NAMIBIA: Shona Hunting Adventures

Discussion in 'Hunting Reports Africa' started by Aquahallic, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. Aquahallic

    Aquahallic New Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Roseville CA
    Hunted:
    Zimbawe, Namibia
    It all started 25 years ago, I was lucky in that I was able to travel to sub Saharan Africa for work in the early 90's, and met friends who took me hunting in Zimbabwe (before it declined so badly), I was able to harvest a Wildebeest, and a nice Impala, but what left me wanting all these years was the Grey Ghost !!


    On one hunt ( these were weekend trips to a friends ranch, not guided hunts ) we came upon a large herd of Kudu, and proceeded to stalk a big bull ( easily 50+ " ), and for three days he gave us the slip, we had a couple of quick opportunities, but nothing I felt confident in taking a shot at.


    Since then life has changed and work gets in the way, and family and divorce as well, always though the thought of that great bull and Africa always was in the back of my mind. I looked at different options to return but they did not pan out until Jan 2016.


    My current wife had indicated to me that she had no interest in going to Africa what so ever, and does not like to fly, and she tolerates my hunting passion, but does not want to participate.


    Then one night we were watching The Amazing Race, and they were at Victoria Falls, and she say's I want to go there !! Say What ?? I still remember to this day I pause the TV and looked at her and said I have been trying to get you to go to Africa for 4 years and you said No, but you want to go to Victoria Falls ? And she responds Yes !! A dream come true, and I tell her I am going to make this happen and no going back !


    A month later the ISE show is in Sacramento and I go alone and start talking to outfitters in RSA, Zimbabwe, and really had my heart set on Namibia, as during my travels I always loved Namibia, it's stable, good infrastructure, low population and great animal populations.


    Also while discussing a potential trip with most outfitters, I asked about additional opportunities for my wife and I to explore and have a "Safari" after the hunt, most of the outfitters I talked with said they would take care of the hunt and then pawn us off on someone else or we could set that up separately ourselves, that was not of interest to me.


    I then stumble upon a booth for Namibia Shona Hunting Adventures, who was promoting Hunting and Family adventures, I had struck gold.


    I begin to talk with them about what I was looking for and was soon introduced to the owner and PH, Johann Veldsman, who said he had Exactly what I was looking for and in fact had a trip already planned and a client had booked it, but had cancelled ! The god's were looking down on me.


    The trip he had planned and was already laid out was 5 days of hunting at Johann's lodge in Damarland of Namibia at Tualuka lodge owned by Johann and included in the package 3 animals a Mountain Zebra, a Gemsbuck, and a Springbuck or Warthog. Upon completion of the hunting Johann would personally drive us to Etosha Pans for 2 nights staying in different accommodation on both ends of the park, then travel up the remaining length of Namibia to the border of Angola at Rundu with an overnight there on the river, then the following day drive through the Caprivi Strip ( some place I had only dreamed of going ) to Katima on the Namibia Botswana border and overnight in Camp Chobe, the next day driving to Kasane Botswana, and boarding a house boat for 3 nights on the Chobe river, with daily boat excursions for game viewing, at the completion of this drive to Victoria falls, spending 2 days one night in Vic Falls, where we would fly out from.


    After discussions I said I'm all in !! We start the planning process and I tell my wife ! She is not thrilled, but I remind her we are going to Vic Falls.


    Johann and I communicate and plan for the next 6-7 weeks, and then my company announces big layoffs, I panic !! I tell Johann I cannot go, I am nervous spending this kind of money with Lay Offs happening, and let's postpone the trip, which he fully understands, and say's let's look at 2017.


    3 months later a dear friend at work that many of have known for years suddenly dies from a heart attack, we are all stunned, and reminded at the same time, Life is short. I contact Johann and tell him It's a go, we are taking this trip in Aug / Sept 2017. He agree's and deposit is paid, now it's a waiting game, and preparation time, I spend the next 18 months planning and prepping, I read everything I can on hunting in Africa, and I start getting in some shape for the trip and going to the range on a weekly basis 4 months prior to departure.


