Hunting > African Game

Plains Games (Page 2)

On his first Namibia safari, the author’s adventures go beyond his wildest childhood dreams and ignite an inextinguishable love for Africa.

We hunted hard over the next several days. We collected several zebra and Dave harvested a magnificent 55-inch kudu bull, but I had not been able to close on my own kudu. On the morning of day five, while atop a mountain glassing, we spotted two large kudu bulls halfway up the next mountain. Two hours later we were in position to witness the bulls crossing the third distant mountain. This was not an easy hunt but it was a wonderful, rewarding experience.

On day seven, Johann decided to try a different area where he had seen kudu in the past. Around 11 a.m. my dream of harvesting a mature kudu bull finally came true. While walking up another mountain, Johann and our tracker suddenly stopped as Johann pointed out two bulls moving up the rocky terrain above us. Johann called, “Come, come, come.” I found the larger of the two in my scope and as the crosshairs settled, I took the shot. The old bull was an amazing 56 inches and was estimated to be between 13 and 14 years old. His gray coat was beautiful. After climbing to where the kudu fell, I sat down beside the regal beast and remembered my childhood readings and the promise I had made to myself. What could be better than this? I wondered.

Our last days in camp were as exciting as the first. Dave and I collected another pair of gemsbok and I shot a nice springbok. I recalled how Johann had asked what types of trophies we were looking to take. Though neither of us had cared about the record books, as it turns out all the kudu, gemsbok and springbok easily would make the SCI record book and were all Gold Medal trophies for Namibia. We had collected everything on our list and more. We were bringing home memories and photographs that would last a lifetime and now had new friends halfway around the world.

Gary “Hoot” Gibson is a fellow NRA employee who serves as staff instructor for the NRA Law Enforcement Division.

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