Alex and Maddy

Alex and Maddy

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Wish Trip Day 2

Yesterday we headed to the San Diego Wild Animal Park which is the place that sparked Alex's wish. We were really looking forward to exploring the park and seeing the animals in more natural habitats. The main mission of the day was to see the zebras of course. When we got tot he park we asked the guest relations people which safari was the best to see the zebras. She suggested the "Cart Safari". You get to tour the plains in a golf cart and can get a lot closer tot he animals. It was a semi-private tour so we would be able to personalize it some. The only time we could get on was at 3:45 so we set out to explore the rest of the park before our tour. We started with the gorilla trail and some beautiful birds. We also got to see an African Porcupine. We were hoping to see the baby Gorilla (4 months) but he wasn't out. Then we passed some gibbon monkeys on the way to the elevator. When we reached the platform to take the elevator down to the lower level the view was absolutely breathtaking! I am amazed by the beauty of this park and this part of the country.

When we got to the lower level we were able to see the lions before heading to the Safari Tram. The tram was a 30 min tour around the outside of the African and Asian Plains. It was cool to see the animals in wide open spaces interacting in natural ways. We headed back up to the higher level and passed the animal care center on our way to the gift shop and a pit stop to the car! The gift shop was Alex Heaven! Zebras and animals everywhere. After a ride on the carousel and a quick bite to eat, we were able to interact with Robert the animated zebra.

We left Robert and headed on. We took at trail up to Condor Ridge which was equally as beautiful. We took a break up there and enjoyed the scenery. Then we had a long hike down a very steep trail that took us by tigers and elephants and giraffes. We had a little bit of time before our tour so we found a table and relaxed.

Then it was time for the highlight of our day...the cart safari! We were blessed with an incredible guide, Mary. She went out of her way to make it special for Alex. We were lucky that it was only us and one other family who didn't really care what they saw. We saw the giraffes and rhinos ands lots of antelopes and gazelles before heading to a part of the park that no other safari can go. We got to see 3 kinds of mountain goats and sheep that live on very steep rocky cliffs. Then she took us to see Somali wild Asses which are a cousin of the zebra. Alex thought it was hysterical that she was saying a bad word!

One of the coolest parts of the day was seeing Nola, a North African White Rhino. There are only 6 of this species left in the world. They are extinct in the wild. There are 2 in San Diego and 4 in kenya at a conservation center. She was really close to us and I got awesome pics. After seeing Nola we continued on to see the zebras. She let us get out of the cart and stand around and see them. On our way back we saw a newborn water buck that was only a few days old. when we got back to the station they surprised Alex with a zebra striped backpack full of zebra stckers, pencils, coloring book, etc. They were so sweet to him.

Another long day where we all crashed early. Off to legoland to make more incredible memories!

PS- I am leaving my camera home today to enjoy the rides with my Bug!

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