    At the same time my wife is getting more nervous by the day, she is worried about diseases, snakes, scorpions etc. , not to mention she is so nervous about the long flights over. I planned it so we flew from Sacramento, to Seattle and then Lufthansa to Frankfurt with a 13 hour layover arriving in the AM, as my wife's family was from Germany, she speaks some German and has never been and also to get her out of the plane and airport for a time, then to Joberg, and then Windhoek.


    Well the day finally arrives and we are off on our adventure, all goes as planned and 2 days later we arrive in Windhoek airport to be met by Johann's Father Vellis and Mother Clarisa, who drive us the 6 hours ( Vellis drives slow ) to Outjo where we will be met by Johann.


    For me it was a dream come true back in Africa driving in the afternoon seeing warthogs, impala, kudu along the way. We arrive in Outjo as the sun is setting and meet up with Johann ( for the 3rd time, we had dinner with him in Sacramento Jan 2017 when he was here for the ISE show and my wife could meet him and also try and feel comfortable with the trip ). Johann informs us we have about another hour to Tualuka lodge.


    Off we go, and on the way see some game including nice mountain Zebra, finally after 54 hours of travel since leaving our home in Sacramento, we arrive at our first destination, and I can tell you we were not disappointed one bit !!


    Tualuka lodge is amazing top notch accommodation and lodge, the main lodge is a huge structure with a thatch roof 40 feet in the air, with 4 tiers, starting with a bar area, then an indoor BBQ area and then up another level to dining and lounge area and the 4th level being office and kitchen area.


    When arriving there are 2 other hunters who are there just finishing their trip, 6 days 11 animals and they said they had an amazing time, and they were leaving the following AM, my wife and I had the entire lodge to ourselves for 5 whole days. After a few beers we were shown to our own private Chalet !! It was huge, massive main room, an impressive bathroom with separate tub and shower, and a walk in closet area the size of the average hotel 6 room !!


    Off to bed we go, Johann says to sleep in tomorrow and we will start our day at the range.


    I am able to fall asleep fairly quickly after 54 hours of travel and maybe 6 hours of sleep, however I was wide awake at 0700 the following morning. and up to the lodge for a light breakfast and then to the truck for the ride to the shooting range. I am in heaven I love the smell of Africa in the AM and the sounds of the birds, my heart is beating with excitement.


    Now in the day light, I am able to see the lodge is built on the banks of the Acacia riverine forests of the non- perennial Huab River, and is backed up to massive granite Kjoppe. We drive across the river bed towards the shooting range and not 1/4 of a mile from the lodge we encounter a heard of approx. 12-15 Gemsbuck ! Johann stops the truck and watches for a few minutes, I find out later he considered getting out and pursuing one bull at that time, in hind sight it's good thing we didn't !!


    Off we go to the range, and Johann has a nice concrete shooting bench set up and a target at 100 yds ( Meters ). He tells me I have a choice of two guns a Savage 30-06 with a 3x9 scope, or a CZ chambered in 9.3x62 with a 1x4 scope. I elect for the 30-06 and set up on the bench, and proceed to shoot 2 shots at the target off the rest, feeling quite comfortable. We walk down to look and both of my shots are 10-12" high and right by a couple of inches !! WTF I had been shooting for weeks putting at least 200 rounds down range up to 300 yds with shots better then that. !! Johann gives me a look and says he will have a go !!


    We go back Johann set's up and puts 2 shots down range, we walk down to check and the entire time I 'm on pins and needles, hoping it was the scope and not me ! Much to my delight when we get close enough both of Johanns shots are high and right as well !! Relief floods over me.


