SOUTH AFRICA: My 2024 Season

Frederik

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South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique and Sweden
I have been very busy at work and feeling very blessed with this amount of work that I have not yet compiled any reports this year on my two hunting trips thus far and decided to rather do one report over my hunting season of 2024.

So here goes Hunt no.1 for this year would be from May 9 to 12, 2024 with some good friends on a fabulous largish property in North West Limpopo about 60km as the crow flies from the Bostwana border.

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Early morning of 9 May 2024 and I pick up my good friend Riaan load up and head out north to Limpopo about 3 1/2 hour drive excluding pit stop or two.

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Quick Breakfast stop just north outside Nylstroom/Modimole and all 3 vehicles heading north in convoy from there.

My plan was to harvest impala and if chance came up waterbuck or kudu cow a gemsbuck was also not out of the pictue if it would present itself. Took two rifles along my new 7x57 CZ 550 Loaded with 160gr Safari Bullet Company solid shank bonded bullets 160gr travelling at 2600fps. The other my 6.5x55 Carl Gustav loaded with 160gr Hornady interlock travelling at 2400fps which Riaan my friend would use on the hunt.

Now this would be a my third visit on the property of 7000 acres but my first proper hunt on it from the visit in December just before Christmas and taking our two dogs for walks I came upon a lot of game especially impala and knew that would be easy targets. But it seems in the last 5 months since December some evil reigned over the property that we did not know. The property does not have permanent resident expect for the staff that keep the camp lodge and check water holes and fencing but not anti poaching or very active visual presence and so it was for the last 4 years with no issues.
All the neoghbouring frams would also not have any permanent residents as two of them were sold off recently.

Anyway before I get ahead of myself we arrived Thursday late morning unpacked had a bit to eat checked rifles on the range and off we went for the afternoon session. We were the first hunters of the season and game should have been very calm and relaxed like I have seen in December.

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Just before we head out the afternoon I kindly asked if we should start the coldroom so long as the impalas would be coming in of course and then we found that the gas somehow escaped and the coldroom is not functional. The owner letting us know they will make a plan and have it sorted. We have been experiencing very hot weather for this time of the year with temperature on the Saturday hitting 35C midday. So the coldroom was essential of course for the meat we would harvest.

So me and RIaan get dropped of first and we slowly make our way stalking very slowly with the wind in our favour. It was not 5 minutes and I spot a group of kudu cows and the stalk is on, slowly we move closer the cows are unaware of us and I see some impala also following them. I mark the largest cow and setup the shooting sticks they linger in the shade of a tree with quite a bit of bush covering vitals. Range around 120 meters and very little cover left for us to get closer.

I take the safety off and settle on the largest cow but there is another behind her I have seen the 160gr 7mm bullet penetrate really well and do not shoot as I knew there would be a good chance on a pass through. The longer I stand there as I wait for my shot the more my brain goes overboard the coldroom is busted what will happen to the carcass in this heat and its 3pm. Bugger this I'm sure we will get another opportunity I call off the shot and switch target to an impala ewe that was behind the cows. At least it would be a smaller issue to cool down the impala carcass than the kudu cow.

The kudu cows gently move away and we move closer to the impalas who are grazing and moving all the time. Suddenly the wind shifts and we are busted with the impalas leaving for safety.

Wow, what a nice stalk and that within 5 minutes of getting dropped of me and Riaan think. We head in the direction where the impalas fled and I tell riaan why I dind't take the shot on the kudu with the uncertainty of the coldroom being fixed. He fully agrees and on we go.

The other guys Deon was after Gembuck or impala and Adriaan after impala mostly walking together Arend our other friend was behind the mountain looking for a wildebeest bull. Deon was hunting with his 404 Jeff and aimpoint sight, Adriaan with his 375 H&H CZ 550 and Arend with his 416 Rigby CZ550.

Me and Riaan spotted and got busted on a bunch of stalks on more impala but somehting was not right the impalas were on very high alert yes there is a few brown hyenas around and leopard but the impalas didnt need to confirm you if they smelled, heard or see you they were off in a flash. This was a complete change on the walks I did with my dogs in December and from previous seasons impalas were the easiest game due to their numbers to hunt.

