Lion hunt in Kalahari desert with Spiral Horns Safari my first African Hunt
Well the time has come finally May 8th, so off we went to meet up with Louis at JNB Airport, 16 hour flight on SAA was on time and great service. Soon as we got our bags and guns, off to the Police Checkin where Louis and 3 more PH were waiting for us. No time flat Louis had our guns cleared and we were off to a great guest house in Pretoria. Dinner and drinks then off to bed for a early flight to Kalahari. Next morning we arrived at Pretoria Airport where our PAC 750 was waiting, loaded up with me & my 2 pals and all the PH's and off we went.
Landing at the dirt strip was entertaining, being a pilot as well got to play pilot, that was too cool. Unpacked and got to see the the lodge where we each had our own chalet quick brunch and I headed out first to find my Lion about 11.00 am. It was my birthday so heck what a way to spend it. Watching the tracker check the tracks and move on for a fresh one was just crazy, heck they all looked the same to me. I could not even tell a lion track just soft impressions in the sand.
Finally Robert (tracker) hopped off the truck spoke a few words and we all grabbed the guns and hit the bush, it was thick bush and lots of tracks but Robert was on it, went for over a hour and then he pointed at the bush with his index & pinkie finger, I whispered what is that Louis said Lion was close, OK that was important LOL. but the lion had slipped away and I got a glimpse of his tail and hindquarters about 150 yards, WOW he was alot bigger than I figured.
So another hour of cat & mouse we tracked and pushed him as hard as we could. Then the finger pointing again and this time I got to see just how big he was, but he slipped out thru the bush and was gone in a blink, by now we had been at it for over 3 hours straight so a short break, some water and Robert talked about how it was not good he seen us the next time he would make a stand.
We had went over the cautions again for like the 10th time, be wary if his tail is moving, make a good shot, etc. Man it was hot and the Kalahari sand was deep, I already figured out every bush had big thorns and following Robert was no easy task, he slipped thru the bushes without making a sound where I managed to snag my clothes and me on lots of fine Africa bushes lol. Heck the camera man could go easier than me lol. I had zipped off my pants legs to look like a PH now that was a mistake lol, wish I left them on.
So another hour of hard tracking with the cat circling back on our tracks to see what the heck was pushing him, we found a spot where he laid down but we kept pushing, by now I had erased all the thoughts like heck they know where he is, we are just going to walk out and blast him while he was sleeping under a big ole tree, suddenly Robert stopped and made a motion to back up and everyone was nervous, not been a expert in African lol, I asked Louis whats up now, he said Robert could hear the cat breathing deeply just ahead!!!!!!!!!
I looked and all you could see was thick bushes so we backed up slipped to our right and all hell let loose, the lion was 15 yards away in the thickest thorn patch and all I could see was his tail waving like it was on fire and he was roaring away. First thing I could think was this is bad if they did not want him moving his tail at all now whipping it and roaring had to be a bad thing, but like a well oiled machine all the PH's went into motion guns up, Louis got the sticks ready camera guy behind me but one small problem no one could see the lions head or body just that tail and his roar. Louis whispered get ready he may charge and can you see his head heck NO so for 30 minutes we stood our ground while he carried on like his ass was on fire. Finally PH made the call to try and back up to circle around and get a better view.
Wait one minute, I looked down a seen my boots where untied so I told Louis hold up I was not running barefoot he thought I was crazy but tied my shoes and we slipped back and then circled more to the right, reset lion quiet but no luck could not see crap, so we slipped again to the right and about 40 yards reset , sticks up, lion pissed again they could see him but I was still not sure could see some things maybe his ears but too wide had to be a branch, Louis gave me his bino's and said look for his eyes. Well I did a WOW, Louis said can you see I just whispered give me a minute.
I tell you the gods truth looking into that Lion's eyes thru those bino's was like looking into his soul, plus those were his ears OMG, I figured out enough of that, so got back on the scope found his tail, followed up his back to his shoulder hard to see with that thick mane but quickly made my aim point on a small sunny spot and told the guys I was taking the shot, hit him with the 375 H&H those Swift A Frame fly straight, hit him again, Louis had said keep shooting till he said stop, about time I loaded the 3rd shot he had put his hand on my shoulder to stop me but too late I hit him again. The first shot had did its job, dead on the shoulder those shot placement charts on AH was the trick, I could hardly stand up, held onto Louis and I just remember telling him do not tell anyone to look into the eyes. What a animal, I promise it will be many years before I forget this great hunt
If anyone tells you that hunting a lion at a 10,000 acre game ranch is a pen hunt go with Louis and hunt them, we tracked from 11.30 to almost 4.45 with only one short 5 min break before I took the shot, what a thrill.
The funny thing that night when I called my wife to tell her about the hunt, first thing she asked "you did not look into his eyes" we have the movie "Ghost of the Darkness" funny how some stuff in movies can play into your life.
Sorry about the long post I will put up the video when I get it, thanks again to Louis and all the PH's that made this hunt the best,
Attachment 11624 Attachment 11625