Elephant Terrorises Elvis at Babala Picnic Spot Kruger National Park
The day after my encounter with the 2 charging elephants on the H1-8 road from Pafuri to Punda Maria I was doing the S56 drive east towards the H1-7 and at about 4 pm arrived at the Babala picnic spot. This picnic spot is situated on the banks of the Dungile (muddy or silted) Creek
At picnic spots like Babala it is possible to get out of the car and walk around, buy a cool-drink or even have a barbecue. When I arrived there were no other cars there and I could not see any person in attendance. Picnic spots are looked after by people who actually live at the spot and there are normally a couple of people or even a family.
On this day as I discovered later only Elvis was at the picnic spot since his colleague was away for the day. This is how I met Elvis ...
I drove into the parking lot and got out of my car. As I walked towards the cool-drink fridges I heard the call ...
"Don't you see that elephant? He is very aggressive".
At that point I looked behind me and to the right and saw a man calling to me and pointing towards the fridges. On looking again I saw this very large elephant right next to the thatched building into which he was blending perfectly (see picture of a similar structure).
I quickly got back into the car and drove over to where the man was. He told me his name was Elvis and that he had been charged by the elephant after it had been upset by a busload of visitors followed by a car whose driver insisted upon revving the engine continuously.
Elvis told me how he had to run around a building to escape the elephant and he had now taken up refuge in the toilets about 50 metres from the elephant. To get from his house from the toilets was about 100 metres.
He asked me to report what was happening to the Vlakteplaas station which I did soon afterwards by meeting with a senior park ranger on the road.
I learned on the evening of Thursday 2 days later that the elephant had been shot since upon investigation it had been decided it was just too aggressive and potentially dangerous.