SOUTH AFRICA: Running Review Of Limpopo Safaris

Discussion in 'Hunting Reports' started by Reaper, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    oryx

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  2. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    Day 3:

    Came up empty handed after chasing Zebra which was the only animal left on the list (besides impala, which I decided I would not dedicate too much time to, but take one if stumbled upon).
    We climbed a rocky hill and were able to spot a herd of half a dozen or so about a mile away. After a long stalk was able to get to within 100 yards. After wasting some time looking over the herd for the nicest one, I was lining up on one of the zebras when the winded or seen us and bolted, never to be seen again. I took a break from hunting in the afternoon and relaxed around camp, had a swim in the pool, layed out on the lounge chairs and did some fishing. Caught a couple nice catfish that the camp chef turned into a delicious appetizer.

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  3. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    Day 4:
    We started out again climbing yet another rocky ridge to get a good viewpoint for glassing, trying to locate more zebra.
    We came up empty on the zebra. But I spotted a small group of Impala wandering towards us. The group looked like it had a really nice ram in it. The PH was glassing the other side of the ridge and I pointed them out to him. He confirmed that one of them was in fact really nice. I told him that I wanted to take him. I set up on some rocks for the almost 200 yard downhill shot. As I was taking up the slack in the trigger, the PH whispered "WAIT!!". It seems that just out of my field of view an even nicer ram had come out of the bush. I lined up on this second ram, who was broadside and touched off a round.
    The 180gr Power point caught him low in shoulder. Pulverizing both shoulders and shredding the heart to pieces. The ram was DRT and never moved an inch.

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  4. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    here's the ram

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  5. bluey

    bluey AH Legend

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    nice impala , reaper.
    congratulations
     
  6. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    Sorry guys, I forgot all about this thread. I don't visit here much. I will now conclude the thread.

    Day 4
    Sunrise found us out looking for fresh Zebra tracks, as this was the only animal left "on my list". After cutting several sets of tracks and getting busted everytime, mostly due to swirling wind and their sharp eyes (I think Zebra might be the smartest of the African plains game), we decided to call it a morning and head back to the truck for well deserved "brai" (barbeque in the bush). As we were coming around some scrub bush, the PH suddenly stopped and told me to look for the nearest sturdy tree. I knew this meant there was a black rhino somewhere nearby. Over the past couple of days I had already been up a few trees. Thankfully, everytime the rhinos minded their own business and left the area.
    As I was about to head over to a decent size Mopani tree the PH informed me that it was not a rhino, but an Eland. And a big old bull at that! I could tell he was excited! I informed him that Eland was not on my list and I preferred to save it for next year. He said fine, but that running into such a nice old bull is a rare occasion and sometimes hunters have to make several trips to Africa just to find one like this. I decided to take a second look at him. He was in a group of 4 bulls and you could tell that he was head and shoulders above the rest.
    I decided to heed the PH's advice and go for him. He was about 80 yards out and broadside - an easy shot from the sticks. I put the crosshairs of the .30-06 tight behind his shoulder and let one fly. The bulls started all running away, except mine which ran parallel to us and stopped. The PH was hissing in my ear "HIT EM AGAIN!!!!! THEY CAN WALK FOREVER WHEN WOUNDED!!!"
    After taking a few steps to my right to get around a bush, I fired one more round. No reaction! Ph still hissing "AGAIN AGAIN!!!". So i fire again...still no reaction from the bull who is just standing there. I shoot again. Nothing!
    I take aim again and CLICK!!! Damn, I'm empty. So i chuck a round by hand into the chamber and fire. That one got his attention as he is now looking at me and noticing that something is not quite right here. I load yet another shell into the rifle and decide i will try a neck shaot to end this circus. Well I hit the neck, but missed the spine obviously as the bull decides he's had enough of this BS and starts trotting off. I throw my last shell into the chamber and put one into his rear end hoping I will connect with bone and keep him from moving too far off. At the impact he stops but is still standing there like a statue. I'm out of ammo and just look at my PH and kinda throw up my arms like "W.T.F!!!".
    The tracker arrives at my position with the PH's 375 H&H back up and just then the bull finally starts swaying back and forth before stiff legged falling on his side. The PH was so relived. Apparently, he has been on multi day Eland tracking expeditions. Not a lot of fun according to him.

    Back at the skinning shed for the post mortem, we find bullet 3-4 holes in his heart/lung area. Heart and lungs are soup. Another one in the guts and one in the neck.
    The 180 grain Winchester power points all penetrated and expanded well. Retained weight was around 80%. These are tough animals!!!

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  7. Sand Rat

    Sand Rat SILVER SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    Great report Reaper! Super Impala and nice mature Eland.
     
  8. thriller

    thriller AH Enthusiast

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    nice report, Congrats on a successful hunt. Zebra are a lot smarter than they look on TV is one of the first things I found out as well!! lol

    PS. I envy that eland I looked for one of those for days!!!
     
  9. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    My first Eland took 1200 grains of lead in the boiler room before he was finished. They are tough.
    Congratulations on your Eland.

    Glad you got back to finishing this report.
     
  10. Ragman

    Ragman AH Veteran

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    Excellent trip and beautiful trophies. Love that kudu!
     
  11. Rob404

    Rob404 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Thanks for your report
     
  12. dory

    dory AH Fanatic

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    Totally agree mr Brickburn .
    I always liked a bullet to use its energy up in the animal . Not Now.
    After Africa , I am sold on pass through shots with tons of blood .
    Cheers Dory .
     