    We cover up the holes and go back and set up the CZ 9.3x62, I send 2 shots down range and we check they are both about 2's high and 1" right of bulls eye, Johann says, it's ok the rifle is zeroed at 200 M anyway


    So off we go on the first hunt of the day, Johann introduces me to his tracker Jonas, and he and I are in the back of the truck with Johann driving. We head in the opposite direction of the shooting range and further from the lodge back across the river bed and into a large valley, approx. 10 miles long and 2 miles wide surrounded by mountains on 3 sides. We head up a road ( if you can call it that ) on one side and climb half way up the mountain and come to an area obviously used as a glassing point.


    We stop and all start glassing, and I can see animals literally everywhere !! Herds of Gemsbuck, Springbuck, and some Kudu cows dot the valley. After 20 min's or so, Johann says lets go he see's a heard of Gemsbuck on the other side of the valley with a nice Bull and he wants to put a stock on them. IMG_0710.JPG


    Down we go in the truck and up to one end of the valley and back down the other side for maybe a mile or so, and he parks the truck and off we go. Initally at a steady pace, then slowing and eventually into a full stock we go, Johann and Jonas constantly stopping and glassing. I slowly begin to see shapes and glimpses of Gemsbuck in the distance in the scrub and brush around us. Next thing I know Johann steps out from a bush, the sticks go up and he motions for me to come and set up !! Wow it's happening !


    I step out behind the bush and there 150 + yds away is a herd of 6-8 Gemsbuck looking right at us, Johann says you see the big one in the middle, which I confirm and he says shoot him about 1/3 of the way down his shoulder.


    Let me sidebar here as prior to my trip I did practice shooting off sticks, but as many have said here and other places not enough !!! Also I made the mistake of shooting with my 4.5x14 Leupold scope set at 9x at 100 yds, I am now looking at a huge Gemsbuck bull at 150+ yds at 4 x !!


    Still I feel somewhat comfortable and take the shot !! I feels good and we can hear the bullet hit, all 286 gr.


    The Gemsbuck are off, we start walking to where they were standing and Jonas goes in to action as our tracker, and I'm impressed, we start following tracks, but no big blood to be seen, I'm in shock !! We continue to follow and soon Jonas finds blood !! However small drops, and not bright red.


    We continue tracking and following the blood trail, which is not getting bigger, much to my dismay. We track for at least a mile, and come to a dense area of brush at the entrance to a small gulley going into the mountains. Johann and Jonas talk for a bit and come to me and Johann says we think the bull is in that brush, we think he is hit too far back, and we are going to leave him, go the lodge have lunch and come back in the afternoon, hopefully by that time he will bed down and we can find him and finish him. I say okay, but am upset with myself for not making a good shot.


    Back to the lodge for an amazing lunch of grilled Kudu, salad and butter nut squash. Johann says we will go back out at 3:30, right now it’s 12:30 so I go have a nap.


    3:00 I’m up and back at the truck ready to go, knowing I will find my bull. We drive back to the area where we left the trail, Johann had left the shooting sticks there to mark where we left the trail.


    We go into the thicket find the trail, and track the bull for next 2 hours plus, going further into the draw, the trail then starts up the mountain, and Johann tells me a wounded animal will not go up hill if it’s badly hurt !! My heart sinks !!


    We continue up the mountain looking and hoping somewhere it will jump up and I can finish him off, that was not too be !


    With the sun begging to set and we are getting close to the top of the ridge Johann says he is gone, and we need to get off this mountain before it get’s dark. We walk maybe 50 yds and hear crashing I’m thinking it’s my Gemsbuck, but it’s not, it’s a huge Kudu bull who goes down the draw and up the other side standing broad side looking at us at 100 yds. I start to raise my gun and move towards a downed tree for support and Johann whispers let’s leave him. It’s getting dark and we don’t know how close a road it to get him out and we are in thick rough country.


    So we leave him and not long after we find a road and hear Jonas coming with the truck, and back to the lodge we go, to say I’m disappointed is an understatement, I wanted a good clean kill not a wounded animal that we will never see.


