Going it alone.............

Mr. 16 gauge

AH fanatic
Joined
Aug 1, 2011
Messages
652
Reaction score
960
Location
Michigan
Media
3
Hunting reports
Africa
2
Hello;
Just curious as to how many who have hunted Africa have "gone it alone", i.e. traveled without a companion of some sort?
When I went to Africa in 2014 I was suppose to go with a friend who likes to hunt. He then asked about bringing the wives, which I didn't have a problem with. So I asked my wife (the world traveler) and she said she would be delighted to go.......as long as she didn't have to see anything being killed.
....then my friend tells me he can't go......his wife won't let him. Not sure why (other than she is a...well, never mind). So it was just my wife and I. She had fun with the elephant back safari, touring Marakele and the predator park, had some excitement with a black mamba in camp, etc).
SO............now I would like to go back for cape buffalo and some more plains game. My friend starts with "when are we going". Then the last time I talked with him, he tells "I don't know why I'm planning on going; my wife is never going to let me go!" UGH!!!!:confused:

My wife is not really into going back......not that she didn't like going, but she has other places on her bucket list that she wants to visit: Australia, Spain, etc.

I've done trips alone here in the States: deer hunts to N.C., mule deer and antelope hunts out west, etc. No problems........but I'm just a little leery of flying half way across the globe on my own.

Anybody here hunt Africa alone? What problems, if any, did you encounter? Do you feel that you were more of a target of scam artists and thieves because of your being a single, or doesn't that make a difference?

I'm picky about who I hunt with......I don't want to just "hook up" with someone else that I don't know; did that on a duck hunt several years ago and damn near got my head blown off!!! I'm still partially deaf in my right ear thanks to that little shindig!

Just curious........with all the negativism in the papers now adays re: travel (I know there is nothing one can do re: a terrorist attack, like what happened in London the other day, but it still weighs heavily on my mind), I'm just a bit concerned.
Thanks to all for your input............................
 

BRICKBURN

Super moderator
Contributor
Lifetime titanium benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
Aug 5, 2010
Messages
23,023
Reaction score
17,613
Location
Canada
Media
412
Articles
24
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Europe
1
Hunted
Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Canada, USA, Mexico, England
On each trip I have done significant parts alone. Travelled alone, hunted alone, toured alone, driven alone.
If you are alright with your own company you will be fine.

Typically, you are also in an Outfitters care soon after arrival. (for most hunters anyway).

Problems encountered, none what so ever. (Google Maps needs some updates and I no longer trust it to take me on short cuts in the countryside.)

When driving myself alone; know where you are going, don't drive at night.
Bank machines; Same precautions you use here at home.
Airport; know where you are headed and refuse "help". Don't stand at the curb looking bewildered.

Watch out for idiots like you would anywhere.
I walk around with a huge camera pack on my back where ever I go. If that does not present a target, I don't know what does. Perhaps, my diminutive stature makes thieves think twice, who knows.
 

gillettehunter

AH legend
Joined
Sep 10, 2009
Messages
3,662
Reaction score
3,615
Location
WYOMING
Media
83
Hunting reports
Africa
6
USA/Canada
4
Asia/M.East
2
Australia/NZ
1
Hunted
Namibia, Kyrgyzstan(2) South Africa(4) New Zealand Zambia(2)
Ya Brickburn, what are you 6'4" or more? Not too likely to get picked on. I went by myself last year. It is more fun with a friend, but still a blast to go. I hunted with 3 different outfits in Zambia and RSA. Had my best African hunt ever! I missed having my wife or someone to share it with. Did not feel like more of a target. I would do it solo again if it worked out that way. Bruce
 

cpr0312

AH ambassador
Joined
Jul 21, 2011
Messages
10,128
Reaction score
13,354
Location
North Carolina
Media
346
Articles
1
Hunting reports
Africa
6
USA/Canada
1
Australia/NZ
1
Member of
NRA Life Member
Hunted
US (All over), New Zealand, South Africa(Northern Cape, Northwest), Zimbabwe, Zambia
Every hunt I have been on internationally (3 to SA and 1 to NZ ) I have done alone. More so because I couldn't' get anyone to go with me versus just wanting to be alone. NO problems, just like always make sure you do your homework, know the setup in each country/airport, know what to expect, speak with the outfitters/travel companies/etc., speak with hunter references to see their experiences with the place you are considering.

