ve included an aerial view of the crater – – actually a caldera – – to show its closed ecosystem. One final note, I snapped most of the pictures “on the fly” from a moving vehicle. I didn’t feel good about holding up the crowd to plan out exposures, compositions, and the rest of tasks involved. Thankfully, post processing with Lightroom and Photoshop helped a bunch.

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