Safari guide has close encounter with African lion; video

An African lion got up from its comfy position in the bush to check out the safari tour vehicle parked not far away. It slowly walked up to the guide sitting at the front and gave him a look and a sniff before walking away.

Bjarne Olsen, 50, of Denmark captured the tense moment on video during a five-day safari at Kapama Game Reserve in Johannesburg, South Africa.

"As we were in a car we could get very close to the wild animals," Olsen told Caters News. "But we were told that we should not have our arms reaching outside the car, because if we sat still, the lions would only see the car as one big thing instead of a car with eight people inside.

“It was really exciting and when we saw the lion approaching, we all remained still as the lion took a sniff of the guide’s foot."

Apparently only their fingers were moving evidenced by the clicking cameras.

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“Seeing the lion up close was surreal," Olsen said. "I think the guide was relieved once it walked away, no one wants to become its next meal.”

Olsen said the group returned to the area later in the day and noticed the same group of lions getting ready to go hunting.

"So no doubt, the group of lions was hungry," he told Caters. "Knowing they were actually hungry made me realize how lucky we had been. The lion would most likely have attacked the guide, if he moved earlier that day."