NAMIBIA: Has Anyone Hunted With Felix Marnewecke In Namibia?

Benjamin, I assure you that you will be the first person I will call once I bag a hundred pounder.:beer::letsparty:

And if I do bump into a gift 80 lbs bull, I will certainly not pass on him. That is why I carry two bull permits in my pocket.:huntingrifle:
I want to see that 100 pounder too.

Walk your legs off.

Good luck in the Nyae Nyae. Take lots of pictures.
They have done a lot of work in the conservancy.
Can't wait for pictures....good luck!!
You have to admire a die hard elephant hunter!
Of the big five, I have not yet hunted a rhino (searching for a wild black rhino in Namibia though). To me, elephant hunting is the most interesting and the most challenging game. It is an art.
Hey Stan, I imagine you are in the bush now. Please give us some updates during the safari. There is some signal in camp during the night to send and receive emails.

Thanks and good hunting. Wish I was there!
Hi Benjamin,

Not yet still working. I will fly out to Joburng on August 18, then Windhoek in the same day.

I have told Felix to tie up a hundred pound to a tree for me. Not sure if he has done that or not.
Hi Jerome,

Thank you for this new. It seems that Felix is not seriously injured. I will sed them an email.
I asked for info from my good friend Jamy Traut in Namibia He hunts the same general area for the big stuff. Hope Felix gets well soon.
Stan, we are all waiting to hear the details! Pictures as well please. What a great place to hunt elephants isn't it?
Hello Benjamin,

I did not bag a hundred pounder though that is why i did not make a report. To me, Nyae-Nyae conservancy is the best place with the best possibility chance to get the biggest tusk and the oldest elephant, LEGALLY!

I have made myself a daily memo while I was there. If you like to read them I can posted provided that you do not mind my poor English.

Jerome, perhaps you would want to audit it first?
Hello Benjamin,

I did not bag a hundred pounder though that is why i did not make a report. To me, Nyae-Nyae conservancy is the best place with the best possibility chance to get the biggest tusk and the oldest elephant, LEGALLY!

I have made myself a daily memo while I was there. If you like to read them I can posted provided that you do not mind my poor English.

Jerome, perhaps you would want to audit it first?

Stan we don't care if it was a 100 pounder or a 0 pounder we just love to hear the tale. post pics we'll figure out what your saying, I my self have never seen the place and would love to see the pics. and as far as english goes post lines that your not sure of in your own Language, I've got google translate.
Namibia-Nyae Nyae Conservancy August 18-Sep 8, 2012
Camelthorn Safaris: Felix Marnewecke as PH and partner with Florian Huettner as administer.

I have read several articles about hunting a great majestic old bull elephant in Nyae Nyae conservancy (formerly Bushmanland), Namibia, by the legend Mr. Kai-Uwe Denker; an old school PH and a conservationist. He hunts elephant by foot and he would only let his client shoots just the aged bullI, including old plain games. I am very impressed with the way Mr. Denker hunt (of course a hundred pounder too) and I kept telling myself that I have to go there ASAP. So I sent out a couple of e-mails and finally he Had replied. Unfortunately, Mr. Denker has stopped elephant hunting at the end of 2011 at the age of 52 years as he feels that elephant hunting is a sport for younger people ( whereas I started elephant hunting at 52 to the fact that I felt that I would not be able to walk far if I get any older than this). It was very generous of him to connect me with Camelthorn Safari , a new co-outfitter in this area with SMJ Safari. After three weeks of exchanging emails asking and inquiring about this safari with florian, I booked a nineteen hunting days safari for the last two trophy bulls, an own-use elephant bull and some plain games.

Nyae Nyae Conservancy (formerly Bushman land where the famous old movie " God must be crazy" was filmed) is a remote region of northern kalahari, northeast of Namibia. 900,000 hectors in size with limited road accesses. Felix has told me that there are approximately 2,500-3,000 elephants in this concession and most of them are resident. There is only six permits for trophy elephant for the whole concession per year. This means there are so many old elephants here with good trophy quality. However, it does not mean that there are a hundred pounder, a ninety pounder nor even a fifty pounder behind every bush or tree. As there is limited road access in a big area, hunting is mainly done by walking. You will not see many elephants while driving like some other countries.

