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Old February 4, 2016, 10:14 AM   #1
Photon Guy
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African Safaris

I want to go on an African safari hunt sometime when I get the chance. I've got some really big guns that would certainly be suited for that so when I've got the time and money I would like to do it. Anybody here ever been to an African safari? How is it? Im thinking of going to South Africa and perhaps some of the inner countries in Africa as well. And is it possible to carry a sidearm when you hunt in Africa?
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Old February 4, 2016, 02:44 PM   #2
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There are a few guys on here that have hunted Africa. My buddy went a year ago and it was an eye opener for him, he's a blue collar machinists and the backdoor costs about ate his lunch. I'll text him this topic and I'm sure he'll respond.
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Old February 4, 2016, 05:11 PM   #3
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The ability to carry a sidearm will vary based on the country, province, level of corruption, and even your PH's rules.

---

My father has been at least twice (including Tanzania, Namibia, S. Africa, and probably more - plus a photographic trip through Kenya). I suspect there was a third, "secret" trip, but that's another story. And, he spent some time "hunting" in Mongolia.

He enjoyed most of the trips, and felt it was worth the trouble. ...But there were definitely some headaches along the way, and some lessons learned about doing your own research.

Even though my father knew that pretty much every fee he looked at represented at least double that amount in reality, he still didn't budget properly for his first trip (Namibia).

He planned for about $5,500 for expenses related to the animals (common plains game), took something like $7,500, and came home with a Visa with an additional $4k on it - after exhausting his cash supply and paying one trophy fee with a rifle and ammunition. And then he still had to send more money over for shipping and customs processing of the hides and heads.
Most of the overage could have been planned for. He just didn't ask enough questions or verify what he was told, beforehand.

His next trip was better planned and cost him less, even though the trophy fees were significantly higher.


On at least one Africa trip and the Mongolia trip, graft was in play when the firearms went through customs. The customs officials refused to release his firearms without a 7-day hold (S. Africa) or 21-day hold (Mongolia) until he slipped them some extra cash. In Africa, he just had to pay it - $75 apiece for three rifles, I believe - or use the PH's loaners (he paid).
In Mongolia ($100 per rifle demand), however, a phone call to the official that set the trip up had the fires of hell raining down upon the two customs officers within a short time. The rifles were instantly released, and the two officers were taken away (likely to be executed and fed to the homeless...).

One other potential nightmare-inducing problem with the Mongolia trip was the necessity to travel through China. Getting the rifles through customs was fairly easy, from what he described, but he wasn't allowed to take the rifles through China. He had to ship them from the airport to their next customs station at the Mongolian border. ...And repeat the process in reverse, for the return trip.
On the way in, the rifles were three days late (plus the $100/each graft). And on the way home, he had to delay his departure and spend an extra 4 days in China, waiting for the rifles to arrive so they could be processed and shipped back to the U.S.


The biggest problem with the Mongolia trip was the lack of organization and some lying on the part of the Mongol leader. My father was hunting for three days, only to find out that the somewhat-important government official (a friend's uncle) that set the trip up for him never actually got ALL of the permits for the animals or for export. The Mongol knew he wasn't legal, but told my father that everything was set. Nor did the official properly explain the trip to the locals that were doing most of the guiding. They thought this "rich" American was just there to shoot stuff, see stuff shot, and get drunk every day. (That, of course, wasn't the intent; and he doesn't drink. ).

So, he came home with pictures of a wolverine-like animal that he shot, only to have the locals drag it behind their Lada for 40 miles ("to exercise the evil spirits"); a picture of some sort of boar that was immediately decapitated, stuffed with hot rocks, and roasted while the dogs ate the head; a story about how he was woken up in the middle of the night and told that a local police squad had wounded "his" brown bear for him about 15 miles away ... with hundreds of rounds from their AK-47s, and then bayed it with dogs; and a bunch of pictures of hungover and/or passed out Mongolians.
...Plus a bunch of worthless crap from the tourist markets in China, of course.



Bottom line:
Research.
Research.
Research.
Trust.
...But verify.
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Old February 4, 2016, 08:04 PM   #4
tedthorn
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Sidearm? Why?

