Gear loadout

Backyardsniper

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Looking to get a little advice from the guys with experience here. I'm starting to collect gear for the upcoming safari. I have most of your basic stuff because I hunt a lot here at home. I'm looking for opinions on shooting sticks first of all. Are the African creation ones worth it? Is there any unusual gear that you bring that is specific to hunting Africa that you just can't do without? I have heard knee pads and gloves are handy for stalking because of the thorns. Courtney boots? I have some danner mountain 600 that are a 6" low cut light tread boot. I don't want to show up with a bunch of unnecessary junk looking like a tourist but I also don't want to overlook any important gear that might actual make the hunt better/more enjoyable.
Thanks guys
 

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Your PH or outfitter will likely have some shooting sticks for you to use. I picked up a Bog Pod for practice here in the US and my PH was packing the exact same one on my hunt.

From reading on here 99.99% of all hunters on their first safari over pack and bring more clothes, tools, and other items than they will ever use.

Are those Danner's 600 grams of insulation? Depending on the time of your your feet may sweat like a Saturday night drunk on a Sunday morning. I just wore a well broken in pair of non insulated hikers and never had a problem.

Knee pads are way too noisy for me, but a pair of leather gloves are nice, again some light weight ones.

Just figure that you are going on a week long whitetail hunt in a remote area, and what you would bring on that hunt will suit you in Africa.
 

Backyardsniper

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Makes sense. Those danners are not insulated and were gonna be going in June/July so it'll be cool over there any way. The shooting sticks are for practicing here at home but I may take them with me.
I completely understand the packing deal, believe me. I have over packed for some hunts, my first elk hunt years ago I found something in my pack everyday when we got back to camp that I didn't need for the next day
One guy told me not to wear 5.11 pants that they are too loud? It would have to be a pretty quiet place to be able to hear those pants but if anyone has any reccomendations on pants let me know. Me and the wife are going to the DSC so I plan to pick up a little gear there if I identify anything that I'm gonna need.
 

Kevin Peacocke

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Whilst the practical side must obviously be addressed, don't forget that you are in Africa, on a genuine safari! Courteneys are certainly a great boot for the occasion, as is a cotton canvas jacket, like a Westley Richards or Barbour. A good pair of sunglasses, long trousers, wide brimmed hat. A pair of flip flops to keep by your bed in case you need to get up in the night for a pee. NEVER walk barefoot at night, a scorpion or centipede could end your hunt. No slippers either, they make a nice cosy hideaway for nasties. A watch cover if you wear a watch and short sleeves. I wear long sleeves mostly, gives the biters less to find.
Trousers with thigh pouches to keep your pocket binos in on one side, and knife on the other. The less you have clanking around your neck, or on your waist the better. Dark coloured shirts and pants,
 

Backyardsniper

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Whilst the practical side must obviously be addressed, don't forget that you are in Africa, on a genuine safari! Courteneys are certainly a great boot for the occasion, as is a cotton canvas jacket, like a Westley Richards or Barbour. A good pair of sunglasses, long trousers, wide brimmed hat. A pair of flip flops to keep by your bed in case you need to get up in the night for a pee. NEVER walk barefoot at night, a scorpion or centipede could end your hunt. No slippers either, they make a nice cosy hideaway for nasties. A watch cover if you wear a watch and short sleeves. I wear long sleeves mostly, gives the biters less to find.
Trousers with thigh pouches to keep your pocket binos in on one side, and knife on the other. The less you have clanking around your neck, or on your waist the better. Dark coloured shirts and pants,
Excellent man. Thanks that is the kind of info on looking for. I do agree with you while keeping as practical as possible I do like having the "proper" equipment for the situation and I plan to hopefully make may trips if this is as awesome as I expect it to be. I totally understand the shoe situation. I spent two and a half years in the middle east hunting terrorists and let me tell you. The shit you find in your boots is sometimes scarier than the bad guys you were hunting
 

Kevin Peacocke

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Oh, forgot to say, cotton shirts and trousers for sure. I like Westley Richards, but they are more of a treat. Johnson workwear khaki trousers are great, their dark green shirts too. Falke tracker socks are great - thick enough to prevent blisters.
 

