SOUTH AFRICA: Hunting At Umlilo Safaris With Francois & Johan Dorfling In Port Elizabeth


New member
Feb 16, 2013
Reaction score
Slough Berkshire England
Hunting reports
Hello Everyone...

I have just returned a very happy hunter from Umlilo Safari's near Port Elizabeth, South Africa..... And just wanted to say "BIG THANK YOU" to Francois and Johan Dorfling (Owners of Umlilo Safaris) for a wonderful hunt of a lifetime dream......

Just a brief history of my trip....

Always fly South African Airways (loved it).... found them to be very helpful with everything... you are allowed one 23kg checked baggage and around 10kg hand luggage. Along with (under sports equipment) you are allowed one Rifle Case up to 23kg and a separate box/bag for Ammo of 5kg... to be honest that is more than enough luggage weight you will need....

Flew from T2 Heathrow, flight was at 9pm so went to the Airport at 5:30pm a little early as not sure how long it would've taken (first timer :eek:)... checked in and the lovely ladies asked me to wait on a side for the security person whom was supposed to take my rifle and ammo box inside...A

All bags tagged and the security person arrived in about 25min and apologized straight away for being late as he was also helping another person carrying Firearms on the same flight.

He gave me his mobile number and asked me to call him once through security which only took 15min, so at around 6:30pm i was inside the Terminal and called the SA firearms security person, whom asked me to meet him by the Customs Office (easy to find).

Went to customs office where he was waiting for me with my rifle case and the Customs officer asked me to open my rifle case and he took a photo copy of my FAC matched the serial number and that was it...

The SA security person told me that he would take my Rifle case/Ammo to the plane himself and by 6:50 i was all done and dusted and had a well-deserved drink with friends whom also made it inside the terminal by this time and were drunk :eek:)....

Landed at Joberg and i opted to get the Meet and Greet service from a company whom also helped me to fast track my SA Permit for a fee around $100... as soon as we stepped outside the plane there was a lady waiting with my name on a piece of paper and escorted us through fast track Immigration and took us outside to get our checked baggage and straight to Customs to get my Permit which was all ready and my rifle/ammo and then to SAPS (South African Police Station), also inside the Airport for them to authorise the permit etc...

This thing took about 45min and we were then escorted by another person outside who took us on a 5min walk inside the Airport to Terminal B and to check us in for our connecting flight to Port Elizabeth so all in all about 1hr and 15min and we were done... (strongly recommend going through this fast track meet and greet service and its only abour £65 to get the permit all ready and done so dont have to wait at the airport for hours)...

We arrived at PE, and were greeted by Johan Dorfling (co-owner of Umlilo Safari's himself) from there only about an hours drive to the Umlilo Safari Lodge...

The rest I will leave to your imagination after looking at just my Trophy Pictures (it was a BIG group)… lots of animals taken....
I will highly recommend Hunting with Francois and Johan Dorfling at Umlilo Safari's to anyone....

Amazing place to HUNT, Great PH/Guides, Trackers, Vehicles and Fabulous Food cooked personally by Melissa Dorfling and an Awwsome place to be....

My sincere Thanks to everyone at Umlilo Safaris... Cois, Johan, Peter, Pierre, Johan, Ricus, Henno and Dion for making our First Trip to South Africa a one to remember for the rest of our lives....

Please send me a PM if you require any more information.... always happy to help...

Kind Regards

Last edited by a moderator:
Congrats on your safari! Thanks for sharing! I particularly like the shape of the waterbuck and nyala, all the rest look good as well
Well done!
Great trophies and memories. Congratulations.

Glad to see a happy hunter with some nice trophies.

Congratulations and thanks for sharing.

If you get the urge fell free to add some content on the hunting aspect of the trip. :A Praying:
Yep looks like you had a great hunt sir! Thanks for sharing your photos with us.
Congrats, nice trophies !
Come-on we need some sorta of story! Those are some great trophies! That waterbuck looks like a beast! I think they are a very underrated trophy and a truly beautiful animal.
looks like you had a great hunt. Some fine animals. That waterbuck looks particularly nice. Would love to hear some stories about the stalks etc. Bruce
Good job.
Thanks for sharing your hunt with us.
Great photos, looks like you are filling up the trophy room here, well done!!
Many Thanks for all your comments... and you are all absolutely correct this was my first trip and as with everyone I'm hooked to Africa, only yesterday myself a few friends were talking about booking another trip with Umlilo Safari's for June/July 2017 next year... I saw a Monster Lechwe which has my name on

Story wise, I will start with a very exciting hunt,,, Impala

We started at around 6am when it was still dark (only a 20min drive from the main lodge to another concession area), we drove to top of a Hill and started glassing for about 20-30min but could not see any Impala’s, we were seeing animals which we weren’t after...

Then saw a group of Impala about 1km away,, so drove a little closer and then of foot, we walked for a about 4-500m still looking at the group which was still another 4-500m away and BAMM ran straight into another group of Impala that we did not see..

