The ultimate African bush and beach safari

Chasing ghosts… finding the snow leopard

,

Masai Mara in the green season

They say the Masai Mara is over-traded. During the spectacle that is the annual wildebeest migration you might agree. I have just returned from an incredible stay in the ‘dreaded rainy season’. We got rain almost daily in fantastic thunderstorms (plus a little Rift Valley earth tremor one evening!). But as you will see below, we also got plenty of sunshine, saw loads of animals, very active displaying birds and very very few people…

These young lions will have a real appetite by the time the wildebeest migration returns to the Mara.

These young lions will have a real appetite by the time the wildebeest migration returns to the Mara.

We had a special sighting of a female hippo bringing her young calf from out of the riverine forest back into the Mara River

We had a special sighting of a female hippo bringing her young calf from out of the riverine forest back into the Mara River

Anyone that has been to the Mara Triangle will know the sound of the Little Swifts that nest at the Oloololo Gate. It seems they were gearing up for nesting.

Anyone that has been to the Mara Triangle will know the sound of the Little Swifts that nest at the Oloololo Gate. It seems they were gearing up for nesting.

This is such a classic Mara scene in the rain season.

This is such a classic Mara scene in the rain season.

Whilst this is not the most arresting photo of a lion, I enjoyed his focus and motion through the long grass.

Whilst this is not the most arresting photo of a lion, I enjoyed his focus and motion through the long grass.

The rains turn the landscape green, but this area has also been burnt so was a shocking green. We stopped for a picnic lunch and had 9 mammal species in view!

The rains turn the landscape green, but this area has also been burnt so was a shocking green. We stopped for a picnic lunch and had 9 mammal species in view!

The voice of the Mara is not quite as drab as people say! The Rufous-naped Larks are all singing and nesting right now.

The voice of the Mara is not quite as drab as people say! The Rufous-naped Larks are all singing and nesting right now.

Thatching weavers build nests is a great African safari treat. Quite how this male managed to keep avoiding the thorns whilst so busy I don’t know.

Watching weavers build nests is a great African safari treat. Quite how this male managed to keep avoiding the thorns whilst so busy I don’t know.

The first 5 of no less than 40 vultures that pressured and pushed this female cheetah off her gazelle kill right in front of us (we only saw one other vehicle this day!).

The first 5 of no less than 40 vultures that pressured and pushed this female cheetah off her gazelle kill right in front of us (we only saw one other vehicle this day!).

The ‘Out of Africa’ site where the superb new Angama Mara lodge will be opening soon.

The ‘Out of Africa’ site where the superb new Angama Mara lodge will be opening soon.

,

Zakouma – a wild Safari south of Sahara

As promised, the first report back from Zakouma National Park in south-east Chad. It is tough to put into words just how what an incredible experience this has been. Spending 5 nights camped out in the moonlight on the edge of the Rigueik wetland with a great bunch of people, tasty bush food and great […]

,

Dawn & Dusk #Whyilovekenya

Recently I spent some time on safari in the Masai Mara and Laikipia. Days were warm and dry, especially in southern Laikipia, so I made the most of my favourite times of day…dawn and dusk. Although I never got the ‘Golden Hour’ everyday, I was treated to some classic safari moments. Couple this with some excellent walking at Ol Pejeta and the low numbers of tourists in Kenya at this time of year, I can safely say January is a great time to be in Kenya if you aren’t really looking for wildebeest! #Whyilovekenya

The excitement builds as we are nearly ready to board the Governor’s Balloon for our morning floating over the majestic Masai Mara.

The excitement builds as we are nearly ready to board the Governor’s Balloon for our morning floating over the majestic Masai Mara.

What an incredible way to start my day – sunrise over the Mara.

What an incredible way to start my day – sunrise over the Mara.

One of the dreamy scenes that unfolded on the balloon ride, just after floating over a pride of lions!

One of the dreamy scenes that unfolded on the balloon ride, just after floating over a pride of lions!

The chance to photograph this iconic mountain in a different mood each day is my motivation for rising early.

The chance to photograph this iconic mountain in a different mood each day is my motivation for rising early.