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Brown Hyena tracks was covering most of the roads on the farm.

So a difficult afternoon went by as we slowly head to back to camp only to be called in by radio to help on a might be wounded impala ram that Deon shot at.
Heading off in their direction after being picked up we followed the tracks of the would be monster impala ram but we could find any blood and had to halt the search due to light.

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Around the nice campfire we discussed everyones afternoon and Deon was sure that although the shot was longish on the ram over 100 meters he was secure and confident so he decided to head back to the area the next morning and keep looking as the gemsbuck was also in that area.

Arend, didn't see much except for a monster of a klipspringer but they were not on the list to be hunted.

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A good evening around the fire with all the words troubles being solved as usual by men who love to hunt.

The next morning I would be on my own in the area where I spotted the kudu cows and the impalas while Riaan and Adriaan would be going after gemsbuck and impala on another area and Deon after his monster impala that we could not find any trace of blood but also gemsbuck. Arend decided to stay in and rest he had couple of hard weeks at work.
 
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A great beginning to an adventure, can’t wait on reading the rest!
 
May 10, day of the dreaded chicken!!!!!!

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7x57 CZ550 topped with a Zerotech 4-15 x 50 scope, 160gr Safari bullet company bullet at 2600fps

So Friday morning I'm off on my own without Riaan these pesky impalas will not beat me I tell myself and I get dropped off very close where I got dropped off the previous afternoon. The wind is swirly but I can work with it. It is extra quiet like the impalas where knowing I wanted.

Got a few glimpses of mostly males and beacise of the warm wether the impala rut was not yet in full swing heraing a roar or two but not much of it. It was like the teenagers were checking and testing their new throat calls.

The impalas were just too switched on as soon as I spot one I spot it fleeing for its life. At one stage close to one mountain I heard kudu cows going mad barking at something for over 15 minutes I assumed it was a hyena or a leopard. I had a good luck at an almost good kudu bull pushing 49-50" but with at least another year or two to grow and some nyala ewes. Even stumbled on a good troop of baboons that was unaware of me good have shot one easily if I wnated too but did not wnat to spook the rest of the area.

What was going on, why would the impalas be so cagey? Surely if it was leopard or brown hyena all the other game would have been super spooky as well.

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Mountain where the kudus were going crazy just barking all the time.

It really started to heat up and expcept for a crack at a young balck impala ram and some nyala if I wanted to I went back to the lodge grabbed a beer and poundered waiting for the other guys hoping they would have more success.

Anyway awaiting the others and they took their time and for a good reason Deon found his wounded impala the 404 Jeff broke one of the impala legs reason for no blood and 6" higher it would have been a heart shot. Cracker of a ram and he had to finish it off while running away flaring tips and even made the Roland Ward record book.

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Old Warrior smooth horns and tips worn down sure he made good and spread his genes.

Adriaan also good lucky on a good impala ram.

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After a good brunch I didnt feel like sleeping as it was too hot and me and Riaan also not finding luck enjoyed the unheated pool. First time in my life that I was swimming in a pool on May 10th which is suppose to be winter.

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Sun was cooking my dear friends!!!!

Afternoon me and Riaan teamed up again to the other oarea where gemsbuck were roaming we just stopped my bakkie got out and there stood a yong zebra stallion on the road Riaan declined the shot as he looked young and off they went two of them.

Gemsbuck tracks were all over and we bumped into some eland later I managed to fire a very fast shot at an impala ram half an hour before dark. I had to fire through a gap in scikle bush. The impala ram was frontal looking at us and would flee any second so had to make a hasty shot I looked at what was my best gap between the hard branches of the sickle bush and fired. At the shot there was a lot of dust hanging in the air were the impala stood like if someone would fire into the ground.

Normally on a frontal shot like that, at about 80 meters the impala would have dropped right there but he bounded off to our left and vanished without a trace of being hit. We waited a minute before going to the spot where the impala stood. Tried to follow his track as best as possile but with a lot of impala tracks aropind it was not so easy then we started combing the area and me on the tracks.

40 minutes later we called off the search the dust and the way the impala just bolted off I must have hit a branch and the bullet must have diverted. I was not a happy camper to blow my only chance after two days on finding an impala.

