The first of many first time africa questions.

Discussion in 'Bowhunting Africa' started by kal, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. kal

    kal AH Veteran

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    I will start this out by saying this forum is an invaluable resource. I have spent many hours perusing pages in an attempt to get a better grip on the challenges of hunting Africa. I am in the early process of planing a trip to South Africa and have a feeling I will be posting many more questions as time goes. The first question I guess I have is how far in advance do most hunters and outfitters book trips? Is two years advance too much?
     
  2. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    The range I have seen: 10 days to Five years.
    Most RSA I would guess between 1 to 2 years.

    It all depends on:
    how flexible your schedule is
    or how much you want a particular date
    or for how many people you are trying to bring along.
     
  3. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I try to be 1 to 2 years out on booking however i am looking 3 to 5 years out for specific hunting concessions.

     
  4. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    It depends on how much time and money you have? If you have the animals you are looking for thought out, then it's time to think if you are going to have any taxidermy done? If so, what is your budget there?

    The hardest thing is figuring what you want to hunt? And where? It's rare, unless you travel around Africa to find everything you are looking for in one spot.

    But planning can be one week to years.
     
  5. kal

    kal AH Veteran

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    Thanks for the fast replies. I have been dreaming about plains game for some time so picking out what I want isn't an issue. Now finding something I don't want to shoot can be tricky. I am going to talk to a few of the outfitters I see every year at my local SCI banquet. Nothing like firsthand information on the animals at the top my list. I just bought a new house so my hope is to give myself two years to save up the money. As far as taxidermy I will probably be doing shoulder mounts on my animals. I will be using my local taxidermist. The planing is so much fun its hard to think of how amazing the trip will be.
     
  6. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    The planning surely is some of the most fun. The reality of the trip is always different than you can imagine. Some things will be better, others may dissapoint, depending on specific expectations. When its all said and done, an African safari has few equals in the hunting world for most of us. Some hunters never go and dont care to. I have been 6 times and even though my most recent trip was something of a bust, I still plan to go again. I think on average the planning of my trips would be something around a year, maybe a little more for a couple of the trips. Good luck!
     
  7. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Hi Kal,
    First of all a very warm welcome to AH! As always, the members here have given you great advice which you can trust. No need to make mistakes, when others have been there and done it.
    Looking forward to answering your questions.

    Best Regards
    Marius Goosen
     
  8. RickB

    RickB AH Fanatic

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    Kal,
    First off welcome to AH! You have come to the right place for Africa!
    As everyone has said 1-2 years is probably the norm. Some guys offer specials that have to be used within a month or two. Just depends. You are right about the first hand info. I had a lot of questions for a PH at our SCI banquet before I went. He knew I was not even going with him, bit he still was very helpful and awnsered all my questions. As I have found every PH represents their professional Hunter name well. They are all professionals! I am sure there is a bad apple out there and I hope to never meet him! Good luck with the planning! I think this is the second best part of your safari! Being in Africa of course number one!

    Good luck!
     
  9. Nyati

    Nyati AH Legend

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    Welcome to the forum Kal, I would say a year is more than enough, as circumstances change fast in Africa.
     
  10. TOM

    TOM AH Elite

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    You will need more time to plan this first safari than you will in the future as you plan your follow up safaris. Give yourself a good 12 months to save, plan and get excited! For your second safari you will have a good idea of what you need and won't need nearly as long to plan. Good luck and have fun!
     
  11. kal

    kal AH Veteran

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    Thanks again for the replies and welcomes. Glad to see that everyone is helpful but I guess that's what should be expected when it comes to hunters helping hunters. This will be a archery only affair, what time of the year is the best for bow hunting. I am leaning to late July or early August.
     
