2nd gun companion on Buffalo + safari?

shootist~

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For some redundancy, you can always pack a second optic. Preferably in QD rings.
 

paul seckar

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As expected, excellent advice...thanks. No need to dicker around with an addition to the safe for this purpose.

To answer a few questions...I have not even begun to think of location. I'm set on the buffalo, and would like to do something as big as kudu/eland but also would like to try my hand at a Tommy. beyond that, I'm pretty flexible and have only begun to do the research.
 

318AE

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As expected, excellent advice...thanks. No need to dicker around with an addition to the safe for this purpose.

To answer a few questions...I have not even begun to think of location. I'm set on the buffalo, and would like to do something as big as kudu/eland but also would like to try my hand at a Tommy. beyond that, I'm pretty flexible and have only begun to do the research.
Interesting you would mention a Tommy. On a 2020 trip to Masailand I took both a double and 375 take down bolt gun. The 375 worked just fine for Thompson’s gazelle of course, and essentially everything else (lesser kudu, gerenuk, buffalo etc). Many are quite fond of a 375 with solids for the tiny ten. Why the double? Just for fun. If you have other rifles you like, are familiar with, and want to take them along, so be it. None of it is a practical endeavor. The decision is just a matter of what will add to your satisfaction in balance with effort to do so. I don’t think its a matter of ballistics, reliability or practicality.
 

Mtn_Infantry

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I've done 4 total hunts in Africa (breakdown below). I've done multiple rifles and 1 rifle/bow. Personally I'd always take something .375 or larger. Your .404J fills this spot nicely. You never know what opportunities you'll get (example PAC Elephant). Now I also could've rented a .375 but I want a gun I'm familiar with on a DG hunt. If I were to take another rifle now, it'll probably be a .257Wby Mag. Something fast and flat. I'd consider a .300WM or even a .308 as well, but I know I can kill anything with the .375 H&H and the terrain and animals would more or less dictate gun #2.

1) PG
2) PG/DG (Buf)
3) PG/DG (Lion)
4) PG - but ended up unsuccessfully chasing a PAC Elephant

On the 1st I took a .375 H&H and a Bow. I shot 6 animals with the .375 and then a Waterbuck and Impala with my bow. On the 2nd I shot my Buf and a Red Hartebeest with the .375, no time to bow hunt. On the 3rd I took a .300 H&H and a .375 H&H. Everything was shot with the .375 H&H (Duiker to Lion). On the 4th I took the same .300 H&H and .375 H&H. I had some issues with the .300 loosing zero after shooting an Impala with it and shot everything with the .375 to include a Dik Dik.


My personal dilemma is Trip #5. It's a PG Hunt but I'm considering adding another buf. I've got a Double in 500NE I want to use IF I add a buf. Eland and Kudu are the Top 2 Species of focus, with Giraffe and Klipspringer also likely being on the menu. Do I go with 3 guns (500, .375, .257wby for a long shot on the Klipspringer)? Or do I go 2 guns (.500 and .257 or .500 and .375)? Good news is I'll be taking someone else (who doesn't know they're hunting) and might have them lug the .257wby around for me since the .375 is likely gonna be a bit much for them.
 

Inline6

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I wonder how much the classic, long, safari “three gun battery” influences modern hunters thinking they need multiple rifles for a short hunt?
Can only speak for myself, brought 2 rifles because I had them. Can't say how many opportunities that I would have to hunt Africa. Knowing I had this one, I was going to make the most of it. Like others on here, that once in a lifetime trip is turning into another hunt in 2024. Different rifles will be taken, I enjoyed using the rifles I did bring. It gave me peace of mind at the time, no regrets. Now with more experience, I have a different perspective. I understand the logic better when @Red Leg says what he does. Part of the fun of owning different rifles is using them. That said less hassle traveling makes for a more enjoyable trip. Just have to decide what is most important to you.
 

Mtn_Infantry

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My preferred two rifle setup for an African mixed bag safari is:
- .375 Holland & Holland Magnum
- .30-06 Springfield

The combination has been serving me satisfactorily since my first African Safari back in 1974.
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In a perfect world, an ideal two rifle battery for a client would be:
- .375 Holland & Holland Magnum for dangerous game
- .300 Holland & Holland Magnum for plains game

My current two rifle battery (and the one I intend to take on my next African safari) is:
- .600 Nitro Express for dangerous game
- 7x57mm Mauser for plains game.

Now, in your context… my proposition is:
- .404 Jeffery for the Cape buffalo
- .338 Winchester Magnum for all the plains game.

The .338 Winchester Magnum will be more useful than the .30-06, if your intended plains game includes eland and kudu. I’ve bagged several eland with a .30-06 and 220Gr bullets (initially Remington Core Lokts and more recently Sako Hammerheads). All were one shot kills. I’ve even taken one eland bull with my 7x57mm Mauser and a 175Gr Nosler Partition (Sellier & Bellot factory load)... my point of aim being a broadside double lung shot. But if I had a choice, I’d readily use a .338 Winchester Magnum for eland and kudu.
I took that ideal 2 Rifle Battery of Pre64 M70 in .375 H&H and .300 H&H because it was iconic. If I were to hunt the same areas again, I'd probably swap the .300 for a .257wby. I had all sorts of issues with my .300 H&H, but I think it was the scope.
 

