Cheetah Run, SD Safari Park

The San Diego Wild Animal Park changed it’s name to the Safari Park and I’m having trouble making myself call it by that name. I’ve known it as the WAP for so long. It used to be the rougher edged little brother to the World Renowned San Diego Zoo but on our recent trip we saw that they are really putting a lot of effort into making it as first class a facility as the Zoo.

The Wild Animal Park was never poorly kept or in bad shape. The animals have always been priority every trip there was fun. It was just not as ergonomically thought out as the Zoo. The new additions however have made is so that everything feels fluid, clean and beautiful. They have added some new attractions too, one of them is the Cheetah Run where they let a Cheetah get out and stretch his legs for a 100 dash of a lifetime. We actually didn’t know that it was happening, we just sort of walked into it about 25 mins before show time and decided to stick around.

Man it was pretty damned cool to see a Cheetah doing what a Cheetah does best. I learned that at full speed a Cheetah runs about 67 MPH. As a means of comparison they have a dog run the 100 yards to show you that fast is all relative. Before the Cheetah runs the handler explains that there’s a good chance you won’t get a good shot, and if you do its going to be of grass or a foot. But screw that warning! When am I ever going to get to shoot a Cheetah running full speed unless I go to Africa on a Photo Safari (you can read that as never going to happen), so it was worth trying. I don’t know how the other photogs faired but I feel pretty good about my shot. It’s certainly not easy shooting a cheetah (with a camera) but I think it was worth it. Also amazing to see I def recomment the Cheetah Run and the “safari