Africa 2022

OntarioHunter

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Another African tale about Mzee {respected old man)
We were in great elephant country but after many days were having a tough time finding, “the big one”. The crew was getting discouraged. One night they came to us in a group and wanted us to go see the wizard living in a small hut in a nearby village. My PH indicated he did not believe in magic but a visit would give the men renewed confidence and enthusiasm to hunt hard and be watchful. So at dawn off we went to see the wizard. All the villagers gathered round his hut to watch. He did not disappoint and put on an award winning performance. He drew a circle in the dirt and with great gestures placed an axe in the center. the placing a foot on the ax head he thumped the handle up and down crying out, waving his hands and shouting in an unknown tongue. His visions instructions were interpreted we should go to a certain place where we would see three decent bulls but cautioned not to shoot them but then after which we were to go to another specific place where we would find the right bull And kill it. After this it was not clear but we would see a leopard and something strange would happed but he did not know what it was. He would not take money because in that area they had no use for it in those days. All i had i did not need was a pair of Longs Drugstore cheap eye glasses . These he proudly wore because no one else in a 100 miles had eye glasses. Never mind he could not see through them.
We followed his instructions and his visions all came to pass and I took a great 80 pounder. However, afterward government agents asked us to take care of a problem leopard. While taking care of the cat I got mauled.. while waiting for an small emergency plane on a hastily cleared area I mentioned to the crew what a wise old man the wizard was. They looked at me in horror and stated, “ he was a crazy old fool but could read the future!’ I love Africa
As I recall, that was the kindly leopard who saved your life by chewing you up. Didn't they discover stage three colon cancer at the hospital? The old wizard nailed it. His fee was a pair of $1 reading cheaters. What a deal! And the leopard who deserved a medal was paid with a bullet.
 
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Salmonchaser

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The rest of the story:
The Eland was a great hunt, we crawled through that short grass for quite a while to access a draw, once there we were able to hustle up to a little knob that put us about 280 yards out. Then it took about five minutes for the cows to clear enough for a safe shot. I’ve killed moose, eland are huge. Was told by the ”Farmer” he weighed just over 1500 pounds when they got him to the meat room.
The landscape had changed dramatically from the area near Durban where we started. Near Durban it was rough, very brushy, humid and down right warm. Here it was all grass land; very much resembling parts of Eastern Oregon, or Montana or Wyoming. IT was also cold, apparently the coldest region of South Africa, and we were at 6000 feet above sea level.
We left the Stromberg ranch and headed to the main ranch (farm) About 30 miles out of Bedford. About 1 1/2 hours south east. The country remained very much like eastern Oregon, juniper and pine replaced by Acacia. Rugged country but relatively open. Just out of the town Of Bedford I saw a sign that read Pringle farms. Every couple of miles, for 30 miles was another sign reading Pringle farms. When we finally arrived at Andrew Pringles farm I told Catherine, “ this looks like hunting heaven”
That afternoon we looked at several Kudu, passed on several different species; waterbuck, blessbuck Impala, clipspringer duiker, hogs etc. and finally ran out of light on a Kudu bull. I was beginning to feel like Hemingway.
The next day we were bouncing down a trail when we spotted a great warthog. Sean (PH) locked up the brakes and started yelling shoot him. So I did. At the shot a Kudu bull got up near by but we let him go. Ugh.
We saw game the rest of the day, just not the right Kudu.
Next day Catherine stayed in. Good internet and she had received some information from US State Department regarding her efforts to get her interpreter out of Afganistan.
The PH and I checked out a ridge where we had seen a good bull, bumped a couple then made a stalk on one we could see laying up under a tree, looked good but when we got to about 300 he turned his head and revealed a broken horn. Jeepers
We hiked a little ways and spotted several kudu going into a canyon quite a ways up the mountain. Wind was bad for us so we double timed it back to the rig, drove about five miles and put the wind in our face. We had hiked about a mile, game of one kind or another was always in view it seemed. Giraffe, Hartebeast, Impala it was crazy. Simms, the tracker started pointing and telling us Kudu, Took Sean and I a few minutes to find him with our binoculars. 1200 yards, bedded under an Acacia was a pretty good looking bull. We made it to 500 yards and busted some Kudu cows. He gets up, I dial for 500 on the borrowed 300 and get into a kneeling position. I sent the first one right over his back, Sean called it and I held low on the shoulder crease and tapped the trigger again. Down, but his head came up so I hit him again. More stories to follow
 

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Salmonchaser

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Finished off the hunt with a good bushbuck, an Impala, wildebeest and a blesbuck. This was 100% free range hunting. From arrival to leaving I saw multiple animals I could have or would have shot had I a fat wallet. I can’t say enough good about this operation. If you would like more, get in touch, I’ll answer the questions I can.
 

