NAMIBIA: Khomas Highland Hunting Safaris February 2020

So the following morning arrived and both teams set off in opposite directions. We spent the morning scouring a section the rhino where known to hang out in but after an hour or so no luck. We took a break and had some of our packed breakfast and Marius and Hendrick climbed up one of the rocky outcrops to see if the could locate them. When they came back down they shook there heads and said still no sign we loaded up and set off again to look in another area. As we were driving along the radio sparked into life and I thought the giraffe hunt must of been a success, but Hendrick said that the other team had just seen the rhinos and we were to head over there and see if they were still about. As we drove to locate the rhinos we met up with Philip coming the opposite way they had not been able to find a suitable male yet and asked the guys to keep a look out for one. we had not gone far when we located the rhinos out in the open. Marius told us to be ready as they normally take off into the cover really quickly when you stop. Well today the played ball and hung around before disappearing off in to the bush.

After the rhino left we went to help look for a giraffe bull it was not long before Hendrick had found a nice giraffe bull a call was made and Philips team came to look him over, they decided to see if they could find a bull we had seen the day before so we set off again about 45 minutes later a call came through Philips team had gone back and taken the bull we had located and assistance was now required with the extraction.
Very nice Cape eland. Dark colored for sure. Good job.
Congrats on a really nice eland. They are one animal I don’t think I will ever get enough of hunting.
Awesome pictures and story.

Today would have been the half way point of our safaris. Not that I’m depressed and eating my feelings lol.

But I will see that place someday.

Look forward to the rest of the story.
A grand old blue bull with a nice fuzzy face! Those rhinos are impressive too!
Great write up!!!!!!

Beautiful animal. Sounds like an amazing place and amazing trip.

How old is an eland like that guessed to be ?
Hi Philip thought that about 10+ years old give or take a bit.
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We arrived at the site of the downed giraffe , it was interesting to get up close to such an animal. The decision was made to skin and cut up the animal where it lay. The first job was to lay a sheet onto the ground and place the giraffe onto it before work on it began was quite a task but everyone jumped on a section of the animal and began pulling and rolling until it was in position. Then the skinning began our assistance was required again when it came to rolling over the giraffe to work on the opposite side. Once the skinning was complete the guys pulled out the axes and the big cleavers to begin the quartering of the carcase. It was beginning to approach midday by now and Philip asked if we could leave the guys to finish off and get the skin back to the lodge , We could then have lunch and pack up and be ready to leave for khomas early in the afternoon we all agreed and headed back. The carcase of the giraffe was being donated to the local school and orphanage ( it may have been one in the same place). Now there are a few animals that when I mention maybe I could go hunt one I get that look from the wife, Now giraffe are in that category now she was not overly keen in being involved in any part of the giraffe hunt but having seen the amount of giraffes on the property, meaning nowhere near the level of extinction often quoted in the british media and knowing it was all being donated for the local community she was more at ease with it.
Love that picture. Animal view from a built in tree stand via that neck
We finished lunch and loaded our gear into the truck it was a bit of a squeeze. Five of us in the cab and the rear loaded with luggage all of us having come direct from the airport two days earlier, the rest of the team were in the second truck with the skins and heads and all their equipment. All set we headed off down the sandy track to the gravel road, Having the luxury of sitting up front meant I took on the role of " gate bitch " the padlocked gate onto the gravel road gave us some trouble but once Philip got the right combination we were off. We travelled on into Windhoek where we made a stop to pick up supplies for the week and to add to the already overloaded truck. The American couple made a bit of a stir when they cleared out the supermarket of there entire stock of doctor pepper. The wifi was down at the lodge and Philip thought they may not of paid the bill with all that had happened so we went to the telecom shop next and managed to pick up some ice creams now we are on holiday. Apparently the bill had been paid so they would check the wifi when we made it to the farm. All stocked up and business seen to we headed out to the farm. The journey seems to get shorter with each trip and it was not long before we pulled off the main road onto the second entrance The " tradesman" entrance I joked and said what the fancy electric sliding gate broken or have you lost the remote key fob for it, to which Philip replied its not lost just don't know were it is at present.
We pulled into the lodge and again more building work had taken place and a lot was still in progress since the trip last year. Philip apologised that the work was still ongoing they had thought it would have been completed by now but things had slipped with the recent events.
We spent what was left of the day settling into the lodge I went for a tour of the latest developments in the lodge grounds and said hello to some of the familiar face's. After freshening up me and the wife went and sat on the veranda we watched the animals arrive and depart the waterhole and just relax as time went on we were joined buy Philips family and Roy, Philip had taken on some new lodge staff and we were sort of their test run we had already been told by Philip if anything not right let us know, So drinks were ordered it was an easy choice being It was Gin o' clock drinks were promptly delivered Roy took one sip looked at me and asked if I had any gin in my drink. A sip and yes it was a little light was my reply he whisked away my drink and went back to the bar gave instructions on the correct volumes necessary to make a perfect khomas G&T Roy returned a few moments later with a much improved version.
Plans we made for the following morning I would hunt with Hendrick and Marius as Philip had business to attend to with the builders in the morning and we would head out early for a springbok still an animal I had not hunted in Namibia.
So up early the events and travel of the last few days had caught up with my wife so she was going to sleep in I had breakfast and took her cup of tea before I left. The guys as usual were waiting by the trucks waiting to go Philip was there to make sure we were good to go I did have to remind him I would require a rifle before we left. He quickly departed and returned with the 375 and also the .22 and said maybe you will see a jackal. All set we headed off. We had not travelled far when we saw a nice springbok ram stood alone we stopped and looked at him for a while He looked good to me Hendrick said it was a nice ram but we should look at some more first. I thought maybe we might regret that decision later but onwards we went. It was the driest I had ever seen at khomas usually there was still grass available but now there was nothing things were looking quite desperate. The lack of cover meant spotting animals was quite easy but they could see you just as well, it also meant that there was less cover available for the stalks. There were lots of steenbok with no cover they were very visible for a change. We spotted a large heard of springbok so we set off to follow them through the scrub we followed them for about an hour and finally found them out on an open area of ground but they were mainly females with young and only few young rams among them. We backed out and left them and called for the truck to meet us on one of the road ways. Back on the truck we began the search again. We saw a lizard which Hendrick said no good poisonous so we took a picture.

