NAMIBIA: Khomas Highland Hunting Safaris

Dudders

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When we get back to the farm some good news the second team had caught up with the wounded blue wildebeest and dealt with it. My shot had grazed the side of the face hit through the neck below the spine and above the lungs missing anything vital. Philip did tell me that the guys had also messed up a shot on another blue at one point were after 2 wounded blues but did catch up with both. I think he thought it may have made me feel less annoyed with myself.
 

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The afternoon began with a trip to the range just to check the rifle and my shooting both appeared to be fine with a dead paper target. So once more we set forth into the highlands to continue our family adventure. As we drive we see mountain zebra , Oryx , warthog ,kudu, red hartebeest and steenbok . As we reach the place Philip had in mind for our afternoon hunt we spotted a small group of Oryx. Philip killed the engine and we rolled to a stop we quickly got out and set off on foot but after a couple of minutes we realised that they had taken off and stopped our pursuit. We think for a minute and Philips says we should go for a walk we leave Hendrick at the truck and head off the sky had began to cloud up and the temperature had dropped significantly from the morning. As we worked our way along one of the ridgelines we spotted a couple of kudu bulls on the opposite valley heading parallel to us mixed with some zebra and Oryx. We continued along our ridge stopping every now and then to keep track of the animals on the opposite ridge after half an hour I called louis over and got him to carry the rifle no point in wearing myself out with all these youngsters about we set off again and had gone not more than 50 meters when Philip stops putts up the sticks and beckon's louis up as we approach Philip we see an Oryx bull stood 30 meters away louis setts the rifle on the sticks and bang the Oryx took one pace and dropped to the floor . Louis reloaded and carefully approached with Philip no need to worry the Oryx had expired right there.
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louis had got himself a beaten up old Oryx bull he had really been in the wars with puncture wounds from fighting all over him, he had obviously had his time and had been ousted from the heard to wander alone in the mountains. Philp called Hendrick to come find us but again the radios had stopped working again so we waited while Philip made the trip back to hendrick to fetch the truck as we waited the clouds began to darken and we could see rain beginning to head our way.
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While we waited for Philips arrival I went for a little walk the difference in the vegetation from my last trip was quite amazing lots of bushes were flowering.
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the flowers are quite sparse on the bushes very small but colourful
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lots of bushes had yellow flowers they were very yellow against the green leaves.
After a while we could hear the truck crashing through the scrub towards us we heard what sounded like a rifle shot one of the tyre's had blown out me and louis headed out to help. we located Philip and helped get the tyres changed a bit of a challenge on the side of a hill but we did it then travelled the last 100 meters to the oryx . The rain began Just as we reached the oryx for loading.
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As heavy as it was the rain was gone as quick as it came we loaded up and began to head to the nearest track with us walking ahead to move large rocks and navigate a path for the truck after a couple of hundred meters we reached a path that had been cut and cleared previously by someone for the same reason. As we walked along this cut track I looked back and realised that I had helped make this track 16 months earlier to extract a zebra I had shot. That thought made me smile.
 

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As we headed back to the farm the rain began again so everyone jumped into the truck cab as we reached one of the grassy open areas we saw this large bird.
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Much to the kids amusement Philip announced that it was a kori bustard. But with Philips slight german accent it became a kori bastard. They asked Philip that birds name several times and his reply was meet with fits of laughter. There was one more highlight for the day and that was Philips brother Yani and his home made ice cream which we had for that evenings pudding that was good. Not so good is the size of Philips new pudding bowls. I think it is part of his plan to lose a few pounds.
 

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Day four Sunday :
We were up early today 6am for breakfast then we were to head right up into the mountains on a neighbouring property only 30km away. Today we were going to look for some nuisance blue wildebeest and we were being accompanied by more of Philips PH's and trackers in a second vehicle. We travelled completely on farm tracks the whole way into the mountains and saw lots of wildlife along the way, two much to list but everything you would expect to see. We arrived at the neighbours farm house and Philip went to speak with him. When Philip returned he said we could shoot a young oryx for the owner if we see one, and anything that else we would like is ok. We collected one of the farm hands as extra guide and drove up a bit further to wait for the second team to catch up. When they arrived we got set up and went to look for the blue wildebeest it did not take long about 5 minutes and their they were. I quickly took aim and fired and from that moment on the day just fell apart. A shot I would take at home without a second thought went just about as wrong as it could. Everyone thought it was a good solid hit but I knew better. The group took off over the next valley with the other guys going around to turn them while we waited to see where they would head, after a couple of minutes they reappeared heading back down the valley past us we tried to position ourselves for a shot but to no avail. we then spotted the second team in hot pursuit so we left them to carry on after them. We then went in search of oryx for louis and the farm house me and Philip also discussed kudu and if we saw one with a narrow upright set of horn I would be interested. As we searched for oryx it began to get very hot and all the animals we had seen earlier had began to melt away with just the occasional sighting of an oryx in the distance .View attachment 220155 On Top Of The World