When driving myself alone; know where you are going, don't drive at night.
Bank machines; Same precautions you use here at home.
Airport; know where you are headed and refuse "help". Don't stand at the curb looking bewildered.

Watch out for idiots like you would anywhere

+ 1 here also
 

BRICKBURN

Super moderator
Contributor
Lifetime titanium benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
Aug 5, 2010
Messages
23,023
Reaction score
17,613
Location
Canada
Media
412
Articles
24
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Europe
1
Hunted
Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Canada, USA, Mexico, England
Ya Brickburn, what are you 6'4" or more? Not too likely to get picked on. ..............
6'7" It may play a part. :D

I missed having my wife or someone to share it with. .............

This is true, but I had some little turd for company.

head rest.jpg



You do have to watch out for the roadside bandits. They can be scary. :ROFLMAO:
IMG_9116.jpg
 
Last edited:

JimP

AH legend
Joined
Dec 14, 2014
Messages
2,361
Reaction score
3,298
Location
Gypsum, Co
Media
46
Hunting reports
Africa
1
USA/Canada
3
Member of
NRA, RMEF
Hunted
US (Utah, Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Nevada. Canada (British Colombia), South Africa (Eastern Cape)
I'm in the same boat. All my hunting friends want to go but when it comes time to actually commit they can't for one reason or another.

But look at it this way, are you really alone? On your flight over you have a couple hundred others on the plane. Once you arrive the outfitter will pick you up at the airport but if you have to catch a connecting flight or stay in a hotel for a night you might be alone for a while but not really. Then once out on the hunt it will be you and your PH along with a tracker or trackers until you get back to the lodge that night.

Sure it would be nice to have someone to talk to on the flights but even if you are with someone you should occupy your time doing something besides talking.

On my first and only safari I had only met one of the other hunters once, and while I didn't approve of some of the things that he did we got along OK during the trip. I hadn't met the other two a husband and wife until we were about to leave NYC but even when we were at the lodge my only interaction with them was at breakfast, dinner, and the social hour. So in a nutshell I was actually alone without the hunters that were on the same trip with me.
 

rookhawk

AH legend
Joined
Mar 4, 2015
Messages
3,519
Reaction score
5,122
Location
North America
Media
143
Articles
2
Member of
NRA Life Benefactor, Trout Unlimited, Safari Club International
I've never been to Africa with a buddy before. I'm trying that for the first time this trip. If you're on good terms with your PH and the hospitality team you certainly aren't lonely on a trip. Frankly, I think the risks of a bad trip are higher with a 2:1 buddy hunt anyway. Greed, Jealousy, Disappointment, Rudeness...hard to predict what vice will come out of another person (or you!) when you get into the bush with them for a week or two.

The only reason I'm going with a friend this trip is:

A.) I know the man well and he is a good guy

B.) We are not hunting the same things...0% overlap or cause for jealousy or "blaming", etc.

C.) I've done plenty of killing in Africa and its not that important to me on this trip. My partner has a quota of some 15+ large game animals he is licensed to hunt, I have to kill 4 cull impalas for bait, an eland bull, a klippy and a leopard. Leopard is always iffy, 50/50 shot of getting one at best so that's not going to change with a 2:1 hunt. The Klippy is an opportunity shot in the cliffs and the Eland is something we'll see as we are looking for all his game animals.

So in short, the majority of the hunt this time is about my friend having a good time, not me. I'm going to enjoy watching him on his first African hunt and will be rejoicing with him around the brai each evening for all that has taken place.

I would suggest if you cannot structure a 2:1 hunt in this manner you're better off going alone. I bet a lot of friendships are damaged on buddy hunts when the plan isn't etched in stone and looked at very carefully together.
 