Aug 18- Arrived OR Tambo International Airport half an hour earlier than schedule, three of us, me and two of my staffs spent two and a half hours in SAA lounge. SAA flight to Windhoek, a capital of Namibia, arrived on time at 10.30 am. We met by Felix right after we cleared immigration, rifle and custom. Rifle and ammunition were easily cleared with one simple form. At this time of the year Windhoek is one hour behind Johannesburg. Our charter flight to Tsumkwe airport was an hour delayed as the charter guy had gotten mixed up the booking time. The two propellers plane was much smaller than I had expected. We have to put my rifle case in the middle of the plane between seats. We had strong head wind which made our ride quite bumpy. I had to closed my eyes a couple time to prevent air sickness.

Inside Twin Propellers


After one hour and fifty minutes we arrive at Tsumkwe airport, Florian was waiting for us with Keshe, a 60 years old tracker. There would be two more trackers when we hunt; Robert, Mr Denker's X-number one tracker and Xhau, a youngest tracker of the three. Our camp was fifty Kms from this airport, which was about half an hour drive. It was a brand new camp and we were Camelthorn first clients here as this was the first year they start hunting in Nyae Nyae . It was a very nice camp indeed.


Felix and Florian Tents

Kitchen - Inside Kitchen - Stove

Inside Twin Propllers


At the dining table Felix must has been very impressed with my build as he is about 195-200 cm tall whereas I am 167 cm. "An old and beat up city man" he must have thought. He asked whether I could walk? Since Felix has just left a Hosital three days ago and has not fully recovered from the encounter with a buffalo which has left three holes in his body and leg. Plus he was pretty much still limping. I decided to tell him "Please do not worry, I will be okay with your condition like this too". Felix replies was " You'd better watch out what you are saying". Well, I was right, at least most of the time.

Sunday August 19-First hunting day.

Felix's plan was to leave the camp at 05.00 am every morning to look for fresh old bull tracks. It was still dark at that hour when we left the camp, but only within ten minutes, we saw eight roan cows right off the road. We also noticed some fresh elephant tracks but there were too young. At the first water pan, we saw two groups of elephant tracks, about five to seven bulls per group, but they were nothing to our interest. We drove on and spotted a couple of elephant bull 600-700 meters away. We walked in for a closer look. One of them has a big body with left tusk broken in half and the right one weighting around sixty pounds. The other bull was a much younger one. He saw us and started to walk toward us..... Wait he is walking with FIVE legs though.

At about 9.20 am, we saw two hartebeests in a distant away from the road. Then we saw a big heard of kudu cows at the next water hole with about seventeen to twenty cows. At 10.00 am we arrived at a massive water pan full of flamingos, various birds and water flows. There were also two large herds of springboks and few cows and calves tracks here. We had made a good round trip this in morning and came back to the camp around 11.50 am for lunch.

Our search for a couple of dream bulls resumed at 14.30 pm by looking for a good track on the roads and checking at water holes. We drove east until we hit a Botswana's fence, then headed north along the fence. Only five minutes later we had a left rear tire punctured. After we had the tire changed and within a hundred meters ,the tracker spotted a large kudu three hundred meters away. Felix decided to have a closer look at him, os we went after this kudu but in the end it took off very far. Both Felix and I did not manage to see the horn size of this kudu. So we changed our course toward a water hole. Felix told me that Mr. Denker had seen a ninety-pounder elephant at this water hole last November after the hunting season. We walked for an hour but fortunately the water hole had dried off for a while. But there was a wild dog about a hundred meters away. He saw us and walked closer to us to have a better look.

Monday August 20- Second Hunting day.

