South Africa Plains Game, Packaged Hunt Vs. A La Carte??

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by Big Country, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Jaco, has some very good points here that will impact your experience immensely.

    Lots of driving between concessions is time you are not hunting. Manage your time well.

    My personal peeve. Providing the aggregate concession area is a favourite obfuscation.
    "Concession" became a dirty word for me.
    I can contract 200 properties of 100 acres each or 1 of 20,000 acres. The area is the same. The hunting will be different.
    There are other issues about property type, terrain, etc.

    I hunted a small "open" (very few trees) concession and the game just started running at the sight of the Baakie and then just kept running. The animals had to be herded/driven to get anyone a shot.
    Size and terrain matters!


    Are you there alone? If they pack a hoard onto a large property or small one it will change your experience.
    It takes very talented PH's to ensure that you do not interfere if this is happening.

    How many people a year and what they have hunted on the property makes a huge difference.
    This really impacted me at Leeukop this past year.
    Warthogs had been hunted very hard just before we arrived for our hunt.
    (Not the experience I had on my first trip to the property)
    Timing is everything.
    The property next door is booked BACK to BACK for the entire season. NOT where I would want to hunt.
    Anyone ever ask that question?

    I'll give you the high five. Honest assessment really.
     
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  2. Safari Afrika

    Safari Afrika AH Enthusiast

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    Brickburn you honestly go the extra yard in every post !!! What more can anyone ask for ! Again as I said in an earlier post there is room for every outfitter on here . We just offer different experiences and that is where the client have to make his pick !

    It is a total experience ! You can have a successful hunt without killing something ! Obviously my bank manager wont agree on this !!!! :punch:
     
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  3. billc

    billc SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Just dont get caught up thinking a 5000 acre place is not that big.When you see some of the terrian and bush there 5000 acres becomes real big and totally a fair chase hunt.With that being said 5000 acres in the limpo is not the same as 5000 in the cape or karoo area.The places I have hunted the animals grew up on the land not just stocked like some and were as wild as could be.They knew how to get away and were to hide.Having 3 or 4 places of 5000 or so acres within a thirty minute drive will not ruin any hunt and not cut into your time hunting.Is it nice to hunt one big area yes it is but is the hunting that much better I dont think enough to make the difference to must.Just ask all the question you can think of when picking a place and there is no question to dumb to ask.
     
  4. Don K

    Don K AH Senior Member

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    I'm headed to SA with 3 friends in 86 days... I'm doing a Buff hunt with White Lion and can't wait. There's a few other animals I'm going to take (maybe more if opportunity arises lol). It's a package and I'm thinking I'll have a few add ons...

    I'm headed to Namibia next April with my daughter in tow and it'll be strictly on a per animal basis (discounted as we shoot more).

    I'll base my decision on these 2 hunts, experience and value, for a hunt with my father and another with my son in the upcoming years!

    The packages are tough to beat, and if they're what they seem it'll be a given that is what my following 2 safaris will be encompassed around.
    I like the idea of a package, for the value, and then add animals of opportunity to it!

    I'm hopeful that we hit it off well with one of the outfitters over the next year and then just continue with them. I'm a creature of habit and if comfortable somewhere I like to go back to what I know!
     
  5. Rob44

    Rob44 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Welcome to AH Big Country,,,Lots of help here as you can see,,I'm off in 2 Months to hunt in SA ,,I picked a small Venue, One on One PH in Limpopo provience,,who tailored my hunt just to suit Me,,I agree with your choice of a just got to have it 375 cal
     
  6. graybird

    graybird AH Veteran

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    I particularly like the idea of package hunts for first or second time hunter. I've done two package hunts, but in different locations. Once in KZN and once in the Eastern Cape. Completely different areas to hunt and completely different animals to hunt.

    Having said that, I'm going back to the EC in June and will be hunting a la carte hunting several odds and ends species like Vaal Rhebok, blue duiker and oribi, animals you won't find on typical packages offered. Yet, I know at the end of the safari, my PH will work some deals with me because this is my second trip with him.

    Another thought regarding choosing a particular outfitter to me is the size of the operation. I personally enjoy the smaller "mom and pop" places versus the bigger operations you see on TV shows. Too me, things seem more personal. My first trip to KZN was in a tented camp where you had to light a fire under a drum of water to pressurize the line to the shower. I'll never forget taking a shower every night while the hyenas visited to each other, looking up at the Southern Cross, and enjoying the little frog that graced the kerosine lit, thatched shower.

    It's little things like that, that make a safari special and you typically won't find those in the larger operations.

    Good luck with your choices!
     
  7. Big Country

    Big Country New Member

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    Thank you to everyone that chimed in. My wife and I spent hours trying to decide which way to go. In the end we decided to book an ala carte safari for the ease of adding fishing side trips and animals of opportunity. I have since booked a ten day safari with Leo Van Rooyen Safaris in Kwa-Zulu Natal RSA. As my wife and I sit in the terminal at Dulles International awaiting boarding of our flight to Johannesburg I thank all of you frequent poster's for the help you unknowingly gave us in planning this thing called safari. especially Jaco, Brickburn, and Enysse. This site has made researching and planning a first time safari a pleasant experience rather than a nerve racking one. Hopefully in a little over two weeks I will have a hunting report filled with exciting stories and trophies to be proud of. Catch you all on the flip side....
     
