50 Days and Counting

CHAPUISARMES

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In 50 days time my big adventure begins where I leave Dubbo on the 9th August and return on the 22nd of August 2011.

I thought that it was a timely figure (50) as it has been 50 years since I first wanted to hunt Africa but due to the normal work, marriage, family etc it had been put off, but now at age 65 years and again single and with my health not being as good as I would have hoped I made the decision to make it now before it was to late as one would hate to wake up dead one morning and say ‘Why didn’t I do it before’

I am going with CT Safaris, Chris Troskie for a 10 day Plains Game hunt in the Eastern Cape and Kwa Zulu Natal Provinces which have proved successful with other forum members in the past.

The normal game species is on the ‘Wanted’ list, Impala, Zebra, Gemsbok, Bushbuck, Kudu, Waterbuck, Common Springbok, Black Springbok and one never know what else will take my fancy when I see it.

I originally was going to take a Warthog but of recent the Australian ‘A.Q.I.S.’ (Quarantine) is only accepting completed trophies so I will have to give that some serious thought before I do shoot one.

I intend to have the ‘Skins’ soft tanned and the ‘Skulls’ in the European Skull Mount style of course the Zebra skin will be felt backed.

I am intending to use Umlindi Taxidermy of Tarkastad unless I hear of something to the contrary.

The packing has started so that the weight restriction can be mostly adhered to with a little excess baggage but being the one and only trip to Africa that I will make
(unless I win the lottery) a few extra dollars is the least on my mind at the moment.

The paperwork is almost complete ( Just waiting on the Customs paperwork, they only post it to you within 28 days of leaving) my only concern is the 14 odd hour plane trip as I am like a ‘Jack in the Box’ with pain so that will be interesting.

So I will sign off for now and post a report when I return,

Cheers for now,

Jeff Gray

.:)
 

James.Grage

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Jeff

Welcome to the Forum...

You will have a great time...if your health prevents long tracking let your PH know...

I think it is great you are going at 65...i went last year as a 60th birthday present to my self...

Like you said if you do not go and later say "Why did I not do that before"...

On your warthog why not take the tusk...that is what i plan to do...I have a shoulder mount and a bleached skull...

Your wanted list is very good and you will be on target to have a great time...take many pictures while you are there...

For the airline flight i always get an isle row seat so that i am able to stand up and stretch my legs and take a short walk if i want..
 

CHAPUISARMES

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Hi James,

Even though we have never met, old ideas are handy. I let the P.H. know before I booked and I have already chose an isle seat so I agree with you.

As for the 'Bleached skull' thats what I am after as my first choice so I will give it a go.

Thanks for the thought and I have 2 cameras so I will take as many photos as I can,

Cheers,

Jeff Gray
 

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Jeff, have a great time.
Hunt as hard as you can and enjoy yourself.
Thats all we can do.
Good luck it sounds like you have it down and ready to go.
 

CHAPUISARMES

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Hi Brickburn,

Thanks, I will try to do my best which is the best I can do.

Cheers,

Jeff Gray

.
 

enysse

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I would say add a nyala to your list....I don't know how tight money is...but you will be in prime country to hunt one and sure would if I had a chance.

I shot one on the last trip, but would like to KZN Province like you.

Anyway, I wish you the best of luck...you picked a great outfitter!
 

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Wish you a great hunt, Jeff.

I agree with Enysse, the best Nyalas are in KZN, so, think about it.
 

Diamondhitch

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Jeff, I just got back from hunting with Chris. Chris and Sabina are great hosts and Sabinas cooking will spoil you for all other food, possibly for life!

When you are in KZN definitely hunt Nyala! They are truely the most beautiful antelope and a great trophy. Plus you will be in a place where Roland and Ward trophies are average! Also think about Blue Wildebeest, after seeing several 27"+ bulls my first morning on the plains, I foolishly held out for a 28" Roland and Ward bull. Quite possible but the weather had other plans. Anyway long story short there are many great wildebeest bulls there to be had. Also if you see 'my' Hartebeest shoot him too LOL.

You will have a great time. Good Luck.
 

