New here.. looking for some advices on a Cape Buffalo hunt for 2022

Qc_BearHunter

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Hi,

I’m turning 50 in october 2021. I’ll only have 50 once, and I’ll only live once. I want to do my lifetime dream hunt, a Cape Buffalo.

The hunt would take place in end of june/july 2022.

I have my rifle, a winchester Model 70 in 375 H&H and I want to hunt with it. It’s part of the hunt, and the memories.

I plan to use 300 grains bullets, like Partitions or A-Frame. Pushed by IMR 4350.

For me, free range is more important than the size of the animal. I just want to hunt a mature buffalo. If possible, I would like to add a few other animals like a zebra and I don’t know what else.

We would be 2 hunters on that trip. My old hunting friend is turning 50 too. He’s not as focused as me the buffalo however. But he’ll go for some other species.

We both have good hunting experience under our belt, we’re in shape and above average shooters.

Any PH recommandation would be greatly appreciated.

Propositions are welcomed too!

Thanks
 

Rare Breed

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It will depend on both budget and type of experience you want. I am a market researcher so I research listening to the many people on this great forum. For me I am doing the following: July 2021 hunting a +40 inch buffalo in SA with Tsala for $8k, In 2022 goi g back for a second hunt with Game 4 Africa for Buffalo 36-43 inches, another Kudu and Water Buck for $10K. Both properties fenced but huge so in my opinion given both are spot tracks then stalk through tough terrain both challenging to me. However PHs like the great John Sharp offer an entirely different hunt experience for a different cost. Ruger75 Fan has been the biggest help to me given he has been on all these type hunts

excited for you!!!!
 

JHT

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You can PM me. It sounds like we are in the same boat. I just booked and can help if needed.
 

375Fox

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You should try and narrow down your budget and the region you would like to hunt first, then work on finding an outfitter. I’ve done one buffalo hunt free range against Kruger in South Africa. I took a great buffalo but it was missing that wilderness aspect I’ve seen in other countries even though the area was absolutely huge. I would only consider a high fenced hunt for a buffalo in South Africa after a lot of careful research because there appears to be hugely varying definitions of self sustaining and free range from outfitters there. I have seen really great buffalo in the Caprivi in Namibia and there are great outfitters operating there, but the costs are high compared to Zimbabwe and Mozambique. I have a hunt booked to Zambezi valley in Zimbabwe in September because I wanted a true tracking hunt in a wild area and have to really work hard for my buffalo. Plains game is apparently quite limited there though. I would really like to hunt bubye valley and save valley in Zimbabwe someday. They both have great reputations for buffalo and plains game and have well known reputable PHs working there. I would also really like to hunt Zambezi delta in Mozambique which also has a good reputation for buffalo hunting and plains game. I know others on here have experience in those areas. Based on your own research, where are you initially leaning?
 

yhc

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You can PM me. It sounds like we are in the same boat. I just booked and can help if needed
@JHT if you don’t mind I would appreciate hearing what you have found as well.

I am booked for my 1st safari in coming May, mostly for plains game. Considered shooting a cape buffalo but my particular outfitter’s published trophy fee seems very high. Though he states the published trophy fee is a “maximum guideline” and is “negotiable” I am planning to focus on plains game for my first safari. If I get bit by African safari bug then I might consider going back for a Cape buffalo after doing more research.
 

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Qc_BearHunter, welcome to the AH forum! Im certain a number of outfitters/PHes will jump in here with some options for you.
Best of luck finding your dream buff hunt!
 

WAB

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I would recommend Zim or Zambia. Both offer excellent buffalo and plains game areas. Consider:

1) upper Luangwa valley, Zambia
2) Zambezi Valley, Zim. I loved Dande but it doesn’t have a lot of plains game. Perhaps Nyakasanga.
3) Save Conservancy, Zimbabwe. We had a wonderful hunt there.

I hear great things about the Bubye. Check with Tarbe on this one.

As to PH’s, if you are going to hunt Zim you could do no better than Len Taylor. He has relocated to Bots but will continue to hunt in Zim as well.
 

JHT

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@JHT if you don’t mind I would appreciate hearing what you have found as well.