LivingTheDream

AH legend
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Messages
2,413
Reaction score
3,621
Media
19
Hunting reports
Africa
3
USA/Canada
1
Europe
1
I have gone twice alone. Never gone with anyone, but mostly because I don't want to hear them complain or want to do this or see this, etc. I'm slightly slefish I guess, but I also put a lot of pressure on myself and I'm willing to push myself farther then most people want to go.

I am taking 6 people on my next trip, some hunting for the first time. My plan is hunt 2 animals, probably a sable and kudu and maybe cull some or shoot birds, but mostly let them enjoy Africa and I relax.

To your point of you are going for cape buffalo I would prefer to do it alone. With Leopard I will go alone, I will probably be one intense prick to be around. I will say the traveling part stinks but that is about all.

I have a friend who loves to hunt, we hunt differently (neither one is better just different), we are still best friends but we don't hunt together, he is not coming to Africa with me.

Bottom line is you will be fine. Have fun and shoot straight.
 

wesheltonj

AH legend
Joined
Feb 11, 2015
Messages
2,495
Reaction score
2,625
Location
South Texas
Media
19
Articles
7
Hunting reports
Africa
2
Member of
Benefactor-Life NRA, Life SCI, Life DSC, HSC
Hunted
USA, RSA
I would not have a problem going alone. You just have to worry about yourself that way. And cheaper too.
 

Red Leg

Lifetime bronze benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
May 19, 2009
Messages
6,699
Reaction score
19,589
Location
Texas Hill Country
Media
285
Articles
5
Hunting reports
Africa
2
USA/Canada
5
Mex/S.Amer
1
Europe
3
Member of
SCI DSC life memberships / NRA Patron Life
Hunted
Mexico, Namibia, RSA, Germany, Austria, Argentina, Canada, Mozambique, Spain, US (15 states)
Taken my son twice, but have never hunted Africa with a friend. Part of it is that I hate sharing a guide or PH, and don't much care for package deals. That means having a friend who can fit your schedule and hunting plan. That's a tough combo going to Africa. On the other hand, I have a couple of PHs whose company I value enormously and whom I consider friends. That works pretty well.
 

Martin Snyman

AH member
Joined
Jun 6, 2015
Messages
49
Reaction score
104
Location
Niassa
Media
2
Member of
PHASA
Hunted
RSA, Mozambique and Zimbabwe
You can have just as great of safari alone as you can with friends (it is fun with a few familiar faces but sometimes it’s not worth the bullS…a safari is much more personal than a few beers every now and again or a day or 2 of hunting, so it’s very important to choose the right person as they can influence the whole vibe in camp and your once in a life time hunt)

That being said most companies are with you as get through the gate, from there on your ph will look after you and befriend you and help out with most. Trust him as he has probably (and hopefully) done it a few times.

I think a very true thing Brick said is watch out for the same stuff you would back home……. the basic rule stays the same do not look ignorant and overwhelmed as well as try not to flash your valuables or your money and you will be fine.
 

Redruff

AH enthusiast
Joined
Jan 19, 2015
Messages
453
Reaction score
314
Media
3
Hunted
Botswana, RSA, Scotland, Canada
+1. Hate sharing my PH/Outfitter. Do Africa alone and take better half on European Vacations (read Stalking Trip). It's worked for me.

R.
 

Albert GRANT

AH fanatic
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
957
Reaction score
731
Location
Maine
Media
55
Hunting reports
Africa
2
Hunted
RSA, Canada, Ireland
All by myself last Sept. for my first trip to Africa. I think the guys have it right on here- especially for the first trip. Do it alone and simply enjoy Africa! I doubt you will regret it. I was a little disappointed I could not find anyone to go with me before my trip, but it wasn't even a factor while I was there. Now when I try to think about who I would want to go for the next one, I keep coming up with likely issues that could arise from each and every person I could have along. That's not to say I will be going alone or that it will be a bad hunt because of that, it just won't be as easy and care free.
 

