The ultimate South African hunt
The ultimate South African plains game hunt
Paul Winters came out to SA from the states to hunt with Morongwa bush Safaris in Thabazimbi; I was to be his PH as he requested that I guide him on his hunt because the year before his Parents Otis and Ann Winters hunted with me.
I had a feeling that Paul and I would have a good hunt because he is good sport and shot very well. Paul used a Kimberly .308 rifle loaded with 180gr. Premium softs.
Paul and I went hunting early the first morning, I knew of good steenbok that I wanted for Paul because he wanted one for a full mount. We stalked into the area where I knew he would be, it did not take 15min and we spotted a female feeding in an open area in between the Geelhak trees. We stalked closer and found cover behind a raisenbush, I set up the shooting sticks and said to Paul to get ready because the male cant be far of.
We scanned the area and found the Ram 80m away in same long gras, I instructed Paul to take the shot as soon as he has a clear shot. Paul made a good shot and we had a Sci Steenbok in the salt
We headed back to camp were we had lunch and Paul had a short snooze he was still suffering from jetlag. We where back out in the bush that afternoon. By around 4:00 we spotted a herd of wildebeest, they where on their way down to a waterhole. Paul and I set of to get down wind and intercept them before they got down to the water, we got a good spot to ambush them and they walked right past us at a distance of about 40m
Paul got onto the shooting sticks and as the bull walked past he shot for the top off the heart. He was down 30m from where he was shot. Wildebeest in the salt.
We had a good time around the campfire that evening Paul was very exited about his first day in South Africa as we told the stories of the memories made that day.
Out and about early we watched the sun rice out in the bush the next morning, we where walking to a dry pan out in the felt with an open area around it where I placed a saltlick a couple of weeks earlier. As we came to edge of the clearing we spotted a bachelor group of Impala and amongst them was a real big boy. They were feeding away from us and we had to stalk closer to get a shot at the ram. We came on their flank and to a distance of 70m when the Ram turned broughside and gave Paul the opportunity to shoot.
He made another good shot and the ram was down. Paul and I were real exited about the Impala as it was one of the biggest rams hunted in that area.
The next day was just as productive for us. We where driving out off camp when Poulos the tracker knocked on the roof of my Toyota to get our attention. He had spotted fresh Zebra tracks on the road and wanted to take a closer look. Poulos followed the tracks for a short distance and found fresh dung that was still steaming in the cold morning air.
We started following the herd with Poulos walking in front of me and Paul behind me.
After an our or so the track told Poulos that the zebra has started feeding and that we must go slow as we are close to them. Poulos came to the edge of a small clearing and was battling to see the tracks so we stopped and Poulos tried to make out where they went and kept his eyes glued to the tracks. My Eye caught a movement in the bush on the other side of the clearing and a closer look with my binos confirmed that it was the heard of zebra. I wisteled to poulos and he froze, Paul already had his rifle on the shooting sticks ready. The stallion gave himself away by letting his genitals hang out and as I pointed him out to Paul the shot went off with the zebra disappearing in the bush.
We Waited 10min and then went with Poulos to go and find the place were the zebra had stood. Poulos found blood almost immediately and it looked to be good lung blood.
Paul spotted his Zebra off to the side as we where following the blood trail, he was very happy with zebra and told me that his parents told him how good the trackers was and said that it was an unbelievable hunt. He had never seen anything like the abilities of Poulos to track game that far. With the zebra safely in the skinning shed we had lunch and headed out again, it was a slow afternoon but Paul bagged a Porcupine just before dark that he wanted do a full mount with.
The next day I wanted to look for Kudu, so we set out walking early the next morning. We spooked a good bull but never got a shot opportunity, later that morning we spotted a nice Warthog witch Paul bagged with another good shot. Later that afternoon we ambushed a 50” kudu at another saltlick that I had put out. Paul again shot from the shooting sticks to make a perfect 100m double lung shot with the bullet found on the far side under the skin. We had very good cause for celebration that night because the kudu was Paul’s no. 1 animal on his list off game he wanted.
Gemsbok was next on our list, we spotted a very old cow from the Toyota early the next morning and after a short stalk Paul shot her and she dropped where she stood.
This was the perfect animal to harvest as she was way past her prime and had no hair on her flanks The horns was an interesting pair, the one measured 39” and the other 35” probably from greater use over the years.
The next day was our last hunting day and Paul brought his bow and told me that if the opportunity arises he would like to bow hunt a little as well.
I arranged for us to go and bow hunt a Nyala on a nearby bow hunting area with good hides. We slept a little late that morning and arrived at the bowhide around 8:00 and got all set up. There was activity around the hide the whole morning but nothing worthwhile as trophies until Paul sow a Nyala bull approach from his side off the blind.
He got my attention and I looked and spotted the bull, he was a good looking specimen.
I told Paul to wait until he had a queering away shot for the lungs while I got video camera ready to video the shot. The Nyala came strait in and stopped 25 m away from us and Paul let his arrow fly, the shot was good and Poulos tracked him about 60m and found him dead. He measured 27” and was in the top 50 SCI at the time for a bow kill.
We spend the rest of the after noon in camp relaxing and taking pictures and had a lovely evening around the campfire. Every one was relaxed after an exceptional hunt.
Paul took 9 trophies on this hunt all in an ethical manner and with good sportsmanship.
I enjoyed it to hunt with Paul and if he makes it back to South Africa to hunt with him again.
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