The almost milky late afternoon light on Ol Pejeta provided a fun opportunity to capture the top f the Aberdares as backdrop to the zebras and elephants

The almost milky late afternoon light on Ol Pejeta provided a fun opportunity to capture the top f the Aberdares as backdrop to the zebras and elephants

Some patience before sunset was rewarded when a young male Grant’s Gazelle decided to put in a big effort to court a female.

Some patience before sunset was rewarded when a young male Grant’s Gazelle decided to put in a big effort to court a female.

This cute bushbaby can be tricky to photograph in the thorn trees with no natural light. I spotted this one in silhouette as it emerged just minutes after sunset.

This cute bushbaby can be tricky to photograph in the thorn trees with no natural light. I spotted this one in silhouette as it emerged just minutes after sunset.

 

,

African Civet po(o)ps by…

One of things we love to do with our guests is find a waterhole or well-used game trail to put up a camera trap. The infra-red sensor takes photos while we sleep and later we get to download the card and find out who came to visit. Better still is to look at the tracks first and try to establish how many species came past. In Karongwe, west of the Kruger National Park, we had a successful nights’ trapping. The highlight was an African Civet which decided to poop right in front of the camera. Anyone that has seen the droppings in a civetry (a special name for their latrine) will have questioned how an animal the size of a civet could pass them – well take a close look at the photo. The answer is it isn’t easy!

I always enjoy finding African Civet on a night safari - for me it is a sign of a healthy environment

I always enjoy finding African Civet on a night safari – for me it is a sign of a healthy environment

A picture says a thousand words!

A picture says a thousand words!

Although the porcupine is actually quite common, you don't get to see them too often unless they are raiding the camp veggie garden.

Although the porcupine is actually quite common, you don’t get to see them too often unless they are raiding the camp veggie garden.

I assume this Common Duiker was headed for a morning drink at the waterhole

I assume this Common Duiker was headed for a morning drink at the waterhole

This female impala must have sensed something out of place on the tree - she is very alert

This female impala must have sensed something out of place on the tree – she is very alert

I you put a camera trap up just about anywhere for a few days, you are bound to get at least one look-in from an inquisitive baboon!

If you put a camera trap up just about anywhere for a few days, you are bound to get at least one look-in from an inquisitive baboon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

,

Incredible wail of the Indri

There are over 100 species of lemurs recognised in Madagascar (only there right!), but none come close to the largest, the Indri when it comes to sound! This short clip is exactly that sound.

 

 

,

Take A Walk On The Wild Side

The Pafuri Walking Trail  in the Makuleke Concession of the Kruger National Park is without a doubt one of the most remote and wild walking experiences that can be found today. A 3 night 4 day trail is the perfect getaway to experience nature at its best.

The early hours of each day were spent walking in various parts of this unique and extremely diverse area. We had a number of great sightings of elephant, safety is distance when out walking which can be hard to maintain whilst walking for 4 to 5 hours. Most of the time we were able to get to an elevated area and enjoyed watching the behavior of the elephants whilst they were completely unaware of our presence. Buffalo were fairly common and we had to be very careful where we walked. Once or twice we got a little too close for comfort but with the knowledge and experience of our guides we were able to appreciate the skills needed to spend time safely in this environment and avoided having to climb any trees.

In this areas the cats are difficult to find on foot so in the in the afternoon we would use the the vehicle to explore the area, we were fortunate to see two different leopards which was a real highlight. We found some spectacular spots to enjoy our hard earned sun downers and to relive the days sightings. When we arrived back at camp after each adventure, we were  greeted warmly by the friendly staff and treated to some fabulous meals cooked on the open fire.

We really had a fantastic time and enjoyed every minute of the adventure, a special thanks to the staff at Pafuri for such a great experience  and for making us feel so welcome and for looking after us so well.

Some of the best walking in South Africa, the area is extremely diverse. We enjoyed walking in the morning and then taking a drive in the evening to cover more area.

Some of the best walking in South Africa, the Pafuri Wilderness Trail is perfectly situated to explore this incredibly diverse area.

The reputation of a buffalo is well deserved which is why taking photos from the comfort of a vehicle will generally yield better photos due to less camera shake.

The reputation of a buffalo is well deserved, which is why taking photos from the comfort of a vehicle will generally yield better photos due to less camera shake.

A lone elephant bull in the spectacular Fever Tree forests.