Back at camp we BBQ'd some chicken me and Adriaan shared one chicken (Evil chicken it was)
Slept not so well that night and woke up with a funny tummy.

Almost forgot at about 10pm we heard an duiker/rabbit being caught by a leopard or brown hyena right in camp not even 100 meters from us in the mountain behind us.
 
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May 11,

I wake up not feeling too great runny tummy and me and Riaan head out we go to the same area where we saw the zebra and gemsbuck tracks as well as close to the area where I missed my impala ram. We got of extra early to reach the area when there was enough light to shoot.

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Extremely fresh Hyena tracks again.

Forgot to mention on previous evening on the way back to camp we spotted a brown hyena down the road in the headlights. Track above was considerable ways away from where we saw the hyena but they do tend to move quite a bit in a session.

It was definitely cooler and that is good as Friday was seriously warm for winter. I didn't grab a coffee or anything that monring just feeling too uneasy with my insides and we walked slowly. We came around a bend and saw the ara where I missed the impala in the road stood a good looking ram. I quickly arrange the shooting sticks for Riaan and we wait untill he is perfectly broadside. The sun is behind us the wind in our favour pefect setup.

Riaan takes his time and fires the impala explodes in a jump and head into the thick sickle bush range was just under 100 meters and the other impala flee in a different direction.

Marking the spot where he stood we wait a minute or so and we are both extremly happy at least we connected. The shot looked good through my binos the 160gr bullet doing its thing.

We walk up to the spot and find blood and not so good watery blood and some pieces of meat we follow the tracks for a bit and the blood suddenly stops completely. There again is so many impala tracks around we start going round in circles and widening the circles. Surely this impala looked hit properly but it happened so fast you cannot always be sure of the exact impact on the animal.

We call in for back up and hear two quick shots in the distance just as we finished and asked for help from a tracker. That must have been Deon with his 404 Jeff . 10 minutes later we get a call back its going to take a bit longer to reach us as they need to get a traier to load Deon's gemsbuck we are elated its Deon's first gemsbuck and his first Roland Ward impala he is having a great hunt.

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Deon's Gemsbuck with the 404 Jeff and aimpoint sight. He is also using safari Bullet Company bullets.

We keep searching while we wait and half an hour later the tracker joins us. We show him the blood and where we lost the tracks he keeps circling back making sure he is on the right tracks and one hour later we found him stiffened up but a very nice large impala ram.

Shot was a bit too far back and exited on the stomach and that caused the exit to be blocked and lack of blood. As the crows fly he only managed 400 meters but was in a complete different line that what we thought.

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By the time we found him he was to stiff to pose for a proper photo. You can see the thick sickle bush in the background this was an old field where crops were planted.

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Adriaan, also bagged another great Impala


Loaded up and heading back to the lodge I started feeling uneasy didnt feel like eating anything and went down to lay down on the bed. What happened there after was a competion on who could make the worst noise when throwing up between me and Adriaan. That bloody Evil Chicken had it perfectly chronographed then Adriaan would vommit then minutes later it was my turn, man that was sick and we felt it. Nothing stayed inside even taking water would just start it up again I knew there an then my hunt was completely finished and so was Adriaan's.

That evening we worked out that the only me and Adriaan had to eat or drink at the same time as that one evil chicken. I felt horrible and couldn't remember when last I was so sick. Lucklily Deon had some charcoal pills which helped.

Arend, went out again in our abscence to see if he could find anything and stumled upon this very close to the mountain where the kudus were barking so mad.

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This Kudu bull was poached the poachers thought it was dead started cutting off the hind leg when the kudu must have stood up and somehow overpowered the poacher or poachers. It then stumbled down the mountain to finally end up here dying with lack of blood. The tracker who helped with the impala backtracked the bull up the mountain.

This was the cause of the game being so terrified at humans we found out from neighbouring farms further out that there has been a lot of activity with poachers and dogs, snares as well as silenced .22 rifles.

The poachers found a good spot for themselves more than 18 000 acres with no owners permanently based on the farms. Its a disgrace and was horibble to see and I suppose that is why the kudus were barking so mad not at a leoprd or a hyenas but the poacher or poachers.