As we begin to think about head back there come a call from the back of the truck Hendrick had spotted a kudu up on one of the mountain sides. he was so well camouflaged that it took me an age to find him. Philip tells me it is just what I was looking for a nice upright narrow horns. The kudu stands watching us we decide me and Philip with hendrick will leave the others head back down the track out of sight then using some thorn as cover will double back hopefully unnoticed. This worked a treat and the old bull was still stood watching the truck unaware of our presence , I move into a spot and rest the rifle in a v in a thorn bush and settle down it took an age to find the kudu again in the scope of the rifle. I placed the cross hair on the shoulder and squeezed the trigger " CLICK " I cursed my stupidity looked at Philip who had an amused look on his face whisper sorry and loaded a round in the chamber. Philip said aim a bit high so I did, I found the old bull in the scope again aimed and fired I saw the shot impact on the rock above his shoulder, the old bull looked at where the shot had impacted then took off only to stop fifty meters away I took aim and fired again same result shot high and this time he didn't hang around. We climbed up to where the old bull had been just to check but as we already knew no signs of any hit, we headed off in the direction he had last been seen heading and after 200 meters we bumped a group of kudu cows which took of up the mountain side as we turned to look back we see the old bull again trying to sneak out through an narrow gully we quickly run to a spot were Philip could set the sticks and I take another shot as he clears the thorn bushes heading away from us but again the shot misses this time down the side of him. Again we scrabble down over the rocky gully and up the other side to confirm the miss no signs of anything so we call the truck to the road and and make our way across one more rocky gully to the vehicle.View attachment 220165

We reach the truck and the with much delight the kids start ribbing their poor old dad. It had now become very hot and was now nearing midday so we returned the farm tracker and headed back to farm heusis .[/QUOTE
Day four Sunday :
We were up early today 6am for breakfast then we were to head right up into the mountains on a neighbouring property only 30km away. Today we were going to look for some nuisance blue wildebeest and we were being accompanied by more of Philips PH's and trackers in a second vehicle. We travelled completely on farm tracks the whole way into the mountains and saw lots of wildlife along the way, two much to list but everything you would expect to see. We arrived at the neighbours farm house and Philip went to speak with him. When Philip returned he said we could shoot a young oryx for the owner if we see one, and anything that else we would like is ok. We collected one of the farm hands as extra guide and drove up a bit further to wait for the second team to catch up. When they arrived we got set up and went to look for the blue wildebeest it did not take long about 5 minutes and their they were. I quickly took aim and fired and from that moment on the day just fell apart. A shot I would take at home without a second thought went just about as wrong as it could. Everyone thought it was a good solid hit but I knew better. The group took off over the next valley with the other guys going around to turn them while we waited to see where they would head, after a couple of minutes they reappeared heading back down the valley past us we tried to position ourselves for a shot but to no avail. we then spotted the second team in hot pursuit so we left them to carry on after them. We then went in search of oryx for louis and the farm house me and Philip also discussed kudu and if we saw one with a narrow upright set of horn I would be interested. As we searched for oryx it began to get very hot and all the animals we had seen earlier had began to melt away with just the occasional sighting of an oryx in the distance .View attachment 220155 On Top Of The World

As we begin to think about head back there come a call from the back of the truck Hendrick had spotted a kudu up on one of the mountain sides. he was so well camouflaged that it took me an age to find him. Philip tells me it is just what I was looking for a nice upright narrow horns. The kudu stands watching us we decide me and Philip with hendrick will leave the others head back down the track out of sight then using some thorn as cover will double back hopefully unnoticed. This worked a treat and the old bull was still stood watching the truck unaware of our presence , I move into a spot and rest the rifle in a v in a thorn bush and settle down it took an age to find the kudu again in the scope of the rifle. I placed the cross hair on the shoulder and squeezed the trigger " CLICK " I cursed my stupidity looked at Philip who had an amused look on his face whisper sorry and loaded a round in the chamber. Philip said aim a bit high so I did, I found the old bull in the scope again aimed and fired I saw the shot impact on the rock above his shoulder, the old bull looked at where the shot had impacted then took off only to stop fifty meters away I took aim and fired again same result shot high and this time he didn't hang around. We climbed up to where the old bull had been just to check but as we already knew no signs of any hit, we headed off in the direction he had last been seen heading and after 200 meters we bumped a group of kudu cows which took of up the mountain side as we turned to look back we see the old bull again trying to sneak out through an narrow gully we quickly run to a spot were Philip could set the sticks and I take another shot as he clears the thorn bushes heading away from us but again the shot misses this time down the side of him. Again we scrabble down over the rocky gully and up the other side to confirm the miss no signs of anything so we call the truck to the road and and make our way across one more rocky gully to the vehicle.View attachment 220165

We reach the truck and the with much delight the kids start ribbing their poor old dad. It had now become very hot and was now nearing midday so we returned the farm tracker and headed back to farm heusis .

