Greetings from the Rockies

SafariDreamer3

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I have dreamed of hunting in Africa since I was a little boy watching Mutual of Omaha. I would sit in front of the TV and shoot animals with my finger gun. I got my first taste of Africa 15+ years ago in Kenya after the US Embassy was bombed in Nairobi. During my time in Kenya I was able to spend over a week in the bush in a tent on the Serengeti and I was hooked. My dream has been to go back to Africa, but this time to hunt. I started hunting with my Dad and relatives at age 4 and I still have fond memories of some of those early hunts. Unfortunately, my father stopped hunting about the age I was old enough to start carrying a gun and I plan to not have the same thing happen with my sons.

I believe my time has come to head back to Africa to live out my dream and I have spoken to several outfitters for the past several years. However, I still have several questions for those of you who really know African hunting well, and particularly South Africa.

1. I have two sons who have been hunting the Rockies with me every fall since age 4. The will be 10 and 12 in May/June of 2020 when we plan to go and I would love to bring them along to shoot a few cull animals as well as to experience the adventure. If the outfitter agrees, I may have them shoot one of the trophy animals on my package and then mount it for them for a future Christmas present. Have any of you taken kids this young and had a successful trip? Are they old enough? They can shoot and hike 5+ miles a day in the Rockies and have done so with me but an African hunt is quite different from what they are accustomed to. My non-hunting brother plans to come along for the adventure and to film so I will have some assistance on the hunt and it wouldn’t just be me.

2. Difficulty in choosing an outfitter and suggestions: I have called references and spoken to every one I know that has hunted Africa. I have read every online review on the outfitters I am considering and that is how I came upon this sight. Some of the mostly highly recommended outfitters my friends have gone with are simply well beyond my price range so not an option for me and my finances if I bring the boys. I am currently seriously considering going with either Marius at KMG or with Huntershill, both of which are in the Eastern Cape. I have read many good reviews for both but is anyone aware of any legitimate reason not to book with either of these groups?
3. Opionions and guidance on trip insurance? Yes, no, and if yes, with whom? I was told by one person to purchase it with plane tickets but not sure how this works.
4. If you buy a package, realistically how many animals can you expect to take out of the package on a 10 day/ 10 animal package?

This hunt may end up being a once in a lifetime deal....although I hope not.. but I want it to be successful and fun for my boys as an experience they will never forget.

I really look forward to any guidance or thoughts you all are willing to share.

Trent
 

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Welcome Trent to AH! I’d suggest talking to Lori at Travel Express (advertises on here) about the air travel, travel insurance and possibly Global Rescue. She will be very helpful, IME.
I’ve never hunted with either of the outfitters you mention, but they are both highly regarded by the trip reports I have read on here.
I might suggest you consider an outfitter who has kids the age of yours to add to their interest.

Oh you have a grand adventure awaiting you and your boys! They will have such a life long memory!
 

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Welcome to AH Trent. It sounds like you have plans we in hand so the expertise represented on the forum will most certainly get you all the decision making answers you will need to make this hunt happen
 

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Welcome!

I have no doubt that either outfitter can get you set up on a fantastic hunt for you and your boys. A lot of folks here can give you first hand experience with them. I would say travel insurance is cheap, especially if something pops up unexpectedly. I'll second @Travel Express for recommendations on travel insurance, and flights as well. Have used them 3 times now and they are great!
 

SafariDreamer3

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Welcome Trent to AH! I’d suggest talking to Lori at Travel Express (advertises on here) about the air travel, travel insurance and possibly Global Rescue. She will be very helpful, IME.
I’ve never hunted with either of the outfitters you mention, but they are both highly regarded by the trip reports I have read on here.
I might suggest you consider an outfitter who has kids the age of yours to add to their interest.

Oh you have a grand adventure awaiting you and your boys! They will have such a life long memory!
Ridgewalker, Thanks for the suggestion. I will reach out to Lori at Travel Express.
 

SafariDreamer3

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Welcome!

