What's the big draw? Why do we do it? Africa I mean.

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by Cliffy, May 5, 2012.

  1. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    good to see you are throwing away the tape measure! just enjoy being in the bush, not worrying how big the trophies are. enjoy the whole experience :)
     
  2. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    Message Please sign in so we can have a good screen name- we're all friends here

    Just relax and enjoy each and every day. There is no rush. The shots will come (either with gun or camera-you are bringing a camera right?) This is NOT North American hunting with but one target. You will see more than you shoot by a large margin. You never know what's around the next corner. Enjoy the fire in the boma every night, enjoy the mornings and especially the sunsets. There is nothing like an African sunset. You will take 3 days to slow down. Then you just cruise along with the rest of the days. You may find after 4 or 5 days you'll want to sleep late or stay in camp one afternoon just to relax. We do every time we go. Search for my posts on this forum for more "first time" help. There are other posters here also who have info and have lots more experience than me over there but I am going back for #6 as soon as I can.
    IF YOU GO ONCE-YOU WILL GO AGAIN-DEAL WITH IT
     
  3. Message

    Message AH Senior Member

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    Cliffy, I read your account of your last trip. You had me glued to my computer to hear your story. I thought I was signed in?! Message is actually my nickname from college.
    Anyway, you have convinced to bring a journal along to keep track as things happen. Yes we are bringing our "big" camera, a point and shoot, and a camcorder . Maybe overkill but we might as well be prepared!
     
  4. RogerHeintzman

    RogerHeintzman AH Enthusiast

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    Back to your question Cliffy,

    For me as a kid Africa was something of a dream, like something you can't have or think you will never have or get and it makes the pull so much stronger. Growing up poor and a big family I never ever thought a trip to Africa or even a hunt in NA would ever be reality. You just keep dreaming. Good thing for dreams for they keep you getting up each day and working harder.

    Now I have been there three times with the fourth this August. The pull to keep going back to Africa is the quality, quantity of game, sights, sounds, people and a foreign country. Plus the thought that life and or health can be gone in a blink of and eye.

    "A Dream and be relived again and again in Africa"
     
  5. 35bore

    35bore AH Elite

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    Very well said...
     
  6. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    Member, sorry for the foo-paw. I thought you just didn't want a name on the board. There's probably a good story behind the nick name :)
    Take a few minutes every day to jot down your sights, feelings, experiences as they occur. You will forget details if you don't And the experience is in the details. I can go back and look at my first trip in Zim a relive the experiences. That's 15 yrs ago!.
    One item to pay particular attention to is the background sounds. African background sounds are unique to anything else in the world. Close your eyes at a quiet time (like if you stop for a drink and to water a bush
    :) and just listen for a moment. Remember what you are hearing because WHEN YOU RETURN (and you will return) you will know you are there just by the background noise.
    Get yourself a good SA bird book. My wife has a great one and I'll post its name when she gets home. Even if you're not a birder (and I'm not) looking up the birds gives a new dimension to the trip. There will be hundreds of them. Look for Cory Bustard. Ask your PH to show you a "Go Away" bird. And find out why it's called that. Take pictures of the bugs and insects. Use the macro setting of the camera for the closeups. Take in the whole experience and not just the shooting and you'll truly understand the African Experience.
    Oh how I wish the political situation in so much of the lower half of the African continent was different than it is now. They have lost what would and could be a chance at being THE world's destination for travel. They could improve so much of the lives of their citizens just by waking up and smelling the roses. Politics are somewhat the same same all over the world (little men with bigger idea for self aggrandizement and wealth) but it's particularly distressing with what Africa could offer to the world.
     
  7. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    It's a darn shame for sure. I think the hunting could be about 10 times better, there would be more animals and bigger ones too. We could be hunting GIANT SABLE from Angola!
     
  8. Message

    Message AH Senior Member

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    Cliffy, thanks for all the ideas. My wife is going to buy two journals (one for each of us) just to have two perspectives. I showed her your pics of snakes from your trip. She assured me I would be ALONE the rest of the trip if we saw any. She would find a nice hotel til i was done hunting. Hope they are all underground .
     
