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What was your first hunt like?

This is a discussion on What was your first hunt like? within the Hunting Africa forums, part of the HUNT AFRICA category; Hey guys! Just thought it would be interesting to hear where everybody started with their passion that is hunting. Mine ...

  1. #1
    Frontosa is offline New Member
    Jul 2011
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    Default What was your first hunt like?

    Hey guys!

    Just thought it would be interesting to hear where everybody started with their passion that is hunting.

    Mine started when I was 8 my dad bought me a windbuks "air rifle", everyday after school I would go out and shoot birds and come back just before dinner time. I started "real" hunting when I was 11 .. My first animal was a gemsbok with a .243 and what a day that was. I remember thinking that it felt better than scoring a winning try in a game of rugby....and nothing has changed. For me there is no better feeling than being in the bush and doing what I love.

    Looking forward to reading your story!

  2. #2
    1ObsessedHunter's Avatar
    1ObsessedHunter is offline AH Veteran
    Sep 2012

    Member of NRA Life Member

    Hunted South Africa

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    I got into it from my father and he got into it from his. I started at around the age of 5. My father took my brother and I duck hunting just to watch. We were hooked from that point on. I had no real interest in anything else after that. I hunted waterfowl and upland game birds a soon as I was of age to get my hunting license. I killed my first whitetail deer at 16 (legal hunting age in my state at the time) and never looked back. I fulfilled my dream of hunting Africa this year and can't wait to go back. Hunting is a way of life for me. And, as I write this I'm getting ready for an upland bird hunt tomorrow.

  3. #3
    owenowen's Avatar
    owenowen is online now AH Veteran
    Mar 2009

    Hunted South Africa, Mozambique, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia

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    Hi there, i started also very young just growing up in a hunting family i too used to shoot birds in the garden and trap what ever i could. Used grill doves and camp in the garden :-) I think when i was 8 shot my first grey duiker and steenbok and when i was 10 a springbuck,blesbok and 14 i got a pitch black well waited cape bushbuck one early morning :-)


  4. #4
    enysse's Avatar
    enysse is online now AH Ambassador
    Jan 2009

    Member of Northeast Wisconsin SCI chapter, Lifetime member of NRA,RMEF

    Hunted Namibia, South Africa (East Cape, Guateng and Limpopo)

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    I shot my first whitetail deer when I was 15 with a smooth barrel Mossberg 20 gauge, it was miracle with that gun (LOL). I don't think he was further than 25 yards from me at the time. The addiction started and never ended.

  5. #5
    DLS is offline AH Member
    Oct 2009
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    My dad started carrying me on his back out across a pond to go duck hunting when I was 5 years old. By the time I was 9, I'd shot my first duck, a drake greenwing teal, using an old single shot .410. That started a lifelong passion for hunting that has never abated and since then I've been fortunate to hunt every western state, Alaska, Canada, Mexico and 4 african safaris across 3 countries.

    I started taking my own son duck hunting when he was 3 years old. He was shooting a .22 by the time he was 5, and started shooting his first birds, turkeys and ducks, by the time he was 9 using a 20 gauge. He'll turn 25 later this month, and he's as passionate a hunter as I am.

  6. #6
    Bobpuckett's Avatar
    Bobpuckett is online now GOLD SUPPORTER
    Dec 2009

    Member of NAHC Life Member, NRA Life Member,SCI, Buckmasters

    Hunted USA(from Coast to Coast and Alaska), Germany, South Africa, Canada

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    I was 6 or 7 when I went on my first hunt I wasn't the one doing the hunting it was my Dad. It was in Michigan early Nov. snow was about a foot deep I seen my dad getting ready to go rabbit hunting and I begged him to let me go with him, he said no at first but finely gave in and let me go, he told me to get a pair of boots cause the snow was deep so I did but the pair I got was the ones I used to feed the dogs and the sides was split on them. Well we got to the woods and I started following my dad through the snow trying to find rabbits after a short while my dad noticed that I was slowing down and come to check on me when he looked down and saw my boots he knew what the problem was. He picked me up an set me on a dead fallen tree and removed my boots and socks he dryed my feet with his shirt tails then sat down beside me and removed his dry warm socks and put them on my feet he put his boots back on picked me up and carried me back to the car and took me home. That memory has been with me for over 50 years now as well as my passion for hunting.
    Enjoy life now -- it has an expiration date.

