Help me pick an outfitter

CAustin

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Hi guys, so I’m going around in circles a little bit here and was wondering if you can help me from experience.

So what I want to hunt is, large areas, can be high fence. Must be spot and stalk. With a rifle.

I’ve seen videos from people on here who are site regulars where,(mainly for bow hunting), there’s feed laid out for warthogs or a blind made next to an aritficial pond or water trough and for me it’s just not a hunt. I’m not knocking it for anyone else and I’ll happily sit and wait for a deer for the table but as a one-off I don’t want it to be predictable or easy.

I don’t really want to go to 6 different properties to hunt 6 different animals. Is there somewhere with just one or two massive areas? Is it possible to see at least some of the big five,(buffalo aside)?

I’ve got a list of plains game which is all I’m really after. I’m not too worried if it’s fractionally bigger limpopo or EC ect. I just want somewhere that is fair chase, difficult stalks, good reviews and most importantly, doesn’t feel artificial?

I feel like whenever I get near a choice, someone will give an honest opinion,(mostly by PM) which contradicts everything you read in the various write ups.


My anxiety is purely because this will financially be a one off trip,(for at least 10, 20 years) and it’s not a case of “I’ll book somewhere else next time”. I don’t really want to have a look at a trophy and see “there’s my kudu from block 1, my nyala from block 2, and my springbok from block 3”. I’d rather go to one massive conservancy and be able to do most of the hunt in one place.


Reviews and recommendations much needed. I’ve been desperate to do an African hunt since a kid but I’ve almost gone the other extreme and booked a NZ hunt instead to guarantee an experience.


Thanks!

Sir,
There are several fine outfitters here on AH that can deliver what you want. I think there will always be detractors because in this industry people make mistakes and omissions which hack folks off to no end. Usually rightfully so. That being said you are getting some great food for thought....ie the post by @BRICKBURN. The species yo7 want can be found on some rather large farms in South Africa. Namibia will also be a great destination.
 

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Do you see a pattern here?
This does not mean that every property line has a fence. But,....

The implication that lines on the maps represent high fences is not appropriate for the areas I'm familiar with in central Namibia (some of which are shown on the map).
I hunted farm Heusis (center of map) as well as several of the surrounding farms (e.g., Karanab) in 2016 and 2017. I saw cattle fences but no high fences.
The area is part of the Khomas Hochland Conservancy which I understand is a group of 20 or so farms committed to cooperative management of natural resources including game animals.
 

postoak

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I believe I saw high fences around Khomas Highlands but the area is very large and that shouldn’t be a concern.
 

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Springbok and Nyala aren’t two you find together often, unless the property is pretty diverse. Where I went in ‘16 in RSA had both but the springbok were a 1 1/2 to 2 hour drive to another biome. I had already gotten a springbok before and didn’t make the drive. I stayed on the main property and took kudu, nyala, bushbuck, impala, warthog, duiker.
 

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All I can add from experience is my rule now is I ONLY speak with the outfitter that I am hunting with. Too many bad experiences with representing outfitters promising things that were NOT available or possible. With internet you can ask direct questions and expect to receive direct truth full answers. You have your must haves, now make a list of good questions and narrow down list based on responses and answers. Then verify those answers with references or others who have hunted area and with outfit. This site a very good resource, but don't restrict yourself, there are many small good outfits with such high hunter returns advertising is minimal. Usually takes me just over a year to decide/send deposit but ooh what an exciting fun filled year that is. After a couple safaris things do get easier but still the organizing/planning is fun.

MB
 

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I will also offer the suggestion that you look at Craig Boddington's website and go to his list of endorsed outfitters. In the past, Craig has given me good advice. I would expect the same with those that he has included on his website, but I can't vouch for that. I would provide the URL, but I don't think that's allowed, so I will just suggest that you search for his name and "endorsed outfitters".
My suggestion is not to the exclusion of other recommendations. It's just another resource.
 

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Never used Craig's endorsed outfitters but do like all about Craig Boddington. Show, attitude, Military (in Gulf while I was), and DVD's. AHG has same sort of thing, verified outfitters, many of those outfitters are also on here so a bonus x2.

