I wanted to see wild elephants and there are numerous wildlife areas here in Sri Lanka where elephants and leopards, sloth bears, mongeese, several types of deer and such still roam freely. We took 4WD vehicles into the park and bounced along the muddy trails through the low jungle growth.
This was our first elephant sighting, off along the tree line. The drivers are good--they don't get too close to disturb the elephants and they don't let people out to get closer. Guess you need a good zoom on the cameras.
Three of my cameras have now given up the ghost and these shots are from the iPhone and/or the Sony that our driver somehow managed to coax into working for a while.
The shot above is a zoom of the first elephant, but the others are about how we saw them.
An elephant on the roadside as we left the park area. We bounced around for hours standing in the back of a 4WD vehicle and this was closer than we ever got to an elephant inside the park!
Flowers at the roadside lunch stop restaurant.
The second elephant we saw in the park seemed to be a young one, not quite so big.
A zoom of the young elephant. You can see how they throw the reddish dirt onto their backs to keep the sun from scorching them. The middle of the day isn't the best time to view elephants int he wild.
The landscape at Hurulu Eco Park. Some granite rocky outcrops. While we missed the big herds of elephants that supposedly live around here, we did see hawk eagles, a mongoose, a golden jackal, a chameleon, storks and other assorted birds.
We had a good weather day and got scorched in the sun from standing and holding on in the vehicle as we bounced along the muddy trails. The two birds are actually storks circling above us.