At dawn on Easter Sunday my wife and I were hiking a bearing to a creek system we wanted to explore. Still in the high, savanna and woodland country, we were nearly at the head of the creek when a boar and I spotted each other simultaneously through the spear grass. He was unsure but spooked across our path at sixty metres as I chambered a fat cartridge into the Sako .500 Jeffery and sent a 600 grain Woodleigh PPSN into him, dropping him. But alas, it was a poor first shot and he was up and running in seconds. My second shot missed but my third shot went through the shoulders and dropped him dead. He is a big tusker for this area, easily one of my best. The boar died forty metres from a secret waterfall that I’d dreamt of the night before. We had no idea it was there, and the only people who may have been there before are getting on in years and have forgotten. Perhaps the ancestors wanted us to find it. Beautiful, clear water cascaded out of the rocks in the cliff beneath our feet, a seep to drain away the wet season and send it to the Gulf. It was refreshing to cool down once we’d carefully picked our way down. The creek led us to some glorious country, but the buffalo are still scattered hell-west and crooked, making it hard to get meat. All we found was a cow and calf, so we left them in peace. We found a beautiful, clear swimming hole and cooled down. Then it was time to turn back and beat the heat, but my wife wanted to explore just another two-hundred metres upstream. I agreed and chambered a round in the thick confines of the narrow, winding ravine. After a short distance I examined the thick cover ahead and stopped, feeling nervous. I felt something was there. I didn’t want to continue but my wife wanted to check the creek just ahead. I began a cautious approach at the ready. Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I saw the bastard at the same time that my wife urgently whispered “snake!” and covered her mouth to stop herself from screaming. The brown snake was about five feet and on a mission to escape that caused him to literally collide with my boot - I felt the impact as I stood stock-still and watched him slither over my boots and away. I felt shaky inside and we turned for home. This season the snakes are out in greater numbers than I have seen in many years. I am usually quite casual - shorts and sandals - but what I’ve seen and experienced this year has frightened me. Yesterday I was wearing boots and trousers because a couple of weeks back another brown slid across my sandal-clad toes at the end of my bare legs - that was a terrifying buffalo hunt!