The H1-2 tar road is the main road between Skukuza camp and theTshokwane Picnic Area and to prevent the tar from melting in the sweltering summer heat in certain stretches parts of the tar road is covered in sand.
The first stretch, closer to Skukuza which runs on the northern bank of the Sand River is dense on either side of the road. This is a excellent place to find leopards in the early morning and late afternoon. The road crosses two low bridges, one across the Sabie River and one across the Sand River. These are flooded when the river rises and happens every so often in the rainy season.
Driving north-east on the H1-2 from Skukuza there are a number of places to stop along the way. Taking the S83 Maroela loop often produces lion sightings. Just north-west of the junction with the S36 you will find Mantimahle Dam. The view from either side is rather poor, but with luck one will still be able animals drinking or taking a bath. The Elephant waterhole turn-off is not that much further in the direction of Tshokwane and is definitely worth a visit for some memorable sightings.
Further along the road you will find two more stops. The first, the Eileen Orpen Rocks and second, the Kruger Tablets. You are allowed to alight from your vehicle at the Kruger Tablets, but watch out for lions or leopards resting on the rocks or elephants feeding close by.
Approaching Tshokwane you will pass two more water points: Leeupan, which is unpredictable for animals but good for birding and Siloweni Dam where Hippos may be seen.
As you get closer to Tshokwane the H1-2 opens up and becomes very scenic. Cheetahs are sometimes found in this north-eastern stretch of the H1-2 and Elephants are also common.
One of the most rewarding reasons to drive the H1-2 is when you spot the extremely rare sable antelope The area around Elephant waterhole or Olifantdrinkgat where the S36 splits to the north, is one of the best areas in the whole park to search for this elusive and elegant antelope.
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