ZAMBIA: 2018 Hunt With Strang Middleton In 2 Different Areas Of The Country

Discussion in 'Hunting Reports Africa' started by cpr0312, Aug 9, 2018.

  1. JES Adventures

    JES Adventures AH Fanatic

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    @cpr0312, thanks for the great report - tell Strang hello for me! Your pictures and report brought back memories of my trip to the Luangwa Valley back in ‘96 with my old friend Rory Gellatly. If you haven’t had it yet, ask them to make soup from the hippo tail it is amazing.

    Enjoy your time there, every moment is precious in this most beautiful part of Africa!

    Good Hunting
     
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  2. johnnyblues

    johnnyblues AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Excellent Charlie. Congratulations
     
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  3. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    We had hippo tail soup one night and hippo steaks another, The soup was fantastic!!!
     

  4. Wheels

    Wheels AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    I have looked for this report a couple of times. Didn't realize there had been a moniker change. Did you become a paramedic?:D

    Ditto regarding the AH/DSC dinner with Strang and Shawn. Good stories , good dinner, good evening.

    Great report so far. Looking forward to hearing about the rest of the hunt!
     
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  5. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Day 5.....

    Start off the morning looking for a puku for Mike. Travel about 45 minutes to an area they frequent. We quickly get on a group and start pursuit.. Again this is his part of the story so I'll let him tell it. Later in the morning we head to the croc blind we assembled late in the afternoon the day prior to look for Jaws as Strang likes to call crocs (y)

    We stop about 1000 yards away on the road that runs along the river, and can see 2 good crocs where we hoped they would be! So we duck off into the woods to try to remain unseen to get to the blind. We sneak up the last 50 yards or so, and on bolts of the sandbar, the other remains. We ease up to the blind and sit on our butts. Strang sees the other duck off the bank. Dang is our chance now gone? These things are wiley for sure. He says just be calm and they will get back out of the water. Sure enough about 10 minutes later one comes back out. Strang can see the other one from his vantage point, he says its the bigger of the two, but by bigger I mean fatter around, they are both about the same length. After about 5 minutes, the croc is comfortable, the wind is good, and he starts to open his mouth. We ease to our standing positions to get a better look...

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  6. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    This is great living this through your experience! All the pictures of the landscape really make me imagine I am there!
    Pull the trigger on that lizard!
     
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  7. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Damned auto focus! :mad:
     

  8. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Day 5 continued....

    I have since went through 2-3 cycles of being ridiculously excited/nervous, and back to quiet calm while looking over the croc. All this time however I have been able to look at him through the scope and can clearly see the spot on his neck that I need to aim for. Strang and I have talked about this a few times this week of where to shoot, then to reload and be ready immediately. Also the fact that I have asked him to be on the ready for insurance as well in case my shot doesn't anchor him.

    After 5-10 minutes, Strang has had a good chance to look him over. He says he has a big head, just not quit as big body wise as the other lurking close by in the water. I ask him if this is a pretty good one for this area, he says yes he will probably go 12 foot. We had previously talked about the crocs in this area, and the face that an 11-11.5 footer is good for this area, anything above is gravy. He judges this on at 12' plus. He said we can wait to see if the other one comes out, or try to sit on bait again this afternoon. To this point in the hunt, we have not had any of the big boys come to dine on the baits.

    All that info in my head, I make the call that if Strang is happy with him then I will be. I say lets take him! Ok now back to a racing heartbeat! The croc is completely calm and the wind is still in our favor, so don't be stupid and make any noise or rush yourself. Calm down for a minute!! Strang also tells me to relax and catch my breathe, I rally appreciate a good PH who also talks you through things and reminds your to not shoot until your calm.

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    He readies his rifle, I ready mine, he says when your ready take him. One more series of breathing in and out, in and out, third time its a go...... I take aim for the center of the neck between the smile and where the shoulder area starts. Squeeze the trigger of the .375, bang, get him back in the scope asap.... Not moving! What happened? Strang says good shot! The croc is not moving one bit, no tail flutter, no thrashing, nothing.

    I am one who wants to make sure of insurance shots on something like this, especially with the fear of losing a croc to the river. He says take another neck shot, so I do. Again no movement. I want to be sure and I ask Strang if we need to shoot in the heart or lungs. The croc is done but I imagine Strang wants to appease my mind so he instructs me on where to shoot the croc in the lungs, take steady aim and squeeze, another good hit! No movement, my mid is finally at ease!!! This is perhaps the most nervous I've ever been on a hunt simply due to the fact of not making a great shot and potentially losing him. So happy I was able to get my breathing in control, take steady aim, make a good shot, and anchor him first shot.

    Now for the recovery, which is interesting to say the least. Where he's at, we have to go about 800 yards downstream where the bluff flattens out to meet the river. When we get down, there is a series of small sandbars intermingled with a deep channel here and there, along with several shallow channels as well. The tracker (Jason, Darryson, and Obvi) must wade through the river some 500 yards plus with a rope to retrieve the beast!!!! At this point I am very concerned for obvious reasons. These guys have done this before, I'm assuming at least a few times because nobody really pitched a fit or argued about having to do it. So they go in and one of them has a stick to measure depth along the way, and begin to find the shallowest areas to walk through.
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  9. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    You shoot so well you can't believe it. The mind games we play!
    "Croc Fever"

    Well done.
     
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  10. CAustin

    CAustin AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    Nice lizard Charles! Has your h7nting partner started his report?
     

  11. 375 Ruger Fan

    375 Ruger Fan AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Great report! Those trackers deserve an extra large tip by retrieving that croc!
     
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  12. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I’ll bet the trackers weren’t as calm as you thought! I would have made certain someone good with a gun was watching for the other big boy!
    Excellent croc hunt report! I really enjoyed my croc hunt though much shorter than yours. I plan to do it again!
    That first perfect shot cannot be off an inch or two, or he’s long gone! Good shooting!
     
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  13. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    GREAT shooting on your croc. Congrats!
    Bruce
     
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  14. Ragman

    Ragman AH Elite

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    Good going! Looking forward to the close up pics!
     
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  15. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Croc continued...

    After we pulled him ashore
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  16. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Handsome croc! Nice dark spots and really big teeth!
    Congratulations again on a great shot!
     

  17. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Getting him to and in the truck was no easy task. Had to drag him across about 75 yards of very loose sand

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  18. Edge

    Edge AH Fanatic

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    Great pictures and congratulations!
     
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  19. LivingTheDream

    LivingTheDream AH Legend

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    Man you did some good shooting! Enjoying the report so far!
     
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  20. Hunting Sailor

    Hunting Sailor SILVER SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    Congratulations! I really enjoy reading this. Well Done!

    //Gus
     
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