Tracking at the confluence of of the Limpopo and Levuvu rivers.

Reading tracks and signs at the confluence of the Limpopo and Levuvu rivers.

Enjoying the freedom of tracking animals on foot in the dry Limpopo River.

Enjoying wildlife from the comfort of the camp. This elephant spent most of the mid day feeding around our tents.

Enjoying wildlife from the comfort of the camp. This elephant spent most of the mid day feeding around our tents.

The thrill and excitement of the mornings adventure proving too much for Gareth.

Brett, head of sustainability at Wilderness Safaris enjoying a fantastic photographic opportunity with buffalo.

Brett, head of sustainability at Wilderness Safaris enjoying a fantastic photographic opportunity with this herd of buffalo.

Spectacular scenery form Lanner Gorge, probably one of the best place in Africa to enjoy sundowners.

Spectacular scenery from Lanner Gorge, probably one of the best place in Africa to enjoy sundowners.

Walking in the wilderness is all about having fund and leaving the daily grind behind.

Walking in the wilderness is all about having fun and leaving the daily grind behind.

Time on foot allows you to earn a greater understanding of the natural world. We had an opportunity to spend time exploring the skull of an elephant which was extremely interesting.

Time on foot allows you to earn a greater understanding of the natural world. We had an opportunity to spend time exploring the skull of an elephant which was extremely interesting.

Taking a rest after a long morning walk and enjoying the scenic Levuvu River.

Every sunset in the African wilderness is special, one has to make sure to not spend too much time in the city before the next one.

Some tangible History

Well it is about a year ago that I was perched on the small island of St. Helena – in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, but right on the edge of the African Plate! I was leading a trip with some lovely people who had joined me to brave about 11 days on a round trip ocean voyage for the privilege of a week in this remote and beautiful part of the planet. Primarily we explored the island with the great folks from the St. Helena National Trust and St. Helena Tourism – from their endemic wirebirds and breeding seabirds to reforestation projects (yes, a rainforest occurs on the highest peaks) and important cultural features. We enjoyed the diverse history related to the development of trade routes as well as the prisoner/exile stories too.

Their most famous ‘visitor’ was Napoleon who was exiled here in 1815 after Waterloo. It is recorded that to pass the time he particularly enjoyed a dessert wine produced in the Cape. Vin de Constance was its name and although from different vines, it is still made today and is a highly decorated product of the Klein Constantia wine estate in Cape Town. The highlight for all of us came one afternoon. Steven & Maureen run a super establishment called the Farm House and when I showed him the bottle he countered by showing us an antique wood and brass wine cooler … which belonged to Napoleon himself. I couldn’t beat that for authenticity! And the Fairy Terns drifted by… (Alastair)

The celebrated Vin de Constance which we drank off Napoleon's old wooden wine cooler!

The celebrated Vin de Constance which we drank off Napoleon’s old wooden wine cooler!

Enjoying an afternoon Vin de Constance on the front lawn of the Farm House - the finest place to stay on the island - superb food throughout and entertaining hosts

Enjoying an afternoon Vin de Constance on the front lawn of the Farm House – the finest place to stay on the island – superb food throughout and entertaining hosts

A view from the hillsides down to the 'capital' of Jamestown - all in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, about 2000 kilometers from Africa!

A view from the hillsides down to the ‘capital’ of Jamestown – all in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, about 2000 kilometers from Africa!

No post about St. Helena could be without one of the star avian attractions, one of my favourite fliers, the Fairy Tern

No post about St. Helena could be without one of the star avian attractions, one of my favourite fliers, the Fairy Tern

 

 

 

 

 

,

Cape Town Autumn Ocean Wildlife!!

Ocean safaris are not everyone’s cup of tea, but the waters off Cape Town are the prime place to get into it! I’ve had the privilege of getting out onto the ocean a few times in the late summer and autumn months and the photographic opportunities have been great. Pics of Great Whites, African Penguins and large game fish are not even included here! I did not get to see the famed Orcas which visit our waters, but hear they have been sighted recently, so I guess I will have to bide my time for them. The good news is that the Southern Right Whales will start arriving from Antarctica soon… (Alastair)

 

Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross is one of the small albatross, but picture-perfect! Most trips out to sea will encounter at least 2 and up to 5 species of albatross, making Cape Town a global hotspot for viewing these phenomenal fliers.

Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross is one of the small albatross, but picture-perfect! Most trips out to sea will encounter at least 2 and up to 5 species of albatross, making Cape Town a global hotspot for viewing these phenomenal fliers.

Daybreak in False Bay off Cape Town is a real treat especially when the sea is a millpond! This is the view towards the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve as we head towards Cape Point.

Daybreak in False Bay off Cape Town is a real treat especially when the sea is a millpond! This is the view towards the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve as we head towards Cape Point.

Not a sharp shot as it was far behind the boat, but a great feeling to capture this Atlantic endemic found only along the coast from Cape Town to Namibia.

Not a sharp shot as it was far behind the boat, but a great feeling to capture this Atlantic endemic Heviside’s Dolphin, found only along the coast from Cape Town to Namibia.

These Cory’s Shearwaters spend the summer in our waters off Cape Town and can be seen singly or in flocks of over 100 birds. Amazingly they are rather long-lived birds going for well over 30 years!

These Cory’s Shearwaters spend the summer in our waters off Cape Town and can be seen singly or in flocks of over 100 birds. Amazingly they are rather long-lived birds going for well over 30 years!

This is one of my favourite subjects, especially at this time of year when they aggregate into megapods of over 1000 animals – the water literally boils...and the fish don't easily escape!

This is one of my favourite subjects, especially at this time of year when the Long-beaked Common Dolphins aggregate into megapods of over 1000 animals – the water literally boils…and the fish don’t easily escape!

The usual challenge when photographing this Cape Gannet is to snap the moment it enters the water at break-neck speed. This time the light was great and I snapped it as it gathered momentum to fly off. The water and its eye match nicely!

The usual challenge when photographing this Cape Gannet is to snap the moment it enters the water at break-neck speed. This time the light was great and I snapped it as it gathered momentum to fly off. The water and its eye match nicely!

This shot is almost guaranteed on most days at sea as these are two of the more common species – the larger Skua pirates from the White-chinned Petrel.

This shot is almost guaranteed on most days at sea as these are two of the more common species – the larger Skua pirates from the White-chinned Petrel.

Not a seabird is it? This handsome bird can only be seen on Robben Island where it was introduced in 1964 by customs officals? A far cry from its typical rocky mountain habitat over much of Eurasia, but they seem to be doing well.

Not a seabird is it? This handsome bird can only be seen on Robben Island where it was introduced in 1964 by customs officials. A far cry from its typical rocky mountain habitat over much of Eurasia, but they seem to be doing well.

These are great predators in their own right, but off Cape Town they regularly fall prey to the Great White Sharks

These are great predators in their own right, but off Cape Town the South African Fur Seals regularly fall prey to the Great White Sharks.

This stunning bird was hunting with great success in amongst the 10,000 odd cormorants we had all around the boat.

This stunning Swift Tern was hunting with great success in amongst the 10,000 odd cormorants we had all around the boat.

I enjoyed snapping these fisherman as we entered Gordon's Bay harbour

I enjoyed snapping these fisherman as we entered Gordon’s Bay harbour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

,

Rufiji Rhythmns

Seeing one Africa’s great rivers in flood is always special. To be honest I prefer the Rufiji when she is lazy and her sandbanks exposed, but the sound of her unstinting pulse in the green season helps me to sleep well after a long, hot day in the bush. Dawn brings the nasal baa of Trumpeter Hornbills heading to the figs trees, shrieking parrots, hyrax and manic Yellow Baboons. The hippos have started giving birth as the long rains approach and with all we are seeing here, I can confirm that Selous is the finest place to see bee-eaters anywhere in Africa. Despite rampant poaching in this vast game reserve, there are daily sightings of small herds, perhaps more skittish than I remember in the past though. The summer birding has been fantastic too, so even though I know the roads are always rough in Selous and it is almost always hot, I will be back soon – mainly because I enjoy walking in this magnificent wilderness! (Alastair)

This was a lucky escape for the dragonfly that flew right past a tree loaded with Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters - this is like running past a family of bears whilst covered in honey!

This was a lucky escape for the dragonfly that flew right past a tree loaded with Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters – this is like running past a family of bears whilst covered in honey!

