Friday, March 28, 2014

A tiger at ten for the General - Yes Again - He!He!

The entourage landed in the afternoon at Courtyard House full of expectancy. The General full of smiles appeared relaxed and was expecting much more. 

"A tiger would be fine" he said to me. "Else Kanha will be a wonderful experience anyway."  

The General and his family made us feel at ease. Smiling and beaming upon seeing the Courtyard House the family did not seemed tired from travel at all. 

The General's Entourage & Us
Time to Leave

Neelesh Agarwal Owner
Just two safaris is not enough to see the tiger sometimes and we missed Munna and Dig Dola Tigeress fair and square in the evening safari. We also missed a new male tiger by inches as he vanished into the forest before our arrival. We came to know this from the laborers and the jeeps waiting in expectation.

The next day we did not come close to any tiger on the way to Kanha Zone. We waited at Ghoda Chapar where I had seen Munna male tiger while guiding a Scottish Couple. "No sign of tiger," the guide remarked and we moved forward.  

The meadows at Kanha were empty and lifeless when we arrived through the forests. After lot of futile searching we decided to have breakfast along with Mr.O.P.Tiwari the Deputy FD of Kanha. While having breakfast I heard alarm calls from somewhere near the Minkur Nala crossroad. Earlier a jeep had encountered a tigress with a fawn which she had killed crossing over the road here.

As we left to continue our safari the General said,"A tiger at Ten!" I affirmed his belief and we proceeded to the spot where the tigress was seen. 

Look the tigress has not enough to eat and she will rise again," I said. Rightly so after few minutes of waiting a monkey alarm cry confirmed our belief, the tigress was just a short distance from us in the bush. We were waiting in expectation which proved rewarding. From our left at Kanha meadow a serious of loud alarm cries confirmed presence of the tiger.  

Medal for Courtyard House
Me & the medal
So we had two tigers to chance upon. "Keep an eye on the jeep on road at Minkur Nala," I told the guide. Well said I thought as the jeep started moving in the reverse. Move back the guide said to the driver but very slowly. As we were moving on the Minkur Nala road the guide spotted the tiger. It was the tigress's cub about fifteen months which moves along with its siblings on Kanha Meadow. The rest is history as the young tiger moved around without fear. The young tiger had emerged right at ten and I shook my head in disbelief. The General smiled at me. 

The tigress did not venture out and we left for our abode. It was a happy ending and post lunch we bid farewell to a smiling and beaming General and his entourage.