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OntarioHunter

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Very nice blesbuck. Heavy horns. He will score well.

Who's handling your taxidermy? Not Karoo I hope.
 

OntarioHunter

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No, We are using Africa Wildlife Artistry.
Randi, that's always an option 😂
Good to hear. You won't believe the mess the other outfit made of last year's trophies shipment. For starters, they drilled holes through the TIPS of the horns to hang ID tags! And it gets worse. The dental implants must have been done by a blind person with Parkinsons and a bucket of epoxy glue. My magnificent black wildebeest with bosses almost grown together was ruined by overcooking. The first shipment of 2019 trophies was just about as bad. All skulls were PAINTED white, teeth missing on all skulls (totally on cape buffalo), rotting flesh, bugs, etc. They made big promises to make things right and then this crap arrives. Splitting Image also in PE has been in contact re my upcoming trip. He promises to do things right and the video of their shop operation and procedures was encouraging. Oh, I almost forgot ... DO NOT LET REX FORWARDERS (aka "Wammy Washers") GET THEIR HANDS ON YOUR STUFF. Right now, before you forget, contact AWA and make SURE they are NOT using those pirates to ship your stuff. They ripped me off for about a $1K and nothing I could do but pay or lose my stuff once it was in their warehouse (without my permission).

I hope you get your trophies before I head over in August. I'm not locked in at Splitting Image. Be good to know how you make out. Euros or shoulder mounts or both? A shoulder mount of your eland would require a freighter all its own to get it over here. A Lord Derby eland is, believe it or not, half again larger than what you shot. They are not naturally in SA and I believe they're now on the CITES list. I saw a shoulder mount Lord Derby in Minneapolis Cabelas. It was hanging between two South African eland. WOW!
 

Randi

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I have not been to Africa but my grandparents have hunted the dark continent a few times and they loved your stories and congratulate you on your success .

They were curious, whether or not you elected to, not hunt the Gemsbok, Zebra, and Giraffe or did not have the opportunity.

They and I wanted to congratulate you on the 500 yard shot with a borrowed rifle/scope/ammo !

They also wondered if the people you used offered you the opportunity to return and help cull animals, if they do that. The trophies are not always that good, but the hunting is I am told.

I was curious which of the big five would you hunt, if you were given the opportunity. It is funny how everybody is different on this one. I know April likes Lion. My grandfather Elephant, My grandmother Buffalo. Actually I think your choices are now only four as the Rhino is no longer available to hunt in most countries anyway. I enjoy mountain lion and brown bear hunts, so maybe the lion for me, but I would think I died and went to heaven if I could hunt all the animals you just did on your trip . So very happy for you!

Did Catherine have any success in getting her interpretation out of Afghanistan ?

--------

OH---April or Happymyles would know about the Lord Derby, as I was just told by my grandparents that they have both hunted them and the Bongo in either C.A. R, or Cameroon, but that you may or may not be able to hunt those countries at this time. Check with the State Dept. ( I personally have no clue )
 

Salmonchaser

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Good to hear. You won't believe the mess the other outfit made of last year's trophies shipment. For starters, they drilled holes through the TIPS of the horns to hang ID tags! And it gets worse. The dental implants must have been done by a blind person with Parkinsons and a bucket of epoxy glue. My magnificent black wildebeest with bosses almost grown together was ruined by overcooking. The first shipment of 2019 trophies was just about as bad. All skulls were PAINTED white, teeth missing on all skulls (totally on cape buffalo), rotting flesh, bugs, etc. They made big promises to make things right and then this crap arrives. Splitting Image also in PE has been in contact re my upcoming trip. He promises to do things right and the video of their shop operation and procedures was encouraging. Oh, I almost forgot ... DO NOT LET REX FORWARDERS (aka "Wammy Washers") GET THEIR HANDS ON YOUR STUFF. Right now, before you forget, contact AWA and make SURE they are NOT using those pirates to ship your stuff. They ripped me off for about a $1K and nothing I could do but pay or lose my stuff once it was in their warehouse (without my permission).

I hope you get your trophies before I head over in August. I'm not locked in at Splitting Image. Be good to know how you make out. Euros or shoulder mounts or both? A shoulder mount of your eland would require a freighter all its own to get it over here. A Lord Derby eland is, believe it or not, half again larger than what you shot. They are not naturally in SA and I believe they're now on the CITES list. I saw a shoulder mount Lord Derby in Minneapolis Cabelas. It was hanging between two South African eland. WOW!
I will let you know, the outfitter has been using this out fit for quite a while. Hornady is a regular customer, did there field work with the PRC cartridges at Crusaders. I’m having all Euro mounts. Combination of room at home and I went over to shoot four spirals, shot five plus an additional five animals. Shot my budget to hell.
 