I may have missed another photo of an impala that was hunted but that is the end of this hunt fired one shot and missed and then that bloody evil chicken. :sick:

Felt better on Sunday but very bruised and weak after not eating the whole day Saturday. Packed and headed back home and dropped off the meat to get prosessed.

Monday, I devised another plan to get my freezer filled but that is another story on it's own to be continued. :D
 
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Very nice report! Very sorry to hear about the stomach troubles. I've only been to Africa 3 times and all 3 times I've had an upset stomach in camp. At least this last trip it waited until the next to the last day to act up. Also sorry to hear about the poachers. What a scourge!!!
 
Oh and congrats to the lucky hunters who scored some very nice animals!!
 
Ok, I will be off again today for another small adventure with rifles of course then next week I will have two hunting trip reports to cover. My son's turn to be behind a rifle as he hasn't had a chance to hunt this year yet with the start of his varsity life.

I hope to connect with something with very big hooves, tall and slender like my 458 Lott round.
 
16 May 2024,

After the not so enjoyable forced chicken diet I as able to quickly ask a friend who invited me for hunt earlier in the year if I could still join them. There was a resounding yes answer and my wife did remind me freezers need to be filled. (y) Shes a keeper thats for sure.

So, 16 May we headed north again this time along the banks of the Limpopo not far off from the previous weekend.

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Just before 11am we found ourselves at the farm's entrance the farm was split in two one side bordering the Limpopo and the other west of the gravel road going further north. Its' a working farm where they grow Potatoes as their main produce. There is about 6000 acres for the game to roam between the two pieces along the river and the west side.

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Selfie of the gang of hunters at the farm gate,

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We got settled in and went off to the range to sight and check rifles.
We did play a bit with 9mm and a 458 Socom and rifles were all ready to go.
My one friend would use the 6.5 x55 Carl Gustav and me the 7x57 CZ 550

Headed out at 3pm and meat animals was on the order of the day.
Waterbuck bull would be on my list if we bumped one or a cow for meat.
Otherwise it was impala, kudu cows, blue wildebeest, eland cows and warties.
The farm hunts by invitaion only and this would be my first trip and it went good I'm in for next year already!!!

So after a long10km walk and the keeping the wind in our face we bump and see kudu bulls that are off the list bump into young eland group and a waterbuck cow that almost gave me a chance but ran away before I was properly setup on the sticks.

Heading back slowly we headed back to the home we stayed in and going around a corner slowly as we walked we spot a kudu cow 120 meters down the road standing next to the road. Slowly got the sticks ready took aim and fired she jumped properly and headed back into the thick bush. We waited a bit marked the spot where she stood and walked over taking her tracks. On the way we spotted two young impala rams in an open field opposite to were the kudu cow stood.

Two minutes later we found her dead with a perfect shot and I hastily took a photo where she lay and then went to the open field to see if we could get my friend onto an impala.

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The wind was not great and the impala smelled us fleeing to the other side of the large field and range was way too far for us. We then moved to a waterhole and saw two zebra stallion in the road I didn't know it yet but zebra was on the menu but I did not get the memo luckily for them. They were very calm and we could have easily taken one at a range of 80 meters.

Took a couple of nice photos at the waterhole and headed back to the home.

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Me and Jay was on to cook dinner and the other two went Jackal hunting with a caller and thermal scope and they had quick success.

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Photo taken next mornning of their success.

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Anynone up for lamb Chops Yummie it was a good and a good day all in all.
After last weekends chciken fiasco this kudu cow down was well earned.
 
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17 May 2024,

This was one for the books probarbly one of my best days out hunting ever.

We divided the farm into 3 areas that is in the west side of the road the piece of land next to Limpopo was kept for special hunting privilidges only. Me and Jay was to set foot from the home we stayed in and it was not 5 minutes when we heard some crashing through thick bush as we saw a waterbuck bull horn briefly and a waterbuck cow being chased by him. The bull kept going and the waterbuck cow gave me a very slim chance to have a shot at her but at 30 meters I was going to go for a head shot but she vanished just before I could fire.

Obviously the blood and adrenaline got pumped very quickly very early!