Despite the fact that this vast game reserve has again become a killing field for these magnificent animals, we did manage daily sightings of small family groups in the miombo and along the river.

Despite the fact that this vast game reserve has again become a killing field for these magnificent animals, we did manage daily sightings of small family groups in the miombo and along the river.

These African Skimmers represent wild Africa to me as they only survive where the natural  seasonal flooding on large rivers is still in tact. To watch them feed with beaks cutting the water is special.

These African Skimmers represent wild Africa to me as they only survive where the natural seasonal flooding on large rivers is still in tact. To watch them feed with beaks cutting the water is special.

We spotted a dead hippo on the banks of the Rufiji. As we approached a large bull snorted and made a bow-wave away from us. The scene of destruction of the vegetation told the story of how the two must have fought through the night - and now it is a case of waiting to see if the crocs, hyenas or the vultures  get here first...

We spotted a dead hippo on the banks of the Rufiji. As we approached a large bull snorted and made a bow-wave away from us. The scene of destruction of the vegetation told the story of how the two must have fought through the night – and now it is a case of waiting to see if the crocs, hyenas or the vultures get here first…

This is the only decent shot I got of a small pride that we found devouring a carcass inside a palm thicket. The best part was listening to the one female growl at the young cubs as they braved her fearsome noises as they edged in to claim a small bit of the kill.

This is the only decent shot I got of a small pride that we found devouring a carcass inside a palm thicket. The best part was listening to the one female growl at the young cubs as they braved her fearsome noises as they edged in to claim a small bit of the kill.

In the end I decided the backlit shot portrayed this superb little bee-eater best. Although colourful it spends much of its time hunting from dense riverine bush. This is one of 8 bee-eater species we saw!!!

In the end I decided the backlit shot portrayed this superb little bee-eater best. Although colourful it spends much of its time hunting from dense riverine bush. This is one of 8 bee-eater species we saw!!!

Not a great shot this, but we saw numerous of these migratory Eurasian Honey-buzzards in Selous' woodlands and this one actually dropped to the ground and ripped out a wasp nest to eat - textbook!

Not a great shot this, but we saw numerous of these migratory Eurasian Honey-buzzards in Selous’ woodlands and this one actually dropped to the ground and ripped out a wasp nest to eat – textbook!

one one of our many good walks, we had been sitting quietly watching the Openbills when the rocks moved and we got a glimpse of this tiny hippo behind its mother. This is no doubt the first of many that will be born along the mighty Rufiji during the rainy season.

One one of our many good walks, we had been sitting quietly watching the Openbills when the rocks moved and we got a glimpse of this tiny hippo behind its mother. This is no doubt the first of many that will be born along the mighty Rufiji during the rainy season.

There is no better way to end a day in the bush than cruising the river - sundowners on the move as the Osprey head to bed and the hippos start making their way out to forage.

There is no better way to end a day in the bush than cruising the river – sundowners on the move as the Osprey head to bed and the hippos start making their way out to forage.

,

Desert Dreaming in Sossusvlei

I have just spent a few phenomenal days at &Beyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge. Although I have been to the desert a good few times before this was a first stay – and it was all I had hoped and more. Staff service and romantic accommodation aside (all excellent), it was the space, serenity and detail in the desert that was so inspiring. Spending time with resident astronomer Terry was great as we had close up views of Jupiter and its moons amongst others. My camera was on fire most of the time as there are just so many opportunities and angles to explore. Thanks to the team there for an amazing stay. (Alastair)

The Namib Rand Reserve is a photographer's paradise - colour, texture, space, contrasts and more...

The Namib Rand Reserve is a photographer’s paradise – colour, texture, space, contrasts and more…

Two incredible women posing beneath the impressive Sociable Weaver nest - purposefully offbeat to get them all in!

Two incredible women posing beneath the impressive Sociable Weaver nest – purposefully offbeat to get them all in!

 

If there is one wildlife reason that stands alone for visiting Sossusvlei and the Namib Rand, it is the Gemsbok What a magnificent antelope!

If there is one wildlife reason that stands alone for visiting Sossusvlei and the Namib Rand, it is the Gemsbok What a magnificent antelope!