CHAPUISARMES

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Hi DiamondHitch,

Thanks for the encouragement, I will ask Chris to point out "Your" animals but can you at least give me a first name (P.M. me if you want) as he sees a lot of people and may not remember "Your" animals without a name.

I am hearing a lot about the Nyala and my arm is going further up my back so I may have to 'Change' my trophy list.

Cheers for now,

Jeff Gray

.
 

Diamondhitch

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Hi Jeff

My name is Derek.
It is not actually 'my' Hartebeest LOL. Long story short, I wounded and lost a huge Roland & Ward Hartebeest that Chris has wanted a crack at for several years. The land owners however were still building their herd and did not allow any Hartebeest hunting. When the ranch manager found out that I wanted one he offered to let me hunt the big herd bull since he had run herd for several years and was close to being run out of the herd by younger bulls. With only a sparse 60yd blood trail and animals running everywhere due to poachers chasing everything with dogs that day we never found him. We also never saw birds or jackal so despite my confidence in my shot he may be fine. I havent heard if he has been seen again but it took us several days to find him in the first place so who knows.
 

CHAPUISARMES

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5 Days and Counting

5 Days and Counting.

A lot of forum members know that I am planning my first and probably the last Safari to Africa when I posted the details in ’50 Days and Counting’ well, we are now down to the final 5 days.

I have taken note of all the information and suggestions that the forum members have posted and then made my decisions.

I want to thank the members for their valuable help and guidance and I am the first to admit that I had a little ‘Pressure’ applied in the form of giving this ‘Old Fella’ a polite kick in you know where to get me off my butt and “Just do it” and stop procrastinating.

The paperwork was to say the least a bit of a nightmare possibly because I have never taken firearms overseas before but thanks to the many Emails that I sent to Code4 all seems to now be correct but until I am actually on the plane I wont fully believe there are no more problems.

As for the packing, all is now complete but I will have to ‘Buy’ an additional 10kg excess baggage but it is the least of the overall cost of the Safari.

A lot of members suggested that I also take a Nyala as the area that we will be hunting in is a ‘Top’ area for them so a request was passed onto Chris Troskie of CT Safaris when we spoke the other night at length. God bless Skype.

The temperatures in this area to say the least ‘Sucks’ with the most rain in 30 years, thunderstorms and snow and temperatures going from –3 to12 on a good day but luckily for me it is on the rise with today’s temperature going from 1 to 20 and seems to be going to stay around the –1 to 20 for my stay.

I have arranged Travel Insurance through the S.S.A.A. who goes through QBE when it comes to a higher value on firearms which allowed me to insure my 2 Custom CZ550’s known in my stories as “Father & Son” which are snugly packed in the Pelican 1750 case.

So that about tells the story to date, I am taking two Digital Cameras and plenty of batteries and S.D. Cards just in case one camera dies or something, so until later,

Cheers for now,

Jeff Gray

.:)
 

PaulT

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My very best wishes to you Jeff for safe travel and succesful hunting.

May the wind hold true for you for the duration of your inaugural African hunt.

Cheers,
Paul.
 

CHAPUISARMES

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Hi Paul,

Thanks for the thoughts, currently the wind is 9kmh from the N.W. but I know what you meant and thanks.

Cheers for now,

Jeff Gray
 

Gerhard.375

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Good Luck Jeff!
 

CHAPUISARMES

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Thanks Gerhard.375, I need all the luck I can get,

Cheers,

Jeff Gray

.
 

enysse

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If you are hunting with CT Safaris, you are going to a excellent outfitter that care a lot about his clients. He is excellent with communicating to his clients. I hope to hunt with him in the future! Post pictures when you get back :).
 

sestoppelman

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I have a friend who has hunted with CT twice and loved every minute. You should have a great hunt and good luck to you!!!
 

Diamondhitch

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Good luck, we will be waiting for pics!!! I am sure you will have a great time.
 

Diamondhitch

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I was just thinking about your Warthog troubles. Are you allowed to import the tusks by themselves? If so a reproduction skull with your original tusks would be an option. There is no picture online but the picture in thier catalog looks top notch, you would have to look real close to tell it from the real thing.

Van Dyke's Taxidermy Supply - Warthog Skull
 

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