Armed with Kimber rifles, American Hunter Editor-in-Chief Scott Olmsted and his girlfriend journeyed to South Africa for a Plains-game hunt of a lifetime, taking Impala, Kudu, Cape Eland and more. The pair also captured images of the unique flora and fauna scattered across the South African countryside, which they share in this photo gallery.
A suspension foot bridge built in 1969 carries tourists over the mouth of the Storms River, which spills into the Indian Ocean at the northern end of the Garden Route in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province.
While blue wildebeest are found throughout southern Africa, black wildebeest are native only to South Africa. In four trips to South Africa the author had never killed a black wildebeest; on this trip that all changed, thanks to a well-placed shot from his Kimber Model 8400 in .300 Win. Mag.
Inside a “hide,” a wildlife-viewing blind that protects visitors behind an electrified fence, visitors whisper and watch a herd of Cape buffalo at a watering hole. Moments earlier, a pride of lions had been spotted nearby. Would the cats come to hunt the buffalo? …
Before he accomplished the feat, the author had never seen an eland bull fall to a single shot. But that’s exactly what happened when he felled his bull at Bombazi, thanks in no small part to an accurate rifle (a Kimber Model 8400 in .300 Win. Mag.) and a well-placed bullet (a Winchester 180-grain E-Tip).
The sign says “Beware of Lions.” Indeed Addo Elephant National Park is home to the Big 5—elephant, rhino, buffalo, leopard and lion—but daytime visitors are lucky if they get to see a cat. The author’s party was among the lucky ones.
The hillsides at the mouth of the Storms River were once covered by real yellowwoods, huge trees standing a hundred feet tall that supplied a burgeoning timber industry a century ago. Today, the hillsides are covered by smaller flora, including abundant lilies.
Before their trip, the author and his girlfriend, Meryl Berman, practiced shooting for a month of Saturdays. Berman had to learn from scratch. When the time came, she did exactly as she had practiced back home in Virginia: She chose a shooting position, used available support to steady her Kimber 84M in .243 Win., and made a 140-yard shot. It was her first hunt, but clearly won’t be her last.
The author’s Kimber M8400 in .300 Win. Mag. has accounted for many trophies—and many of them came from Africa. It is one of his favorite rifles. In South Africa, firing a 180-grain Winchester E-Tip bullet, he used the Model 8400 to take a black wildebeest and a Cape eland bull—both with one shot.
Greater kudu are known as the “elk of Africa.” In fact, the kudu in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa are known as Cape kudu because they are descended from a small gene pool. Bombazi Ranch is home to numerous kudu and other plains game, but no dangerous game, which means visitors are free to roam the ranch at will.