Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Walking Safari in the Panna-Bandhavgarh Tiger Corridor

At the end of February, Pugdundee Safaris organized a walking jungle safari in India through the famous Panna - Bandavgarh wildlife corridor. The intrepid walkers included (among others) Christina  Pochmursky, a Toronto-based documentary filmmaker and writer/director at Walk the Talk Productions Inc, and Iain Allan, founder, owner and chief guide of the Nairobi-based company, Tropical Ice, who initiated the concept of walking safaris in East Africa in 1978. Iain has been leading adventure safaris in East Africa ever since.

Panna - Bandhavgarh Camp

The genesis of the walk was a desire to protect and promote interest in a stretch of forest that links the Panna and Bandhavgarh National Parks. This forested area could provide a vital wildlife corridor for tigers and other wide-ranging species. Our aim was to explore the possibility of bringing groups to Walk in the Footsteps (or pugmarks) of the Tiger in the northern Panna and southern Shyamgiri corridors. The reason ? Because well-managed, low-volume tourism can generate not only income, but also a sense of ownership among locals through revenue-sharing, which can help to conserve the region. In addition, small groups of people walking regularly through the corridor will act as wildlife patrols and ultimately benefit the ecosystem and the tiger. Left to itself, the area will probably lose much of its forest cover over the next few decades.

Mamabehene Camp

Ajit Rana at Ken River Lodge and Jonathan Peach, an experienced safari guide based at Kanha Earth Lodge spent several days exploring the corridor area marking out possible routes and campsites. Staff and managers from all Pugdundee’s lodges pitched in, making it a truly pan Pugdundee venture.

Walking Safari