South Africa laws are quite restrictive.....be aware......no semi automatic weapons......zero

You won't be carrying any firearm if you are not hunting

First of all...... any firearm you import with you into South Africa will have to registered and cary a permit for the time you are in country......ammo as well

Your safari cost will indeed be far more than most people will admit to

I however am not shy

My 2014 June plains game safari in South Africa with my wife cost as follows

Passports................................................................... $265
Immunizations and RX drugs for the trip................. $150
Gun permits................................................................ $150
6 animal pacage......................................................... $4500
Spouse observer..........................................................$1000
Round trip Airfare St. Louis to East London SA......... $5600
3 extra animals...Waterbuck, Blk Wildebeest, Orax....$4500
Dip, Pack and Ship of 10 sculls/horns and capes...... $2875
US Customs broker to accept and clear then ship US.. $525
US truck line shipping of the crate to the taxidermist...$275
Tips to the PH, trackers, taxi driver and camp staff... $1200
Meet and greet at the Johannesburg airport.............. $150
Overnight stay in Johannesburg with 2 meals............ $200
10 animals with an observer in South Africa..........$21,390

All this before any taxidermy is done
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Old February 4, 2016, 10:11 PM   #5
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Sidearm? Why?
Depending on what rifle I bring, this one rifle of mine you can only get off two shots before having to reload, if I was being charged by a very dangerous predator I would want some backup, I would want more than just two shots.
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Old February 4, 2016, 11:27 PM   #6
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Your PWH is your backup.
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Old February 5, 2016, 12:40 AM   #7
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You can never have too much backup.
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Old February 5, 2016, 06:44 AM   #8
tedthorn
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Sidearm for dangerous game protection?

So.....as this wild beast is charging after shot #2 ( from a double rifle I'm guessing ) please explain a sidearm that will stop this beast. Better yet....explain what wild charging animal you speak of?

.375 Ruger and .375 H&H are generally the legal minimum for dangerous game but in some rare incidents the 9.3 @ 4000 PT's is the legal min

Last edited by tedthorn; February 5, 2016 at 07:31 AM.
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Old February 5, 2016, 10:10 AM   #9
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So.....as this wild beast is charging after shot #2 ( from a double rifle I'm guessing ) please explain a sidearm that will stop this beast. Better yet....explain what wild charging animal you speak of?

.375 Ruger and .375 H&H are generally the legal minimum for dangerous game but in some rare incidents the 9.3 @ 4000 PT's is the legal min
Wild beats are not armor plated. It's all about shot placement. I saw it posted numerous times so it must be true. I'd want a .357 with Buffalo Bore SD ammo for that angry cape buffalo I missed twice with a rifle.
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Old February 5, 2016, 10:33 AM   #10
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If you think a .357 is going to stop a charging Buff, you're dreaming and have no business being in the bush.

Besides, unless you've got a .375 H&H Magnum revolver, it's illegal to hunt with a smaller round in most of once-British Africa. Elsewhere it's usually the 9.3x74. Fire it at an animal, and your PH is obligated to report illegal hunting.

You rely on your PH, that's the way it works. If you can't hit the animal square, you have a human backup. You're going to set your shots up like a sniper, broadside into the boiler room, from cover or near cover.

If you don't have $30,000 for a safari, you're not going on a safari. It's a wealthy man's game, and always has been.
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Old February 5, 2016, 11:56 AM   #11
Photon Guy
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If you don't have $30,000 for a safari, you're not going on a safari. It's a wealthy man's game, and always has been.
Does the $30,000 include the price of a hunting weapon?

The idea of carrying a sidearm is not for hunting but for defense. Lets say you're being closed in on by a pride of lions, with a pistol you can move faster and get off more shots than with a rifle.
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Old February 5, 2016, 12:04 PM   #12
Jim Watson
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M. Ayoob got a .44 Magnum into someplace in Africa.
I recall he shot some medium game with it and carried it for self defense when he went to town. He did not think of it as "backup" against a charging wounded animal or predator defense.
That was some years ago, I doubt an American could get a license for a pistol these days.

