NAMIBIA: Hunting Namibia With Aru Game Lodges

Discussion in 'Hunting Reports Africa' started by Philip Glass, Jun 7, 2019.

  1. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I have just returned from another great adventure to my favorite country. I have done most of my international hunts by myself so this was a nice change of pace. I had a group of 7 hunters including my 13 year old son going with me to Namibia for the first time. We flew from SJT-DFW-ATL-JNB-WDH which included three airlines and the usual incompetence that goes along with flying with guns. This long journey got us to Windhoek the capital of Namibia at 9:30PM. Thankfully it is only about an hours drive to our first destination Kalakwa Lodge. Even though we arrived late Gysbert and Danene van der Westhuzen had a wonderful meal ready for us. I can not adequately describe the quality of the lodges at Aru. They are absolutely over the top incredible! We hunted three days there and this area is characterized by rocky mountainous terrain. My son Jasper and I hunted with Gysbert our PH, dear friend, and owner of Aru.
    The first day was typical and included much stalking and glassing for Hartmans Zebra which Jasper was hunting. In case you don't know the Hartmans mountain zebra is one of the most challenging animals to hunt in Africa. After many miles driven and walked the sun was getting ready to set when we found a lone zebra on a steep rocky hill. As we stalked in its direction a young waterbuck busted us and we had to just cool it for a while and let things quiet down. We made the final approach and Jasper made a fantastic shot with his Blaser 7mm. After the shot the animal turned and we all saw blood. A perfect lung shot! The mountain zebra went no more than 30 yards and of course I was very proud of my son on his first African animal.
    The next day we were determined to find a giraffe bull and we left the lodge early and began our pursuit. There are actually lots of giraffe here but still finding an old bull to take is always a challenge. We found the right animal and he was on the move to a herd. Our group hurriedly worked to get into position for what was going to be about a 180 yard shot. Two heart shots with my .375 Ruger and the giraffe was on his way down. At first glance I had noticed something strange about the bull's mouth but kept it to myself as we were all tense with the situation. After the skinning was done it was noticed that this animal had his jaw broken very badly at some point but was still living. It was definitely the right old bull to take!
    Next it was my turn to try for a black wildebeest. After a failed stalk for a blue wildebeest that we located we kept walking to a clear grassy area where there have been black wildebeest seen recently. My PH puts me on one and I make a bad shot (later we found out my gun was off) and the long, long, long followup commences. After over 5 miles of a forced march through deep sand and then up steep rocky hills we found the animal finally slowing down and the opportunity for a finishing shot was at hand. I had to work for this one and will certainly appreciate it for years to come.
    Day 4 we jump in a charter plane for a day trip to Sossusvlei. The pilot flew low for the hour flight and we got to see lots of Namibia close up! We landed and were picked up by a tour guide and we were off to the dunes. Words can not describe this place and photos still don't really do it justice. What a fun day we had playing in the sand and getting to see the many hundreds of years old dead trees in the famous Dead Vlei. We had lunch at Sossusvlei Lodge and hopped back in the Cessna plane and headed for Veronica Lodge. There is so much game on Veronica someone must chase the animals off of the runway and the pilot makes a pass to see that everything is clear to land. We arrive at yet another of the most fantastic lodges you will ever stay in on a hunt. Veronica is sandy and has no rocky hills. Our first morning we headed out for Jasper a red hartebeest. We get a herd located, get the wind right, and Gysbert gets us in very close to these wily animals. We were in there long enough I just knew we were going to get busted but a mature bull is just to the right of the others and Jasper gets set up for a shot. It was quartering away and he made absolutely the perfect shot and the bull is down! We recover the 7mm Barnes TSX and as many of you know the performance is perfect and predictable. I am really a Barnes fan after my recent experiences with four different calibers.
    Day 6 finds me after a blue wildebeest and there are many here on Veronica but finding that old bull proves challenging. Gysbert, as usual, gets us on a bull that afternoon and I get a shot. This is when we are certain my gun is off and what should have been an easy one and done takes a few shots to get the job done. It happens but it is terribly frustrating when something goes wrong on a hunt.
    We spend the rest of the hunt looking for a big kudu for Jasper and along the way he gets to do some warthog culling. Bang down, bang down. Thats my boy! I am so proud of him and how well he shoots a big gun under this kind of pressure. He is happy to get to give the meat to some of the people that live there and they are happy as well.
    If you haven't experienced Namibia please check out Aru Game Lodges. It is an experience in so many ways. Their professionalism, kindness, quality of accommodations, quality of food, and just overall care for the client just can't be beat.
    Regards,
    Philip

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  2. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Sossusvlei was a wonderful day trip. I am usually hunting or on sheep ranches on all of my adventures and rarely get to do any side trips like this.

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  3. FallowJaeger

    FallowJaeger AH Senior Member

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    What a wonderful time you were able to have with your son. I hope to do this with my daughters one day. Great animals, congrats on another fantastic adventure.
     
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  4. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I especially like the photo of you and your son jumping on each side of the tree! What fun!
    That is a fine dark giraffe! One is on my bucket list, but not until I find a good dark one like yours. If it has a messed up jaw too, even the better!
    Wonderful you took your son to share the Africa experience! I hope to have as good an experience in 2020 with my granddaughter!
    Thanks for sharing your adventure!
     
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  5. cagkt3

    cagkt3 AH ENABLER PLATINUM SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Looks like you had a great time with your son, congrats to you both!
     
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  6. buckmarkhunter

    buckmarkhunter AH Enthusiast

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    Awesome adventure with your son, congrats to you both. If more people raised their kids to like and respect the outdoors the world would be a better place.
     
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  7. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Congrats on a great hunt with your son! Thanks for sharing the report and pics!
     
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  8. Edge

    Edge AH Fanatic

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    Looks like you and your Son had a great time! I really need to get to Namibia sometime soon, the pictures of the desert area and dunes are excellent.
     
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  9. cls

    cls AH Elite

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    Congrats to you and your son, well done!
     
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  10. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Elite

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    Thank you for sharing! Time with children is priceless and to enjoy such a beautiful place with your son , developed memories you will both have for life.
     
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  11. Nyati

    Nyati AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Congrats Philip, that was a great experience.
     
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  12. D.Unger

    D.Unger AH Member

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    What a great experience with your son, thanks for sharing. My wife and I took our then 16 & 12 year olds sons to Aru 4 years ago for their first African trip. Great operation and people.
     
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  13. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Good for you to get your son out to Africa with you. I'm sure that he will remember it for a long time. Congrats
    Bruce
     
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  14. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Yes an old giraffe bull is a special trophy. Thanks so much!
     
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  15. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Very true.
     

  16. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I will post some video clips when they are edited and ready. It was a great adventure especially the dunes.
    Philip
     
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  17. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Yes Aru is first class!
     
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  18. Mark Biggerstaff

    Mark Biggerstaff BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Congratulations to you and your son. Thanks for sharing with us.
     
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  19. BenKK

    BenKK AH Elite

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    Nice adventure in a beautiful place! Congrats!
     
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  20. meigsbucks

    meigsbucks AH Fanatic

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    Sounds like you had a great experience. Took some great trophies and some great pics. Makes me want to head back to Namibia.
     
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