  9. buzz1858

    buzz1858 AH Senior Member

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    For me, Grammar school teacher was from SA. She'd skip the book larnin' for stories of growing up there.
    Decided early on that I just had to arrow a zebra - epitome of African game for me at the time.

    Bottom line...

    Forget who said it, or where I read it - Africa is a woman.
    Too much is not enough of her.
     
  10. Cliffy

    Cliffy AH Elite

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    buzz Thanks for bringing this up again
    After reading all the responses I have decided to incorporate many of them in a handout I'll pass out at DSC during my seminar Saturday Jan 5th at 12:30PM This is just what someone who is hesitant to go would want to read
    To all of you that reponded Thank You even though it's from several months ago.
     
  11. bluey

    bluey GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    ive just this whole thread and something in every post rings so true ,one of my fondest memories is the sounds and smells of the bush and the twilights are so damn quick its totally dark one second theres just the slightest lightening of the sky ,then baboof just like that its daylight and the same again in the evening. the sky seems so clear and blue during the day and so dark and starry at night the game is everywhere the longest i can remember stalking and not seeing anything was maybe 45 minutes and some times it wouldnt have been ten minutes an we would be sneaking in on some thing even if it was just for a photo ,the guide was fun and knew alot about the trees ,flowers,birds, bugs and the whole time was pushing me in everything from bush skills to hunting abilities and making it an adventure to remember .
    when i met the good wife at arrivals in melbourne the second thing i did was tell i left a piece of my self in africa and we need to go back and look for it .
    one thing i regret is not keeping a journal and i ll not make that mistake twice
     
  12. buzz1858

    buzz1858 AH Senior Member

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    Bluey - I'm going to have a shirt made of that "Left a piece of myself" line...
    I believe everyone who's been knows the feeling upon arriving home.
    I too was awed by the sunrises / sunsets. Capstick wrote "The sun doesn't set in the equatorial regions, it positively plummets".
     
  13. rphguy

    rphguy AH Enthusiast

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    I have a desire to hunt Moose, Caribou, Elk, Mule Deer, Antelope, etc just as much. I've only hunted Mississippi until I went to Africa.
    I have heard much disappointments from friends, etal concerning North American trips. One friend has been to Canada without a Caribou, Montana without an elk, and elsewhere Mule Deer. 3 hunts and only a pronghorn to show for it. The pronghorn was not intended either. just some guy told him, "Don't go home empty handed. they couldn't find you a mule deer, I'll take you for an antelope tomorrow." And, he did.

    When you spend that much money to hunt, you expect to see game. Africa makes that happen. Now, I do plan to hunt some of those other North American animals, but for the same money, I'll take Africa, until I run out of new plainsgame to hunt anyway.
     
  14. Peleton

    Peleton AH Member

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    I have a bit of a different take. For me, the passion is gone. Perhaps just a bit of burnout, but I fear it is not. I have become skeptical of the PH's, the Booking agents, and even others clients in the game. There is an "egofest" involved in hunting I just can't seem to figure out.

    AR really soured me I think, there is sooo much chest thumping and hunters turning on one another over there that it made me lose a bit of respect for the industry as a whole. It's nothing but a popularity contest, one I'm not good at and don't play. I have and always hunted for my soul, it's simplistic, purity of purpose if you will.

    I have/had many PH friends from my 32 safaris. The unfortunate part is that I've heard them talk, talk about us clients. They will always say "your different" but trust me, your not. As soon as you've departed your the brunt of the jokes for the next stumbling bumbling fool that arrives. By the time he leaves he will be best friends with the guy, just like you.

    They come to stay at your home during the conventions, they drink your best scotch, you buy them dinners, you offer to try and help them get clients. Why? do you ever get a break there? nope, it'd business as usual. I hear them as I'm sure many, many of you have about clients wives and daughters, think your's is off limits? why would that be?