    Johann is understanding, and says don’t’ worry we will find you a big Gemsbuck bull.


    Back to the lodge another amazing meal, and Johann say’s we are going for a Kudu in the AM, so get some sleep and we will start over.


    The following AM up at 0530 for a 0600 light breakfast and in the truck we go, back up on the look out on the side of the mountain. Johann, Jonas and I start glassing, I see some Kudu below us at maybe 300 yds, Johann says they are too small.


    Soon Jonas departs for another part of the ridge for glassing and I enjoy my hot coffee and continue to glass, approx. half way across the valley I spot a lone Kudu, it looks big in the body however I am unable to see any horns, I watch for a while and still cannot see any horns and look away at other parts of the valley, but always looking back to see if the big Kudu is there and it is and is quietly browsing away at the leaves on the trees around it.

    Now I hear foot steps fast approaching the truck and see both Johann and Jonas walking quickly to the truck, and as the approach Johann says did you see that big Kudu Bull half way across the valley ? As my heart skips a beat, I say is it the one I was watching but I couldn’t see his horns ? and gesture in the direction of the Kudu I had continued to watch, and Johann confirms yes that one and he is nice bull and we are going to go and get him.



    I expect everyone to pile in the truck and for us to move down the hill, however Johann says grab your gun we are going to get him, Jonas will stay here and keep an eye on him and radio us if he moves and help guide us to him.

    Down the hill we go trying to be somewhat quite, but also trying to make some time, as we discussed later the bull is approx. 1 mile from where we are sitting and we need to get to him before he moves off. We hit the valley floor and continue on for about 15 min at brisk walk, and Johann starts to slow and calls Jonas on the radio getting directions I assume as they are speaking Afrikkans and I do not understand, we alter course a bit and start into stalking mode, quietly taking steps and watching in all directions, we continue to doing this moving from bush to bush and Johann is constantly scanning the area with his bino’s looking for the Kudu Bull. After another 400-500 meters of stalking this way and getting some info from Jonas we come upon a large tree and Johann moves to the middle of the busy tree and is intently glassing ahead of us, he stops puts up the sticks and motions me to come forward and put the gun on the sticks. He points forward approx. 150 yds and there between two bushes Is the Kudu Bull, my heart skips a few beats that that moment and Johann asks if I have a shot and if yes take the bull.

    After my ordeal with the wounded Gemsbuck Bull I take no chances and tell Johann, there are too many sticks in the way. He grabs the shooting sticks and walks around the tree to the RH side and up another 30-40 yds next to a bush and set’s up the sticks again, and tells me there he is on the earthen dam wall ahead of approx. 90-110 yds with is back to us and quartered to one side, Johann say’s get on the sticks and when he turns broad side shoot him. I get on the sticks and really now see how big and beautiful this bull really is. I sit with me eye to the scope and cross hairs dancing on the bull’s rh back shoulder, and more than once I think I can make this shot take it !! But patients wins and I wait, the bull is facing more towards my RH side, and on the LH side of the bull is a big bush, thinking he will more than likely turn to the RH side and when broad side I will shoot, well it seemed like and hour I waited like this ( probably closer to 5 min ), the bull then raises his head and looks up in the sky and I see his massive set of horns down his back, at that point I wanted to shoot, but again waited. I have the cross hairs on his RH shoulder and he starts to move, I think he going to turn and you can shoot him, right at that moment, he turns, but not to the RH side but to the left side towards the bush, my first thought is if he goes into that bush he is gone, Later Johann tells me if he had gone into the bush we could have easily followed him as he had no idea we were there. So as he turns to the LH side I get a clear view of his LH shoulder, I put the cross hairs just behind his shoulder and pull the trigger, unlike the Gemsbuck Bull this shot is good, and I can hear the Thwack of the impact of the 268 GR bullet and the rear legs of the Kudu jump in the air and he is off !!