I have no doubt that either outfitter can get you set up on a fantastic hunt for you and your boys. A lot of folks here can give you first hand experience with them. I would say travel insurance is cheap, especially if something pops up unexpectedly. I'll second @Travel Express for recommendations on travel insurance, and flights as well. Have used them 3 times now and they are great!
Just sent Lori at Travel Express an e-mail as this looks like a good option. Thanks for the suggestion
 

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Welcome to AH.
 

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1. Take your kids. Enjoy it, they will.

2. Marius has repeatedly, successfully managed safaris for families. You've read the reports.
There is no reason not to hunt with KMG.

3. You've got the advice already.

4. Depends which critters, but typically, no it will not be an issue getting your animals.

Take enough time, do not rush the trip.
 

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Welcome to AH! I took my then 12 year old a few years back. 10 might have been a little young for my kids, but that depends on them. You be the judge of his maturity, but it seems he's already been exposed to hunting and should be fine.

Trip insurance is a good idea, allow your travel agent to explain this to you.

What I have typically found is you can count on one animal per day of hunting when PG hunting in RSA. This after four trips there. Somedays you might not get an animal, others you may get two or three. But in the end the average has been one/day for me.

Enjoy the planning!
 

SafariDreamer3

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1. Take your kids. Enjoy it, they will.

2. Marius has repeatedly, successfully managed safaris for families. You've read the reports.
There is no reason not to hunt with KMG.

3. You've got the advice already.

4. Depends which critters, but typically, no it will not be an issue getting your animals.

Take enough time, do not rush the trip.
Thanks for the information. Appreciate the suggestions.
 

SafariDreamer3

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Thx
Welcome to AH! I took my then 12 year old a few years back. 10 might have been a little young for my kids, but that depends on them. You be the judge of his maturity, but it seems he's already been exposed to hunting and should be fine.

Trip insurance is a good idea, allow your travel agent to explain this to you.

What I have typically found is you can count on one animal per day of hunting when PG hunting in RSA. This after four trips there. Somedays you might not get an animal, others you may get two or three. But in the end the average has been one/day for me.

Enjoy the planning!
Thanks Phoenix Phil. Glad to know you had a great trip with your son. Appreciate your advice. I learned early on that taking one boy hunting and leaving the other home, despite a 2 year difference in age, was not an option.
 

mark-hunter

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3. Opionions and guidance on trip insurance? Yes, no, and if yes, with whom? I was told by one person to purchase it with plane tickets but not sure how this works.
4. If you buy a package, realistically how many animals can you expect to take out of the package on a 10 day/ 10 animal package?

on point 3.:
On insurance, I live in EU, and what I will say maybe is not applicable in your case. But, after signing contract for hunting I went with it to local insurance company, and signed insurance contract. I used "Wiener" insurance company.
Check also "Global Rescue" on these pages.

on point 4:
In general plains game safari, Namibia, RSA - you can expect to collect all the planned trophies, if you follow advise of outfitter on number of days required. Generally, as Craig Boddington has written somewhere it is roughly 1.5 days, per 1 trophy.
But it is not uncommon to have 1 species per day during safari.
If the package quotes 7 species of game in 10 days, or 6 species of game in 7 days, or similar - this is what you may expect with 99% certainty. This is also within my experience from two plains game safaris.

Planning for my self following hunts, after my research I came to (teoretic) conclusion - the things and ratio will change:
Once your hunts in the future become more specialized, the number of species / per day will reduce, or not being certain to get at all.
For example: 7 days buffalo hunt (1 species in a week), or leopard hunt (not always 100% certain)...
 

johnvdw

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I have dreamed of hunting in Africa since I was a little boy watching Mutual of Omaha. I would sit in front of the TV and shoot animals with my finger gun. I got my first taste of Africa 15+ years ago in Kenya after the US Embassy was bombed in Nairobi. During my time in Kenya I was able to spend over a week in the bush in a tent on the Serengeti and I was hooked. My dream has been to go back to Africa, but this time to hunt. I started hunting with my Dad and relatives at age 4 and I still have fond memories of some of those early hunts. Unfortunately, my father stopped hunting about the age I was old enough to start carrying a gun and I plan to not have the same thing happen with my sons.