  12. philheise

    philheise AH Member

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    Hi Kal,
    for my first trip I started planning/saving 2 and a half years in advance. For my second trip, it kinda fell into my lap and so I had only four months. The third trip planning started 13 months in advance. The planning for my fourth trip started 33 months before departure. And I started my preliminary planning for a summer 2014 trip (say 31 months). The average for the five trip is 22.2 months or 26.75 months if we throw out the second trip (which was an fluke - a much appreciated and pleasurable fluke, but a fluke nonetheless). So for me, about 2 years in advance. But this is mostly so that I have enough time to save rather the need of that much time to make arrangements. For just making the arrangements, each trip probably required four or five months of researching, contacting the PH/outfitter, making airline and other reservations, etc. But all of these activities (for me) are enjoyable and help pass the time before the actual hunt. Just my $0.02 worth - I hope it helps.
     
  13. Dox

    Dox AH Veteran

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    A 70 pound bow should be decent enough for a 2nd plainsgame bow.
     
  14. ndbwhnter

    ndbwhnter AH Enthusiast

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    kal, welcome to AH.

    When I went, I put my initial deposit down 26 months in advance. Looking back I am glad I did, because my outfitter locked in the prices for my trophy fees at that years rate. Two years later they had gone up, but he charged me only the original rates.

    In all the research I did for my archery safari, I learned that June, July and August are probably the best months, but additionally focus your hunt dates around the dark period of the moon.

    Good luck!

    nd
     
  15. Norwegianwoods

    Norwegianwoods SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    Don't see the point of booking very long time ahead.
    But make sure to plan your first trip well. Don't rush it.

    I just booked with Marius of KMG Hunting Safaris now and I will go there for a 12 days bowhunt at the end of June/start of July this year:)

    This is my second trip to SA. My first was in 2011(at another place) and I shot one Kudu cow with my bow and the rest with a gun. (The trip was mainly a gun hunt and I just brought my bow just in case)
    Hopefully I can shoot all with my bow this time:)

    Because of my first trip I am more sure about what I want for my next trip and I think I will have a great time stalking PG with my bow.
    Hopefully Marius can prove me right when I come there:)

    I am taking a Bowtech Destroyer 340 at 70 lbs and 31" DL.
    I am going to use 125 grain Slick Trick Magnums.
    I don't have a second bow, but I will bring a gun with me in case something happens to my bow or/and for the last days of my hunting if there still are some animals I really want to get.
     
  16. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    :thumb:Norwegianwoods, congrats on next trip with Marius! Can't wait to hear about it. Wise choice!
     
  17. kal

    kal AH Veteran

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    Thanks for all the information, I guess I will have much to talk about with the phs and outfitters at my SCI banquet next month. Any advice on questions I should be asking?
     
  18. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    I'll write something up so everyone can see it in another thread or article.
     
  19. Spiral Horn Safaris

    Spiral Horn Safaris AH Fanatic

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    Hi Kal

    First of all welcome to the forum and good luck on planning your hunt you are going to love Africa!

    Kal with regards to bow hunting and dates I would look at late in the year August/September and also take in to account the moon it is important to get good moon dates!

    Make sure to choose and experienced bow Outfit and you will be in good shape.

    Best Regards
    Louis van Bergen
     
  20. providerrick

    providerrick AH Member

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    Hi Kal,I went on my first S.A. safari this past June -Early July because of the moon and the outfitter had the opening.I booked 3 months in advance and it couldn't come soon enough.Even now I think of going back soon.I only brought a bow and Tiene at Warthog Safaris is set up for archery.the blinds on the 10,000 acre bow only area are all set up for close shots.I brought a spare bow all set up then taken apart in case anything went wrong.I brought a simple potable bow press,3 dozen arrows(way too many but you never know),One set of camo ,and extra sight.I never even unpacked the spare bow.The thing I didn't think of was in the blinds it is very dark and at last light you can't see your pins.So i taped a small flashlight to hit the fiber optics and taped it so no light could get out.Instant lighted pins at the push of a switch.We tried for Bush Pig but none showed.Definitely break in a good pair of boots.You'll spend most of your time in the blind but walking around there are a lot of very long thorns.Good luck planning I'll try to add more insight soon.Rick
     

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