    Johann looks at me and said well done that was a good shot, I think you got him let’s go look. So off we go up on the dam wall and follow his tracks and a considerable amount of blood for about 50 yds, and we can hear him thrashing on the ground not 200 yds from where he was shot, as we come around a bush there he is on the ground thrashing from side to side. Johann looks at me with a big smile and says well done he is not going anywhere !! WE shake hands and have a quick hug and Johann says go on, go over there and enjoy what has happened. Well I do slowly walk over to him as he is in the throws of death, and a tear enters my eye at both the beauty of the animal and the sadness that he is dying in front of me, I wait and he slowly passes away. I walk up and slowly start to pet him and thank him for his sacrifice, and am overwhelmed with emotions as I had waited 25 years for this day, as 25 years ago in Zimbabwe on a business trip I had seen my first Kudu Bull on a hunting trip and tried many times to shoot one but was unable, but today was the day !!!

    Johann comes over and again handshakes and smiles and congratulations all around, we move the bull around and set him up for photo’s, soon Jonas arrives with the cruiser, he has some water and we wash the blood off the bull and photo’s are taken. What a rush.

    Then Jonas pulls the cruiser up and backs up to the Kudu Bull, and the rear gate of the back structure where we have been riding drops down like a ramp and the winch is deployed and using a pulley on top of the Bull Bar on the front of the cruiser and another pulley raised up by a removable square tubing on top of the “roll Bar” on the cruiser allows the winch on the front of the truck to pull the massive animal into the bed of the truck utilizing the winch

    IMG_0647.JPG



    That night Johann gives me some Namibian whiskey that is in a bottle wrapped with barbed wire to celebrate, I think the barbed wire is in the Whiskey !! Cheers all around and off to bed.


    The next AM Johann and Jonas and I are now going out for Gemsbuck Bull, and after my success with my Kudu I am flying high and confident unlike 24 hrs earlier when I had wounded the Gemsbuck Bull.


    We set out, but not to the normal valley, but to the area around where the Gemsbuck had been seen on the first morning, on the way to the shooting range.

    Johann parks the truck and we get out and he say’s he wants to walk this area looking for the Gemsbuck from the day before and he sure they are new to the area and not skidish. So we set off Johann, myself and Jonas, this time in riverine forest with tall grass and sandy ground looking for Gemsbuck. After some 20 min of walking we come to a water hole, but nobody is home, near the water hole is a small mountain or Koppjie as they call them here and we all hike up to the top for a glassing session. Not long and Johann spots a heard of Gemsbuck about ½ mile away and says there is a good bull in there let’s go get them.


    Again Jonas stays on the hill watching our progress and the path of the Gemsbuck while we hike down the hill and across the valley floor to them, again repeating the stalking method utilized on the Kudu Bull earlier in the day.


    Unlike the Kudu Bull the Gemsbuck keep moving on us, fortunately Jonas is able to keep and eye on them, and guide is in the direction of them. Also while stocking them, we encounter a couple of small Wart Hog, who are no more than 30 yds from us, but do not see or smell us and move on. Johann say’s he thinks the Gemsbuck have moved into the dry river bed, and we need to work our way over there, while doing this we encounter a herd of wild horses who almost blow our cover but after a minute or so of them staring at us, they move off and we continue our stalk. Soon I am able to see the Gemsbuck in the river bed feeding and we move closer. Soon up come the sticks and Johann motions for me to come set up, which I gladly do. He then points out 2 of the 6 Gemsbuck and say’s they both are bulls which one would I like to shoot ? One is old and one is young, the later having larger diameter horns and the young one having longer but more slender horns. I ask Johann, which one would you take ? He says the older one, so I say ok that is the one I will shoot. I watch him slowly moving and feeding towards me and I do not have a shot, I patiently watch him feeding and moving and he slowly gives me a broad side shot. I center the cross hairs of the 4 x power scope on the lower 1/3rd of his front shoulder as instructed by Johann, I pull the trigger and hear a wack sound, however the Gemsbuck bull does not react as if he had been shot, Instead he and the others run off down the dry river bed, at one point I thought I saw him stagger and slow, but that was not the case at all but my over active imagination !!


