Diary of first african safari for Herve, 47, Marie, 47 and Pierre-Antoine, 14, in August 2013

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by herve747, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. herve747

    herve747 AH Member

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    We are back from our first african safari in RSA, 6 days from Aug 3rd to 8th, 2013, followed by 2 weeks of travelling and visiting the South African National Parks.

    This safari was intensively prepared, firstly with the selection of one ammunition among 15 for me, for my Blaser R8 in 9.3x62 mm caliber (sako hammerhead 286 grains) and the selection of one ammunition among 7 for Marie, my girlfriend, for her Ruger American rifle in 270 win (Barnes TTSX 130 grains)
    [​IMG]
    ,secondly by numerous sessions at the range, shooting at 100m and 200m with a tripod, thirdly by numerous walks in the forest of our area near Bordeaux, France, with all our gear, finally by 2 successful stalks on roedeers for Marie and me just before we left.

    We were 3 hunters, myself (herve, 47), Marie (my girlfriend, 47), and Pierre-Antoine my son, 14 years old.

    I started hunting about 10 years ago, and have taken only about 30 animals (roedeer and wild boars), mainly in driven hunts and some on stalking.
    Marie started hunting last year and have taken a roedeer on stalking.
    My son never hunted but went with me several time in driven hunts and participated in our preparation stalking.

    We were fully staffed with cameras and videos (4 cameras including 1 NIKON 200D, and 3 video cameras including 1 GOPRO Hero 2 and 2 JVC with x40 zoom on tripods). When one of us was hunting, the 2 others were taking videos of the action. One guy was carrying the NIKON with cobra flaslight, that allowed me to take very good shots after the animals were killed.

    With the photos and the screenshots of the videos, I have created electronic postcards for each of the 13 animals we have taken.

    Here is the first one, of the first animal, a warthog, by my son, on Day 1, at 100 meters, a one shot kill in the neck.
    [​IMG]

    I will post a postcard everyday or so on this forum.

    See you later!

    Herve
     

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  2. 1ObsessedHunter

    1ObsessedHunter AH Veteran

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    Fantastic my friend...keep it coming!
     
  3. Badger Matt

    Badger Matt AH Member

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    You've got me hooked. Great story and pics. I'll keep checking in...
     
  4. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    herve love the way you have done the photos, i wont even ask how its done as the reply will totally confuse me!! congrats to pierre on his first trophy. when your child takes their first hunting trophy i think you are as excited and proud as they are, if not more so :thumb::)
     
  5. herve747

    herve747 AH Member

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    So proud I was indeed, and happy! It was not expected that he would shoot and kill the first animal of our safari. I was supposed to do so, with a kudu, since kudu was the emblematic, superstar, "totem" of our safari.

    But on our first stalk, when the PH spotted those 2 warthogs, he asked who wanted to shoot. I said not me (warthog was not on my list) and asked Marie (warthog was on her list since she missed several wild boars last winter in her first hunting season). But Marie was so flabbergasted by the animals, the land, the color, the situation, by AFRICA HUNTING indeed, that she was not ready. I asked my son and he said that he was ready. He took my Blaser and went with the PH. We stayed with Marie with the 2 camcorders and tripods. We stayed a few minutes glassing at the 2 warthogs feeding. Suddenly the first warthog made on step forward. A few seconds later, BANG, I saw his tuss and head up and nothing more. Sure it was a deadly shot. Pierre told me after that there was a small tree branch in his line of sight of the shoulder, so he could not shoot. He just waited for an opportunity. The step forward of the warthog was it.
     
  6. Sand Rat

    Sand Rat AH Senior Member

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    Great warthog to break in a young hunter, please congratulate him for me.

    Robert
     
  7. herve747

    herve747 AH Member

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    Thanks Robert, I just congratulated him on behalf of you, while he was doing his Facebook stuff and so on. Hopefully, he is ALSO a hunter and fan of wildlife and not only a computer geek!
     
  8. Hogpatrol

    Hogpatrol BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Senior Member

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    Great story & great photos. Keep 'em coming. I bet the PH was thrilled at your son gettin the first shot and kill too.
     
  9. PHOENIX PHIL

    PHOENIX PHIL AH Legend

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    Great start, keep it coming!
     
  10. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Thanks for posting the start of the report.

    Congratulations..
     