  7. #7
    bcarper is online now AH Veteran
    Dec 2010

    Member of SCI,NAHC,

    Hunted USA, South Africa

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    My first hunt was for mule deer, in Oregon, I shot a really nice buck with an octagon barreled, lever action 32-20. Started an obsession with hunting that after 53 years is still going strong. Went to Africa in 2010, can't wait to return there. Moved to Alaska 20 years ago for the fishing and hunting. Brian

  8. #8
    timbear is offline AH Enthusiast
    Mar 2011

    Member of SSAA, NZDA

    Hunted Germany, NZ, Australia

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    You guys are all sooo lucky! Hunting was not part of growing up in urban Germany. I did my Hunter Training after leaving the army, but did not get a chance to really hunt (shot a roe deer from a high stand, not very exiting), until I moved to New Zealand. My first hunt was on Coppermine Creek, just north of Haast, on the West Coast of the South Island, and I was 40 years old! I was going in with Hans, a dutch immigrant and ultra keen hunter, his 12 year old son, and the son's best friend. West Coast gets 3000mm (120") of rain a year, and I swear we got most of it on the way in. It normally is a 90 minute walk in the riverbed to the Coppermine Creek hut from the last place you can drive to. Well, that day there was no way we could have walked the riverbed. We took a dim trail along the banks, crossing a lot of creeks that went to mid thigh for Hans and me, and to chest height for the boys, just handing the kids across. Well, in the hut much later that day, I thought: "No way are we going to get anything in this downpour!"
    Now, West Coast weather is as unpredictable as they come. The next morning was one of the most beautiful days I have ever seen, a brilliantly blue sky, a freshly washed forest, it was like the Dawn of Time itself. Hans took the boys along the river flats, and told me to hunt up the creek. Coppermine, like most West Coast creeks, is full of boulders from the size of a football to the size of a small car, with cold weather rain forest right to the banks. I had started at first light, and by 0900 was maybe 1.5km upstream from the hut, when a red deer hind stepped out about 90m upstream from me, followed by a female yearling. I was carrying Hans' oldest son's rifle, a 6.5x55mm Swedish Mauser restocked. The scene is engraved in my memory, playing as if in slow motion: The brilliant morning light, the birdsong in the forest, the two deer picking their way across the stream. I put the crosshairs onto the yearling's neck and fire. She goes down, the mother starts running, disappears from sight behind a boulder for a moment. I have a long internal debate, do I shoot her as well or not (it must have taken all of a second but feels like years). She comes out the other side, I decide to let her go, carrying one out is going to be tough enough. She disappears into the forest. Suddenly the yearling gets up and runs the other way, towards the treeline. Another eternal one second thought: "If she gets in there I will never find her again, it's too dense!" I shoot, know I've hit her again, she keeps going. I shoot again, am sure I was too high this time. She keeps going. 2m from the trees she falls down in a heap, stone dead. My ears are ringing, all the birds have shut up, only the river makes it's usual racket.
    I have sat for a long time with that deer. When I gutted her, I found that the first shot hat missed the spine but severed the windpipe and one carotid. The second hit her going away, just behind the right ribs, traversing stomach, heart and lungs and exiting through the left shoulder. There was no trace of the third shot. After gutting her, I dragged her into the creek and thoroughly washed her insides, as the stomach had leaked. The meat afterwards was excellent, I must have gotten all the muck out. Carrying her out, though, was a big job. I had learned to make a backpack by threading the back legs through the front legs, but she must have weighed well in excess of 50kg even gutted and beheaded.
    When I finally arrived back at the hut, I was amazed to realize that it was not even noon yet, and that Hans and the boys were still out. I felt like I had lived a lifetime.
    I have hunted NZ and Australia since, and will keep hunting as long as I can, hopefully for many decades. I may have started late, but the bug has bitten deep. Oh, and BTW: I bought that rifle off Hans' son, later, and it is still my favorite hunting firearm - but that's a story for another day.
    Overkill is underestimated!