BRICKBURN

Super moderator
Contributor
Lifetime titanium benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
Aug 5, 2010
Messages
23,023
Reaction score
17,613
Location
Canada
Media
412
Articles
24
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Europe
1
Hunted
Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Canada, USA, Mexico, England
Al, having met you on Skype I can tell you that you are not that bad to get along with. Really. :D
 

Divernhunter

AH elite
Joined
Feb 15, 2012
Messages
1,111
Reaction score
1,209
Location
Denair, California USA
Media
51
Member of
Life member NRA and NAHC Escalon Sportsmans club, Manteca sportsman club and Coalinga Rifle Club. Member of SCI
Hunted
USA, RSA
My 1st trip my brother and I were going together. He flaked. Then my adult daughter wanted to go. She only wanted one animal. So she went.
We had a great time once we got there sightseeing in Cape Town for 5 days with different tours and such. She hated the flight over. I did not care about it because I WAS GOING TO AFRICA! I had spent 3 years getting ready.

Then we flew to Port Elizabeth and the PH/outfitter/owner picked us up. Had a nice meal and went to a gun shop there. Then headed to the great camp. Forgot to take photos on the way. Be sure to have your camera out of your luggage. Take digital photos of everything. You can sort them later.

Once we got to camp and stated hunting my daughter decided she wanted more animals---so did I. We had a great time. She got a bit snippy with me when I would blow her stalks----my disabilities caused it usually. But she was my daughter and I overlooked it. She did apologize later for it. Her one animal became something like 5 plus at least 6-8 warthogs for fun and meat. The PH/outfitter/owner still only charged her "observer rates" which was nice and I loaned her some money for the other animals. I also picked up the tag for the sightseeing but she is my only kid so it is ok. Besides she was saving to pay for most of her wedding.

I plan to go again this year or next with the same outfitter/owner/PH and we have become friends. This depends on the rain, when they can fit me in for hunting and a couple of weeks after hunting to do more sightseeing. I will be staying with them for all of it. No charge for after the allotted hunt days. This time she cannot go because of the baby---the next one I will teach to shoot. I am not concerned about going alone. It would be a bit more fun to me to have someone to share things with other than the PH. But I assure you I will have plenty of fun and enjoy the trip 100%

I would not worry about going alone---once you are there the PH will take over except if you go for a longer time to sightsee.
 

Albert GRANT

AH fanatic
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
957
Reaction score
731
Location
Maine
Media
55
Hunting reports
Africa
2
Hunted
RSA, Canada, Ireland
Al, having met you on Skype I can tell you that you are not that bad to get along with. Really. :D
Thanks Wayne, I was on my best behavior:D It was nice meeting you as well!
 

Mike B

AH enthusiast
Joined
Mar 13, 2017
Messages
343
Reaction score
705
Location
Texas
Website
www.bazarsolutions.com
Media
30
Articles
2
Hunting reports
Africa
1
USA/Canada
1
Mex/S.Amer
1
Member of
DSC - Lifetime Member, NRA
Hunted
South Africa, Argentina, US (TX, NM, SD)
I went to China and Peru (not hunting) in College by myself. Both were great trips, but there are certainly things you miss about being able to share with someone. Inside jokes, etc. I would say you can still go and have fun, especially since you will be with an outfitter for most of the trip. I was at a conference and then when I did some sight seeing after it was just me, myself and I - but we make a good Trio! I'd take both trips solo again if nobody else wanted to go.
 

Velo Dog

Silver supporter
AH legend
Joined
Mar 27, 2014
Messages
3,540
Reaction score
5,323
Location
Anchorage
Media
58
Hunting reports
Africa
1
USA/Canada
1
Member of
NRA Life Member.
Hunted
Africa 5 times, USA - most western states including Alaska and Hawaii.
Twice I have traveled round trip Africa en-solo.
However admittedly, both times there either were friends from home already in camp, hunting for a couple days before I arrived or, friends from home scheduled to arrive some days after my own arrival day.
Personally, I do not fret about being set upon within the USA/Europe/southern Africa airport systems (except Airline employee's blazing incompetence, if not out-right harassment when I bring a firearm).
If however, for "touring" or "sight seeing" alone, I would definitely prefer family or friend/s, just for the pleasure of sharing the good times.
(Plus I pity the fool/s that might try either one of my sons.)