Happy Myles

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It would be helpful to know where in Africa you are headed. It is a big continent. Do not take shooting sticks they will have what they prefer to use. But practice using sticks a lot here at home. Use cotton clothes green khaki is generally a good color. An ankle high boot with flexible sole and decent ankle support. Courtneys are stylish and in big demand. I am one of the few that find them uncomfortable. I use different shoes for different environments.
 

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Don't forget a good headlamp and extra batteries for it and all other things needing them.
My bag:
3 sets of clothes (pants, shirts, skivvies, sox). I like camo that fits the area I'm hunting.
2 pair well broken in boots. Wear one, take one.
Light jacket. Early AMs can be cool.
Hat or ball cap. I use ball cap, no wide brim to catch brush.
Binos.
Belt slide ammo carrier.
Knife.
A few bandaids.
Phone charger and electrical adaptor.
Cash in small bills.
Hard copies of all paperwork.
Usual complement of guns and ammo.

I don't take sticks because the PH will have them. For me binos are optional. I have taken them but never used them. Apre hunt clothes are optional. Usually we met at the bar for a kind of debrief before dinner unless we were soaked from rain. Then a good shower and change was called for. If you plan on some sightseeing some civvies would be recommended.

In any case, Good luck and enjoy your safari.
 

JimP

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All I wore on my safari in late May were cotton T's long and short sleeve along 60/40 military BDU pants in woodland camo and plain green. My jacket was the same one that I wear every year bow hunting here in Colorado. Nothing special. All of my clothing items I wear while hunting here in Colorado, Arizona, and Utah in the fall or spring.
 

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I pack light, very light. Everything I need for a successful Safari ex gun and ammo is in my carry-on. I take:
2 pairs of shorts
1 pair of zip offs
3 shirts
3 pr underwear
3 pr smartwool socks
1 jacket
2 pr boots
Guns&ammo
Screwdriver with bits for critical screws
Bino’s
Torch
Toiletries & meds
Hunting belt w knife, ammo slide, possibles pouch, water bottle holder.
What I wear on the flight comes out of the list above. Laundry is done daily so additional clothing is wasted.
I can literally pack in half an hour. My PH claims I am the lightest packer he has had but I’ve never needed anything.
 

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Clothes: I wore some really lightweight KUIU warm weather shirts. They worked well. I had a thin wind resistant vest to remove the chill. My pants were actually some I have for work - they are a lightweight, quick dry nylon. If they were too loud the animals I killed didn't say anything.

Footwear: I wore a pair of Lowa Renegades. We hiked as many as 8.5 miles in a day, but the average was probably more like 4-6. They were perfect.

I had seen pictures of my PH's tripod; it looks homemade to me. He said they had used them for years and didn't remember the origin. The closest commercial thing I could find was a Bog-pod, which I practiced with but did not take with me. His was fine and it felt familiar once I got there.

The one thing I can think I didn't take that I wish I had was some form of anti-itch, antibacterial ointment. Foolishly I unzipped the legs on my pants (they convert to shorts) on day 1 and proceeded to absolutely shred my lower legs on pretty much everything we walked through or I can in contact with.
 

Inline6

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Looking to get a little advice from the guys with experience here. I'm starting to collect gear for the upcoming safari. I have most of your basic stuff because I hunt a lot here at home. I'm looking for opinions on shooting sticks first of all. Are the African creation ones worth it? Is there any unusual gear that you bring that is specific to hunting Africa that you just can't do without? I have heard knee pads and gloves are handy for stalking because of the thorns. Courtney boots? I have some danner mountain 600 that are a 6" low cut light tread boot. I don't want to show up with a bunch of unnecessary junk looking like a tourist but I also don't want to overlook any important gear that might actual make the hunt better/more enjoyable.
Thanks guys
I have a set of African creations shooting sticks, they are well made. Knowing what I do now I would go with Viper Flex Shooting Sticks. They are more money and yes they 100% worth it.

The rest of your gear, you probably have what you need. Honestly I bought stuff I thought I needed, when I could have just used something I had. I used my Lowa hiking boots. Never had a problem with them. Lighter than my mountain boots. We hunted 10ish days hiking on the average of 3.5-5 miles a day, one day was close to 10 miles.

If they offer laundry service, you will over pack. 3 sets at the most for hunting is all you will need IMHO.

Last but not least, thank you for your service!
 