The rest of the morning continued in the same fashion seeing small groups of springbok but consisting of young males and females with young. We did not see to much of any thing else either but with conditions the way they were it was not really a surprise with the temperature rising we decided to call an end to the morning hunt and head back to the lodge.
The afternoon followed the same as story as the morning more ground covered but still not much moving around.
The following morning again I headed out this time with Philip, Hendrick and Marius we went to an area which had received rain fall not that long ago and were hoping that some of the animals had moved there for water and to graze as we drove through the area we noticed water in the dam a promising sign for sure. There was also more green in the landscape. We parked up and set off for a walk through the scrub heading towards a flat area that had a earth embankment at one end to hold back water one of the many typical makeshift dams in the area. As we worked our way through the scrub it was not long before we spotted some springbok ahead of us we all froze luckily the wind was in our favour and they had not spotted us the were slowly grazing as they walked down towards the open area. We gave them time to put some distance between us and began to follow trying to get a better look at them. Hendrick managed to get a glimpse of one ram and said we should continue to follow them, They had moved out into the open and Hendrick moved forward to get a better look at the two rams who had now separated. Hendrick beckoned me forward while the other two stayed back in the cover we used the cover around the edge of the open area to get a better shooting position moving when the springbok ram had turned away from us. Hendrick placed the sticks and I got into position the ram was slowly walking away from us and we were waiting for our chance hoping he would turn for the shot. As we were beginning to think he was going to walk back into the bush he turned to look at the other ram and stopped presenting me with a frontal shot. The shot was good and the springbok ran and then piled up on the floor as we began our approach the other ram ran towards us did a couple of slow circuits of us and the dead ram before finally taking off none of them have ever seen that behaviour before. I had taken my first Namibian springbok on my fourth trip.
Marius brought the truck down to collect the springbok and we headed of again as we crested one of the valley the tap came on the roof on the next ridge over was stood a red hartebeest and a blue wildebeest we stopped to look. Philip said that both were good but the blue was a good bull luckily blue wildebeest was next on my list. We waited for them to move off the ridge line and then headed off into the scrub taking a wide semi circular route to crest the next ridgeline just below where we had last seen them. As we arrived there was a snort from the red hartebeest and we watched him take off but no sign of the blue, we began working the valley down towards an old derelict farm house but could not find any trace of the bull as we stood glassing the area a nice warthog was meandering our way I was tempted but was more interested in the blue wildebeest. The warthog made it to within 30 feet before he noticed the three of us stood ahead of him with that he took off at a rate of knots. After looking some more and with nothing to lose Hendrick picked up a large rock and threw it into the scrub below us there was a commotion in the bushes but no blue wildebeest just a group of female kudu which are always nice to see. We headed back to the truck and worked our way back to the lodge. The afternoon was quiet again and we checked out some quiet areas of the farm The highlight was finding biltong The Eland.
They need rain! Badly!
Hard to believe an animal as big as that eland can find enough to eat!
Up nice and early once again and today we were leaving Philip behind as he had the pool man coming to discuss lining's for the new swimming pool that was under construction. Also yes the wife is still here she had been spending her time around the lodge drinking tea and watching the animals from the veranda come to feed and drink at the water hole. We had also arranged for her to go horse riding with Philips mother this morning. As usual I met with Hendrick and Marius and we headed out we would return to the same green valley as yesterday and see if we could catch up with a blue wildebeest. We drove into the area and parked up Hendrick said today we walk a lot I grabbed some water and off we went walking through this green oasis in the middle of the burnt off land.

