Safari, Namibia 2016: Next Link In The Chain. Blog #17 “Repeat Performance?”

by david on June 8, 2017

The wind was up hard again the next morning, but I did not really care.  I was still on Cloud 9 from the day before. Ruan met us for breakfast and was going to be my PH for the day. As a member of C.H.C. (Conservation and Hunting Combined), Ruan would be accompanying us to the hunting shows this year. As the only American and hunting client in the booth, I am always asked what it is like to hunt with one of the C.H.C. PH’s. I have hunted with the other two, and after today I could say I had hunted with Ruan. Firsthand knowledge is always the best. To make things even more interesting, Ms. Sonya asked to go along. The three of us had a wonderful morning sneaking about in the bush. Too bad the animals would not cooperate.   No matter how hard we worked or what we tried, the wind once again spoiled our best efforts. Successful or not, it was nice to see how Ruan hunted. He is the youngest of the bunch and has been a PH the least amount of time. My impression was he is already a good PH and on his way to becoming a great PH.

We came in for lunch without having seen the first animal.  Some of the Tualuka staff wanted to see the eland and they brought Doug up for the afternoon so we could hunt together (he had finally taken a very nice gemsbok the day before).  After lunch, Johann, Doug, Ben and I headed out just to see what, if anything, the hunting gods would offer us that afternoon.  I could look for the hybrid black-face common impala cross, a cull wildebeest, and Doug could look for a springbuck.  It had been less than 20 minutes, and we had not made it to the first glassing place when a herd of the hybrid black-faced impala popped into view.  Johann said there was a very, very nice ram in the back and asked if I want to go for it.  I was out of the truck, rifle in hand, before he stopped the truck completely.  Johann stepped around the side with the shooting sticks and made sure I was looking at the correct ram who was staring at us from about 110 yards away.  At the report from my 9.3, the ram looked sick, wobbled for a few seconds, went down, and was mine.  The hunting gods were still smiling.

After a quick trip to the skinning shed to drop off my ram there was still plenty of time to hunt. I still wanted a wildebeest and Doug wanted a springbuck. Since we were leaving Ben to cape out my trophy, Hobie tagged along to help spot. Once again we quickly came upon some game animals, this time they were wildebeest. We came off the truck and worked our way closer looking for a non-trophy animal. Try as we might, all of the bulls were or would be trophy animals and there were no barren females in the group. According to Webster’s, the definition of hunting is the “pursuit of game”. We had found the game, just not the particular game animal we needed to find. The hunt was still on.

Darkness overtook us and we were well past sundown when we got back to Hobie and Stephie’s. Missing sundowners on a safari is not something I like to do, that is exactly what had happened tonight. Cocktails are a poor substitute, but tonight they would have to suffice. Dinner was pleasant and the conversation was even better with little brother at the table. Tomorrow would be another day.

Grinning with my ram. Grinning with my ram. My very nice hybrid ram My very nice hybrid ram

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