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While we are in a continual struggle to get closer and closer to the jackal action to enable us to get the required close ups, this particular jackal (see pic) was more curious about us then we were about him. He actually became a nuisance trying to steal our ground sheet and bits of equipment. We eventually called him “Pest”.

The final straw was when Eric, our researcher, with his spade in hand, took a walk into the desert for his morning ablutions. After a while we heard a cry for help. Thinking snakebite or broken limb we rushed to his aid only to discover that Pest had stolen his toilet paper, leaving him high and not so dry.

This shoot is made in one of the most inhabitable places on Earth. This piece of rough coastline is probably the windiest in Africa and during our last period of filming we were plagued with some serious wind storms that made filming extremely difficult. Not only does the wind effect the filming but it also changes the landscape, making following tracks or finding ones way through the dunes almost impossible.

During this filming period we were on our way back from Bakers Bay, about 30 km’s down the coast from our base at Van Reenans Bay. At one point the route winds its way through the dunes and every trip is a mission, trying to find a way through. Typically we would get stuck on average 3 or 4 times during each journey. This time we found ourselves in a huge sandstorm with visibility about 2 to 3 meters at most. We had just dug ourselves out of a drift (Much like a snow drift where the sand is very soft) and we continued in the direction we thought would get us to camp. After awhile the landscape seemed to change with the dunes becoming much bigger than we remembered. We had taken a wrong turn and were heading deep into the desert. While it seems this can be easily rectified, not only is turning around in the thick sand a recipe for disaster but if one gets too badly stuck or lost in the dunes this mistake could not only lose us much valuable time but also our equipment and vehicle.

After spending a few painful hours on foot in the stinging sandstorm looking for manageable tracks, we managed to turn around and find a relatively traversable route westwards, directly towards the coastline where we finally found the way home.

It goes without saying the night was spent blowing sand out of lenses and equipment.

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