    We walk down to the river where there were and start looking at the area where they stood looking for blood but find none !! I walk past that point and thinking back the Wack sound I heard sounded a lot like a bullet hitting wood, not bones. Sure enough I look low on the tree that was just behind the Bull I was shooting at and there is big fresh scar in the tree from a bullet !!


    Johann and I walk the river and follow the tracks to the other side and look everywhere for blood but none to be found, a clean miss. Going over the shot I am sure when I pulled the trigger rather than a slow squeeze as I should be doing, I must have pulled the shot just in front of the bull hitting the tree.


    By this time light was running out and Jonnas had joined us in looking for blood and none to be found, unbeknownst to me, Johann had arranged for one of his skinners to get the cruiser and soon he was on the dirt road infront of us, and picked us up and back to Tolaluka for another amazing dinner and drinks and on to bed to sleep the best I had since arriving in Namibia, and tomorrow is another day.


    The following day Johann tells me that he needs to stay at the lodge and start preparations for our trip after the hunting so Jonas and I will be hunting, which is fine by me.


    We spend the morning glassing and attempting 3 different stalks on Gemsbuck, but when we get 250-300 yds out each time they spook and run off, the wind is light and variable and swirling, they catch our sent and are gone.


    Back for lunch and head back out in the afternoon again for Gemsbuck, and same as the AM, skidish animals with swirling wind.


    Back to the lodge for dinner, and Johann say’s he will come with us the next AM for a Gemsbuck.


    So next AM up early light breakfast and up on the hill glassing, we set off again on a couple of stalks but the wind foils us today as well, and they catch our scent and they are off.


    By this time it’s getting quite warm and we have walked probably 5 miles and I’m getting tired and hot. Johann goes up on a Koppije for a look and after about 20 mins, he comes back down and says he sees nothing. Soon Jonas show’s up with the truck and I proceed to chug a bottle of water, and climb in for what I think is a ride back to the lodge, instead we head the opposite direction towards the other end of the valley, and soon see a blind on top of a small hill and we stop at the bottom.


    Johann say’s grab your gun, we are going to sit here for a while and see if we can get you a warthog, the big ones come to this water hole.


    Up we go to a nice big blind built of brick and has wood log shutters as a blind overlooking two water holes, which I glass at 80 yds and 110 yds.


    We sit there glassing and see some Gembsbuck ½ mile away but not heading for water, and no Warthogs in site.
    IMG_0752.JPG

    After about 20 min, much to my surprise a Gemsbuck walks out of the tree’s near the furthest water hole and starts approaching the water. I whisper to Johann Gemsbuck ! He is startled and later tells me he had almost fallen asleep in the warm afternoon after our morning hike.


    He and Jonas start glassing and I’m thinking it’s a cow or a young bull, as 90% of the Gemsbuck we see that is what they tell me.


    Johann suddenly whispers it’s an old bull, shoot him !!


    I grab the CZ 9.3 x 62 and set on my jacket which is folded on the concrete wall in front of me, I know the shot is 110 yds as I had ranged it when we first sat down.


    The bull is facing us, and then turns as if he knows we are there and I only have a rear facing shot, I’m not gonna take that shot. Just then he turns back around and starts heading to the water. He is facing towards us walking slowly, I rest the cross hairs on his chest and he stops. I squeeze the trigger and see the impact of the 286 gr bullet hit him square in the chest ! Any deer or antelope I had shot in North America would have dropped at that shot and a bullet of that size, not this Gemsbuck !! He turns and runs off into the trees !!


    Johann say’s good shot, grab your gun and let’s go.