Salmonchaser

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I have not been to Africa but my grandparents have hunted the dark continent a few times and they loved your stories and congratulate you on your success .

They were curious, whether or not you elected to, not hunt the Gemsbok, Zebra, and Giraffe or did not have the opportunity.

They and I wanted to congratulate you on the 500 yard shot with a borrowed rifle/scope/ammo !

They also wondered if the people you used offered you the opportunity to return and help cull animals, if they do that. The trophies are not always that good, but the hunting is I am told.

I was curious which of the big five would you hunt, if you were given the opportunity. It is funny how everybody is different on this one. I know April likes Lion. My grandfather Elephant, My grandmother Buffalo. Actually I think your choices are now only four as the Rhino is no longer available to hunt in most countries anyway. I enjoy mountain lion and brown bear hunts, so maybe the lion for me, but I would think I died and went to heaven if I could hunt all the animals you just did on your trip . So very happy for you!

Did Catherine have any success in getting her interpretation out of Afghanistan ?

--------

OH---April or Happymyles would know about the Lord Derby, as I was just told by my grandparents that they have both hunted them and the Bongo in either C.A. R, or Cameroon, but that you may or may not be able to hunt those countries at this time. Check with the State Dept. ( I personally have no clue )
The last morning of our hunt we ran into Gemsbok. We gave one good bull some consideration but I had just done the math on my trophy fees to date; left him for next time. 10 good animals was enough. Actually walked up on a giraffe when we were looking at the Gemsbok and just before I shot my Kudu, no desire to shoot one. Yes, a little cull shooting is available but not as an exclusive package.
Since that time 15 years ago when that brown bear slipped up behind me and sniffed my neck I made a deal with apex predators, grizz in particular, I don‘t shoot any more of you you dont eat me. Worked for the rest of my guiding career in Alaska. I’ll stick with it. I’ll make the same deal with Lions Etc. Buffaloes however I’ll hunt them next time.
She needed to find one document when we got home. Spent three days going through everything she had and on the phone with the state department. No luck. Very sad. I think it was day five she sat up in bed about 0200, woke me up and asked if there were any boxes in the shop attic. Don’t think so I said. I was ordered to go look. Behind one of my rolled up wall tents was a small box that actually contained the one document she needed for state. She has done everything she can, it’s up to the state department now. With Ukraine it looks like hurry up and wait as far as the Afgans are concerned. We keep praying. I did take a zebra. Cull, he had been wounded a week before we got there. Still moving but slower and sick.
 

OntarioHunter

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I have not been to Africa but my grandparents have hunted the dark continent a few times and they loved your stories and congratulate you on your success .

They were curious, whether or not you elected to, not hunt the Gemsbok, Zebra, and Giraffe or did not have the opportunity.

They and I wanted to congratulate you on the 500 yard shot with a borrowed rifle/scope/ammo !

They also wondered if the people you used offered you the opportunity to return and help cull animals, if they do that. The trophies are not always that good, but the hunting is I am told.

I was curious which of the big five would you hunt, if you were given the opportunity. It is funny how everybody is different on this one. I know April likes Lion. My grandfather Elephant, My grandmother Buffalo. Actually I think your choices are now only four as the Rhino is no longer available to hunt in most countries anyway. I enjoy mountain lion and brown bear hunts, so maybe the lion for me, but I would think I died and went to heaven if I could hunt all the animals you just did on your trip . So very happy for you!

Did Catherine have any success in getting her interpretation out of Afghanistan ?

--------

OH---April or Happymyles would know about the Lord Derby, as I was just told by my grandparents that they have both hunted them and the Bongo in either C.A. R, or Cameroon, but that you may or may not be able to hunt those countries at this time. Check with the State Dept. ( I personally have no clue )
I have no interest in shooting any brand of eland, especially one of those lunkers.

Yes, there's usually lots of "management" culling available, especially springbok and blesbuck. And whenever a one-horned animal is encountered, they are usually taken out. They can be pretty dangerous to other rams/bulls during the rut. I culled a cow buffalo on my first hunt. She was very nice (actually, for a long time a cow held top spot in SCI record book) and the price was right (less than 1/3 what a bull costs). Turned out to be an exciting hunt. The herd bull took extreme exception to me shooting old granny.

Rhino can still be hunted as management culls. Extremely expensive though (about $25K). Most hunters wanting to complete their Big Five Dangerous Game slam shoot rhino with darts. That now qualifies. I was offered one of those hunts for $6500 but absolutely no interest. Lion and leopard hunting invariably involves baiting and I have absolutely no interest in that either. Same with crocodile. Cape buffalo are extremely challenging if spot and stalk (for bow hunters there's always hanging out at a water hole). They are smart, very wary, and usually hang out in thick stuff (or get into it quickly when pushed up). You never know where they'll be. Last year we found where the bunch of bachelor bulls we were after had bedded for the night at the top of a mountain! Cooler up there and consequently some green grass for them to eat ... which was hard to find in the ongoing drought. And yes, they are very big, very tough, and very dangerous. I would hunt them forever if I could. Usually ten grand $ but worth every penny if you like to be challenged.
 