Hogpatrol

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Questions to ask, what's the laundry schedule? Every day or every other day? For every day, I take two pair of everything. Civies, what I wear in transit, one pair of boots, camo ball cap, camo goose down with light weight hooded rain jacket, beanie for cold rides in the back of the truck, Gerber multi-tool, ball cap head lamp, guns and ammo. Sticks? Personal preference, what works for one may not be the best for another so take recommendations with a grain of salt. Having said that, investigate the Rudolph PH version. Used them for the first time and prefer them over all the others available.
 

Backyardsniper

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I do have to say on the comment of "don't bring shooting sticks they will have what they prefer to use." I understand the value of listening to your PH but at the end of the day it is my cash and my hunt. I would rather use what I have practiced with and what I am comfortable with. I'm all about listening to the PH but I do a lot of shooting and a lot of hunting and it is also important that the PH be willing to listen to his client. In my eyes he is there to assist me and offer his insight and also do some teaching along the way but not to bully a client into doing what he wants.
 

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Chances are you have (most likely) everything you need because you hunt here in the US. If you want to bring camo, you should ask your PH. Some areas have restrictions on wearing camo clothing, being limited to the military of the area. We stick to darker earth tones for all hunting.

You are bound to overpack and it will be very difficult to avoid it. Once you have been there, you will figure it out. The other members have given you some very sound advice and there is something to be said about traveling light.

For sticks, we brought our own set of BOG-POD's and our PH loved them. They were much better than the set he had. When we go back, the sticks are going with us.

For us laundry was offered daily so it was 3 undergarments and 2 pants/shirts. Headlamp, light jacket & vest, scarf, leather gloves, 8" desert military boots and a hat. Pretty much looked like this most of the time. Dress in layers so you can adjust as necessary. This picture was taken on a cool morning in May, about 35F (or 2C).
1627681172533.png
 

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I bought a set of the African Creations sticks to practice with a couple years before my hunt. They offer an extra tall set which suited me perfectly. I did not bring them with me, but they break down and would pack very easily. I would say that if you like something, bring it.
Two sets of clothes worked - hard wearing work/tough duck style material. The thorns over there are a bitch! Long sleeved button shirts from Cabelas, they were nice as I could roll up the sleeves when it got hot. Which leads nicely into the next item - sunscreen. Bring some, use it, the odour free kind.
I will bring some thin leather gloves next time. Also, I will wear quieter boots, probably a pair of slip on Blundstone leather boots, which fit my wide duck feet.
Good luck, and enjoy the planning!
 

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I agree completely on the camo. Not only for the "illegal" portion but I want very much to respect the tradition and the i guess "romance" if you will of the safari. I am an avid reader of all the books and true believer that I was born 100 years too late. If the wife wasn't going I would be perfectly happy sleeping in a tent drinking boiled creek water. To me the sum of an adventure like this is in the entire experience and not just killing. I am taking shona lessons even though obviously everyone there speaks English but for me it is way to show a little respect for thier culture and show appreciation for them hosting me, even though at a handsome profit, and letting me come hunt thier game and experience thier country.
 

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Unless I am going into the saber grass of the Zambezi Delta, I hunt in shorts. I am a great believer in cotton. The farther away you get from a lodge in SA, the more likely you are to have the ironing done by something stuffed with coals that looks like it came out of an antique store. They work great, but can be rather hard on the newer exotic materials (that suck anyway).

That said, microfleece is, along with atomic energy, one of the great inventions of the 20th century. I bring a sweater or light jacket that handles anything most early mornings north of SA are likely to throw at you.

I would urge you to be comfortable with whatever sticks your PH has on hand. I never drag mine around with me and have never had an issue with whatever was on the truck.

I don't much care for my dermatologist. So, I always wear a broad brimmed hat. Tilley makes a cotton boonie hat that can be rolled up and still looks Stewart Grangeresque in the field.

Me doing Grangeresque in a cotton Tilley
Eland Hunt In Mozambique



I wouldn't bring a 50's era style safari jacket. I always enjoy @Kevin Peacocke 's posts, but he does wear a pith helmet. :E Shrug: Just saying.

Heavy cotton duck trousers, or worse yet, armored upland pants, will have your PH muttering under his breath - particularly closing with buffalo. Shorts or a soft rip-stop cotton. :E Ok:
 
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