the safari guide Javier Remon he was spotting lions in western Uganda when he learned it was near him a baby elephant was trapped in a well. In that region of the country there are areas where the ground is affected by craters and tunnels – remnants of ancient volcanoes – which cause problems from time to time.
The news, communicated by a group of tourists who were in a 4×4 around the area, reached the ears of the Argentine around seven in the morning. The elephant, Javier is encouraged to claim, would have fallen into the well during the night because it is an animal which, unlike the eagle and like the owl, sees badly and hears well.
To have suffered such a painful accident, the individual would have had to detach himself from a group of females (pups do not walk alone or with males) and sadly, as a result, they must also have seen how the herd left without that her presence had failed in its attempt to get him out of here.
Not long after the report, Javier and a group of rangers -that’s what park rangers are called in Africa- they were in Queen Elizabeth National Park with one goal: take the elephant out of the well. Remón celebrates that the animal fell into a Ugandan den because in neighboring countries, such as Tanzania, there are humans who may be less contemplative in situations like this…
There is a series of videos where you can witness the hard work of the rangers, Javier and Uganda Conservation Foundation staff and other park workers in an effort to save the animal. No less tiring than what the poor elephant did in his attempt to get out of the den.
The biggest problem, for the more confident, was one: that the elephant would not come out. For others, however, the question was complicated for two reasons: because the elephant could not get out and because, if it got out, it could attack anyone who helped it to do so. On this last point, Javier says it was very unlikely to happen.
In the images, we said, you can see how a rangers Dig one side of the hole to create a ramp that will help the elephant get up and out.
Once the gap is reached, the next step was to turn the animal. To achieve this, Javier and those who were present tried to get the victim to do it by their own means, which they did not take long to achieve.
But when the ramp didn’t help, rescuers resorted to using a sand truck to improvise solid ground to serve as a base for the elephant so he could step on it, get up and walk away. And plan B worked: the animal, with the help of the sand, pushed far enough, climbed on two legs on the wall of the well as if it were a human being and finally managed to re-emerge.
Already at the same level as everyone present, the individual set off to who knows where and no, he didn’t attack anyone as some believed and Javier knew it very well.
Rescuing the little giant is one of the most incredible things Remón experienced on his last safari. “It’s exciting to see him make the effort”, shared Javier in dialogue with Clarín. But like these episodes, dozens.
For him, the most spectacular thing about safaris is seeing an animal hunt. Witnessing a cheetah run isn’t far behind either. Having a lion watching you from a few feet away, much less.
Once, for example, they “faced” face to face (or hood against trunk), as if it were a duel. fordian, to a particular male elephant. The animal was walking with great impetus on the same road where he was traveling by car and one of the two had to run yes or yes. Javier did what his own manual says: he stopped the car and waited. The elephant then, having arrived a few meters in front of him, made a strange movement with its trunk, as if it were complaining, ran away and continued on his way.
On another occasion, an elephant — remember, they have vision problems — “crashed” into their car and accidentally stuck a tusk in the window. So that the animal’s huge tooth would not continue to enter, Remón lightly stopped the fang with the palm of his hand, the tooth stopped and the animal calmly backed away. A scene that shares tension with anyone appearing in Jurassic Park.
Furthermore, and this is no less spectacular, he saw a hundred of these mammals perform an incomprehensible conclave together.
“Is it dangerous to go on safari in Africa?”, we asked Javier. “It’s more dangerous to live in Buenos Aires,” he replied.
For the specialist there are only three animals that attack you if they see you: the Bengal tiger, the polar bear and the crocodile (the only one that can appear in Africa).
“If you follow the rules it is unlikely that an animal will kill you. The chance is one in a million,” says Remón. The most normal thing is the accident, he tells us, while clarifying that the animals “they don’t attack just because”.
What is it like to go on safari?
The Argentine, with his company Kifaru Expeditions (@javierremonsafaris), proposes “tailor-made safaris” and various types, including one on a motorcycle. There are different difficulties and for different adrenaline levels.
If a person wants to go on a safari in Africa, he can contact him and the first thing he will do is ask him questions. He will ask you which animals you want to see, how many days you intend to go, how many people will accompany you and where you would like to stay (campsite or hotel, for example), and based on this you will create a budget.
The amounts can be varied. Those who prefer camping will pay less than those who want to sleep in beautiful hotels. For example, a recently driven family of four paid for a “semi-luxury” (yes, not all-luxury) safari about $27,000.
Once the matter is agreed, Javier picks up the adventurers on duty at the corresponding airport (or sends someone to do it) and together they hit the road by car to the chosen area as soon as possible.
The safari goes in and out of national parks and includes encounters with local tribes. On a four day tour Javier led recently they saw 75 lions, 13 cheetahs, 3 leopards, hunting hyenas and mating lions. There are times when the package is complete.
Javier doesn’t stop travelling. So he landed on the most mysterious continent of all and managed to move steadily like a fish in water between 19 of his own countries. He got acquainted with the world of safari having traversed the entire territory and for having an adventurous and extremely sporty spirit (and a past).
He made his way from Patagonia to East Africa but not before dreaming of becoming a veterinarian and studying law, played on the Argentine kayak polo team, led kayaking expeditions, worked as a photographer, climbed Aconcagua, Everest and Kilimanjaro or went scuba diving in seas and lakes on four continents.
Before being a safari guide in Africa, he earned his place by holding various jobs, the first being as a rescue kayaker on rafting tours.
After spending more than a month in Egypt meeting the right people to help him satisfy his thirst for adventure, Remón returned home hoping to set foot on those lands as soon as possible. And the power of his agenda kicked in: he was only out of the territory for a year, soon after being approached to work on the Zambezi River.
Once again in Africa, a Spanish safari company called him to get his services as a safari guide. That would be where he would get his competence on the subject and where he would extend his adrenaline-filled and adventurous stay on the continent for years, and not even he knows when.
Mary Ortiz is a seasoned journalist with a passion for world events. As a writer for News Rebeat, she brings a fresh perspective to the latest global happenings and provides in-depth coverage that offers a deeper understanding of the world around us.