Wildflower.250, if you put all your must haves, then your wants in a generic email and send to as many outfitters as you think fit from initial web search in both SA and Namibia. Ask for direct answers under your questions. Internet prices are not firm so ask tough questions. Most outfitters have reduced or provided some incentive extra to get my booking, ie; reduced trophy fee, extra animal, a cull or 2, free spouse or reduced non hunter, (a night hyena won me on a hunt). This is special when on a fixed budget. Those that duck, weave, or do not give answers you want are dropped, then next round of more specific detailed questions fine tunes outfitters even better. When down to 4/5 then the individual specific questions come in to effect. In the end you should get a clear winner, maybe a close second. Then I research, verify, call refs, buddies, post on here with PM's and confirm all that was stated. I also keep final reduced outfitters informed of my final decision, just courtesy I think and it will not be your only safari so a start on next hunt planning? I enjoy this part fully, adds to the overall Safari experience in my eyes.

MB
 

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Kemp African Safaris in the Limpopo would fit all your needs. They have very good trophy quality. Great food and Lodging.
 

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Really looking at kudu, nyala, springbok and impala, maybe gemsbok.

Even if it was over two big areas that’s great. Just don’t want to go to a ranch for each individual species if that makes sense

Thanks for the reply!
If a free range area is of interest, check out Coutada 9 in Mozambique with Mokore Safaris. They don't have gemsbok but they have lots of kudu, nyala impala, reedbuck, oribi, warthog, hartebeest, bushbuck, etc... I hunted there and it was great with high populations. Probably get to see some lions as well.
 

KHOMAS HIGHLAND HUNTING SAFARIS

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Private property rights in RSA and hunting laws require a CAE in order to be able to hunt under "extended" hunting seasons. If it is an open farm, hunting is restricted to actual hunting seasons that are specified, very similar to the UK.

A CAE is a Certificate of Adequate Enclosure. Guess what that means?
High fencing that has the ability to keep the game inside.
Certain species of course can come and go as they wish. Warthog, Leopard, Jackal


All of those geometric shapes you see on the following maps are FARM BOUNDARIES!
"Farm 19", "Farm Dirleen", "Farm Rooidam 13"
Do you see a pattern here?
This does not mean that every property line has a fence. But,....

Limpopo RSA
View attachment 294431

Central Namibia
View attachment 294432

Eastern Cape RSA
View attachment 294433





Kudu, Nyala and Impala are browsers
Gemsbok and Springbok are grazers.
Different habits different terrain, until they get introduced onto properties.

This series of maps shows the distribution of plains game species within South Africa.
You will immediately note that many species of plains game have been translocated into every last province of South Africa.


Look at the first image in this thread to see the HUGE difference in geography, flora and geology across South Africa. The terrain changes from thick coastal bush to desert.

https://www.africahunting.com/threads/distribution-maps-for-mammals-in-south-africa.30059/





Kudu
View attachment 294422

Nyala
View attachment 294421

Impala
View attachment 294418


Gemsbok
View attachment 294420

Springbok
View attachment 294419



Low fence (random picture) near Middelburg EC
View attachment 294434


High Fence out near Thabazimbi/Botswana border.
View attachment 294435

Google Earth is your friend.


Some folks will say they don't get a straight answers. When in fact they have
I have stated very directly the size of the RESERVE (main property) where I will be hunting next year.
It encompasses several farms, is high fenced and has terrain that will rival NZ if you'd like climbing hills and risking breaking your neck.
Will it have every species on it that everyone wants. Hell no.
Blue Duiker and Oribi are in very limited areas truthfully.
There are specialists that hunt Caracal all the time and they go where the cats go.
Vaalies, you will be heading to the mountains.

Nyala, Impala and Kudu can ALL certainly be hunted on ONE property where I am headed next year.
You'd have to travel to get the Springbok and the Gemsbok. I would want to hunt those species in a more typical environment anyway.


Use all the tools available and you will figure it out.
Good luck with your search.

Hello Hunting Friends,
Brickburn has posted the Map of Central Namibia, this is exactly my hunting block " Khomas Hochland Conservancy "Game Management Unit South" The Conservancy is still larger than the image.
Farm Heusis, Uas Dam, Klein Ondeka is my private land.
Neu Heusis, Dirleen, Karanab, Silverstom, Goab which are bordering Heusis "block" are part of my GMU "game management unit"
All properties are only hunted by Khomas Highland Hunting Safaris.
Each Farm is a registered low-fenced cattle Farm. Low fence meaning 1.2m high with 5 strands of wire. which is the boundary fence as indicated on the map. All game can easily cross my going underneath or jumping.

