In 2019, I made plans for another trip to bowhunt South Africa in 2020. After researching outfitters, I selected Dries Visser Safaris. As we all know, Covid-19 changed everyone’s plan for hunting in 2020. My original trip was cancelled and new trip dates were planned for 2021. I recently returned from my hunt.
I set several goals for this trip:
1. I needed one animal to complete the SCI Continental Award- Africa 15. My animal species choices were steenbok, bush duiker or reedbuck; 2. I needed a black wildebeest to complete the South African “Beest Slam.” This slam includes the blue wildebeest, black wildebeest and the red hartebeest; and 3. I wanted to have an enjoyable, fun hunt.
Due to Delta Airline schedule changes my original 10-day hunt was shorten to a 9-day hunt. As we all know, a day in a hunt can make a major difference. I knew that with the shorten time, I would have to be flexible and adapt.
Day 2 of my hunt I took a beautiful whopper trophy quality mountain reedbuck; Day 4 of my hunt I took a beautiful, aged trophy quality black wildebeest. I initially shot it with a bow, had to track it and shoot it with a .375 rifle and was able to close in on the animal with a bow; Day 6 of hunt my I took an ancient impala ram with a .243 rifle with a “can”; Day 7 of my hunt I took a beautiful trophy steenbok with the .243 rifle. I had missed one earlier in the day with my bow; Day 8 of my hunt I took an ancient, whooper trophy bush duiker with the .243 rifle.
On this hunt I got to bowhunt, spot and stalk with a gun, shoot a .375 caliber rifle, got to see a .457 Lott caliber rifle and ammo, night hunt, tag along on a zebra hunt on my final day in camp and witness God’s display of beauty in some awesome sunrises and sunsets. I saw several species of animals I had never seen before- the golden wildebeest, the golden gemsbok and the king wildebeest, plus many “night” animals. Also saw several bird species that I had not seen on previous African hunts. I experienced hunting in some unusual hunting conditions- extremely high winds with blinding dust and also hunting in the rain in South Africa. Experienced some awesome food. I met some great people- DVS staff and great hunters from many states in the U.S. It’s always great to meet fellow Bowsiters. I got to meet “Jailer” from Bowsite on this trip. I also got to see and experience first-hand the global impact of Covid-19.
This was truly a unique and exciting adventure- a memory I will always treasure.
Heins Lottering was my PH for 2.5 days. I got to know of Heins through Bigpizzaman's post on his leopard hunts. Then met Heins in person at a DSC Convention. Then attended a party in Mississippi where he was in attendance. Heins was reassigned to some first-time African hunters. I assured them that they were in good hands with Heins.
My second PH for the remainder of my hunt (6.5 days) was Frank du Plessis. This was Frank's first year with DVS. He is a seasoned and knowledgable PH.
Both PH's did outstanding jobs- very professional, personable, knowledgeable and customer oriented.