We left camp at 5.05 am to a new water hole. Once we arrived, the trackers found a large elephant spore coming out off the water hole. We went after this spore for about thirty minutes when another bull crossed and mixed up with our track. So the trackers had to back track to trace the first bull track. While waiting for our trackers, Felix had spotted a heard of Onyx moving toward us. They came as close as thirty meters from us in a fairly open terrain and two of them had very long and thick horns. Unfortunately to us that were on an elephant track.


The trackers returned after one hour and twenty minutes, said they had found our bull track but this time they saw this bull track clearly in a soft mud sand. Even though his track is very big but his print has fine cracks in his feet indicated he was a young bull, not an old bull we were looking for. As elephants get older, cracks underneath of their feet will become larger while their sole would wear out.They are a lot of elephant activity at this water hole than any others we had seen so far. We made sure to come back to check this area again tomorrow.




We drove around checking various water holes and pans for a while. We spotted a couple of kudu within two hundreds meters. One has a horn broke off and the other kudu is about fifty four inches. Later on, we spotted a young elephant bull at seven hundred meters away. Around 11.00 am, we found found a nice old bull track but Felix decided that we will come back to check tomorrow morning as the day was getting warmer at a very fast rate.


Tuesday August 21- Third day

We arrived at a water pan at 5.20 am but only saw one young bull track. On the way to another pan we spotted a lone young Roan but his horns were short. Just five minutes after that, we noticed two large old bulls tracks. These tracks are large but not massive, but as their tracks show large crack print, we decided to go after them.

Felix drove around a couple of kilometers to see if these bulls have crossed the road or not. On the way, we spotted a small heard of Roan cows. We decided to come back to the tracks as they did not cross over the road and we started to follow them at 7.20 am. We could observed that our bulls were joined by another two-three bulls. We saw the first bull around 7.50 am as he was slowly feeding in thick bushes. He was an impressive big old body bull. He was standing broadside around fifty meters away from us, his right tusk was very thick and long. It was not taper but it was thick all the way to the tip with round blunt tip. Felix and I both agreed that his tusk can easily make over seventy five pounds. Felix said if his left tusk is good, we will take him. As he moved and turn, we saw he has no left tusk, it had broken off at his lip.

We saw two smaller young bulls and another old bull with both long and thick tusk but he was very far away. We think he should be a seventy pounder but we did not really have a good look at him. We could not get in any closer as the one tusk bull was closed to us and he was downwind from the rest. We had to circled right and left several times, spending more than an hour and a half trying to get a good look at the other old bull. Then we saw him moving away from us but the first one tusk old bull was again in our way and downwind.

About 10.05 am they moved off to find a place to bed. Felix found a chance to bring me closer to the second old bull but the area was full of very thick brushes. The one tusk old bull was standing under a shade to our right fifteen meters away to our right. Felix and I stalked closer to be within ten meters from the second old bull. There was another bull standing very closed to him. Everything was happening very fast and I did not get a chance to look at his tusk as I was too busy watching every steps where my feet would land on the ground. The second old was standing broadside with his head to our left, unfortunately I could not get a clear shot neither at his head nor his heart/lung area as he was behind several bushes. I decided to cat- walked closing to about eight meters to him. The second old bull then caught our movement, turned his head and starred at us. His head was now totally being blocked by some brushes, I had no chance for a clear shot at all. He was staring at us almost two full minutes to come to senses that something was not right. For all those long minutes, my legs were shaking badly from adrenaline rush of excitement and from being so close to the old bull. He slowly moved back ward and moved off. We had to stay still for a while trying not to spook the whole group.

Half an hour later we had another chance to get close to them to about twenty meters. This time these two old bulls were five meters away from each other. And we we had a chance to really look at this bull but it turn out that he was not the same one we had seen in the beginning. We backed off and sent one of the tracker up the tree but he could not locate our seventy pounder. We saw another two bulls twenty five meters away. Upon closer look, one was a young bull and the other was a very old bull with forty to fifty pounds tusks.

In the afternoon we saw a massive track of an old bull on the road, it was last night's track. If we had seen it in the morning, we would had followed him. We spotted three young bulls feeding six to seven hundred meters away from the road on the way back to camp.


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