I am booked for my 1st safari in coming May, mostly for plains game. Considered shooting a cape buffalo but my particular outfitter’s published trophy fee seems very high. Though he states the published trophy fee is a “maximum guideline” and is “negotiable” I am planning to focus on plains game for my first safari. If I get bit by African safari bug then I might consider going back for a Cape buffalo after doing more research.
I chose Zimbabwe. I also booked through an agent. Making it home safely was my number one priority as I have a wife and three children including an eight month old. Just behind this was the chance to hunt wild, unfenced animals. I’ve been planning my trip for 17 years - been working with my agent since April 2018. I’m scheduled for July 2022.
Although I pride myself on getting good deals and buying low, I did not skimp. My trip, as booked, is very costly; however, for my first, I wanted everything handled with military precision.
I would consider my situation very similar to the OP’s in regards to age (I’m 42), described health and ability, and the fact that he has a hunting companion who sounds as though he isn’t as interested in the number of animals/trophy quality as I.
 

Jeffrey

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Save Valley Conservancy and Zambezi Valley in Zimbabwe

Niassa Reserve in Mozambique
 

fourfive8

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I would recommend Zim or Zambia. Both offer excellent buffalo and plains game areas. Consider:

1) upper Luangwa valley, Zambia
2) Zambezi Valley, Zim. I loved Dande but it doesn’t have a lot of plains game. Perhaps Nyakasanga.
3) Save Conservancy, Zimbabwe. We had a wonderful hunt there.

I hear great things about the Bubye. Check with Tarbe on this one.

As to PH’s, if you are going to hunt Zim you could do no better than Len Taylor. He has relocated to Bots but will continue to hunt in Zim as well.
+2 on that ^^

@Qc_BearHunter

Budget is a factor of course. Price shop a little and you'll quickly see some rather puzzling things. Keep digging and talking to people and you'll figure out why. As you stated, you'll never see fifty again and if the opportunity is offered now, THAT chance may never come again... do it! I waited too long because of my own budget constraints to go to one unique location in a particular country. The location of my dreams. Now, the situation there has changed and the people have changed so my opportunity is gone for good. Hindsight is 20-20 and I should have just borrowed the money and done it.... back then. I encourage you to not think twice about it, go and not look back.

Still, many great places to hunt buffalo. Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe all come to mind straight away. There is free range and then there is free range. One of the top producers of good buffalo is the Bubye Valley Conservancy in Zimbabwe. It has absolutely outstanding PG and DG- no exaggeration! However, it is fenced and double fenced at that!. But don't even think it is not a free range situation. That fencing is as much for keeping poachers out as it is for keeping anything in. At over 850,000 acres, you won't know the difference just as the leopards, lions, elephants, buffalo, rhino and the multitude of plains game don't know the difference. Been there twice and it is one very special place. The upper Luangwa Valley, Zambia is tops for true free range and is legend. The wildest most remote area I've hunted in sourthern Africa was in Mozambique- just have to invest in some serious due diligence when planning for Mozambique. After your Buffalo/PG hunt, I'm certain you'll be thinking about your next once in a lifetime hunt. :) Botswana deserves serious consideration- probably my favorite country in Africa!

Enjoy the planning and good luck!
 
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buckcurtin

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flatwater bill

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Qc-BH.......great question. I am considering buff hunt this year, so all data very interesting to me. Lots of veteran buff hunters on this forum. What an uncertain time, and dynamic as well. Two cents.....have traveled Caprivi and have seen buff in open country with easy access.....Have been to Niassa Reserve, fortunately before the current travel advisories. Have been on buff hunts on small fenced RSA areas. Have seen buff on huge fenced RSA areas that probably didn't know they were fenced. Have visited Botswana, Zim and Zambia. Still haven't decided what to do. Some of the wildest places had the easiest buff. Some of the big fenced areas quite a bit more difficult. Watched some vids where terrified PH's have you pay for a hunt that they can't wait to finish...others where a calm profession helps you to complete your hunt. Would say PH and operator more important than location....at least to me. Keep us posted on what you decide......best of luck.........FWB
 

Tanks

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...Have been on buff hunts on small fenced RSA areas. Have seen buff on huge fenced RSA areas that probably didn't know they were fenced....

One advantage of hunting buffalo in RSA is that prior to the hunt one can pick their "wild" buffalo. ;)

Get monthly postcards, watch it grow.

1610345971707.png
 

flatwater bill

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Tanks.............I'm pretty sure that's my buff.................gonna go out in the trophy room and check the tag number...................FWB
 

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this is a huge generalisation and not true for most!!!!
Very good comment Thanks Stuart

Its a huge misconception about hunting SA and what SA has to offer.In the end it's the clients preference.Do your research , talk to multiple outfitters.There are excellent outfitter's and properties in SA that can offer a great experience.

Nowhere on the continent do you have the diversity of fauna and flora that South Africa offer.South African game farmers has done exceptionally well in protecting and bringing back species from very low numbers like Roan , Sable ,Rhino and protecting areas and it's biodiversity.

Regards

Rouan
 

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