Incidentally, I have toured The Kruger Park in South Africa solo and enjoyed it but, I definitely enjoyed it much more, the time I went through it with my wife and a PH as our "Tour Narrator" (he was born and raised just outside the park and has a college degree in Wildlife Biology).
All that being said, every time I travel with my wife, (outside the USA or within the USA, makes little difference to me in regards to encountering criminals) I'm a bit of a worrier in unfamiliar surroundings, because even though she would not be a soft target per se, nonetheless she is no cage fighter or ex-Navy SEAL either.
And I'm always concerned for her safety, especially when travelling.
 

375 Ruger Fan

Gold supporter
AH legend
Joined
Jun 14, 2015
Messages
4,132
Reaction score
6,525
Location
Shreveport, Louisiana
Media
237
Articles
5
Hunting reports
Africa
7
USA/Canada
4
Australia/NZ
1
Member of
NRA, DSC
Hunted
Namibia, Zimbabwe, South Africa (Eastern Cape & NW), Canada, New Zealand, Alaska, TX, LA, MO, OH, MT, ID, WA, WY
I did a 10 day trip to Zim by myself and lived to tell about it. No big issues, although I've lived and worked for about 10 years in Angola and Nigeria, so I am somewhat comfortable with traveling in Africa.

When you travel and hunt by yourself, just you and the PH, you spend a lot of time together. This might be a person you just met and it pays to be a good listener, as they are usually very interesting people and have a few stories to tell.

Even if you go hunting with a friend or two, you might actually not see much of them if you are hunting with different PHs, etc. On my very first guided elk hunt, I went with 2 friends to Montana. It was 3x1 and that was a big mistake. We ended up taking 2 elk and a big mule deer on a 7 day hunt and we all got along great. It was just that you were sharing the guide and most of the time you weren't the main shooter. I'd suggest that unless you are hunting with a son/daughter/wife, etc, do not share a PH. Go 1x1 and go hunt. Go with friends and sit around the camp fire in the evening or compare notes of breakfast, but then go your separate ways for the day with your own PH and do what you want to do.
 

CAustin

Bronze supporter
AH ambassador
Joined
May 7, 2013
Messages
14,487
Reaction score
11,834
Media
258
Hunting reports
Africa
7
Member of
Courtney Hunting Club, NRA Life Member, SCI Kansas City Chapter
Hunted
South Africa, KwaZulu Natal, Kalahari, Northwest, Limpopo, Gauteng, APNR Kruger Area. USA Georgia, South Carolina, Arkansas, New Mexico, North Carolina and Texas
I am about to undertake my 5th safari overall and my 3rd traveling alone. However, I will be in the good hands and care of Pieter Erasmus and the rest if the Pawprint team the whole time. I have made friends with some others in South Africa........and I know I could call upon them if I needed help in any way.
Take your safari sir and have a great time.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
37,636
Messages
719,234
Members
67,292
Latest member
Bulatweils
 

 

 

Latest profile posts

Cervus elaphus wrote on Bob Nelson 35Whelen's profile.
Hi Bob, how's things going in Wyong?. Down your way a couple of years back but haven't been in NSW since Ebor for the fishing. just getting over some nasty storms up here in Qld, seeing the sun for the first time in a few days. I'm going to NZ in the spring and hope to clean up a few buns while there and perhaps shake the spiders out of my old .303LE (currently owned by my BIL). Cheers Brian
A couple pictures of the sable i chased for miles in Mozambique, Coutada 9!! We finally caught up to him and I had the trophy of a lifetime. Mokore Safaris, Doug Duckworth PH
sable Coutada 9.JPG
sable 2 - Coutada 9.JPG
Safari Dave wrote on egrmpty507's profile.
Did you purchase your hunt at a US SCI fundraiser?
uplander01 wrote on colorado's profile.
Heard you may have load data for the 500 Jeffery,.....any info would be appreciated. Was thinking 535gr, but already had a response that the 570gr would be a better way to go, not sure why.
Rickmt wrote on Leica Sport Optics's profile.
will Leica Amplus 6-2.5x15x50 fit on a pro success Blaser with low mount?
 
Top