I have not been to Africa, but a friend has been twice and he did not feel the need for a sidearm.
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Old February 5, 2016, 12:51 PM   #13
T. O'Heir
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"...I would want some backup..." Legalities aside, there is no hand gun you could carry that would do anything but annoy a big game animal you have pestered by shooting at it. Hunting with a hand gun is a different thing though.
Read this, paying particular attention to the paragraph entitled 'GUNS'.
http://www.bobbyhansensafaris.com/hu...andgunhunting/
This is the other 'must read' site. Starting with no handguns allowed in for self defense.
http://www.huntingreport.com/africa_...dures_temp.cfm
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Old February 5, 2016, 01:06 PM   #14
Photon Guy
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I mean self defense from dangerous animals not people. Bear hunters sometimes carry handguns for that same reason and the .44 Magnum was developed as a hunting handgun. I wouldn't expect to take down a charging cape buffalo with a .44 magnum but I would expect it to take down a lion. If the .44 Magnum is used for self defense against bears it could stop a lion.
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Old February 5, 2016, 03:10 PM   #15
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If you think a .357 is going to stop a charging Buff, you're dreaming and have no business being in the bush.
I was kind of hoping the would clear things up for anybody who didn't get humor with which it was posted.
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Old February 5, 2016, 04:19 PM   #16
tedthorn
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A pride of lions?

Educate yourself on all things safari please
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Old February 5, 2016, 05:19 PM   #17
kilimanjaro
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"If you think a .357 is going to stop a charging Buff, you're dreaming and have no business being in the bush.

I was kind of hoping the would clear things up for anybody who didn't get humor with which it was posted."

Humor is good, but it seems as if both humor and straight answers are not good enough.

In Africa, everything is dangerous, from asps and hyenas to warthogs and zebras. Then top that off with cheetah, lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant, rhino, the 'dangerous game'. The only ones you can even consider as vulnerable to a large handgun are the cats, and you'll never get close enough to a cheetah, nor will you ever see the leopard or lion that kills you unless you're a lousy rifle shot and wound one. Then your PH will take care of the issue.
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Old February 5, 2016, 08:05 PM   #18
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In Africa, everything is dangerous, from asps and hyenas to warthogs and zebras. Then top that off with cheetah, lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant, rhino, the 'dangerous game'. The only ones you can even consider as vulnerable to a large handgun are the cats
So a .44 Magnum wouldn't put down a hyena, warthog, or zebra?
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Old February 5, 2016, 09:02 PM   #19
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Not from the inside of Joburg jail. Find another unicorn to chase.
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Old February 5, 2016, 10:45 PM   #20
tedthorn
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Nobody hear will be shooting a cheetah for any reasons

Education

I'm sure there are several outfitters in South Africa that would cater to a plains game handgun hunt and be happy to accept your money.......after all, if you draw blood you pay for said animal regardless of recovery or not.

As far as carrying a handgun in town.....you will soon be an international prisoner hoping your embassy might help you

I've killed only eleven species of African game.....never had a dangerous moment in the field

The streets of Johannesburg are likely more dangerous to a tourist....and everyone knows a tourist in Africa

Education......and join the Accurate Reloader Forum

There is no forum with a greater gathering of highly knowledgeable African hunters and African outfitters on the web
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Old February 6, 2016, 06:37 AM   #21
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Tedthorn, I wish you do a writeup on the Africa trip.. your elk story was freaking awesome dude..
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Old February 6, 2016, 07:51 AM   #22
Photon Guy
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The streets of Johannesburg are likely more dangerous to a tourist....and everyone knows a tourist in Africa
I wouldn't need to carry a handgun in town or in the streets. As for the dangers of the streets there are other methods for dealing with that.
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Old February 6, 2016, 07:54 AM   #23
Jim Watson
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I suggest you talk to your outfitter when you get ready to go to Africa.
He will be up on the laws and polices (which are not always the same.)

Heck, he might approve of an American doing a fast draw on a charging leopard after missing it twice with an express rifle.
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Old February 6, 2016, 11:11 AM   #24
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in three hunting trips to africa i only saw one handgun in the bush and it was on a black truck driver, a 4 " rossi .44 mag. i handled it and wish i had taken a pic of it, we were on a privite hunting ranch in NE south africa. eastbank.
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Old February 6, 2016, 12:39 PM   #25
buck460XVR
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If you don't have $30,000 for a safari, you're not going on a safari. It's a wealthy man's game, and always has been.
Yep. While you don't really have to be wealthy, you do need to have a fistfull of expendable cash to spend on it. Not something the average middle class family man has. This is why exotic game ranches here in the U.S. have become so popular. Many of the most desired plains game is available for less monies, without the shots and airfare. For the most part the hunting experience is similar.
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