"click"...been there done that! :A Bang Head:

Great report and some gorgeous country, looking forward to the rest of the story.
 

Dudders

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Day 5 Monday :
After breakfast we were to head to what Philip called the honey pot, we began our climb up into to the mountains Philip spotted something so we stopped to glass the surrounding hillsides we could see zebra kudu and oryx on a ridge two valleys away from us almost 3k away from our location. We collect our gear from the truck and set off on foot. We dropped down into a shallow valley and as we descended we encountered a troop of baboons as we were so far away from our intended target Philip allowed louis to take a shot at one sat on top of a rock but to no avail but he was being buffeted but quite a strong breeze that had blown up that morning. we set off again to climb around the main hill between us and our quarry we reach the top and Philip scans the distant hill again they were all still in the same location we headed on following Philip as we descended the hill we had just climbed I almost stood on this monster.
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We took some photos and let him go on his way. we caught up with Philip who was now watching a family of warthogs who were right between us and the ridge we were heading to we waited for them to move off before heading on.
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Descending the first hill heading over that next ridgeline.
The sky was blue and the sun beat down we took the opportunity to apply sun cream the strong wind was keeping us cool but masking the fierce sun which would soon leave its mark on unprotected skin. we proceed to the left of the rise in the middle ground and arrive at a small rocky plateau Philip takes a peak and asks what do we want. I ask what is there Zebra and Oryx he replies ok I will go for my zebra. we leave the group and me and Philip creep forward for a better look.
 

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We creep forward on our hands and knee's and Philip and I view the zebra from behind a small bush Philip picks out a stallion from the group and says ok he's the one about 10 meters away is a small tree with a rather handy looking branch we sneak over to it and I rest the rifle on the v of the branch take aim and fire, we hear the thump of the impact and the zebra walks forward Philip says " reload quick" as I do he say's " no its ok he's hit good." the zebra walks in a semi circle and drops to the floor. The remaining zebra now stood looking at him Now while this took place the oryx who were laid down between us and the zebra heard, had not moved. The effect of the strong wind and moderator had helped and they were oblivious. The two kids and Hendrick having heard the shot came walking towards us some frantic waving and they stopped and crouched down. Now began what can only be described as charade's where we made various hand signals to try to get Bronwyn to come to us to try and shoot an oryx we went through shooting sticks, dog , bag, ammunition, camera in bag and Hendrick. Finally the three of them got it and Bronwyn crept to us. The original plan was each of the kids to shoot an oryx but after seeing louis oryx from the day before Bronwyn was not so impressed with them. Bronwyn had given Philip strick instructions of her requirements if she would shoot an oryx.

1) Must be bigger than her brothers
2) Both horns must be exactly the same length
3) No fraying of the end of the horn
4) must be symmetrical
So when Bronwyn arrives with us we explain that the oryx are laid down about 150 meters away an Philip had found one for her. Bronwyn took position behind the tree and Philip guided her to the animal he wanted her to shoot. As they were lining up for the shot and Philip talked about placement the zebra ran down from where they had been stood spooking the oryx as they ran past, The oryx jumped up and took off heading straight towards us. after 50 meters they stopped to see why they were running. The oryx they were targeting stopped broadside and the shot rang out we again heard the hit and the oryx took off running straight at us then piled up on the floor.
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the tree from which we took the shots the zebra were stood opposite slope by the rocky outcrop middle of picture and the oryx at the bottom of the slope. As Philip was finishing his cigarette he turned and said quick it has just stood back up. I had just put the camera down, I picked up the rifle rested on the tree and fired the oryx dropped right there. Philip lit another cigarette and we waited a bit longer .
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I stay back to take some photos of them as they approach the oryx as I put the camera away Philip shouts the dead oryx jumps up and runs off. Louis gets the gun but I shout to Philip it is empty. Philip organises some more rounds from his pouch and reloaded we take off in pursuit. we find the oryx not far away laid down I place a shot into the lungs and it jumps up and takes off down the hill another 20 meters lays down again, we approach again and Philip gets Bronwyn to shoot again at this shot it just rolls over after another minute Philip gives it another in the chest. After 5 shots it finally succumbs all of the shots were good it was just one tough animal who just fought to the end. Hendrick missed the action as he had already gone to fetch the truck.
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Dudders

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The extraction of the oryx was made a little more testing than first thought and involved a lot of rock moving and at one point the removal of a snake which Philip said was not poisonous not sure if I believed him after loading the oryx we went to collect the zebra.
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while we waited for hendrick to arrive with the truck I took these
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We had started this stalk from the ridge behind the hill in the centre of the photo. A landscape view from the hill top
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and not to forget this guy who watched the whole show with interest the camera was on full x55 zoom for this one
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After loading up we headed back to the farm for lunch and a well earned rest .
 