  11. bluey

    bluey GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    gday herve
    congrats to the young fella
    great start mate,be watching this hunt unfold :first:
     
  12. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Toutes mes felicitations a ton fils pour son premier animal Africain et merci de partager votre sejour de chasse avec nous.
     
  13. Wheels

    Wheels GOLD SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Congratulations to your son on his first African trophy. Looking forward to the rest of your story.
     
  14. herve747

    herve747 AH Member

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    Day 2 - 2nd animal of our safari. Forever my FIRST African trophy
    [​IMG]
     

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  15. rphguy

    rphguy AH Enthusiast

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    Hi Herve, Great pictures. You had me with that very first pic. I thought it was so good, I called my wife in. We thought it was an awesome idea and nice shot laying on the targets like that.
    Your son looks very much like Tyler, my daughter's boyfriend of 4 years. He's about 20 now.

    What outfit did you hunt with and what parks did you visit? And which side trip was your favorite?
    My wife and I are planning to go next summer, her first trip/my second, and I am trying to decide on either carrying her to Kruger or something similar or flying up to Victoria Falls.
    blessings,
    jerry
     
  16. herve747

    herve747 AH Member

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    Hi Jerry,

    thanks for the compliment. Yes, I had this idea of electronic postcards for the hunting actions and it is really cool. I had a great time in making them, while it took me between 3 to 5 hours to complete each card.

    Our outfitter was Grand-Safari. They have a SAFARI FORMULA at South Africa - 2013 | Grand Safari USA that was extremely well suited for the 3 of us who woud be hunting. Paying a 6 day safari on a 3 hunter basis would have been too expensive for us. Then you can choose your animal based on the price list that they show. Me and my girlfiriend had our own chalet and my son had its own next to ours. The lodge where we took our meal was very nice. Beer and wine was included.

    This is a 20 second video of sunrise on the lodge and the plain in front of the lodge



    After the safari, we picked our rental car in East London, Christophe BEAU of Grand-Safari gave us his GPS for our 2 week holidays and we made a big loop in the Eastern and South part of RSA. We spent 2 days at Mountain Zebra (awesome for landscapes and animals), 1 day in Graff-Reinet (desolation valley in Camdeboo National park at sunset is a must do), 2 days in Karoo National Park (in fact this park is redundant with Mountain Zebra, you can skip Karoo if you visit Mountain Zebra, and it was damn cold and windy), drove down to Outsdhorn (the ostrich coop near the airport has the lowest price for springbok skins that we ever seen in RSA: 180 ZAR for a skin, while they are at 500 ZAR in the curios of the national parks and in JOBURG duty free area, they also have nice decorated ostrich eggs), went to Prince Albert small city and spent only a few hours there while you could stay a day or 2, and crossed the mountains via the Swartberg Pass, that is a MUST DO (awesome gravel road, landscape, wild protea (South africa national flower) flowers fields). We went to the Tsitsikama area in the wilderness rest camp and walked the half-collared kingfisher trail in the bush that is fantastic. Then we went to the Storms River mouth rest camp, where our chalet was facing the ocean. Made a few easy trails there. Then we drove to Jeffreys Bay (I am a surfer and wanted to see the supertube spot). And then we spent 3 days in Addo Elephant National Park. Addo is fantastic, we saw dozens of elephants with small ones, 2 lions, hyena, and many antelopes. We did not see any rhinos (the rangers are not authorized to say where they are due to poaching issues), leopard and cheetahs.

    Our favorites parks were Mountain Zebra, Tsitsikama and Addo. I do not know Kruger but it seems that you have a good chance for seeing the big five there.

    Anyway, I will be posting a kind of Return Of Experience on our safari and holidays in this post or another one, for the people who are planning a trip in RSA. We have good advices to share.

    Cheers.

    Herve
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2014
  17. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Congratulations on your first animal.
    Hard to beat a Gemsbok/Oryx as your first animal.

    Great shot by the way.
     
  18. Nyati

    Nyati AH Legend

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    First of all congratulations to your son for his first african animal, a warthog and a nice one.

    Then to yourself, for that nice gemsbok, by the way it was also my first african animal.

    Thanks for sharing your hunt with us !
     
  19. herve747

    herve747 AH Member

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    Day 2 - Third animal of our safari - The first of Marie - Perfect shoulder shot
    [​IMG]
     

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  20. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Congratulations! To you and your Family Awesome pictures and Great trophies for all of you. Keep it coming.
     

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