  9. #9
    Norwegianwoods's Avatar
    Norwegianwoods is online now SILVER SUPPORTER
    Nov 2011

    Hunted Norway, Sweden, England, South Africa

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    I started to join my father when hunting Red Fox in the winter when I was 6.
    I would follow his footsteps/tracks in 50-70 cm deep snow in steep valleys and hills for 3-4 hours looking for foxes before we took a break, made a bonfire of dry spruce and ate our food before we hunted 3-4 more hours before going home.
    We started the hunts at dark in the mornings and finished them in the dark in the evenings.
    I got very tired, but I loved every second of them
    When coming back as an adult to that area we hunted, I have problems to understand how I had the energy and stamina to join my father on those hunts from the age of 6 as it is very steep and rough terrain.

    From the age of 10, I started to use a 22 lr and hunt birds with it. I started to hunt birds and hares with a shotgun at 12 and at 15 I bought my first gun, a Remington 1100 Special Field and the same year I shot my first Roe deer with it.

    Today at 45 and being a total huntaholic and have hunted many places, many different kinds of game and many animals shot, I still very much cherish the memories of those fox hunts with my father and very much wish I still had access to hunt in that area.

  10. #10
    Stretch's Avatar
    Stretch is offline AH Fanatic
    Feb 2012

    Hunted USA , Canada, Botswana

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    I like Bobpuckett, started with cottontail rabbits with my father and uncle. Best I can recall I was about 6-8 years old. They fueled my desire to hunt by allowing me to shoot at the rabbits that would sit still. My little recurve bow proved ample medicine as I was able to dispatch numerous rabbits. I have continued that tradition with my children, and now I may have jumped the gun a little by presenting my 15 month old grandson with his first youth bow and carbon arrows. Let the fun begin.
    When I am not hunting, I am thinking about hunting....I think I'll go hunting.

  11. #11
    carbon fibre's Avatar
    carbon fibre is offline New Member
    Dec 2012
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    I started hunting way back around 6 years old.Dad enjoyed hunting rabbits foxes etc and i tagged along any opportunity i had.To be honest i still enjoy doing the odd rabbit hunt today and we still have access to the same property we had when i was 6 years old....It was not until i grew older had my own car license, job etc a mate of mine said lets start hunting Deer,pigs We have covered endless KM`S but some memories i have will stay with me forever and i can`t wait to introduce my kids to the beauty of hunting and the outdoors and what it has to offer.


  12. #12
    davidarizpe's Avatar
    davidarizpe is offline AH Veteran
    Feb 2010

