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Thread: Hunting Trip to South Africa

  1. #1
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Hunting Trip to South Africa

    I had an amazing time last week!

    Waterbuck of a lifetime. Double kneeling off of Bog Gear. Tried both prone and sitting, but there was too many limbs in the way.
    Even with double kneeling I had to thread the needle so to speak. Relatively short shot at 176 yards I think (Could be 167). One shot and 40 yards later he was done.
    Thanks to Thinus Steyn (Big Water Safaris) and Philip! Had a hunting/shooting buddy with me too, Todd Fischer.
    Another very good friend, Darrell Holland had hunted with me on my first day. 7mm Dakota XP-100/180 Grain Berger.
    He weighed 750 pounds. Thinus never measures animals but this one was so big, he said he couldn't help himself.
    Horn length 29.5" and 30". Bases both 10". Green score SCI 79.5" PH doing the measuring





    Springbok at 80-90 yards standing


    Warthog at 35 yards.


    Kudu at 350ish, kneeling shot.


    Jackal at 100 yards standing


    Blesbuck 340ish sitting shot (Corrected distance)


    Blue wildebeest 155 yards proneish on a rock


    Eland sitting and shooting off of a rock under 200 yards.


    Springbok at 395 yards, shooting off a termite mound.




    Of the 16 animals, at least nine of the kills I used the Bog-Gear (sitting, kneeling, and standing).
    I learned a lot of things.
    Since there was no stand hunting, or just get out of the vehicle and shoot over the top of it, hunting or ground blind hunting--all spot and stalk or still hunting.
    Most of these animals do not hang around very long and the springbok are like squirrels on crack.
    I walked from 7 to 10 miles per day and one day we went 12 miles.
    I need a flexible, yet light, yet stable, shooting rest that is quick to change from sitting to standing or kneeling.
    The Bog Gear is too slow to switch quickly from sitting, kneeling, and standing.
    There was almost a handful of times where I missed a opportunity when I ran out of time to make the shot by 2-8 seconds
    The only time I used my bipod (The one exception was my Highwind blesbok) was when it was on a big rock or on a termite mound.
    Next time I will probably go with the cartridge no larger than a Winchester short mag or a short action ultra mag in 6.5 or 7mm.
    We had a couple of guys using 6.5 creed Rifles ( 130 grain in 140 grain accubonds) and they did great.
    This included Eland, Waterbuck, Gemsbok, and kudu.
    I think a lighter recoiling specialty pistol will make it easier to shoot in positions other than prone.
    The grass was fairly high there.
    The price for a 16 animal package in six days of hunting was $3750, and that included six large animals and 10 small animals.
    Blesbuck and springbok are considered small animals.
    For South Africa, this is a bargain.
    You can also upgrade on a specific animal if you ever want to.
    The food and accommodations were wonderful.
    When you're being guided by a professional hunter that kills 300 to 400 game animals per year, you are being led by someone with experience that far surpasses the majority of hunters little alone PH's.
    Ranch surpasses 50,000 acres.
    Big Water Safaris - http://www.bigwatersafaris.com/about.html
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  2. #2
    Senior Member BigDanS's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Wow Ernie, just wow! Amazing trip. I enjoyed that area... was it a bit cool? I am sure nothing like Montana / Wyoming in December. Most people think of Africa as a hot jungle everywhere. We used to hunt dry creek beds for geodes and always hoped to find a diamond. You mentioned you missed shots by 2 to 8 seconds. While you might have been able to take shots more quickly, did you miss out on any trophies vs. what you harvested? Thanks for stirring up a bunch of memories. Did you see any baboons?

    D
    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
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  3. #3
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Great trip!! I am surprised at how affordable it is. I wouldn't have been surprised if you had said it was $20k.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    I did see one but never had a shot opportunity on him as he was flat out running.
    I missed making a shot on a Kudu that was the largest one that he had seen in three years as in the previous attempt, after a springbok I unknowingly bent in one of the legs on the bog-gear trying to get it steady.
    On the kudu I needed a sitting shot and I couldn't get the leg adjusted since it was bent.
    The time it took trying to get that adjusted cost me the time I needed to make the shot.
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  5. #5
    Senior Member NN's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Great hunt
    Go Cowboys go

  6. #6
    Senior Member Diver43's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    All I can say is FANTASTIC hunt. Thank You for sharing your experience
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5

  7. #7
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Quote Originally Posted by RugerFan View Post
    Great trip!! I am surprised at how affordable it is. I wouldn't have been surprised if you had said it was $20k.
    The package price is pretty awesome for what it is.
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  8. #8
    Senior Member Big Chief's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Any issues using hand gun length rigs over there? Did you have to convince them you and your guns could do the job?

