I will post a lengthy detailed write up of my second hunt with Kingsview when im done with all the details as there are pages of them, but i would like to share my pics and small details with yall . Its been tough this time to get it all down on paper because there was so much to write. Ive kept a small journal with notes but every day was long, adventurous, and i didn't want to miss putting any of it down. It was my second hunt with KIngsview Safaris and my wife accompanied me on both. Jono Mchugh, owner of Kingsview, and Wayne Dell my PH on both hunts, were the main reason we decided to do this hunt again. We have stayed good friends and talked probably every month since the time we last which was 3 years ago. It meant alot to be able to go back and know we were in good hands. I was also able to take in more of Africa this time. The last time, i felt like i missed so much because it was all new. It went so fast that i felt i missed out on a alot. Ths time i was up early, in bed late, and all of my senses were turned on. It was my 40th birthday and this was my excuse to get to go back. Jono is a straight arrow and is as honest and caring as they come. His desire to make sure his clients have not only a good time but an unforgettable adventure is second to none in my opinion. He truly cares about each hunter and wants to make sure their adventure is what they dream of when they visit Africa. He puts alot of effort into each hunt and it shows. He and Justine have always treated my wife like she was family. Even though she isnt an outdoorsy type, her and Justine get along great. Jono, Justine, the kids, Wayne, And Alex are family. That's the only way i can explain how i feel about them. These pics are all of animals i took on my 9 day safari. We hunted the same places anyone else would if they book with Kingsview. The animals we took were all extraordinary and by the end of the hunt all we could say was we were blessed. We hunted hard, shot well, and enjoyed every minute. We hunted for the right animals not just representatives and i appreciated that. I felt like by hunting for the " right " animal you have a trophy whether its the biggest or not. We hunted mature animals and i was very proud of all of them as were Wayne and Jono. Hope you like the pics and if you ever think Africa is a place you would like to visit please do not pass up on the opportunity to hunt with Kingsview. You wont be disappointed i promise.
Flight- Delta flight 200 from Atlanta to Joberg them British aorwasy to Port Elizabeth.
Lodge was Intle. Amazing place with excellent food, service, and game drives.
Gun - Waynes suppressed mouser action 30-06 with a boyd stock and 4 x 12 leoupold vx2. Wayne and Jonos guns are very well suited to use. Highly recommend.
Camo- mixed, but all sprayed with Permethrin due to the ticks this time of year. Worked like a champ no tick bites for me or the wife. Dont worry to much about camo
Ammo- Hand loaded Hornady interlocks 150 gr. All worked flawless. surprisingly the only animals that took more than 1 shot were the copper springbok and the Kudu both hit high and back on first shots. Both were my fault.
Vehicles used were crew cab trucks with plenty of room and very clean and comfortable. No hunting was done was from the truck. All was done spot and stalk. We did glass from the truck and move on animals.
Binos - Wayne and Jono hunted with 10 x 42s and i took my 15 power cabela euros. This was too much although did come in handy a few times. Not sure if it was worth it but they were fun to use as i love to glass. Rangefinder is not a must in my opinion and can cause some grief if you rely on them to much.
Here is my Bush buck from Yellowwood, one of the concessions. We had hunted all morning and hadn't seen any bushbuck. This was an animal that can be tough to get and usually take some time. As luck would have it we went in for lunch and caught a glimce of him moving through some trees. My first trip i shot an old ram with 1 horn that had broken off while fighting. Cool thing was that the hunter before me had shot the ram he fought with. My rams horn was still stuck in his cheek bone when he was harvested. This ram was stunning. We knew he was a shooter as soon as we saw him. He was big bodied. Dark black cape and his horns were heavy and long. The shot was 220 and went perfect.
I love impala and to me they are one of the most beautiful animals in Africa. There are a lot of them there so i wanted to be "picky" and get one that was not only old but a good look to him. I dont know how long he is but he definitely didn't shrink when we walked up on him. His body was tremendous as well. I think they said he weighed 48 kilos hanging weight. Everyone was surprised by his body size. I was very happy with him.
