Planning for FIRST HUNTING SAFARI-- in 2012

Discussion in 'GREAT DEALS on Hunts Worldwide' started by EDELWEISS, Aug 10, 2011.

  1. EDELWEISS

    EDELWEISS AH Senior Member

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    After dreaming for far too long, Im finally able to take the plunge. Im ready for my first safari in Afrika. As much as I "want" to start right in with the BIG FIVE, I "think" I can be satisfied with plains game for my first safari.

    I havent done anything yet except a google search and briefly spoken to one PH at a Gun Show. Ive got hunting experience in the US and Canada for the usual stuff (deer, boar, bear, etc); but except for a library's worth of reading, Afrika is an unknown to me.

    I can use ALL the suggestions you can give, as well as recommendations for the "who's", "what's", where's", and "when's".

    Help.....
     
  2. Hartzview Hunting Safaris

    Hartzview Hunting Safaris SPONSOR AH Fanatic

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    Hey Edelweis,

    Welcome to the forum and also welcome to the exciting world of planning your first African Hunt. I will send you a PM with as much information possible and please do not hesitate to contact me if you may have any questions.

    Best regards,

    Jacques
     
  3. Code4

    Code4 AH Enthusiast

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    There is a natural progression with hunting Africa and you are starting the right way with a Plains Game hunt. What you learn and observe will hold you in good stead when you book another (more expensive hunt). Hunting plains game can be very rewarding and a real challenge and unfortunately doesn't get 'marketed' the same way DG does.

    Your experiences domestically with 'the usual stuff' are a lot more than some 'dude' hunters have when they head for Africa.

    Be honest with yourself and your PH. If you do not tell them what you want they can not provide it or will try to provide an experience you do not want. They are not mind readers.

    Determine exactly what you want. Have one priority species you would like to hunt. Follow your heart with that. You can 'collect' lots of different species from a shopping list, but it will not be free range as not all species are native to all areas. eg Sable in South Afria. Also be prepared to compromise. Some farm hunts are very challenging. Are you happy to spot and stalk from a vehicle ? Would a cull hunt of numerous non trophy animals suit you better ? Are trophys important or not and to what standard ? Also determine what type of country you want to hunt in. Is it Bushveldt ? Does the Kalahari appeal to you ? You will have to pay through the nose for truely wild Africa.

    I would start off with a series of standard questions sent via email to every operator you can find. From the replys one or two will leap out at you. You need to check them out as much as possible. Not just their references as anyone can supply a good referee. That is where the www has so many advantages even from a simple google search.

    Take time to do some sight seeing. Cape Town and/or Vic Falls are a must do especially if you take your partner.

    Above all take an open mind. You are 'not in Kansas any more Dorothy'. You are a guest in another country and what applys at home does not necessarily apply in Africa. Africa runs on African time and not much will change it. The plans will have been made and while there will be problems the experiences you have will get you back again.

    I love the Save in Zim. Being lowveldt it 'looks' like the romantic Africa I dreamed about before I went. I would love to hunt the Kalahari in NW South Africa, Botswana or Namibia. I loved hunting Springbok in the Free state despite hateing to hunt on my knees for hours.

    Try Chris Troskie. He is in the field right now, as are most PH's. It is safari season over there.
     
  4. EDELWEISS

    EDELWEISS AH Senior Member

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    The ONE plains game species I KNOW I want is Zebra. Thats been a dream since I was a kid. As far as "Trophy" quality, pretty much any game I take will be trophies to me, and frankly a personal best (until the next time). I have no problems with a "ranch" style hunt, its still Afrika after all.

    I'll most likely be alone, I wish it was otherwise; but if I was still married, I wouldnt be going. Im not opposed to some extra days sight seeing. As many plans that Ive made in my head over the last decade, few have been of non-hunting sight seeing; still its something worth considering.

    I had thought a 10+ day hunt was a good way to start. Im also wondering if it might be better to book a shorter 7 day hunt first and make a second trip all the more sooner. I feel like a kid, I want it ALL and NOW; but I also know I'll want a second hunt too.

    I have no problem with a culling hunt, as long as I can export the mounts. As I said they will all be TROPHIES to me.