    Which ones will/have you send to a taxidermist to get mounted?

    Pretty cool. Thanks for sharing.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Zee's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Well done!!!

    Blue/Black Wildebeest, Warthog, Bushpig, and Baboon are a few of my grail animals.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith

  10. #10
    Senior Member CHIRO1989's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Talk about eating all of those tenderloins please, that looks like fun, I bet you lost weight with all that hunting.
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11

  11. #11
    Senior Member Six-Gun's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Beatutiful job and great animals! Once you hunt Africa, you never forget it.

    Oh, these shots are all lies. There was a Harris bipod involved
    Last edited by Six-Gun; 07-07-2017 at 04:59 PM.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.

  12. #12
    Senior Member MileHighShooter's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Quote Originally Posted by RugerFan View Post
    Great trip!! I am surprised at how affordable it is. I wouldn't have been surprised if you had said it was $20k.
    Dangerous game, and several special plains game (sable, roan, Lord derby eland, tssessebe, etc) are expensive. Typical plains game, in Namibia, South Africa and occasionally Zimbabwe, are about the same price as trophy western guided hunts. Way cheaper than Alaskan hunts, for the most part
    Quote Originally Posted by Wambli Ska View Post
    Once again, please refrain from cutting short any baseless totally emotional arguments with facts. It leads to boring, completely objective conversations well beyond the comprehension ability of many.

  13. #13
    Senior Member BigDanS's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    I cannot begin to tell you how prolific the South African plains and hill country are for animals. A properly managed ranch will have enourmous and varied populations of game that would make any hunter swoon at the thought. South Africa is pretty darn big with a total population of 55 million.



    The area Ernie hunted is pretty remote. It is where their desert " the karoo" meets the plains, kind of like eastern Colorado. It is also sparcely populatated and on a great river basin as well.

    D
    "A patriot is mocked, scorned and hated; yet when his cause succeeds, all men will join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    WOW! Now that's impressive! Great pics.

  15. #15
    Senior Member bobbyrlf3's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Fantastic adventure! Thanks for sharing.
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  16. #16
    Moderator Wambli Ska's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    That's just awesome! Beautiful animals in beautiful country. Great trip!
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton

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    Senior Member Fisheadgib's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Awesome hunt and thanks for sharing it. The price of all that is truly amazing. I've mentioned previously that I'm hoping to hunt in Africa within the next couple of years and I'm trying to learn as much as possible about the entire trips costs. Besides that 3750.00 and airfare, what other costs were associated with the trip? Things like tips, taxidermy, shipping mounts back, any additional fees, ect.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDanS View Post
    I cannot begin to tell you how prolific the South African plains and hill country are for animals. A properly managed ranch will have enourmous and varied populations of game that would make any hunter swoon at the thought. South Africa is pretty darn big with a total population of 55 million.



    The area Ernie hunted is pretty remote. It is where their desert " the karoo" meets the plains, kind of like eastern Colorado. It is also sparcely populatated and on a great river basin as well.

    D
    With lots, and lots, and lots of rocks
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  19. #19
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    The three most special animals for me was the Waterbuck (XP), Springbok (revolver), and Jackal (Revolver).
    The Waterbuck would be an obvious one, since it is a trophy of a lifetime.
    What made it more difficult and memorable was the problems I had to overcome to make the shot. First, there was brush everywhere, and we needed to try to find way to thread the needle/bullet. Prone wouldn't work, so then I tried seated to no avail. Animals were 167 yards away. Trying to hurry and not move much or quickly. Adjusting the legs out on the Bog Gear for a double kneeling shot while staying low was kind of funny after the fact.
    Once I have the Bog Gear set-up, my bolt won't close. This became frustrating but we took our time figuring it out. My scope cover had rotated was was barely hindering the bolt. That was ever so quickly ripped off, never to be seen again! Thinus made sure of that.
    Todd (friend from the states) and Thinus (PH) were way more worked up over all of these adjustments than I was. I just knew I wasn't going to make a bad shot in the attempt to take a trophy of a lifetime, since Thinus said it was the largest Waterbuck he had ever seen outside of a national park.
    Once The XP was finally hot, and ready to go I still needed to make a few small adjustments to ensure I did not clip limbs. That Waterbuck amazingly stayed where he was. I still had a number of limbs to navigate around, but found a small opening and took the shot, and that 750 pound animal went down about 20-40 yards or so from the shot.