We kept going on our way to another watering hole when we spot some kudu crossing the road in front of us. A nice big cow stops and I motion for Jay to come closer and take the shot. Now some insite Jay is not a hunter as I am he has hunted before but it's not his forte! So somehow he was 5 meters behind me and a sudden move to get to the stick where I was would just take too long and she would be gone.

So I put the 7x57 rifle on the sticks and fire she jumps nicely another two cows and a calf crosses the road and we wait for 2 minutes. Jay, was not dissapointed as he knew his time will come an also realised he needs to stay closer when we walk. We go over to the spot where she stood and 15 meters further the cow is out and no.2 is down.

Wow, I am elated 2 cow for the freezer now and that after last weeks distater weekend.

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Best of all me and my new 7x57 seems to understand each other now and the rifle knows what I expect of it.

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So we call the guys to collect the cow and off we go as the bush is still green and very thick we follow the roads rather than walking into the thick stuff as it is quieter and easier to move around. Sometimes we would cut through with Piet the tracker to get the wind in our favour but most of the time walking slowly on the tracks produced good sighting of the game.

This time however I get Jay to walk infront of me as really now it is his turn to shoot after my two quick ones. We head to the waterhole and I see there is a bushcamp and also an elevated hide the waterhole or pan is quite large not so deep but more of a large pan. We keep going and hear an impala ram rutting close to us we pinpoint the direction and start to follow we keep hearing them but just could not connect or spot them.

We hit a road again and see some zebra through the thick bush as they head towards the water no, I did not get the memo yet. So Zebra safe and we keepo going Piet our tracker was excellent with a sixth sense and very good hearing. I could tell from the previous afternoon that eland was his favorite and he would sometimes just stop and listen if he could hear them feed or move.
We jumped a sleeping wartie just hearing him crashing and also what we think another waterbuck but just didnt get any sight of him.

We approached a bend in the road and Piet stood still listening again as he would to listen for eland I don't know how but coming around the bend there was eland next to the road but barely visible we did not know if they were bulls or cow but we could see that they were not young like the ones from the previous day.

I got Jay onto the stick and then he said if we did get a chance I must take it. Range was about 80 meters and the reason why I had to take the shot is that the rules were like this we hunted for meat and whatever you did not want to take yourself our other friend who organized the trip would take it as he had a big factory and lot of workers that wanted game meat. But if you wound anything you had to pay yourself. Jay did not have the confidence that he he could shoot such a big animal and maybe wound it.

So I was up on the stick again the one eland crossed the road with just the hindquarters showing and then another came into view. At first Piet thought it was a big bull and told me I cannot shoot as bulls were off the list to be shot. I double checked throught my scope and assured him it was a large cow. She turned her head and then Piet could see that yes she had large horns but was not a bull and gave me the go ahead.

She stood almost broaddside but I needed to get the bullet on the front of the shoulder to go towards the opposite shoulder. I fired and she jumped nicely followed by the other eland and heard branches breaking and then heard her fall over.

My hands were shaking wow was this for real??? We waited 5 minutes for her to perish and found blood already where she stood and took the shot. There was a good blood track that anyone could follow and found her 30 meters later.

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How we found her this was my 2nd eland ever another cow. You can see bulge from the bullet on the shoulder.

I thanked God and and was still pumped 2 large animals down and its only 9am. Wow how beter can it get and it did just wait to read more.

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BTW PIet was not only an excellent eland tracker but he can take good photos.

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Me and Piet!

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Bulge from the bullet

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If you look closely you will see the 7mm roound hole on tge point of the shoulder at the left corner of the photo. I was very imnpressed with the 160gr 7mm bullet performace at 2600fps.

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Straight line penetration and retained a weight of 152gr of the original 160gr South African made Safari Bullet Company bonded solid shank bullet.

It was starting to warm up we phoned the recovery team and decided to head to the waterhole and sit there untill noon for some warthog to come in. Jay was up and it was slow going and Jay almost dozed off turned around and said let's go back home. His words was not cold when a young warthog boar came in. I was sitting behind Jay and talked him into the shot. aJy was comfortable leaning over the wooden pole to aim downwards but finally managed and made the shot. The shot looked good and the boar sped off wit a trail of blood.