Just for a size comparison the Khomas Hochland Conservancy 1740 km2 is half the size of Yosemite National Park 3 027 km2 .

Greetings from Namibia
Philip
 
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johnnyblues

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I also agree with hunting in Namibia. I just returned last month from my second safari in that fantastic country where I took this big leopard in my avitar along with 7 other PG species. Namibia is definitely a bit different than hunting in SA.
 

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I would include comparing outfitters/places in Namibia. Lots of good reasons, easy too get too, safe, pricing reasonable, lots to see, shoot, do, but round trip airfare from SA could mean 1 less animal, 2 days?? My last safaris was also leopard in Namibia, was an excellent successful in all ways hunt. My experience in SA is limited but research has lots more available there. First safaris research is overwhelming, more so now with internet and immediate responses, lots will push "their" outfit, recommendations and try for your hunt, that's business. With a set plan, questions, and knowing what you want certainly helps single out that perfect hunt. With specific research and verified details I expect wildflower.250 will find an excellent operation and ultimately book his dream hunt that checks all boxes. Good luck.

MB
 

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I would include comparing outfitters/places in Namibia. Lots of good reasons, easy too get too, safe, pricing reasonable, lots to see, shoot, do, but round trip airfare from SA could mean 1 less animal, 2 days?? My last safaris was also leopard in Namibia, was an excellent successful in all ways hunt. My experience in SA is limited but research has lots more available there. First safaris research is overwhelming, more so now with internet and immediate responses, lots will push "their" outfit, recommendations and try for your hunt, that's business. With a set plan, questions, and knowing what you want certainly helps single out that perfect hunt. With specific research and verified details I expect wildflower.250 will find an excellent operation and ultimately book his dream hunt that checks all boxes. Good luck.

MB
There direct flights from Frankfurt to Windhoek.
 

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I am somewhat glad that I was just a tag-along on my first safari. My dad had already chosen his outfitter and booked his trip, so I didn't have to navigate all of the research and ask all of the questions. That being said, it also cut me out from being able to really select everything I was looking for in a hunt. Regardless of who you book with, you will learn while you're there about what you like and don't like, and you'll probably start planning what you want on your next trip. Calling it a once-in-a-lifetime trip only lasts until you actually 'see the elephant' and experience hunting in Africa.
 

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I wouldn't let short drives to different farms deter you too much. I hunted the Eastern Cape last year and Namibia in 2014 and both had morning and evening travel times of a half hour to an hour on average. Time that I got to spend chatting with my PH, looking at the scenery or catching a little nap. Had a fantastic time on both hunts.
 

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There direct flights from Frankfurt to Windhoek.
Understood but then you must go to Frankfurt. Just an extra detail not sure of wildflower.250's home country, state, province. Lots more options to Joberg and usually better priced.
I am somewhat glad that I was just a tag-along on my first safari. My dad had already chosen his outfitter and booked his trip, so I didn't have to navigate all of the research and ask all of the questions. That being said, it also cut me out from being able to really select everything I was looking for in a hunt. Regardless of who you book with, you will learn while you're there about what you like and don't like, and you'll probably start planning what you want on your next trip. Calling it a once-in-a-lifetime trip only lasts until you actually 'see the elephant' and experience hunting in Africa.
I fully enjoy the research part, investigating all options for a hunt. Makes the whole experience a year long journey.
I wouldn't let short drives to different farms deter you too much. I hunted the Eastern Cape last year and Namibia in 2014 and both had morning and evening travel times of a half hour to an hour on average. Time that I got to spend chatting with my PH, looking at the scenery or catching a little nap. Had a fantastic time on both hunts.
So far all my Safaris have been a wild area with same camp, summer 2020 I have 20 days, 4 camps and drives in between. Cant wait. Will be first time in cab with PH , always been on top seat with PH and crew. wildflower.250 wants one camp with minimal camp, animal moves, there are many of those hunts available, but may not see all you can see.

MB
 

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Hi guys, so I’m going around in circles a little bit here and was wondering if you can help me from experience.

So what I want to hunt is, large areas, can be high fence. Must be spot and stalk. With a rifle.