    Thanks again
     
  5. Alaska Hunter

    Alaska Hunter AH Member

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    Cruiser Safaris

    Just finished a fantastic hunt in South Africa with Cruiser Safaris. Check out my review and photos under South Africa hunting reports. Look up their website and call Cruiser Bob with any questions. he is right here in the states. I highly recommend them. PM me if you have any questions. I don't feel their prices can be beat for truly quality game. These are not cull hunts.
     
  6. Code4

    Code4 AH Enthusiast

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    A Zebra is a great start and lined with black felt makes a great rug or wall hanging. They don't wear well however.

    [​IMG]

    Euro skull mounts, even females can also look good. (Blackened horns are very artificial however).

    [​IMG]

    Smaller species make great shoulder mounts.

    [​IMG]

    Some things to be carefull of.

    1) Hidden costs. Ask for all costs to be quoted. Taxidermy and shipping while cheaper in Africa, can easily exceed 30% of the rest of the cost of the Safari.

    2) The operator who promises everything. This is impossible. Most have a fairly good product and a standard modus operandi but you will have to find out what that is. If an operator can't provide what you want and says so, you have found an honest one. They will however should be able to pass you on to someone else. You still have to check those out however.
     

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  7. fhm3006

    fhm3006 AH Enthusiast

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    Welcome to AH mate!
    Code 4 sums it up pretty good - first start with where in Africa you will initiate your dream. Pending where - then you can decide on either short first trip for quick second trip follow up, or extended first trip. Where and what you are going to hunt will largely determine this because diiferent hunts / countries / topography / animals, etc determines the time you spent hunting for a specific animal. When the "where" has been sorted, then the "what" and total trip cost = US$ ??? becomes relevant.

    I am very sure the numerous experienced African Hunters here on AH who regularly hunts Africa will assist you in no time. My 5 c.

    And O-yeah..."Middle East hunting" does not count as countries hunted:devious:... otherwise i would have to add some African countries (except Namibia and RSA) to my list as well...:ignore:
     
  8. Mike70560

    Mike70560 AH Fanatic

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    You may not want to rule out buffalo for your first trip. Elephant and buffalo are my favorite animals to hunt. My first trip included two buffalo in Tanzania.

    You may consider a couple of areas in Zimbabwe such as the Save Conservancy (850 thousand acres) or Bubye Valley Conservancy (Over 1,000,000 acres). You will see the big Five on these hunts and enjoy a great overall experience. There are many good operators such as Mokore, John Sharp, Zambezi Hunters, Shaun Buffee etc.

    Another good option is an area like Omay operated by Martin Pieters. Great Dangerous game area. you can hunt buffalo and move to another area for plains game.

    Book at least 10 days of hunting, you will not regret it.
     
  9. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Shop around and find your self a PH that will take you on a cape Buffalo safari...with Plains game...

    For 2012 you should be able to find your self a group of PH's that would take you
    ... look the countrys over and start your calling and talking now or start with a some e mails to get a feel...

    10 days is do able and with a 14 day safari you could add leopard...sable...

    this all depends on your pocketbook...there are some great deals being offered right now for this year...if you could go ... look them over...

     
  10. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Welcome to AH, you have received a lot of terrific advice already.

    I would not go to Africa for less than 10 days hunting!
     
  11. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Do you have a budget set for your trip/hunting safari?
     
  12. Blue Skies Hunting Adventures

    Blue Skies Hunting Adventures AH Enthusiast

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    I agree with Alaska Hunter, Great company and great quality animals. I would start with a 10 day safari and during that time you can still get in some sight seeing as well. You need to add Kudu to your list. Cruiser safaris have some great package hunts for a very good value. Good luck.
     
  13. EDELWEISS

    EDELWEISS AH Senior Member

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    First thanks for all the suggestions and PMs. As much as I'd love to jump on a plane right now I think 2012 is a better idea (plus I get the extended joy of the anticipation and planning).

    If reading made me an expert, I'd have my doctorate in Safari with masters in 19th and 20th century adventure. I started with Capstick, then found Rooseveldt, Taylor and Hagar. From there I was on to Boddington and even Mark Sullivan. As much as I want to start with adventures like them; I realize times have changed.