I believe my time has come to head back to Africa to live out my dream and I have spoken to several outfitters for the past several years. However, I still have several questions for those of you who really know African hunting well, and particularly South Africa.

1. I have two sons who have been hunting the Rockies with me every fall since age 4. The will be 10 and 12 in May/June of 2020 when we plan to go and I would love to bring them along to shoot a few cull animals as well as to experience the adventure. If the outfitter agrees, I may have them shoot one of the trophy animals on my package and then mount it for them for a future Christmas present. Have any of you taken kids this young and had a successful trip? Are they old enough? They can shoot and hike 5+ miles a day in the Rockies and have done so with me but an African hunt is quite different from what they are accustomed to. My non-hunting brother plans to come along for the adventure and to film so I will have some assistance on the hunt and it wouldn’t just be me.

2. Difficulty in choosing an outfitter and suggestions: I have called references and spoken to every one I know that has hunted Africa. I have read every online review on the outfitters I am considering and that is how I came upon this sight. Some of the mostly highly recommended outfitters my friends have gone with are simply well beyond my price range so not an option for me and my finances if I bring the boys. I am currently seriously considering going with either Marius at KMG or with Huntershill, both of which are in the Eastern Cape. I have read many good reviews for both but is anyone aware of any legitimate reason not to book with either of these groups?
3. Opionions and guidance on trip insurance? Yes, no, and if yes, with whom? I was told by one person to purchase it with plane tickets but not sure how this works.
4. If you buy a package, realistically how many animals can you expect to take out of the package on a 10 day/ 10 animal package?

This hunt may end up being a once in a lifetime deal....although I hope not.. but I want it to be successful and fun for my boys as an experience they will never forget.

I really look forward to any guidance or thoughts you all are willing to share.

Trent
Welcome Trent. Have you considered Namibia for your first African experience with your sons? Namibia is the safest and politically as well as economically the most stable country in Africa. We have hosted numerous father and son, grandfather-daughter and family safaris with great success. We suggest that you decide on the species as well as the type of hunt first. For the finest in old style, free range plains game hunting, look no further.
 

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Hi Trent,
Welcome to the forum. Great to have you join our community here at AH.
If you need anything, please let me know how I can be of any further assistance.

Take Care,
Marius
 

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Hi Trent, welcome to AH.

Your boys will be fine and enjoy themselves immensely.

I have no personal experience with the outfitters you mention, but they are well regarded by our community.

There is no need to take a package, you can make a wishlist, and then follow your PH´s recommendations in the field. Within your budget, of course !
 

SafariDreamer3

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Welcome Trent. Have you considered Namibia for your first African experience with your sons? Namibia is the safest and politically as well as economically the most stable country in Africa. We have hosted numerous father and son, grandfather-daughter and family safaris with great success. We suggest that you decide on the species as well as the type of hunt first. For the finest in old style, free range plains game hunting, look no further.
Yes, I have seriously considered Namibia and I researched several outfitters there although I admit I am not familiar with Westfalen. Uhlenhorst Safaris in Namibia was near the top of my list based on some of my friend’s recommendations and having met with them personally on 2 occasions when they were in the US. However, it seemed like I was able to get a bit more bang for the buck in S. Africa for a first time Safari yet still work with a reputable outfitter.
 

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Yes, I have seriously considered Namibia and I researched several outfitters there although I admit I am not familiar with Westfalen. Uhlenhorst Safaris in Namibia was near the top of my list based on some of my friend’s recommendations and having met with them personally on 2 occasions when they were in the US. However, it seemed like I was able to get a bit more bang for the buck in S. Africa for a first time Safari yet still work with a reputable outfitter.
I can enthusiastically vouch for @Westfalen Hunting Safaris . I wrote up a trip report posted here. I saw a lot of animals I wasn't hunting, elephant, leopard, honey badger, aardvark, dikdik, steenbuck and many more. The food is great and accommodations very nice. PM me if you like, or give me a call. PM for number.
 

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Welcome to AH, Trent!
 

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