    Down the hill we go, and Jonas goes to the truck, we walk over to the water hole where I had hit him, Johann see’s his tracks and I’m surprised I see no blood !! Not again !! But I know the shot is good, I saw the impact and the bull was almost knocked off his feet when it hit.


    We start walking and after about 30 yds Johann whispers there he is laying under that tree in the shade, maybe 100 yds from where I shot him. He is down but not dead. Johann say’s go to the fallen tree between myself and the bull and put another round into him. I walk over and see him in the shade, set the rifle on the tree and take aim, It’s probably 60 yds with a slight up hill. I shoot and the bull jumps up and runs off ! Johann say’s you missed you hit the ground in front of him.


    We walk past the tree and maybe 60 yds later Johann say’s there he is standing in a small clearing between some brush, he whispers finish him. I walk a few steps to get a clear shot, drop to one knee and and put the cross hairs on his LH shoulder and shoot. Down he goes !!


    Finally my Gemsbuck is down !!


    Cheers and hand shakes !!


    We walk up to him, he is beautiful and Johann say’s he is not a huge bull but an old bull, which is what we wanted. His horns have plenty of battle damage on them at the bases, and lot’s wear and character, I’m thrilled.
    IMG_0729.JPG

    We take a couple of quick picks as it’s getting hot ( probably close to 90 F ), load him in the truck and off to the skinning shed.


    So now I had gotten my plains game, I ended up shooting a medium sized warthog as well at another water hole ( that’s another story in itself !! ).


    Johann offered me a cull Gemsbuck for lodge meat, Jonas and I again tried to stalk them but the wind was swirling again and they would wind us, and run off.


    The last evening of the hunt Jonas and I sat at the water hole where I shot the Gemsbuck the day before, and with about 20 mins of light left 3 nice Gemsbuck bulls were spotted off to our LH side at 256 yds. We waited to see if they would come to water, but they didn’t. I had a good rest, and if I had my rifle with my scope I would have taken the shot, but with a 4x scope at that range I was not comfortable taking the shot, and knowing we were leaving the next AM I did not want t repeat of the wound Gemsbuck. We left them for another day.



    The following day we pack up and with much sorrow leave Tualuka lodge, knowing in my heart I will be back.


    We spent the next 2 days in Etosha with Johann as our guide and it was amazing having a PH as a tour guide, he knows where the animals will be, when they will be there and what their movements will be. We saw lot’s of elephants, zebra, giraffes, springbuck, etc. Also a pack of Hyena at the road for some great photo’s, 7 different Lioness’s 2 at a water hole that Johann has parked us at and moved 3 times so when they left they walked right to the truck and spit up one talking in the front and one in the rear, not 8 ft from my window ! We also saw 10-12 Black Rhino. Talking with some tourist who did a self drive, they had not seen a single lion, and only 1 rhino at 700 yds after spending 3 days in the park !!


    We then drove up to Rundu for the night on the river it was beautiful, next morning drove the Caprivi strip to Katima to another river lodge ( all accommodation was first class ), the following morning we went into Botswana, and spent 2 hours driving through Chobe National park, got some great photo’s of Kudu Bulls, and a sable.


    Into Kasane, where we spent 3 night on the Pangolin Voyager a nice 3 deck houseboat, there were my wife and I , another couple from New Jersey and they brought a professional photo guide from RSA with them. The boat was first class as well, food was amazing and the scenery to match. Each AM and PM we had a custom built boat with 6 seats and camera mounts to take us game viewing. Being on the water is amazing the game is not nervous at all, we have many photo’s of 13 ft crocs we got within 6 ft of that didn’t move, Elephants at 10 ft, Hippo’s not that close !!


    Also got in some fishing and landed 2 African Tiger fish, one small one about 5 lbs and a nice one about 12 lbs, and lost 4-5 more, they fight like a freight train and are hard to keep on the hook.


    Next Victoria falls for 2 nights, we did the helicopter tour, the elephant encounter, a sunset river cruise and dinner at what they call the Boma, a fun night of drums and good food.


