Tanzania Wildlife Safari and Chimpanzee Trekking Dispatch
January 13, 2017 – An Emotional Final Farewell!!
Dispatch by Nancy Souza
We woke with great anticipation for a last day at this mind-blowing camp -Greystoke Mahale, which meant a final farewell to this magnificent place, and an ending to this blissful adventure!
But first - there were CHIMPANZEES to be found up in the surrounding Mahale mountains! Mom decided to pass on Day 2 and enjoy the camp - which proved to be the BEST decision as this expedition would take much more time and effort as the path to the "group M" chimps was steep and slippery and VERY challenging!
We trekked almost 3 hours to reach the group and, once again, found Primus (the 26-yr old alpha male) along with some of his cohorts frolicking in the deep bush. We watched with awe as they once again entertained and amazed us with their behavior toward one another and us! We observed them eating the indigenous Saba florida fruit, grooming one another, hunting the red colobus monkey, and communicating with one another through a wild host of noises! It was a sight to behold to see these magnificent creatures in the wild!
Our trek back proved equally as exhausting and we welcomed our arrival back at camp where Julien and Mom were waiting with waves and cheers!!! Jessie, Allie and I decided to forego a shower and instead cool down with a quick refreshing swim in the lake. Then we enjoyed our lunch and headed out with Donna for a wildly successful fishing trip ending in a not-to-be-believed rainbow in full view over the mountains!
A farewell cocktail hour and dinner on the beach was in order - followed by a bonfire and dance party where Allie blasted "We Are Family" as a fitting tribute to the incredible staff and fellow adventurers at Greystoke Mahale that had shared this magical journey with us!!!
As we boarded our boat and plane the next morning, the waves and blowing of kisses among us all were plentiful - and unstoppable tears proved that this was one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that would leave lifelong memories! The icing on the cake you ask?...It was our guides Mwiga and Mateus chasing our plane from the ground as we lifted off...
Thank you to the people of Tanzania: the Maasai; the staff at Treetops, Neptune, Pioneer, and the Arusha Coffee Lodge; the Camp Directors; our Safari guide-Simon; Julien, our guides, and all the kind staff at Mahale...to all who embraced Bibi and our family as their own...we thank you and will never forget you.