    I'm torn between trying a one time "Do Everything" Safari or a something a bit above a "Basic Entry Level" Safari, with the promise of more to come. While my budget isn't in the "One Stop Big Five" 90+ day range. I'm pretty sure its beyond the 7 day economy range as well.

    Ultimately I would love to hunt Leopard and of course Lion. Buffalo would be nice too. I'm open to suggestions as to Plains game. Zebra is definetly on my "want" list and I think I'd like to add Warthog. Again beyond those I'm open to suggestions and availability. I'm not particularly concerned with "record book makers". Yes that would be GREAT; but any typical representative animal will be a "personal record" for me. I'm more concerned with the memories of the hunt.

    I will most likely be bringing a 9.3x74R double and possibly an as yet undetermined Single shot rifle (Ruger No1???). To that end I'm open to suggestions. My current thoughts range between 45-70, 30-06, 450 No2, 470, or perhaps another double in 500/416. I hesitate to jump on the big bore stuff as I keep hearing about Americans showing up over gunned and under trainned. I can more easily "justify" the 9.3 and milder 45's as something I can use before and after for US game (Boar, Bear, even Deer).

    I want to approach this wisely but with enthusiam.
    Thanks
    Bruce
     
  14. billc

    billc SILVER SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I would say give jacque at hartzview an email.Has alot of zebras and everything else you could want.Plus he gets all the little details from airport pickup and return done right.Great lodge great food and fun hunting all day long.You can really start hunting almost from your cabin door.Hope you enjoy planning your hunt Like I did know making plans for another as soon as I can. I can also tell you lori at travel express did awesome for us to.Save me a few hundred dolllars on air fare.
     
  15. EDELWEISS

    EDELWEISS AH Senior Member

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    Ok guys, any thoughts on the airline? I'd prefer a direct flight (or as close to direct as possible).

    Any words of wisdom on travelling with weapons and ammo?

    What else am I not thinking of????
     
  16. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Your choices of airlines is limited somewhat. Delta and South African are the prime carriers to southern Africa. KLM, British, Air France and others service farther north. Depends on where you come from and where you are going to. A good travel agent will take care of all this. Lori at Travel Express can help. Hunt 10 days minimum for sure. Buffalo is allright for the first time, I did. Gotta narrow it down to the critters you most want, find out where they are and start looking for outfitters in that place. Or if the critters matter least, then what country most intrigues you? The possibilities are endless, and the planning is almost as much fun as the actual hunt. Sometimes more! Good luck!
     
  17. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    If you have not already, check out the Ultimate Safari Planning Guide by clicking here, lots of articles to prepare for your hunt.
     
  18. eai outdoors

    eai outdoors AH Member

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    Dear Elderweis:

    Ed here from EAI Outdoors. Planning a trip to Africa can be an intimidating task! So much information to sort through. I do believe your idea of starting with a plains game hunt is a good one. That is how most of us get started or rather "hooked" on Africa! I first went over 20 years ago and have been involved with hunting there ever since. It just gets in your blood. Please have a look at our website for more information on the packages that we offer. Most important feel free to call me toll free at: 888-710-9453 with any questions. I am here at all times to help with anything. Hunting Africa is my great passion and if I can help you in any way just let me know.

    ED
     
  19. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Hi EDELWEISS,
    Welcome to the forum. There are certainly enough experience from the members going around to give you all of the necessary advice on planning a successful trip.

    Best Regards
    Marius Goosen
    KMG Hunting Safaris
     
  20. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    Hi, Edelweiss, I have not been to Africa myself, but like you have done a lot of reading. During my ramblings in the web I came across an interesting site of a female PH in Tanzania who organizes "Old Style" hunts, on foot, with porters, camping in the open, Karen Blixen style. I don't know more than what I learned from her website, natashaillumberg.com, but it sure sounded different and interesting. If I can ever afford it, that would be my dream hunt.
    Another different and interesting hunt would be Rainer Josch's Wild Africa (rainerjosch.com), hunting buffalo on foot on the slopes of Mt. Loosimingor in Tanzania.
     

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