I’ve seen videos from people on here who are site regulars where,(mainly for bow hunting), there’s feed laid out for warthogs or a blind made next to an aritficial pond or water trough and for me it’s just not a hunt. I’m not knocking it for anyone else and I’ll happily sit and wait for a deer for the table but as a one-off I don’t want it to be predictable or easy.

I don’t really want to go to 6 different properties to hunt 6 different animals. Is there somewhere with just one or two massive areas? Is it possible to see at least some of the big five,(buffalo aside)?

I’ve got a list of plains game which is all I’m really after. I’m not too worried if it’s fractionally bigger limpopo or EC ect. I just want somewhere that is fair chase, difficult stalks, good reviews and most importantly, doesn’t feel artificial?

I feel like whenever I get near a choice, someone will give an honest opinion,(mostly by PM) which contradicts everything you read in the various write ups.


My anxiety is purely because this will financially be a one off trip,(for at least 10, 20 years) and it’s not a case of “I’ll book somewhere else next time”. I don’t really want to have a look at a trophy and see “there’s my kudu from block 1, my nyala from block 2, and my springbok from block 3”. I’d rather go to one massive conservancy and be able to do most of the hunt in one place.


Reviews and recommendations much needed. I’ve been desperate to do an African hunt since a kid but I’ve almost gone the other extreme and booked a NZ hunt instead to guarantee an experience.


Thanks!

info@blaauwkrantz.com my wife hunted there on our first safari in 2002.the rudman family.class act 1000%.east cape.they have everything you want.
 

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Hello Hunting Friends,
Brickburn has posted the Map of Central Namibia, this is exactly my hunting block " Khomas Hochland Conservancy "Game Management Unit South" The Conservancy is still larger than the image.
Farm Heusis, Uas Dam, Klein Ondeka is my private land.
Neu Heusis, Dirleen, Karanab, Silverstom, Goab which are bordering Heusis "block" are part of my GMU "game management unit"
All properties are only hunted by Khomas Highland Hunting Safaris.
Each Farm is a registered low-fenced cattle Farm. Low fence meaning 1.2m high with 5 strands of wire. which is the boundary fence as indicated on the map. All game can easily cross my going underneath or jumping.

Just for a size comparison the Khomas Hochland Conservancy 1740 km2 is half the size of Yosemite National Park 3 027 km2 .

Greetings from Namibia
Philip

I used Philips "farm" for a reason.
Philip has described the Conservancy model in Namibia. A series of interconnected properties that are managed by a committee of owners. In this case Khomas Highland Safaris holds exclusive hunting rights. This series of properties does not have high fences.
All conservancies and farms are not equal. Some conservancies share/sell the quota to a variety of Outfitters.

Do your research.
 

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Everyone will have their favorite place to hunt. Lot's of good outfitters here, a couple I would not hunt with for a various reasons. What I did was go to DSC, and obtained info from ever outfitter there, made a spread sheet for the animals I wanted and plus daily rates for quality rooms that's how I made my top three choices. Then I asked on this board if anyone had hunted at those locations. As it turned out because of what one outfitter charged for my daughter made the difference between him and everyone else. Yes, it was high fenced, but it was 24k acres, one continuous property and he owned it. The only time I saw the fences was going thru a gate or when he was checking fence lines. Never saw any supplement feeding stations, except where he kept his horses and mules. He did have lots of man-made watering holes. He also had permission to hunt on some neighbors properties, but I never did. If you wanted to air charter, his neighbor had a landing strip on his place that was light jet capable. The daily rate included food, wine, and plenty of booze. Unlike some operations he only hunts four times a year, plus a cull hunt at the end of his hunting year. It took two years to get a date to hunt. I was the second American to hunt there. Just ask questions, take notes and ask around from other who have hunted where you are looking at.

I saw someone post about Boddington and AHG outfitters. I am sure they are good, but just remember those endorsements were not free.
 

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Understood but then you must go to Frankfurt. Just an extra detail not sure of wildflower.250's home country, state, province. Lots more options to Joberg and usually better priced.
MB

Somewhere on this thread, I do the idea that wildflower.250 is in the UK, but his profile doesn't say that, so I'm not sure. From the UK, FRA is only a short hop. I don't know if there are nonstops from LHR to WND.
 

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