I flew with Lufthansa from Chicago to Frankfurt, Germany then to Johannesburg, RSA. No complaints on Lufthansa, I would use their services again. Yes there is a layover of 8 hrs. but I slept a little on spread out chairs.
Pick up at the airport by Abri was really smooth. I got to meet Josh who was our assistant guide/driver. We drove up the Limpopo Province. We got settled in and sighted the guns. I ended up using Abri’s dad’s Sauer Model 90 30-06, which is very excellent quality gun! We went out to hunt and we sat by a waterhole for warthogs. Needless to say I had a hard time staying awake due to not sleeping well for 2 days. At sunset we did some driving around. We saw warthogs, red hartebeest, gemsbok, steenbok and waterbuck. It was a good day, I wanted to get some food and sleep before doing more hunting. The food and drinks were excellent for the whole trip.
Lalamanzi hunts two areas: one is on the Crocodile River, where there is agriculture land with irrigation. There is an alfalfa and wheat field. There are Cape buffalo, nyala, bushbuck, sable, kudu, oryx and other animals there. We saw about 8-9 foot crocodile on the bank of the river on day 2, that was the first crocodile I have seen in person in the Limpopo.
The main property is close by too. Excellent sable, roan, golden wildebeest, waterbuck, oryx, zebra, eland, warthogs, blue wildebeest, kudu, impala, steenbok, common duiker, etc... There are water troughs available throughout the property. The brush is being managed to create young growth for the animals. There is plenty of security cover for the animals.
We went to the Crocodile River property on day 4 in the morning but the wind was affecting the hunting so we went back to the main camp. We sat for a warthog and we saw a lot female and young warthogs. A mature warthog came out later in the day but he had broken his tusks off or wore them down to nothing. I decided to take him because he was never going to be a great warthog. I lined the sights up and just as I pulled the trigger the warthog turned to move and I shot the warthog back in the body. There was not much blood. We tracked him for over 300 meters and lost his trail. I think the shot was low and back. We came back to camp and saw a large waterbuck in the brush in fading light.
We were at the main property today, looking for a warthog. Abri had trail camera pictures of a very large tusk warthog. We were in there for the long haul. After a couple of hours a jackal came in but he was locked onto the blind looking for any movement and had his ears listening for any sound. I tried to get the gun up onto him but he was to clever and got away without any harm. We saw impala, young warthogs and female warthogs. All of sudden another jackal showed and this one didn’t get away. I forgot to compensate for the short distance but I still killed him fast. At first I was concerned it was to mangled to mount but after cleaning it up I decided to full mount him. I have shot a few jackals and they are usually too blown up to do anything with them. This one was older and I’m pretty sure Dennis can do the job. I have most of the predators from Southern Africa mounted. We sat a few more hours but the blood from the jackal was scaring animals off. Oddly the vervet monkeys were not bothered too much.
We changed locations to the other side of the ranch. We sat in the shade waiting for more warthogs. There was some fresh food set out and in short order the warthogs showed up looking for food. It was interesting to watch how at most sites we sat that the warthogs would work there way to the bait and a large female would act as a sentinel while the others ate. Time passed, eventually everyone got enough to eat and then they left. We continued to watch hoping for a large one to appear and in less than an hour a nice 12 inch plus came out of the brush. I had to be careful to pick the right shot. It took a little time but the warthog finally presented a broadside shot. I shot a little back but it was still a killing shot. The warthog ran down into the thorns and thick brush and died. We all took a few thorns getting him out of the brush. This was my first good warthog so I was pretty proud. It was nice to see the tusks. I really enjoy hunting warthogs.
The rest of the day we chased red hartebeest, impala and whatever else we could hunt. The animals are very wild there. It’s hard hunting but satisfying too, the animals are really earned while hunting there.
We drove around on the main ranch today for a little bit today. There are plenty of giraffes on the property. We chose to sit in blinds today and wait to see if game would come out of the brush to get water and food. It was hard hunting. It got warm in the sun. The zebra, wildebeest, hartebeest, eland, wartbuck and impala are usually in herds. So there are many eyes and noses to fool. We came up empty for the day. We almost got a big nyala but we excited the blind just before it became visible to our eyes.
We started out the day driving around looking at tracks on the ground and looking for visible signs of animals. It didn’t take long today. We were driving down one of the paths and saw a nyala we got up on him quick and he was curious what we were doing. I could see was a mature male and decided to shoot him. The distance was less than 75 yds and I dropped him in one shot. The horns were only 24.5 inches but that was alright to me. It was the last day of hunting and he was mature. I can assure you Abri has many large nyala to hunt. We called another truck and they picked up the nyala and we continued hunting. We really didn’t go to far and turned the corner and ran into a large waterbuck. He was startled and ran into the brush. It took me a little bit to figure out where he was and if any brush was in the way. I looked twice and picked a spot and pulled the trigger. There was not much blood at all but Abri found the waterbuck by following his tracks. The waterbuck only made it about 100 meters. The longest horn measured 27 1/4. We cut a trail into the waterbuck and got him loaded on the truck. So that was two animals in less than hour.
We chose to sit at a blind that had a lot of blue wildebeest, zebra, impala and warthogs showing up. We waited patiently and when the sun got hot the impala showed up to drink. A very nice male showed up and his longest horn was 24 inches. It was a short shot and tracking job. My best impala yet! We dropped it off at the skinning shed.
We continued to hunt I had a shot at a gemsbok and a large blue wildebeest. I passed on the beautiful blue wildebeest and I could not make out how big the gemsbok was because of the sun. We had a great last day!
The last day we stopped by Swift Dip and dropped all the animals off. Their operation is very organized and run properly. I want my mounts to look excellent! @The Artistry of Wildlife will be mounting my animals.
Abri dropped me off at the airport. I was checking in for my 1930 flight by 1530 so I was set.
Lalamanzi Safaris runs a great operation! Abri and his father run a great operation. I’m looking forward to going back to hunt that wonderful piece of Africa. The game is wild, food was excellent and accommodations were very relaxing! If you go to their website and look at the prices for the hunting. The sable/roan combo hunt is there and is very fairly priced. There roan are stunning to watch through binoculars! The one 45 inch sable bull I saw was stunning to watch!
When I get time I will be posting pictures from this hunt.
Nelson. Is this message a PM format. I want to send you my email, but don't know if this is the cirrect way to do it. I'm at <email@example.com> Send me an email with your phone and I will call you about a skull I have. I went to school in Boston and am from Bernardston in the west part of the state. Moved to Alaska in 1984 adn never looked back.
Hi Luke. Just saw your message. I am in Dillingham, and have been since 2002. I took an elementary teaching gig here, taught here five years, and then got a job with Togiak National Wildlife Refuge as their education and outreach specialist. Recently I just got a promotion and now I'm the Visitor Services Manager. Prior to DLG I spent 6 years teaching for Lake and Pen in Nondalton.
I am glad you found some useful info in my posts. Hard cast WFN with GC will do the job fine. I trust Veral Smith (owner of LBT company) - I believe that he can provide you with some finest HC bullets. Many companies are coping his design. I can help you from here in developing max loads (40.000psi) just let me know which powder you are using (I use Quick Load software which turns to be very reliable).