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Nyati

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Good story with excellent pics, I appreciate that you let the scorpion go on its way (y)
 

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Now at this point in our trip you should of left farm huesis for swakopmund for the last couple of days I had asked the kids if they wanted to carry on as planned and head to swakopmund or stay at farm huesis the kids took only a second to decide they would like to stay at huesis and continue our adventure there. My original plan to go to swakopmund was that the kids may not of found hunting the highlands as much fun as I do but I am glad I was proved wrong. I conveyed their decision to Philip and he was delighted and promised to make the rest of their stay something that they would not forget.
 

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............. I think he thought it may have made me feel less annoyed with myself.

You mean misery does not like company!?
 

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So with our new plan we set off again that afternoon into the hills in pursuit of jackal and baboon we had not been travelling long when we spotted a heard of red hartebeest now we stopped left the truck for a better view Philip said their was a nice bull in the group and were we interested, louis never one to miss a chance piped up yes I would like one. We picked up the rifle and set off towards them using all the available cover we could find after a short stalk of 150 meters or so Philip set the sticks and we were set
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Philip talked through which animal to take as the heard were constantly switching position a couple of times it looked like the heard would take off but they only ran in a circle and continued to feed they did this a couple of times finally the bull presented a shot on 250 meters. as I watched through the binoculars the shot rang out and the bull dropped right where he stood and never moved again
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Once again it began to rain as we started to take the photos .
 

KHOMAS HIGHLAND HUNTING SAFARIS

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Louis deserved this Hartebeest!!!
 

Dudders

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The heavens opened and it really began to rain we decided to call it a day and head back to the farm. That evening Philips father decided we should celebrate such a successful day and brought out a bottle of brandy and poured a shot for everyone apart for Bronwyn and we all toasted a successful day the look on louis face when he took his first sip, lets just say he will be sticking with one beer an evening for some time yet. Just to say it did not go to waste I had to finish it up for him, Oh the things we do for our kids.
 

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The Hochland's are a special place. I'm enjoying your photos as well as your report.
 

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Enjoying the read! Congrats to the kids on the gemsbok's and hartebeest!
 

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Day 6 Tuesday:
Today we would again pursue Jackal and baboon for louis. We would take what ever offered us an opportunity, we also loaded up some salt blocks to drop off on our travels. louis was up top ready for his chance at a jackal. Today was very quiet as we travelled to where we were to drop off the first salt lick. As Philip and I talked we caught sight of a kudu stood just back into the scrub. Philip stops and turns off the engine. we are in a wide grassy valley bottom a dry creek to our left and about 100 meters of open grass to our right before it becomes scrubby as the ground rises away. All we could see were legs chest and neck up to his chin as we both sat trying to get a better look the bull stood motionless. I ask Philip his opinion of the bull his reply was he could not see enough to access him properly. At that moment he bull decided he had hung around long enough and as he turned he revealed enough for me to start reaching for the door handle. Philip said " he's a nice bull " knowing that I had specified the type of shape I was looking for earlier in the hunt and this not being of that type. Philip asked "what do you think " My reply " I think we should go " Although not the type I had mentioned earlier I would be more than happy if we could take him. The bull had not moved far just deeper into the scrub. we leave the truck Philip takes the sticks from Hendrick while I take the rifle from louis. Quick look yes loaded this time. The others watch from the truck as Philip and I head for a tree to give us a bit of cover in the open as we near the tree the bull slowly moves from cover into a clearing. Philip setts the sticks as the bull disappears only to walk around the bush to take another look at us, he stands head on looking straight at us I place the rifle put the cross hair's on his chest and squeeze the trigger and with a resounding thud he drop's on the spot. I reload we wait no sign of movement so we approach as we reach the bull he draws his last breath
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.
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The truck was full of salt blocks next involved a discussion on what to do we thought about leaving the bull dropping off the salt blocks and coming back for him but Hendrick pointed out the vultures already sat in the nearby tree's so we abandoned that idea. So Philip went to drop some salt off to make room before we could load up. once loaded we headed off to drop off the last remaining blocks .
 

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