We began heading down hill using the available cover taking care as the ankle twisting rock was buried buy the plant growth. As we meandered through the scrub I was thinking this place should be attracting lots of game. As always seems to be the case just as you start to relax and and your mind begins to wander the two guys ahead freeze, I do the same Hendrick turns to me and signals we wait and then make a move to the nearest bush for cover they had found a blue wildebeest and were waiting for him to look away before moving we spent a couple of minutes to access him as he was covered by some scrub Hendrick said he thought it was the same bull as yesterday we slowly moved into a better position and got set up as we did the blue began to move off and we could not get a shot we quickly moved again, the bull must have sensed something was not right as he appeared between two bushes head on looking straight at us I was already on the sticks as Hendrick whispered 200 meters I settled the cross hair on this chest and fired the bull lurched and took off the shot felt good and sounded like a good hit , But it was a blue wildebeest and through personal experience I know how tough they can be. The three of us stood listening we could hear the clatter of hoof on rock as the wildebeest ran what sounded like to our right and round behind us then silence was that good or bad we headed off in the direction of the last sounds after a couple of minutes searching nothing . We returned to where the bull had been stood there was blood and we could see where he had run through the green plants we began to follow the trail and there just in a hollow lay the bull he had run in totally the opposite direction the sound of his hoof running on the stone must of echoed back and gave us the impression that he had run behind us. We were all relieved to see him lying there.
It was already the final afternoon of hunting we headed out looking for oryx or red hartebeest we spotted some oryx off in the distance and made our way on foot towards them there were some steep climbs involved with our effort to get to them as we neared them the wind at the summit was swirling and gave us away more out of hope than any thing else we quickly ran around the hill to see if we could catch them coming down one of the gully's of the top but the oryx had already made the next ridgeline and we watched as they disappear from view. With that Hendrick with his eagle eye's spots a lone red hartebeest stood by some cover we quickly double back on our selves and move into position for a shot we crawl forward to a rock ledge overlooking the hartebeest Hendrick pushes up the sticks into position while lying on the floor when he gives the all clear I stand and put the rifle on the sticks 200 meters broadside down hill easy and took the shot in unison Hendrick and Marius both said miss shot low. Off took the hartebeest I could not believe I had missed the easiest shot of the trip we followed up for a couple more valleys but never saw him again. It was now time to head back to the lodge for our final evening.
Really good looking wildebeest-I like the horns and even more so the brindling on the hide. Congrats on a successful hunt, I’m looking forward to the grand finale
Congrats on your successful hunt, very nice eland and BW. Thanks for posting definitely needed something to read other than all the doom and gloom.
So as usual packed up and headed to the airport after the usual farewells stopped by the taxidermists to check on how progress was with last years animals they were nearly all ready to go. Philip dropped us at the airport and we got checked in and would you believe it as we departed the terminal the heavens opened.

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The scene 10 days after we left there was not a drop of water here during our stay.

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hunt 65 wrote on DonPablo's profile.
Also, more pics of female #2(black ticked). Thanks, Neil
hunt 65 wrote on DonPablo's profile.
Could you send me some more pics of the Dam(weight?) and Sire, front rear and side pics., looking for a smaller female, with ticking. thanks Don
hunt 65 wrote on 500jeffery's profile.
Please let me know the status of the Sako 500J, thanks again
2 more jackal , one was a big male!

We had another bushfire on a neighbours place we need some summer rain!