We went down and Piet and Jay went to the tracks while I just walked around to see if I could spot the fallen boar as we heard him crash. I spotted the boar 30 meters from me and saw that he was not yet dead. He wanted to get up but Jay almost shot both front legs off the shot was too low as he forgot about the angle and placing the shot a bit higher due to our elevated position.

I cycled my rifle and loaded it and at the sound he was serioulsy limping but actually coming towards me not a happy camper I quickly ended it with a shot to the head.

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Jay is not really into photos with dead animals so I just snapped a quick one you can see the blood on the gound from the head wound.

Wow, what a morning and I'm thinking again how could it get any better.

We head off home and find the other guys who also had success.

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Large wildebeest cow with the 458 SOCOM.

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Another wartie a sow shot with 30-06

Afternoon hunt to be continued.
 

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Waidmannsheil @Frederik !! What a day of hunting, and that’s one huge eland cow, I can see why Piet would have first thought it was a young bull! Congratulations and with all the meat your wife should be happy too ;)
 
17 May 2024 - Continued

I sat around the fire while we made brunch/lunch with unbelief for the amazing morning we just had.
I also decided that I will take the eland cow for our consumption and give the two big kudu cows to my friend and his home and factory.

Suddenly my own meat dillema was history however having brunch I finally got the memo zebra was on the list, I obviously made a mental note.

The owner of the farm joined us for lunch and we got chatting about how very littel impala we have seen on the farm and we were the 2nd group of hunters and the first group also related the issue. As a working agricultural farm and the game being a sideline he did notice a reduction in impala numbers but he passed due to back luck not seeing them.

The real matter came out the previous weekend with poachers and dogs as the neighbouring farm was empty and no one stayed on it so the paochers with their dogs would have easy access.

But more on that later.

So the topic came up that I have been looking for a waterbuck bull for the last few years and he said why don't we go to the river the afternoon and see if we can pot a waterbuck or impala. What a privilidge that is going to be.

I still needed some meat as well for a Paintshop that constantly refers me to clients and I ussualy thank them with Biltong and Droewors.

Me, Jay and Piet went off across the road and went to see what we couldd find.
As the river is the main source of water the agricultural side was also the largest next to the Limpopo river.

We quickly bumped into a big herd of impala but Piet monitioned that we should check for waterbuck first. We bumbed into a young impala ram that was grazing at 15 meters from us.

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Big trees riverine

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Piet took us to and area where the waterbuck are normally seen but excpet for some impala and 3 nyala bulls and a bushbuck ewe we didnt see any sign of waterbuck. As we moved further down the river heading south we happened upon a troop of baboon and we got as close as 20 meters from one just for the fun of it. If only I could have captured their expressions when they finally spotted us and were fleeing and barking.

We went down the bank again and came out a bit further where we heard impala rutting as we came over the bank we could see two impala rams squaring each other. I got the shooting stick ready and Jay was on the sticks. The ram's were finished sizing each other up and one was walking casually away from the other right to left from us while the winner stood and gave him the look.

He was about 35 meters from us when I whistled and he stood still Jay, made a very good shot with the 6.5x55 and he ran 10 meters and fell.

Suddenly a lot of things jumped into action with the shot the rest of the herd behind the impala ram started running towards us as Jay's impala was down I was up on the stick and looking for a good impala ewe. Then came the big ram back also following the ewe's I left him still looking for an ewe that stood still to make a shot again I had a look at the ram again. Then I thought bugger this, when will I get a chance like this again to hunt a big impala ram on the banks of the Limpopo.

Moved in place and dropped the ram on the spot with the 7x57 this was an added bonus both rams not further than 50 meters away and we could setup for a real classic photo one that I will always remember.

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7x57 on the left and 6.5x55 on the right


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Finally got Jay to sort of pose although serious behind his impala

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Piet takes good photos as you can see!!!


So biltong and droewors taking care of for the Paint shop we just enjoyed being around the river untill dark and even if we bumped into a big waterbuck bull we called it a day of days one not easily to be forgotten.

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As they say when you fall off a horse you have to get back up that night we had Chicken on the menu as can be seen here. Now Jay is a firepit chef that is his speciality and I took the plunge and enjoyed some of the best chargrilled chicken I ever had with a hot sauce.