This baboon was a big heavy sucker. Not sure what he weighed but i couldn't hold him up long before i got tired. Very surreal feeling shooting one these things. I never wanted to hunt baboons until i got to Africa. I actually still dont really want to hunt them but do so to help out with the "problem". The stories you hear of the destruction they cause and the turmoil they inflict is enough to want to help the cause. IT was defiantly a experience to get to see one of these animals up close. To see the resemblance to touch their hands and feet, was strange to me to say the least. They are a very neat animal and make a cool mount but i will just be bringing home the skull of this big male.
The first time i came to Africa we were not allowed to hunt Letchwe. They were plentiful and were a sight to see with their majestic horns and red colors. But they were off limits and they knew it. We saw a ton of them and a lot of good ones too. Letchwe was not on my list this time either but i couldn't resist when the wife offered one as a birthday gift. No way was i going to turn this down. I wonder if this included the mounting as well. Should i ask? MMMM tough one. It turned out to be an amazing hunt. We hunted hard all day and got the one we wanted. We saw a lot of mature animals but this was definitely a mature dominate bull. We saw some that were bigger but this was the ONE. He was wide, had dark leggings, and was much bigger than most. He would run off the smaller bulls and was chasing the females extremely early in their rutting season. There was plenty to chose from and although we thought it would be easy, it was hardly that. The saying goes that once an animal knows its being hunted it knows it. This was absolutely the case with my Letchwe.
Now i never thought in a million years i would ever be able to hunt Africa. Especially, to experience it with my wife, who is not a hunter at all. Now, to think i would be there twice and have the ability to hunt a sable, was like winning the lottery and being the only ticket holder. This was a hunt i would say was very hard to describe. I was extremely nervous for obvious reasons. This is the most regal animal in Africa and i am about to be the guy who can pull the trigger on one. I just realized, for the first time, that everyone was there for me and this hunt was one everyone wanted to be perfect on. I know that we have all been together but this hunt just felt different. It actually felt like a championship game in a sport where everything is on the line and im up and can make the difference. Maybe that sounds a bit corny but thats the only way i can explain it. All my practice was about to be tested. The wind was high this day as well and added to the anxiety. I tried my hardest to enjoy and take in every minute. Short story of this hunt was we had 1 day to hunt Sable and make it happen. We drove a good ways to get to this giant concession, and when we pulled in i didn't know what to think. This place was huge. 25000 hectares if i remember correctly. The topography changed from flat to rolling hills to giant mountains to thick brush much like a mix between south Texas and the Hill country. The Sable were in the mountain areas and they are not seen often. They were released years ago and the owner said there was no telling how big or small they were or how many he had. I was excited, nervous, anxious, grateful, and whole mix of things i never felt before. Did i say excited. We all were. This hunt would be a true test for us all. We drove and got to a high spot. Glassed and Wayne found a herd of 6 bulls together with one standing out from over 2 miles away. We parked and made a plan. The wind was 30 miles an hour if i had to guess. We walked about a mile and got to a hill where we could hide ourselves enough to see the group but we were not able to close the distance from there. We were 680 yards at this point. We sat and waited but the group of bull was not liking the wind at all and must have felt safe on the high side of the mountain because they didn't move for an hour. We finally decided to try our luck and stand and let them see us. Our hope was that they ran down towards a fence line and they would stay on that fence line. If they did we could get to within 250. Plans like this never work but it did today. They ran hit the fence line and followed it only stopping at 279 to look at us. Thats all i needed as i was ready and on the sticks. I had nestled into a rock and was sitting on another. I felt steady even in the wind. I waited for the wind to calm and as they stopped i knew exactly which one i was shooting at. I shoot and he falls instantly. I was a bit worried because i knew i must have spined him or hit him in the neck. I ended up hitting him just in front of his shoulder in the neck. He was unbelievable. This hunt was epic.