Tanks

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Last month I took 2 rifles.
.500 NE for elephant and buffalo
.300 RUM for everything else, from grysbok to kudu
 

Hunter-Habib

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I took that ideal 2 Rifle Battery of Pre64 M70 in .375 H&H and .300 H&H because it was iconic. If I were to hunt the same areas again, I'd probably swap the .300 for a .257wby. I had all sorts of issues with my .300 H&H, but I think it was the scope.
Now, you have me concerned. What went wrong with the pre '64 .300 Holland & Holland Magnum ? It's one of my holy grail rifles.
 

frhunter13

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I just finished reading the thread 'My second rifle choice' and a slightly different question occurred to me, specific to my situation. Rather than hi-jack the thread, I thought I'd start a new one.

Background: primary safari objective would be buff, adding other game as convenient to round out the affair. I currently own a 404j, a 416 ruger (that is temporary). a couple 338 WMs, and a 30-06 (along with a variety of other smaller calibers). I am curious to hear the experiences of others who have safari'd and how you would tackle this from a two-rifle selection standpoint. Would you travel two 404j's...one as a primary and one as a backup and use them for the buff and whatever else...maybe have different optics on each for close-up vs distance/plains opportunities? Perhaps the right complement to the 404 is either the 338 or 30-06 or would you suit-up to a 375 as the better mate?

My thinking to date has been to add another 404j as a backup and simply go with those two. But I'd love to hear about the experiences and lessons-learned of the AH community who have 'been there, done that'.
Sure is a quandary. Last trip I was planning to take my 458 Lott and my 3006. Ended up just bringing the Lott cause two rifles is a HASSLE. Had to use the PH’s 375 HH half way through on other game after the Buffalo. So if I go again it will be with a 375/338 Chatfield Taylor on a Mauser frame. I love this caliber because with two sets of ammo it’s like having two rifles. 250g Hornady CX Copper expander at 2600’fps or a 300g Peregrine VR3 at 2535 fps for the big boys. 338 Mag brass is very plentiful, and easily converted to 375/338 Taylor, single pass. Or 458 WinMag brass is also easily converted as well. My Remington DGS 375 HH can do this, however mine is a push feed, and I’m just not as comfortable with it. It’s hard to get 375 HH brass now, here in the US anyway, and the available ammo is way overpriced or without the bullets I want. Good 375 HH ammo is readily available in Africa though, if that decides you.
 

Neil Molendyk

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My trip was with a 416/375. 416 was for buffalo and 375 for every else. If needed the 375h&h would be my back if something happened to the 416.
I did the exact same thing in 2018, 416 Rigby for cape buffalo and 375 as backup in the worst case scenario and then my son used the 375 for is plains game hunt. It almost worked in reverse as there was a minor issue with the scope on the 375 but it was resolved after a bit of tinkering.
 

Mtn_Infantry

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Now, you have me concerned. What went wrong with the pre '64 .300 Holland & Holland Magnum ? It's one of my holy grail rifles.
I think it was a scope issue. Wouldn't hold zero. Sighted it in multiple times. Also noticed the paralax adjustment had to be turned to 450 for it to be clear at 100yds when zeroing.
 

Hunter-Habib

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I think it was a scope issue. Wouldn't hold zero. Sighted it in multiple times. Also noticed the paralax adjustment had to be turned to 450 for it to be clear at 100yds when zeroing.
I hope the rifling wasn’t worn through.
 

Mtn_Infantry

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It shot lights out prior to flying. I shot multiple groups under an inch. Swapped scopes, rezeroed, shot a couple more sub 1” groups in 3 different range sessions including the weekend before flying. Landed, first round out of the gun was top right of the target. Adjusted zero, fired 3 shots which grouped to about an inch. 2 days of riding on the truck missed a zebra and then a 100 yd chip shot on a Blesbok. Replayed the film and it was a foot over its back and to the right again. Put the gun down and grabbed my 375. Shot it again and was high and right. Dialed it back in, shot a good 5 shot group. Shot the 375 went back to it and confirmed it was still shooting same POA/POI. Hunted and the next morning wounded an Impala at 120yds, 2nd shot at 50 was also off, 3rd shot at 15 yds was also off. Put the gun away and shot 6 other animals with the 375.

Got home, checked zero and it’s still shooting sub 1” groups but not zeroed. Bases are tight, no issues with rings or the scope moving in the rings. This leads me to believe the scope isn’t holding zero. Only common denominator is it looses zero everytime after riding around in the rack on the truck, or after flying. Ammo is all the same lot number, bought as an entire case.
 

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