On our last evening at Ngala we went out on game drive a little early because Bernard said a male lion had been seen in the area and we wanted to see if we could find him. We had the vehicle to ourselves again and after driving to the part of the reserve in which the lion had last been seen, Bernard and Jimmy got out to track him on foot. They were successful! I had told Bernard in the beginning that I wanted to see a large male lion and he delivered. Jimmy knew where he was in the bush after their walk and so we drove in to get a closer look. It turned out he was not alone! Our big boy had found himself a lady friend. Not only did we get to see a large male lion in all his glory, but we got to see him mating with a lioness. We felt a little bad about intruding on their interlude but, Wow! It was really cool to see. This lion had clearly been in a scrap as you will see from the photos. We weren't sure if he had been in a fight with other males or females or what, but his left eye was pretty banged up and he had some wounds on his face. This is actually pretty common with lions. They can be very aggressive with one another as well as towards their prey. Jimmy thought this lion would recover just fine so that made me feel a bit better.
This was an incredible sighting to cap off our time at Ngala. Ngala means lion in the local Shangaan language, so it was quite fitting. We were lucky to sit with these lions and observe them by ourselves for quite a while before anyone else showed up. By that time we were ready to go off to find the perfect spot for sundowners and the sunset.