  13. dory

    dory AH Fanatic

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    You tell me zebra arnt hard to hunt !!!!!
    Took me 6 days hard hunting to get mine .
    I too thought they would be easy hunting after seeing to many on tv , ha ha ha !!!
    Man was I wrong .
    Geat hunt and report Reaper , I bet your mates pissed !
    Cheers Dory .
     
  14. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter AH Elite

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    Thanks for the report Reaper. Some nice animals. Good looking Kudu. That Impala is top notch and a great Eland. Smart to take the Eland as it can be a tough animal yo get. Zebra are interesting. When hunted they can become very shy. Congrats Bruce
     
  15. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    There really was nothing the eland was going to do, he couldn't circulate any oxygen to his body. Congrats, nice trophy!
     
  16. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    Thanks, fellows! I'm glad you enjoyed my report. I enjoyed the hunt so much that the very next day after returning home from Africa, I sent my deposit for next year (Summer 2015). Maybe I will continue this thread with a short write up of this second hunt.


    I agree. However, something very interesting. On a subsequent hunt I used a Marlin Guide Gun in 45/70 on Zebra and Blue WB. Both animals, despite not having exit wounds, left MASSIVE blood trails....like they were put down with a paint roller.
     
  17. Wheels

    Wheels AH Legend

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    Congratulations on your hunt. You got some nice trophies.

    You may hold the record for the longest (time wise) hunting report.:) Thanks for finishing it. Look forward to the 2015 report as well.(y)
     
  18. Reaper

    Reaper AH Senior Member

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    Second Hunt - The Return!
    Summer 2015


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    As I previously mentioned, I was so pleased with my hunt and the operation owned and run by Mias Cronje at limpoposafaris.com that I immediately re-booked for the next year.

    As I'm not a fan of heat while hunting (don't mind it at the beach – but not in the field), I wanted my next hunt to take place during the coolest period of the year. After looking at some weather charts for the nearby town of Musina, I settled on 27th of June to the 4th of July. This as opposed to first week of first/second week of August like last hunt.

    This time, I would be accompanied by my good friend (he made sure to get his visa this time) for a 2x1 7 day hunt.

    We landed at around 9am at Jo'burg after a comfortable 10hr direct flight from my home base in Zurich, Switzerland. We had a short 2.5 hour layover until our connecting flight to Polokwane where we would be met by our hosts I was worried that the short layover would not be sufficient to clear my rifles before catching the connecting flight.

    Upon reaching the Customs office to clear my rifles, I informed the nice African officer of my hurry – big mistake! This made him move extraaaa slow! He asked for my SA import permit which I immediately provided. He then asked for my export permit from exporting country! “What export permit”`? Switzerland does not issue export permits for firearms which are not being exported permanently! I immediately knew what he was doing, as I have a lot of experience working with corrupt @$$ eastern European countries, not to mention Russia and Ukraine!

    I told him I didn't need an export permit and that last time I came through it was not requested. He then informed me that if I didn't have an export permit he would have to confiscate the firearms!

    I didn't have any cash on me, so I told him I would go to the nearest ATM/Cash machine and “see if I could find my export permit there”. With a big smile he pointed me to the nearest one. I withdrew some local currency and slipped 150 Rand ($12USD) into my passport. I came back to the office and informed him that my export permit was in my passport. This all the while he was standing under the big sign that said “CUSTOMS EMPLOYEES SHOULD NOT ASK FOR CASH – PLEASE CALL 1 800XXXXX IF YOU ARE ASKED FOR MONEY”

    He then proceeded to very quickly process my documents and informed me that all was in order and I could go. Before I left, there was another guy from Switzerland, who was also being shaken down. He didn't speak english, so this customs officer asked me to talk to him about the “export permit” situation before I left. Hilarious!

    Anyways, I was happy as I had more than enough time to catch my connecting flight.


    After a quick one hour flight we landed in a very cold, windy and rainy Polokwane! The airport thermometer read 13C / 55F - I know I said I didn't like the heat, but I was second guessing my decision to come at this time of year. To top it off, I didn't bring anything much heavier than cotton shirts and a light vest.

    Mias, brought us to a nearby mall – North mall or something like. There's a well stocked outdoors apparel store on the second floor called “Traders post” or something similar, where we were able to get some fleece jackets at very reasonable prices.


    After a 2.5 hour drive we finally arrived at the game preserve where the hunt takes place. For those of you, who like me, detest the small enclosures, or driving from one property to the other to hunt – this place is for you! The property is one 60000 hectare / 150000 acre / 230 square mile enclosure. And the camp is smack in the middle of it. So hunting starts about 10 minutes after leaving camp each morning.

    Before going to camp, we stopped to check the zero on my rifles. I had brought two:

    -Marlin 1895GS “Guide Gun” in .45/70 (topped with a Leupold 1-4x20mm)
    Handloads were 53.5gr of Norma 200 behind a Hornady 350gr flat point


    -Sauer SHR 7mm Rem Mag (topped with 3-9x Zeiss)
    Handloads were max load of R22 behind a 175gr Rem Core Lok.


    When I pulled out the Marlin, the look on the face of Mias, the owner, and our personal PH for this trip said it all! His question of “But...but where's the .30-06 you brought last year?!” told me what he must have thought of the little lever gun!
     
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  19. Rob404

    Rob404 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Love the export story
     
  20. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Enthusiast

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    What does the owner and PH think of the lever gun after the performance on your Zebra and Blue Wildebeest?

    Like your humour and export permit description.
     

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