We saw three really nice Impala Rams, but my PH knew exactly what I was after (Big and old RAM).

When we saw them they were about 300m away, luckily there was very little wind, so we stalked closer, when we got to around 200m there was some Springbok in between us and the Impala, so we waited until they moved to the left..

We then slowly stalked another 60m or so, and took aim at my Ram about 150m or so with my trusted 7mm Rem Mag with 162g soft point bullet, the ram was quartering away so hit him a bit back but the bullet came out of the neck so you can image how much was he quartering away… he only ran about 10m and dropped…

What a lovely stalk… you have to love your PH’s for the knowledge and skills they have about stalking these animals in such a bushy and thick cover area…
looks like you had a great hunt. Some fine animals. That waterbuck looks particularly nice. Would love to hear some stories about the stalks etc. Bruce

Yes Bruce..

The Waterbuck is a Monster,,,,,,,, a very long and hard stalk on the WB...

We left the lodge at around 5.30am to drive to another farm about 70km away only took us just over an hour. This farm was big I think 2800hecters... as soon as we drove in we say a Massive Warthog only 60m away and a few min later we saw a group of Lechwe with three Monster bulls... WOW one of them was HUGE..... so I know what I’m shooting next year... lol

This was a very hilly area and lots and lots of cover which made it very hard to see the animals, but my PH Johan Dorfling told me that this place has very big Bulls so I didn’t mind…,, and guess what….. it started to rain, it continued to rain until 9am so we went for breakfast, nice Kudu Pies, with lovely cup of Coffee and we bought some Kudu and Springbok Biltong.... amazing I loved it...

It started to clear up around 11:30am so we decided to drive back to the farm again, luckily while we were driving back the weather cleared up and Sun came out..

We drove though the farm and after about 30min, we saw a big group of Waterbuck Bulls and Cows, on top of a hill some 800m away.. we parked up and started to stalk, walking up hill, through the dense bush, crawling at times for 20-30m and then walking again and then crawling again, coming back down the hill and then up the hill, as the Waterbucks were on top of the hill looking down, so it would’ve been easier for them to spot us.

This whole thing of walking up and down waiting behind cactus trees, the whole stalk took about 2.5hrs, until when we finally got to about 150-180m range of the animals, from the distance we could only make out about 4 Bulls, but when we got closer there were around 7-8Bulls in the herd…

By this time this became the hardest stalk of the whole trip,,, but as a hunter you have to love every second of it, and I DID….. this was an amazing stalk and you really get to appreciate the professionalism and training of your PH (Johan Dorfling)…

At the end of this stalk, we were only about 120m away from three great bulls, one of them was the biggest as per my PH over 32inches at least.. but the only thing was that his left horn was chipped by at least 2-3inches.. I could’ve shot him at 80m but I wanted my first animal to be a full symmetrical/represented trophy..

We then saw my Waterbuck, laying about 120m away we were in such a good spot that the animals had no idea that we were there..

We waited for about 30min for my animal to stand up, and as soon as he stood up, BOOM straight in the chest, he only ran about 30m and dropped…

If you’ve hunted in African you know exactly how much thrilling it is, but if you have not I suggest you go soon (try Umlilo Safaris)…. Only then you will know exactly what and how I am feeling right now…. Lol.
Great photos. Glad you had a good hunt with Umlilo, I hunted with them some years ago.
What was the name of the meet and greet service
Congratulations on a fantastic adventure!!!!! I've been Facebook friends with Cois and following Umlilo for over a year now. Their prices sounded too good to be true, but from every report I've read, they are the real deal. Their buffalo/sable combo is what I'm mostly interested in, but they also offer a buffalo/sable/roan combo that might just be what I end up doing.

I'm really enjoying your comments about the hunt and look forward to reading more of them. Please post more pics and comments on where you stayed and animals that you might have seen while hunting.

Did you leave your trophies there to be mounted or are you shipping them home?
Thanks for sharing photos and stories of your hunt. Looks like some excellent trophies. That sure is an unruly main on that zebra!

I hunt with Francois in the Kalahari back in June. I'm looking forward to coming down to his place in EC on our next trip!
It's good your first trip over was exceptional! Keeps ya going back.
Your trophies are an awesome bunch.
@Umlilo Safaris should reap benefits from such a report.
Congrats to all!
Last edited by a moderator:

Forum statistics

Latest member



Latest posts

Latest profile posts

tacklers wrote on ianevans's profile.
Hi Ian, I'm contemplating my first outing, leaving UK via Dubai to Africa, taking rifles as you did.

I presume it went okay for you, would you have done anything differently? Cheers, Richard East Sussex
A.A. wrote on Msprenger!'s profile.
Are you still looking for a 375 H&H?
NRA Life, ASSRA Life, GGCA Life
Sable @ the lodge this morning

Buffalo encounter this morning!