 

I have always maintained that every lodge needs some wildlife in camp to make it come alive - these Sociable Weavers came in from their giant nests everyday 'to entertain us'!

I have always maintained that every lodge needs some wildlife in camp to make it come alive – these Sociable Weavers came in from their giant nests everyday ‘to entertain us’!

It requires a little sweat, but the views from the dune tops and the freedom to get down how you please are both worth it!

It requires a little sweat, but the views from the dune tops and the freedom to get down how you please are both worth it!

One doesn't normally associate dragonflies with  deserts - I found this huge Orange Emperor dominating a rock pool at a remote waterfall on the edge of the desert.

One doesn’t normally associate dragonflies with deserts – I found this huge Orange Emperor dominating a rock pool at a remote waterfall on the edge of the desert.

Within 2 days of the rains, the insects emerged - none smarter than this busy pink-winged hawk moth which fed and pollinated the dainty white flowers in front of the bar!

Within 2 days of the rains, the insects emerged – none smarter than this busy pink-winged hawk moth which fed and pollinated the dainty white flowers in front of the bar!

I snapped this shot from behind the lodge one morning when the air was clear after rain the previous day.

I snapped this shot from behind the lodge one morning when the air was clear after rain the previous day.

It is hard to put into words the silent, weightless feeling of rising in a hot air balloon in the desert dawn. Namib Sky were fantastic every step of the way.

It is hard to put into words the silent, weightless feeling of rising in a hot air balloon in the desert dawn. Namib Sky were fantastic every step of the way.

One of the distinctive sounds of the desert is the croaking of Korhaans - we were treated to these two males as well as a female not far from the lodge one afternoon.

One of the distinctive sounds of the desert is the croaking of Korhaans – we were treated to these two males as well as a female not far from the lodge one afternoon.

The morning shadows created a surreal scene wth Gemsbok and Ostrich below.

The morning shadows created a surreal scene wth Gemsbok and Ostrich below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

,

Singita Lebombo turns it on…

I had a brilliant week at Singita Lebombo – far from the madding crowds as they say and with lots to see. On the first afternoon we had a Honey Badger approach us on a bush walk as we headed to a rocky view point. The following evening it was lions, leopard, African Civet and serval. The birding was superb with loads of cuckoos, nest-building weavers, Burnt-necked Eremomelas at a nest (look that up!) and the arrival of the Amur Falcons all the way from their journey across the Indian Ocean and down the east side of Africa. We also got see the gradual demolition of a giraffe carcass from the lions to hyenas to vultures and beetles. It had been some time since I last really sat watching and hearing hippos for extended periods of time and this was probably the highlight of the trip. The diversity of this landscape and the chance to really explore makes this one of my favourite destinations. (Alastair)

There are superb hippo viewing opportunities by vehicle and on foot along the Nwanetsi River

There are superb hippo viewing opportunities by vehicle and on foot along the Nwanetsi River

This is an elephant's way of saying "I am watching you!"

This is an elephant’s way of saying “I am watching you!”

We sat for ages watching the hyenas devour the giraffe bone by bone - the vultures just waited for marrow to shoot out as they fed.

We sat for ages watching the hyenas devour the giraffe bone by bone – the vultures just waited for marrow to shoot out as they fed.

I simply could not get decent photos of these fish as they fled the hunting crocodile.

I simply could not get decent photos of these fish as they fled the hunting crocodile.

We had photographed a good number down at the river, but this Globe Skimmer was hovering around the Land Rover as if we were an elephant flushing insects!

We had photographed a good number down at the river, but this Globe Skimmer was hovering around the Land Rover as if we were an elephant flushing insects!

The fantastic geology in this part of the world is complemented by an array of attractive lizards like this Flat Lizard species.

The fantastic geology in this part of the world is complemented by an array of attractive lizards like this Flat Lizard species.

We found a rather lean-looking pride of lions on the Mozambique boundary. Here the cubs were fighting over  sinew and a chance to lick the ground...desperate times indeed.

We found a rather lean-looking pride of lions on the Mozambique boundary. Here the cubs were fighting over sinew and a chance to lick the ground…desperate times indeed.

I saw this elephant bull and wondered just how large he might be when he really grows up one day!

I saw this elephant bull and wondered just how large he might be when he really grows up one day!