    The Springbok was another animal that popped up when were actually still hunting along the river for a Kudu. Springbok are kind of like squirrels on crack out there. Seems like they are always running and jumping. Every day after I shot the Waterbuck, it was like I became the "Waterbuck Magnet." This was Thinus' description as Thinus and I literally saw hundreds of them in total (all in different locations), every day. It was surreal. As we had another waterbuck encounter, one was a very good trophy in the 40-50 yard range, we had a large Kudu bull blow out of cover, that was closer to us than the Waterbucks, never to give a shot opportunity.
    We kind of assumed that might be it for the area were in, but we continued to take our time outside of the heavy cover from the river. 20 minutes or so later we see a small white spot that looks out of place-Springbok!
    Now we are stalking in a semi-open area, using shrubs and trees as cover trying to get into range with the Franken-Ruger. We get into that 80-90 yard range and I set-up and make the shot from the standing position. Thinus was again overjoyed that were able to accomplish the stalk and kill with a revolver. The Springbok was an old man at that, as you can tell a lot of his hide is worn down in areas.
    The large male Black Backed Jackal was one of the last animals I took. Since we were not going to do any night hunting for them (Which they do), my expectations were pretty low. We were still hunting on the shore of the river, primarily looking for warthog, and possibly a Kudu. I can't tell you why I wanted a Jackal so bad, but I did. I don't coyote hunt very often here in the states. We had been ever so slowly making our way along the shore, staying close to cover in search of hogs, when I noticed movement-Jackals (Three of them). They were over a 100 yards away and they were hunting. They headed for the edge of water and some grass near the water and some topography his us from their sight. We set up the Bog Gear (standing position) and the Franken-Ruger was ready to roll.
    They stayed hidden from our sight, and Thinus asked if I wanted to move closer?
    I declined, as I was afraid if we tried to get closer, they would likely pop out of cover and catch us unprepared to shoot, and the opportunity would be lost. We stayed put and waited.
    Sure enough one of them came our way and stopped right at 100 yards in some of the green grass that was by the water.
    I got as steady as I could and made the shot. One thing I noted is that every time I shot the FR standing with the Bog Gear my shot went a little high and a little left. I do not have this problem sitting or double kneeling.
    To be able to do the "sneaky sneak" on a Jackal with a revolver in the daytime was priceless. My first shot was a little left and high and exited right in front of his hindquarter on the opposite side. I did a finisher shot on him. If that hadn't been required I am pretty sure I would have had a shot on a second Jackal, as these guys had no clue we were there.
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  20. #20
    Senior Member JasonMPD's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Looks like you shot, well, everything in sight.

    Looks like an awesome trip!
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers

  21. #21
    Senior Member bellcat's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Outstanding! Beautiful pictures as well.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member Jeff in TX's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Holy cow what an incredible trip. Hate to see your taxidermist bill for that hunt! Congrats!

  23. #23
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff in TX View Post
    Holy cow what an incredible trip. Hate to see your taxidermist bill for that hunt! Congrats!
    I am NOT having everything mounted.
    Shoulder mounts: Waterbuck, 1 Blesbuck, and one Springbok.
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  24. #24
    Senior Member 1965Jeff's Avatar
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    Wow, what a great hunt and experience for you. Thanks for sharing it.


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  25. #25
    Moderator Jayhawker's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    While the hunt is doable pricewise...I have to ask...what was airfare? Delta wants near 9 grand to fly to Cape Town from Grand Rapids....

    ETA: Ok... I did find some reasonable airfares out there....but details would've appreciated....
    Last edited by Jayhawker; 08-29-2017 at 03:58 AM.
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  26. #26
    Senior Member Ernie Bishop's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Quote Originally Posted by Jayhawker View Post
    While the hunt is doable pricewise...I have to ask...what was airfare? Delta wants near 9 grand to fly to Cape Town from Grand Rapids....

    ETA: Ok... I did find some reasonable airfares out there....but details would've appreciated....
    $2,200-2,300
    Some who booked earlier was several hundred dollars cheaper
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"

  27. #27
    Moderator Jayhawker's Avatar
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    Re: Hunting Trip to South Africa

    Quote Originally Posted by Ernie Bishop View Post
    $2,200-2,300
    Some who booked earlier was several hundred dollars cheaper
    Thank you....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"

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