    I will now (as I did on my last trip) treat them as an employee of sorts, no different than perhaps the relationship with your dentist or the guy you just bought your new F250 from. It worked out great, he did his job, I enjoyed myself and left with no further strings attached.

    I've left a huge emotional attachment in Africa so I get it.
     
  15. bluey

    bluey GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    peleton it took you 32 adventures to work out that you didnt like it ???
    could you please explain what AR is mate ive read it mentioned a few times on here
    dont know much about the chest thumping not much of that on here
    im truly sorry that youve lost your taste for africa man ,maybe you need try hunting somewhwere else for a change
    as for jokes weve all got em sometimes we are the joker and most of time we are jokee that not a bad thing in my book
    man after 32 african adventures you must many outstanding trophies not mention memories
    i hope soured attitude sweetens cobber and personal myself woludnt ever everbuy one of them f250s i spent ten days in one of them god awkard worst turning crappy utes they are the second worst memory of hunting in canada give me a hilux everytime
     
  16. buzz1858

    buzz1858 AH Senior Member

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    Can't let this one go by....
    32 safaris and NOW you get pissed that they make jokes after you leave?
    I don't care what they tell the next guy - I know who I am and what I did while there. My ego can take it.
    And guess what? I AM the "stumbling, bumbling fool" when I am there. That's why the PH is there - to keep me safe and help me make the right moves. Best friends? No. Comfortable around eachother, I certainly hope so.
    If you expect a break on the basis of Scotch and dinners, you'll always be disappointed. It IS a business after all.
     
  17. Peleton

    Peleton AH Member

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    The last two responses are sort of my point, I never once said, I was pissed or didn't like it. I love it. I stated "I may be a bit burnt out" and am skeptical.

    The other forum. Hmmm where to start. There are hundreds of experts over there on everything Africa and Africana.

    As with everything there is much more to any story than meets the eye.

    Don't want or expect a break either. It's a mentality that developes, the PH's have almost a rock star staus at times , spend enough time around them, specially the ones who've been TV guys and you would agree. (not RSA TV guys either)
     
  18. rphguy

    rphguy AH Enthusiast

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    Bluey......... I would imagine after 32 trips the luster does wear at times. I imagine you start to dread the flights, etc. I imagine you've likely hunted practically every pg there are and some dg so there is not much "new" about the trips. I would think it'd be good to step away from it a year or two and do something totally different. Then, when or if the fire returns, go with great expectations of joy. I do understand what you mean about the jokes, etc. Over the years, as a minister and just in life in general, is that if someone will gossip/joke about other people to you, they'll gossip about you and make fun of you to someone else. If I find myself with folks that are always negative about other people, gossipy, etc, I just move on and have little to do with them after that. I didn't see that on my hunt, If I did I'd find a different PH for the next one. As a preacher, I'm used to being gossiped about, and it bothers me very little anymore. But I still choose to disassociate myself from those that do.
     
  19. 1ObsessedHunter

    1ObsessedHunter AH Veteran

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    This past July marked my first safari in South Africa, and truthfully the first big hunting trip I've ever gone on. I consider it to be the greatest accomplishment of my life. I never thought I'd get to do it. I'm 36 now and I've been hunting for most of my life. The seed of going to Africa was somehow planted in me when I was probably around 17. I'm not sure why, but in all that time I never had this great desire to travel anywhere else like I did for Africa. Having never been there, Africa somehow lured me in. Perhaps it was all the stories I heard, or shows I watched... I really don't know. But having finally experienced it, the mystique, allure, and beauty, are all real. Sure I'd like to kill a big moose or elk, but I just can't wait to get back to Africa. I don't care how much I have to save or what I have to sell to get there, but I'm going back as soon as I possibly can. I really think it's a hunter's mecca.
     
  20. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    i agree in a way( not including tv guys as dont know any) but its the clients who have done this . they want to take them for dinner or entertain the ph`s at the shows . then they add to the hype by telling/bragging to each other who they took out etc. thats as far as i am going with this subject as i know too many of the supposed "rock stars" , and most would laugh their balls off at being given that status, there are some though.................
     

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