I asked her if she had a current Passport…yup was the answer. Well then, I guess I have to take her to Africa to watch me doing a little bow hunting….rough job but I had to do it!
Here she is sitting in the Atlanta Airport awaiting a 15 1/2 hour flight to Johannesburg. I think she’s a bit excited.
Purchased two seats in Economy Comfort class. Not too bad, but did cost $2100 each.
Took me a couple sleeping pills (prescribed) around my normal bedtime. Lights were out for the next ten hours. Two movies and a couple meals, we were arriving in Africa.
A big breakfast in the morning and around 9:30 our driver arrive to take us on a 3-4 hour trip to the hunting grounds with Dries Visser Safaris.
Once we got out of the city, the country-side was nice. Lots of agriculture.
I wanted a nice Kudu, Zebra, Impala, and Warthog.
Tour of the main lodge. Very nice with lots of high quality trophies.
I'm an eggs and meat guy when out hunting. Asked my PH if I could have that for each breakfast...sure enough, Chef Mike had a full spread of everything we wanted.
If you don't let them know what you want, you'll never get it. We all ate like kings.
Wild-Man Mike is on the right and J-Dog Jason is sitting to the left of Liz. The other three are PH's.
My field points and Rage 2-bladed, 125g were dead-on, while my G5 Montecs were 4 inches off. I told my PH something's wrong. A couple more shots and all were good. My PH said my Jetlag was off! lol
I was in for a "gentleman’s hunt" you might say.
First morning we had a few cow Kudu come in for a drink and a bite to eat.
The video camera was rolling as I drew and settled in. My PH kept saying wait, wait, wait. I surly wasn't going to shoot until he said too. He then said once the cow clears, shoot. As the cow walked by and her rump cleared the vitals by a foot, I shot. The Rage 2-bladed arrow found it's mark and blood was seen pouring out as the bull ran off.
This wasn't the bull, but you get the idea.
You see, we don't exit the hide unless the truck drives up. (The animals are used to a truck coming around adding feed to the hide area.
It was sort-of like shooting sweetie birds of my mom's bird feeder with a BB gun way back when. Fun to say the least.
We took up the heavy blood trail and about 100 yards later, this was at the end. Wow, was this a big and majestic animal. I was in awe at the beauty and size of the horns.
SCI Gold level bow killed Kudu.
I asked if any were mature ones. He carefully studied them using his binos and said one was a good one.
The camera was rolling and I found myself once again at full draw focusing on the small spot where he said to aim.
I like short track jobs!
This once scored 55 3/8" Missed the SCI Bronze level by 5/8"!
I'm starting to like hunting from these hides...I hate snakes, especially the ones that can kill you. Damn...these Black Mambas are very fast and aggressive. Not to mention the most deadly snake in Africa! Crap!!!
Don't forget to tell the story of how we almost pasted that kid who ran across the road. Whew!
Well, Mike, that kid sure was lucky.
We were traveling down the paved road from Jo-Burg to DVS, out in the country. An occasional person was seen walking along the road or in the nearby fields.
All of a sudden this young kid decides to cross the road to join his friends. Not 50 yards in front of us here he dashes across the road directly in front of us. We were traveling at about 50+ mph. The driver with Mike riding shotgun (steering wheel on the right side) and the rest of us all saw the "stupid" kid at the same time.
The driver hit the brakes and horn while the rest of us braced for the impending crash! Mike had a front row seat for this as the kid passed just inches from the front left portion of the bumper.
Soon after we missed the kid, the driver (somewhat shaken) asked for a drink! A drink of water; bet he really wanted a double whiskey and Coke.
Not the actual person that we nearly killed, but locals.
Kudu, Impala, Gemsbok, warthogs, Eland, Zebra, Waterbuck, a Brown Hyena, Blue Wildebeest, Red Hartebeest, and lots of birds. Saw one Jackal that I missed. They are fast, it ducked my arrow from 25 yards or so.
These pigs were too small. Actually we only saw one good mature male pig on the second day. We passed, should have shot it, but now I have to return for another hunt.
Zebra have extremely high sense of smell and will stay a couple hundred yards away out of sight for an hour or two before approaching the water. They will also sometimes circle the hide checking for scent. A very crafty animal.
Take II: Kool looking bird.
Thanks Chef Mike!
Thanks Chef Mike!
The male Ostrich is black and white, the female gray. He explained these birds can kick the crap out of you if they choose. I passed.