    During this trip Johann Velsman was not only a great hunting guide, but a gracious host, took care of any of our problems, was fun to hang out with, has a good sense of humor, and a great guy.


    The package he put together was Beyond my expectations, and my Wife’s wildest dreams.


    As many have experienced, after her initial fears were overcome my wife Love’s Africa and we are already planning our next trip.


    I cannot recommend Johann, Shona Hunting Adventures or Tualuka Lodge more.
     
  2. reedy0312

    reedy0312 AH Ambassador

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    Congrats and thanks for sharing!! Hopefully a return trip is in the near future!
     
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  3. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter AH Legend

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    Hunted:
    Namibia, Kyrgyzstan(2) South Africa(2) New Zealand
    An excellent report. Sounds like you had a wonderful trip. Was your wife kept busy while you were hunting? Nice trophies. Congrats.
    Bruce
     
  4. Spooksar

    Spooksar AH Fanatic

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Beaverlodge Alberta
    Member of:
    SCI, Dallas Safari Club, NFA ,CSSA NRA
    Hunted:
    South Africa, Namibia, Canada (BC, Alberta Nunavet)
    I've hunted with Johann twice and plan to again next year.
     
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  5. Aquahallic

    Aquahallic New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2017
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    4
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    Location:
    Roseville CA
    Hunted:
    Zimbawe, Namibia
    She was kept somewhat busy, she was so nervous about going, she didn't research any activities she could have done to be busier. But they did take her out on game drives, and she loved hanging out with the staff
    o
     
  6. rinehart0050

    rinehart0050 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Elite

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
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    1,218
    Hunted:
    New Zealand, South Africa (NWP, Limpopo); USA (NE, AZ, TX)
    Congrats! Thanks for sharing
     
  7. johnnyblues

    johnnyblues AH Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2013
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    Location:
    Seaford NY
    Hunted:
    USA, ALASKA Canada, New Zealand, Mexico Africa.
    Congratulations, well done report. I love Namibia also, hope to return one day.
     
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  8. cagkt3

    cagkt3 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Texas
    Member of:
    SCI - West Texas Chapter
    Hunted:
    OK, TX
    Great stuff and thanks for sharing!
     
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  9. CAustin

    CAustin BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

    Joined:
    May 7, 2013
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    Member of:
    Courtney Hunting Club, NRA Life Member, SCI Kansas City Chapter
    Hunted:
    South Africa, Kalahari, Northwest, Limpopo, Gauteng, APNR Kruger Area. USA Georgia, South Carolina, Arkansas, New Mexico, North Carolina and Texas
    Congrats on your hunt! Great write up!
     
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  10. Whiskey1

    Whiskey1 AH Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2017
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    Location:
    United States
    Hunted:
    South Africa, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Virginia, Texas, Wyoming, Maine
    Excellent writing. Thanks for sharing!
     
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  11. IdaRam

    IdaRam AH Fanatic

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Idaho
    Member of:
    NRA Life Member, NAHC Life Member, SCI, DSC, Wild Sheep Foundation, NSSF
    Hunted:
    Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, California, Alberta Canada, South Africa
    A great read on a great trip. Congrats! Glad to hear your wife enjoyed it and wants to go back.
    You made some excellent choices and put together a trip of a lifetime for both you and your wife. Well done!
     
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  12. Neale

    Neale AH Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2015
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Cape York, Queensland Australia
    Member of:
    SSAA
    Hunted:
    Australia, South Africa ( Eastern Cape, Free State, Limpopo,KwaZulu Natal )
    Great report and I know how you feel tracking a wounded Gemsbuck.
    I would like to do a trip like that one day.
     
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  13. Shootist43

    Shootist43 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Elite

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Grosse Ile, Michigan
    Member of:
    NRA
    Hunted:
    Michigan, Texas, Missouri, Limpopo Province South Africa
    Great report, thanks for sharing. What are you thinking about for your return trip?
     

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