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  8. tarbe

    tarbe AH Fanatic

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    Outstanding Big Country!

    Can't wait to read your report. Be safe, have fun!
     
  9. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Welcome. Have a great safari.

    Look forward to that (repayment) hunt report.

    Take lots of pictures.
     
  10. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss AH Elite

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    It is only a pleasure, I am convinced that your trip will be absolutely unforgettable! Looking forward the the hunt report!
    Take lots of pictures and enjoy your time together :)

    My best always
     
  11. accipiter

    accipiter AH Veteran

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    Good advice. I booked my first safari with an AH forum member and I will book my second safari with an AH member.
     
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  12. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Good luck sir! We await your photos and report.

    Take Care,
    Marius Goosen
     
  13. billc

    billc SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    good luck and hope it all goes well.Your going to africa to hunt what can be better either way you do it will be an awesome time
     
  14. jeff

    jeff BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I like hunting different concessions with in a hour or two drive as you get to see more of the area and different things. I had a 12 day trip in limpopo 2 years ago and I sat the same 4 hides on the 22,000 acre property and didn't see much of the area.
     
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  15. Cable68

    Cable68 AH Member

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    I've not done any package hunts, always the daily rate and trophy fee route. One thing this allows me to do is have a day or two of going out and just seeing what presents itself. Some of the most fun hunting days I've had.
     
  16. tarbe

    tarbe AH Fanatic

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    Being a total rookie at this, I decided to do both...10 day package with 6 animals, with hopefully enough time for some catch-as-catch can hunting along the way. Just need to make sure I wire plenty of money ahead so my trigger finger doesn't overload my "bank account"!
     
  17. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Hello,

    Great question.

    Thank you for posting it.

    My first safari was a package deal booked through Cabela's (back in 2002).

    It was with "Burchell Safaris" in Namibia.

    Since those days, Burchell Safaris folded under a hail storm of law suits from angry clients.

    I liked Namibia very much but, disliked my PH very much as well.

    He was an anti-social road hunter (motorized bandit) at heart, and the land owner's son-in-law.

    Today, I prefer a-la cart for PG.

    It is very gratifying to wander far and wide, not knowing what species I might encounter - duiker to eland.

    That's why I prefer larger calibers/heavy bullets - "just in case," plus, they do not ruin the skin/hair on the smaller ones like reedbok, bushbuck, vlakvark, and the tiny ten.

    Cheers,
    Velo Dog.
     
  18. Russ Tippett

    Russ Tippett New Member

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    Some good advise here. I hunted South Africa for the first time this year with an outfit that is not on this forum. I met the outfitters at SCI 10 years ago and just liked them. The owner was honest and told me that I would not shoot the nyala of my dreams on his place but that I could shoot many other good trophies and perhaps i should take the nyala off the list for now. My wife was coming with me and creature comforts were a consideration as well. This outfit provided comfort, good food, 20,000 acres that we could walk on when not hunting .... everything but a good nyala. I took their 5 day package of 4 animals, took one off for a credit and added a bushbuck in lieu of a second one and a kudu plus 2 extra hunting days and 3 photo days. We hunted hardest for the bushbuck but while doing that did manage to locate a nice kudu that had hung around to breed some late cows. After two failed stalks we managed to get him. At something over 51 inches I am told he was good but I really never asked his size, it really did not matter, he was my first kudu. The bushbuck took the better part of 4 days and quite a few miles of walking, glassing, etc before we found him. I am told by a PH on this forum that he too is good. Again I don't know how big he is, but I was more than happy with him. A warthog, 2 nice impala, and a very old blesbuck for leopard bait the last hour of the last day made this a perfect hunt. In the end we converted one 'photo day' to a 'hunting day' to take the second impala (really just to be hunting). We took nearly 4000 pictures during our 10 days some were the "usual suspects " like the kudu and others were the really memorable shots like this rhino bull who appeared behind us late one afternoon while we were hunting I can't remember what.
    In combat it is said that no good plan survives first contact. We had a good plan and let Africa change it. The results could not have been better. My wife began talking about 'our next safari' before the wheels were in the well leaving JNB.
     

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  19. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Hello Russ Tippet,

    Great post and photos.
    Isn't it a relief to find a Safari Company / PH / Support Staff that you can trust and get along with like old friends?
    My first experience in Africa was the opposite but the hunting was so good that I did not give up.
    And today, I have hunted with a chap (Hannes Swanepoel) in South Africa three times.
    South Africa sometimes gets a bad rap but with the right PH, it is as good or better than some other countries for large land holdings, not fenced off from the National Park, very plentiful and diversified game species, bird hunting, fishing opportunities and etc.
    My repeat bookings with the same PH speaks for itself.

    Cheers,
    Velo Dog.
     
  20. JTEX

    JTEX AH Veteran

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    I hope your hunt went great! Lots of good advice here.

    ""Concession" became a dirty word for me."

    All this talk of "concessions" in South Africa is very strange. You are not hunting on "concessions" you are hunting on Farms and Ranches. With a very few exceptions this is hunting on private land. I have no problem at all with this but it is what it is.
     

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