But before that I climbed into the jackal seat and was going to see if I could pot one or two but seems that the previous night took care of al of them. With just one spotted running across the road none where to be found. It was quite neat too look through the thermal at all the other animals.

Our other friends also had success.

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458 Socom and zebra

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Another wartie with the 30-06

I slept extra well that night not that the single malt had anything to do with it. :ROFLMAO:
 

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I'm loving it, keep it coming @Frederik!

Looking forward to going on our boys' trip end of the year as well!
 
You are having a very successful hunt. I am really enjoying your report.
 
18 May 2024

Last day to go find something for the Freezer and around the fire they mention that in a certain area a big waterbuck bull likes to hang out. This is not next to the Limpopo river so with Jay sitting the day out to relax and just have peace (Away from me) around the fire. Apparantely I like to do too many miles in the dust on foot. :ROFLMAO:

Me and Piet head out on our own the morning is more chilly that the other mornings, finally as this winter is really taking its time to arrive and we hit the tracks.

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Half an hour into our walk and we bump the young bunch of eland again look closely and you will spot the eland next to the road on the left standing behind the bush a bout 30 meters away from us.

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Just a perfect morning out in the bush, love it.

After that the morning is really slow and we don't spot anymore game and about an hour later we hear this crash in the bush behind us. Walking with the wind in our face the wind must have taken our scent to whatever made the crash. Piet said we must investigate as it might be the big waterbuck bull. We head into the area where the sound came from and see waterbuck tracks very fresh we circle a bit to get the wind right and slowly make our way through the bush.

Suddenly, Piet stops and here comes two poachers dressed to spend the night in the bush casually walking looking down at tracks. We stop and wait if they will come closer but the one at the back spots us and gives a alarm to the other they start fleeing and we are after them. Piet asks me to fire a shot in their direction and I casually fire a shot in a safe direction but clearly enough that they could hear it coming their way. They chase new 100 meter sprint record and split up.

We head in the general direction of the border fence and find the hole they made in the fence where they came through.

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Hole Cut in fence and their tracks with smooth soled shoes.

We head up the road about 200 meters from the hole cut in the fence to wait and see if we can spot them again. About 5 minutes later one runs across the road and jumps through the fence like and duiker and runs off. In the meantime we phoned the farm owner and he is busy getting a crew together with some anti pocahing unit in the area as well.

We did not see the other pocaher and one hour later the crew arrives we go through the wole detail including what we heard and where we spotted them and assume that what we heard was a big animal caught in a snare.

The farmer brought along his drone and 6 guys take the tracks of the pochers that fled onto the vacant land. The township is 5km away as th crow flies next to the vacant land. I give full description on what they were wearing. As far as I know could not see any weapons or firearms they were carrying except for pliers and steelwire.

Me, PIet and one of the anti poaching unit men that was clearly having an off Saturday took the tracks on where we spotted them and see if we could find what made the large crash noise that we heard.

Along the way we bump into snares that they were obviously coming to check and maybe setup some more.

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The man took photos of where the snares were found as well as their footprints for evidence.
Finally we found what caused the crash it was the big waterbuck bull that got caught in a snare but he was too strong for the snare and broke it clean off.

We follow his tracks and find no blood not unfcomfort in his gait or blood an hoped the snare somehow broke clean off and we didnt see it or that he can get rid of it at a later stage. I don't know if they ever saw the waterbuck bull again and maybe I need to send a message and ask.

After all this going on we headed back to the home as it was already close to lunch. Plan was to spend the afternoon on the Limpopo on a barge.

After brunch we got news that the trackers followed the poachers untill the two joined again and then all the way to their home. When knocking at their home they fled at the backdoor. But now, they were marked and the anti poaching unit knew excatly where they stay.

The aftenoon on the Limpopo

Hunting was done no one else got a chance at something else and the hunt was completed.
Firearms packed away cooler box packed for a good fun afternoon on the Limpopo.

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I really don't know why but a Single Malt just tastes different when floating in no mans land Between Bostwana and South Africa. :LOL:

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We closed the hunt with a magnificent potjie next to the fire again and obviously plans were made for next year same place.

Thanks for tagging along.
 

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A great end to the adventure.
And a good thing that they managed to find the poachers in the end.
 
Next on its way our recent girafffe hunt.
 

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