Great pics and story.
Nice place for lunch.
What was your equipment setup? I know you were shooting Rage BH's but what pound bow and type of arrow shaft?
This is a really interesting and educational thread that you have going.
Thanks again for sharing.
Waiting for the "green Light" from my trusty PH (Johan).
Johan was very meticulous in picking which animal is the best to shoot. He kept telling me we could do better...most of the time he was right.
On the second from last day a group of Zebras came to the water. We had one yearling and three mature ones standing broadside at 18 yards. I really wanted one and even pleaded by telling him I’m not picky! The hides were not high quality, then he said one was pregnant. Game over. I relaxed, I’m not shooting a pregnant Zebra regardless how nice the hide was.
Without warning, a Kudu started barking…all the animals (35+) of different species scattered in a big hurry. The winds had once again switched for a few minutes.
One day while hunting Impala, I had to exercise the "client override" button. I shot two rams that were mature, but past their prime. I was running out of time and they all looked great to me.
On the second day while waiting all day for the mighty, elusive Zebra to show, some real nice Gemsbok came in for a snack.
I asked if any were shooters, a short time later he said yes. Then I asked if the hides make good rugs; once again the answer was YES...I said get out of the way, I'm gonna shoot me a Gemsbok.
Camera rolling, I soon settled my 20 yard pin on the large male's shoulder. Broadside, I released. Arrow once again found the mark, but looked a couple inches too much forward.
The animal bolted as I watched wondering if the broadhead did it's job. My PH reviewed the footage and believed the shot was a heart shot.
Shortly afterwards the tracker arrived and we quickly exited the hide. There was very little blood and we found my broken arrow. I was worried that I just wounded a beautiful animal and we were in for a long track job.
I stayed behind as the tracker and my PH tracked the wounded Gemsbok. Soon Cornie (the tracker) came running back and grabbed the rifle and returned to the bush.
They must have found the animal and needed to finish it off. I waited for the sound of a rifle shot.
Minutes later my PH was seen waiving me to follow. He didn't say a word; I just followed. Less than a 100 yards later he pointed to my latest trophy, dead. YAHHH!!!
The arrow did it's job via severing the trachea and nicking one lung. The shot missed the heart by an inch.
The tracking was easy for them, one front leg was dragging.
The vitals are much more forward and the wound if often sealed via the heavy shoulder muscles.
I don't have any pictures of Impala, however Dries Visser is putting together a video that includes the shots and post-shot interview.
I'll post some once I receive the DVD.
On the way out, we stopped at the other ranch and had a short chat with a group of tame Ostriches.
The asking price is never firm. Haggle haggle haggle. I liked that, Liz was just the opposite. No problem, I haggled for her.
We used US dollars and Visa, mostly green-backs in small bills ($20's and less).
Always bring a self-inflating seat cushion if hunting in a hide.
Bring hand sanitizer to clean hands in the hide.
Bring a bar of soap. African soap doesn't lather like American soaps.
Bring souvenir money in small bills. Use Visa when possible. You normally get a better exchange rate from your credit card company.
Lock your check-in bags. Use zip-ties on the smaller external compartments.
Fly direct from Atlanta via Delta airlines if possible. Purchase Economy Comfort at the very least and get an aisle seat.
Pack light, there's daily laundry service.
Take lots of pictures. I used a Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS camera. Worked great.
Have extra memory card and battery. Bring charger too.
DVS had an adapter in the room. I didn't need anything else for power.
If hunting only from a hide, use one green pin set at 20 yards. Keep it simple.
Have lighted pins. I used a Montana Gold sight with light. Used the light a couple times.
Bring a rangefinder to confirm distances.
Bring a good set of binos. Makes looking at animals more enjoyable.
Wear black hoodie in the hide.
Bring a fleece vest.
Make sure your clothing is quite. These animals have keen hearing.
High-top hiking shoes are fine.
Every plant seems to have spikes. Sneakers are a no-go for hunting. Spikes pierce the soles. Ask J-Dog Jason about this!
Bring a good book to read while in the hide. The sits are all day.
Carry a couple arrows with Judo points for shooting guinea hens for the chef. They taste great.
That's about it.
Hope you all enjoyed my pictorial adventure.
Best wishes, Russell
I never was keen on Africa but now u have spiked my interest.
First time I shot during practice, my eyes switched (I shoot with both eyes open). Closed one eye to make sure.
Center the animal in the widow and I had no issues while shooting with both eyes open.