Europe

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Since that time 15 years ago when that brown bear slipped up behind me and sniffed my neck I made a deal with apex predators, grizz in particular, I don‘t shoot any more of you you dont eat me. Worked for the rest of my guiding career in Alaska. I’ll stick with it. I’ll make the same deal with Lions Etc.
:ROFLMAO: Love this response--and--I remember that story.

'IF" you ever change your mind about hunting the lion, dont do it with bait. I never hunted them with bait or from a blind, only spot and stalk, (tracks, fresh spore, visual ) and it is a real rush when they spot you and you realize they can run 100 yards in 5 seconds or less---BUT, in all honesty the difference in the adrenaline rush between a lion, elephant, or buffalo headed toward you is like trying to determine how many angels can dance on the head of a needle. Enjoyed hunting all three and so will you, if you choose to do so. One last thought about hunting lions. Lion hunting in southern Tanzania is an equal opportunity lion hunt. You will find that you are being hunted by them as you are hunting for them

When, (you will notice I didn't say "if") you go back, please consider the Rungwa region of Tanzania . The accommodations are not as nice, but you will fly in via helicopter and then -- A million, plus, acres with no roads, towns, fences, or people. But a lot of game including lions and buffalo :)


She needed to find one document when we got home. Spent three days going through everything she had and on the phone with the state department. No luck. Very sad. I think it was day five she sat up in bed about 0200, woke me up and asked if there were any boxes in the shop attic. Don’t think so I said. I was ordered to go look. Behind one of my rolled up wall tents was a small box that actually contained the one document she needed for state. She has done everything she can, it’s up to the state department now. With Ukraine it looks like hurry up and wait as far as the Afgans are concerned. We keep praying.
God bless Catherine, she has not forgotten or given up. I hope it happens soon.

I hope you find the 300 H & H before your next trip. But you did VERY well with a borrowed rifle

Congratulations again on a wonderful and successful hunt. Welcome home
 

Salmonchaser

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April, I will keep you posted, looked at a #1 in 300HH passed on it due to hack gunsmithing
 

Randi

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Salmonchaser : I can not take credit for these leads. One came from April and the other one from my grandparents.

There are two 300 H & H rifles available for sale right now. They are not Ruger's and are both used, but in excellent conditions, especially for their age.

1. 300 H & H Double made by H & H in 1968. It is at the Holland and Holland store in Dallas, Texas

2. 300 H & H pre 64 model 70 Winchester. It is at Steve Barnett Guns in Mississippi

My grandparents also wanted to tell you that they second the Tanzania suggestion and will give you the name of the PH they recommend, if your interested.

On a different subject. I have mailed the adoption papers to you of your signature ;)
 

Salmonchaser

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Salmonchaser : I can not take credit for these leads. One came from April and the other one from my grandparents.

There are two 300 H & H rifles available for sale right now. They are not Ruger's and are both used, but in excellent conditions, especially for their age.

1. 300 H & H Double made by H & H in 1968. It is at the Holland and Holland store in Dallas, Texas

2. 300 H & H pre 64 model 70 Winchester. It is at Steve Barnett Guns in Mississippi

My grandparents also wanted to tell you that they second the Tanzania suggestion and will give you the name of the PH they recommend, if your interested.

On a different subject. I have mailed the adoption papers to you of your signature ;)
Thanks Randi; I’m pretty well stuck on #1s. I do like doubles however. Will file the paper work when it arrives.
 

OntarioHunter

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Thanks Randi; I’m pretty well stuck on #1s. I do like doubles however. Will file the paper work when it arrives.
If you think you may want to keep buffalo as an option, you should consider stepping up to .375 H&H (if you don't have one already). That is legal minimum for those guys. Except for eland and giraffe, 300 H&H is almost overkill for plains game in my opinion. I know two other friends who took Ruger #1 rifles to Africa. I have heard they are hit and miss for accuracy (pun intended) much like pre-64 Model 70. Some are great, some are not.
 

Salmonchaser

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The number 1s I have kept are all 1moa or a little better, the target is my 257 roberts at 300 yards a couple of days ago. that would be about .25 moa. When they shoot they shoot. I think the 257 could do a lot of work/ the 275 even more in Africa. I love my 375s but I really like the 300s. I’m betting for antelope the 6.5 prc could become a favorite.
 

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