We all love national parks. I feel animals are better off in the open than in a confined environment. So, a zoo is not a place I particularly enjoy. National parks, oh yes!
In January, 2014, me and my wife had been to the Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan, India. Since we had opted for the morning shift, we had to be up very early. We were expected to be all set by 6am and wait in Hotel main lobby. An open SUV would then take us into the National Park. It was freezing cold. In spite of putting on jackets over our usual clothes, we also had to be wrapped around in blankets, which were provided by our guide. We also had an Australian family accompanying us in the car. They were quiet, equipped with nice professional DSLR cameras, and very much interested in spotting some animals rather than doing some unnecessary chit-chat.
The interior of this sanctuary is just unbelievable. We felt we were at the perfect place to enjoy the early hours of the morning. The fog that lay low on the yellow grass, the rays of light seeping through the gaps of the leaves, and the grey mountains in the background made the setting breathtaking. It was something that has etched in our memories and will probably stay there forever.
To be really honest, we couldn’t see many animals. In winter, animals prefer to stay in their respective abodes. Summer is when they become more thirsty, and that forces them to leave their homes and come near streams to quench their thirst. So, the chances of spotting a tiger were indeed very slim. But, there is a dense family of deer that you can easily spot any time of the year in Rnathambore National Park.
In the above click, the early morning sun rays are falling directly on a spotted deer’s face. It was an absolute joy to watch, and the chill in the air made the experience even more exciting. We did see other animals, some vultures atop some trees, and fresh footprints of a tiger, which the guide said, “Sorry guys, you probably missed the tiger by 10 minutes or so.” Yes, it sounded disappointing, but that’s how it is in a national park. You just need to be lucky.
We were lucky to have seen such a wonderful morning we never get to living in a city. Ranthambore National Park made our day, and since it was the first part of Rajasthan me and my wife were visiting, it made the next 10 days of our tour even more curious and exciting.
I recommend this national park, even though we couldn’t see much wildlife. One needs to spot the perfect time of the year to spot more and more animals. A tiger sighting would perhaps be the icing on the cake. Rajasthan is beautiful, and so is this sanctuary.