Today we went on another journey as Jono was able to find me my final springbok for my slam. This was another trophy that i never thought i would hunt as the price of them was extremely high on my last trip. Jono was able to get me a great price on one and since my black springbok that i had hunted on the last trip had a broken horn, we were also after one as well. This hunt had its ups and downs for sure. We drove a ways to get to hunt this ranch but it was a great drive. It was just the guys on this one so we got to cut loose and the camaraderie was awesome. We had fog and rain to start the day and it continued throughout the day. We were on springbok as soon as we got into the ranch but this was not going to be easy. These things were out of there mind skiddish. They were not staying around for us to even look at them. Wayne decided to take a walk. So we found some brush and walked quietly through the bush to see if we could sneak up on something. After a couple hours we find my black ram alone and he had no idea we were there. The sticks went up ad the shot was true he went right down. A beautiful ram with perfect color. We loaded him up and went to another part of the ranch to see if we could have the same luck on a copper. I felt like this was going to be a very tough task after our morning started out the way it did but after getting the black down the pressure was off. We actually get up on a big copper in quick time. This was the shortest shot of my trip and i miss. I still do not know how other than i was too confident and must have pulled off on the ram to soon. I shot high. We follow in the direction the ram went and unbelievably we get on him again in short time. He is walking and is aware of us but stops long enough for me to shoot. I do and as said earlier hit hmi high and far back. He is hit in the spine and is down but not dead. I feel bad as does Wayne and we hurry over to finish him. You would have had to see it to believe it but this ram gets up and runs off like nothing is wrong. We are both in disbelief. We now gather everyone up and i get to track my first animal in Africa. MI have this feeling that he will be down right in front of us but as the time passes and the blood thins we all worry more and more. Unbelievably luck finds us and a ranch hand sees a copper ram a mile from where we are with blood on its back. He shows us where and we go to see. Sure enough its my ram. He is lying under a tree and as soon as he sees us he is gone. We are able to get into the trees where he goes and find him walking away from us. I was able to put another round in him and this crazy awesome hunt is complete. My stomach hurt and i had a huge headache as this was my fault this animal suffered. I dont know what happened with the first or second shots but he is down. What a day. But it wasnt quite over.....
Now we have hunted Kudu for 2 full days and in between hunts. We passed on a true giant east cape kudu and was a second from getting another one but we only had 1 day left to get one. Not getting a Kudu would devastate all of us especially after passing on the one i did. Now ill say that we passed because i was not there to hunt inches i wanted a mature bull that had a wide appearance. This is what i dream about when i see Kudu. So if i shoot a smaller wider bull over a long narrow bull im good. Well this was put to the test because the narrow bull we passed was a good one. Well after the springbok were taken care of and the drive back to our home ranch was made we had a little over 45 minutes to hunt before the sun set. I had this feeling today was the day and it turned out to be exactly that. We glass and see kudu as soon as we hit the ranch gate. As we sift through them we continue on and see more. Just then a Huge bull runs across the road from us and goes up the hillside into some trees. We cannot see him but his body dwarfed the bull with him. We drive past them and lose them in the trees. We go back to where we last seen them and see the smaller bull he was with. We get out of the truck and wait. and wait. IT must have been a couple minutes but felt like forever, but the big bull appears and runs up the hill. He finally turns and is giving me a hard quartering away shot. We all decide i can make it and i shoot. It hits him where i wanted and he runs a short distance before turning. When he does i am ready and put another one in him. He is down. I was in awe and hadn't even seen him up close. He was a giant bull. Dark cape with lines throughout and i knew he was old. His face showed his age and he was what dreams were made of. We all were so excited to see him. When we did, shock was the word to use. He was unbelievable. His horns and body were heavy. His bases so big my hands just fit around them. I was truly honored to have harvested this king. News got around quickly and lots of photos were taken. Jono actually hunted this place with an earlier client and was on this bull. He told me before i go there that he had found my bull and now here he was. What a day. What a story i have to tell.
I hope you enjoyed the pics as much as i do. This trip was amazing and not a day goes by that i dont relive many memories of it. I hope you all have gotten a glimpse of the trip through this little write up. I apologize for any misspellings and grammatical errors i now it makes it a hard read. I am tired but wanted to finish it as i had time today.
Thank you again to Jono and Wayne for making this trip a reality and a memory that will stay with not just me and Vero but for LInc my 1 year old son. He will relive these stories through me and the mounts that will be here in a year or so. You guys are family. Cant wait to see ya again.
A few more pics taken for your enjoyment.