    Member of BBFT Mexico,SCI New Monterrey Chapter,IHEA

    Hunted Zimbabwe, USA, Mexico , Central America, Kyrgysztan, Scotland

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    That is the one I will not forget, the first one.
    I had been on numerous hunts for white tail deer around home but it was difficult to even see a mature buck on our neck of the woods, but when I became 14 that year my grandpa died and my father decided to lease a property and take me to finally take my first deer!! I could not sleep the whole week before we left for the hunt, finally we arrived at the ranch after a 4 hour drive and I was still super excited, we saw a couple of does in the way in, the first morning we saw 4 bucks all very young and what appeared to be a super big buck at the end of the sendero very far away for me to attempt a shot, almost 500 yards, I did not feel I could make the shot and decided to wait, my father asked if I wanted to try and I said there is no need being the first day out, he agreed. That afternoon we saw nothing of interest and that night when we went to bed my father explained to me that there was no shame in missing a shot and that it had been indeed a wise decision to wait on that particular deer, but he let me know that there is no such thing as a perfect record of one shot kills in a hunter career, I think I over estimated this and the next day when the deer showed in that same area in less than a second!!!BOOOOOMMM!!!! I scared my dad to say the least, but he said he heard the bullet thump after like 2 seconds of flight, Boom shhhhhhhh shhhhhhhh thump. I was super super happy and could not wait to put my hands on his horns as I knew he was big. My father then explains it was my decision to take the shot at that distance and that I had to go recover the buck on my own and adds that the deer ran to the left of the sendero and marked me a spot on it to start looking for blood, I waited for an hour before I went after him as I was instructed and It seemed like an eternity to my young mind, as soon as I got to where the deer was supposed to have crossed the road I knew I was in deep s%5t, I could not distinguish which spoor was the one I needed to follow, could not find a single spot of blood, and I remember looking and looking in the woods around the shot and tried to no make a mess with my own steps, I came back to my father after 40 minutes or so and asked for his help, but he said that the deer was shot and explained about doing ever growing semicircles around the spot where a deep set of prints should be as the deer had jumped at the shot, I was now felling so bad for taking such a long shot, and thinking about the lease that was one deer only, and that my father was kind enough to let me have it, etc, I went back to look for the deer with my hart broken and could not understand why my father was letting me do this all on my own, I started looking for sign again crawling and walking and doing the circles, and then I saw my first spot of blood a tiny one and then nothing, I felt even worse, this could be it, a wounded and lost deer and the end of the special first deer hunt. my heart sank even deeper, I continued trying to find more blood in this now a little longer grass, waist long, it continued for long long minutes and I noticed it was now 10.30, the shot had been taken at around 8, am. I was sure the deer was gone forever, and could not resist to curse at my dad for not helping me and decided to stop looking for blood and forget to place every step I made in a place I figure did not have any track or blood, etc, I just started walking fast and in zig zag, no friking circles or anything as I was broken. That as I step on a branch I could hear movement ant there was my buck still alive in the ground with a broken spine, could only lift his neck in a wisache tree that he had crushed inside, one more shot and I was back in heaven, it had eleven points, he was wide tall and had a lot of mass, I returned to the sendero and my father was already there in the edge on the road, as I was so happy with the news it took me a little to notice he had tears in his eyes and I could not understand why, he already knew because of the shot that I had the deer, and he said he wanted me to do it on my own as it had been his first experience with grandpa and was silently thinking the same thing I was feeling for him ( cursing) but he for his own father now in heaven and he said as soon as he placed a prayer to his father to let me have this one buck he herd my shot, for one more time the 3 of us were hunting together again. It is hard for me to disconnect any hunting experience from this deep emotions, I cannot stop doing it and I love it!!!!.

  13. #13
    The Big Game Hunter's Avatar
    The Big Game Hunter is offline AH Senior Member
    Nov 2012

    Member of NRA, SCI, RMEF

    Hunted Namibia, Zimbabwe

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    When I was 10 years old, my father started letting me hunt white tailed deer under his supervision. We hunted together all that first year and midway through
    the season I finally got a chance to shoot a deer. We were in a stand overlooking a deer feeder in a creek bottom and saw a couple of does moving through the
    woods on the other side of the creek. I took aim with the Winchester Model 70 in .308 my father had bought for me and fired. As it turns out, I had gotten too excited
    and jerked the trigger. Both does escaped unhurt.

    The next season I hunted with my father out of the same stand. One cold, foggy morning several deer stepped out of the mist to eat at the feeder. I shouldered my
    rifle and saw that one of them was a small buck through the scope. I fired and he ran a short distance before expiring.

    He turned out to be a relatively young, small 6 point buck, but I was as happy as could be with my first deer. To this day I have a special affection for crisp, foggy
    winter mornings because of that hunt.
    The most terrifying sound in nature is not the roar of a charging lion, nor the whistle of a descending bomb; rather it is a click when you expect a bang.
    Peter Capstick

  14. #14
    UxbridgeSafari's Avatar
    UxbridgeSafari is offline AH Member
    Dec 2011

    Hunted South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia, and the USA

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    Started hunting at a very young age as is custom to my family. My uncles and father started hunting with the .22 LR in the old days and shot almost all their animals with that or the 303 Enfield. Great stories and pictures have been passed through the generations. Would be nice to see some of you guys's pictures if you can upload them of your first hunts. But I went on my first hunt at the age of 5 and shot an impala with the .243. Hunted with it and the .22 lr till my family upgraded our rifle selection. Dropped right there and was the happiest kid in the world. Always think of that day.

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