Four Paces from Death (part 08)

by david on December 5, 2012

It was time to suck it up and run down the riverbank, past where the herd had crossed, and get behind the buffalo.  We then ran back across the river in a crouched position trying not to spook the herd.  We made it, but, this time, there was no slow stalking and catching of breath.  We had to keep moving.  The herd was feeding in some short grass along the edge of the riverbed and, if we were lucky, we could get ahead of them and set up an ambush.  Luckily, we were able to get behind some very thick bush on the riverbank and it concealed our movement.  We had to move swiftly and silently to get past the buffalo without detection.  It took us about a half mile, but we finally got in front of the herd. 

      Phil found an opening in the bush that would give us an unobstructed view of the herd as they passed by.  He told me to sit down and scoot back into the bush as far as I could go.  Phil sat down in front of me so I could use his shoulder as a rest if I needed to.  I could finally catch my breath as we waited for the buffalo.  The herd started past us and they were grazing at a distance of twenty to fifty yards.  I was amazed at how big they looked at this range.  Little did I know they were about to get a lot bigger.  I sat as still as a statue, mentally picking out the spot on each buffalo that I would have to place the bullet in order for a clean kill.  The herd kept coming by us; there were many cows and calves, but no bulls were visible.  I knew that the older bulls would be toward the back of the herd, but the longer they took to come into view, the more my heart raced and more adrenalin entered my system.  I had to get myself under control so I concentrated on slowing down my breathing.  I was just getting my pulse and adrenalin to start to drop when it happened.

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