Postcards from South Africa, Part I

By Randy Wakeman

South Africa is an amazing place. The broad spectrum of game you may see in any one day, from steenbok to giraffe, from springhare to waterbok makes it all quite a spectacle.

Rangefinders proved to be quite worthless when stalking the bush in this particular area. For the most part you have just a moment to assess your fleeting look at an animal, and to take him or not.

The warthog population was doing well, particularly in grassy areas. The sophisticated swine could feed and also use the waterholes sprinkled through this area, which is close to the Limpopo River with Botswana on the other side. I exclusively used a Savage 10ML-II muzzleloading rifle shooting the Barnes 275 grain .451" XPB bullet and an MMP HPH-12 sabot.

The first shot out the of Savage 10ML-II in South African "bushy field" stopped this warthog instantly at 179 yards. It was the nice set of ivories, easily visible through the bushveldt, that did this old girl in.

Warthog trophy. Photo by Randy Wakeman

My understanding is that while both male and female warthogs have large ivory tusks, the male has four large warts on its face. The female has only two, making it (as you can plainly see) the far more delicate, svelte, and glamorous creature.

We found all the game that we tried to be very good eating. Warthog, Gemsbok, Steenbok, Impala, and Kudu all tasted great, with perhaps the Gemsbok considered the filet of the bushveldt.

We hunted with Karel Haefele (e-mail: [email protected]), professional hunters Pierre and Rob Martin (e-mail: [email protected]) of MAA Safaris / Ke Monati Safaris. I can tell you right now, you will not do better in S. Africa than to hunt with these folks!

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Copyright 2006 by Randy Wakeman. All rights reserved.