4 Days 3 Nights
Camp Chitake is a luxurious stationary camp located near the Chitake Spring. The Spring is a hidden gem nestled deep in Mana Pools National Park. The Chitake Spring is an area of crucial importance to a great variety of wildlife occurring in this southern part of Mana Pools National Park. Water flows strongly out of the ground and flows for up to a kilometre along the otherwise dry riverbed of the Chitake River. The Chitake River rises in the Zambezi Escarpment on the very southern boundary of the Park and connects with the Ruckomechi River, which in turn snakes across the valley floor to the mighty Zambezi, 70 kilometres away. Once the rains have begun properly, there is a torrent of water flowing in these systems but that generally dries up by April. As more of the surrounding waterholes dry, the spring becomes the focus of survival to hundreds of thousands of creatures.
The high and rugged escarpment is only 8 km away but the game has to come down from the hills for water. The mixed Mopane, Combretum and Acacia woodlands of the vast valley floor are home to many thirsty animals. As the dry season progresses the concentrations of wildlife increase, accompanied by huge flocks of doves, starlings, lovebirds, sparrows, finches, hornbills and sand grouse.
With such a diverse array of wildlife on the menu, this is the ideal spot for predators – lion, leopard, hyena, painted hunting dog, mongoose, snakes and a plethora of birds of prey enjoy the fine dining. Vultures are often seen in large numbers waiting for their next meal.
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