THE ELEPHANT CHARGE
Two of our jeeps started our journey through the Satiyana range, a 15 km Sal Forest stretch. The spring has just set in and Sal trees were shedding their leaves, the golden leaves floating in the air and on the forest floor were a treat to watch. Unusual was the presence of a number of spotted deer on the road, we realized that the new grass has sprouted on the road and they were there to relish them.
We were admiring the forest and the birds that suddenly our vehicle sped up and we heard a loud trumpeting call, we stuck to the jeep fearfully realizing that we had just crossed a charging elephant mother and the fearful trumpet was of the baby elephant who shouted in fear when the mother charged our jeep. The driver was so alert and trained that he reacted on time.
As the jeep stopped a Great Indian Hornbill flew in and landed on a tree near us and popped in his booty of fig after tossing it in the air as if partying with us on our escape. He looked at us, let us admire his beauty and flew on.
We took our jeep back a bit to take a look at the elephant family, the mother was still looking at us and the baby happily grazing near him.
When we returned after three hours we again encountered the duo on the same track and heard the trumpeting of the baby. Our guide has suspected this so we passed him safely admiring his size and strength!