2022 recap and 2023 plans

(Lots of pictures at the end of the article)

2022!   What a year.  

It was full of travel and some life changes.

Holly, the last of my dogs was dying and so I pushed off all the travel I could until the end of the year because the Drs. and I were certain she wouldn't survive the summer.

I helped Holly cross over in April and you can read Holly's tribute here.

I've had a pet every single day of my life for the last 45 years and I was unsure how I was going to deal with being pet free.   

Although I am ready to be pet free so I can travel more easily, I was a wee bit nervous as a "doggie mama" is a big part of my identity.

Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, I am not yet pet free as I have my ex's 3 dogs.   I love them dearly but am looking forward to when they can move in with him and I can be truly pet free for at least a little while.  The stress of finding them pet sitters since a few of my trips were really long took it's toll on me and my enjoyment of the travel.

In 2022, I was away from home for 160 days.  110 of those were between August and the end of December.

In addition to some short trips in the USA,  I visited 13 countries (6 of which were  on a Caribbean Cruise).

The countries that I visited to see their wild places were (in the order I saw them):
Ecuador
Zimbabwe
Namibia
Brazil
Botswana
Kenya
Gabon

Although I loved every minute being in the field, what 2022 showed me is that 110 days away from home in the last 5 months of the year was way to much for me and what I want to do. 

I captured so many amazing moments in time and have so many stories to write, but had no time off to look through, edit and cull images or to write any of the stories.

So, 2023 is going to be a slower travel year and a year for me to write about some of the experiences I've already had as well as showcase some of the images and videos I've taken over the years.

As of now, the wildlife countries I plan on visiting next year are:
Tanzania
Kenya
Mexico
Botswana
South Africa and
Zimbabwe

These trips will be shorter than the ones in 2022.  My goal is to be gone less than 130 days and to  spread them out out over the year instead of concentrating the travel like I felt I had to do in 2022.

I also want to take some more trips in the continental USA to see family and friends.

I've met some amazing people on my journeys this year and had so many incredible wildlife moments.   I learned a lot about the different wild places and wildlife.   

The trip reports for Ecuador are done -- they are written in more of a travel journal style with loads of photographs and videos.   You can find them here:
Galapagos
Ecuadorian Amazon

I got to see wildlife on foot in Mana Pools - a very new and extraordinary experience. 

I saw animals from the water in Chobe - another new experience. 

My soul was shattered in Kenya when I saw the devastating effects of the drought first hand - read this difficult article here 

I got to see wildlife I've never seen before (or even heard of) in Gabon - what an adventure and again, on foot - my favorite way to experience wildlife!

I'll be working on the articles about the these trips over the next several months, so be sure to check back often to read the latest posts and to see more images and videos.

Until then, here are a few images for you to enjoy from the trips other than Ecuador (as you can see those in the articles linked above):

Zimbabwe - Mana Pools

beautiful orange and red sunset over the Zambezi river
a male lion portrait
a baby elephant in the forest
an elephant standing to reach the fruit on the higher branches
a wild dog in front of the river

Zimbabwe - Hwange

2 male lions
high key image of a zebra
elephants having a dust bath
roan antelope in the yellow foilage
2 male lions

Namibia and Botswana - Chobe

close up of a crocodile jaw
beautiful sunrise over the chobe river
giraffe with the sunsetting behind him
a hippo
a family of elephants drinking

Brazil - The Pantanal

Caiman with a dragon fly on his head
Jaguar
Toucan in the trees

Kenya

black and white of a Fish Eagle
elephant baby nursing
leopard carrying her cub
leopard laying in a tree
baby waterbuck
rhino mama with baby peeking behind
sub adult lion laying in the grass

Gabon

western lowland gorilla with a baby on her back
crocodile
forest buffalo
red river hog
turtle trail on the beach
forest elephant
sunset on the beach
looking up to the tree tops in the forest

I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek of images from my trips this year.     More pictures will be posted on my social media platforms and I'll be writing about my experiences over the next few months.

Here is a video that I put together that has additional images from my 2022 travels.  I still have over 44,000 images to go thru and cull.  The majority of the ones in this video are not edited and I'm not even sure they will make the final cut.

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