Freddy and Kelly Chesney arrived on the farm for their first African Safari. They were two of the friendliest, caring and enjoyable clients I ever had the privilege of guiding.
The hunt did not start well as the airline lost their luggage and it got sent to another continent. This not only included their clothes and personal items but also all their hunting gear. The airline promised to look into the matter. This is not good news on a ten day hunt. Every day is precious and expensive.
I called Redge Grant from Archers Edge that night and explained the problem. Redge and his team moved mountains to get replacement archery equipment delivered at the farm with in a day and a half. Luckily, both husband and wife used Bowtech so it was easier to supply them. Redge delivered the exact same setup that Freddy used but for Kelly he brought the new Heartbreaker bow set at 46lb in pink camo. All other equipment like arrows, broad heads, releases etc. were already tuned in and all we had to do was to fine-tune the sights.
The hunt could finally start and it was decided that Kelly would join her husband in the blind as it would be her first hunt with a bow. They were not in the blind for more than one hour when a huge Kudu walked in. Kelly took one look and pushed her husband aside with a “Dirty Harry” look on her face. Freddy new better than to argue with his wife.
Kelly drew the bow and settled into her anchor point and the 450gr CE arrow with a 100gr Slick Trick blew a hole through the Kudu’s lungs. As the bull ran off Kelly started shaking like a wet dog. Buck fever like that I have never witnessed before. The shot looked good and after waiting a while we followed the wide, clear blood trail. 60y further we came upon her monster Kudu. 54” for your first African animal is not something that happens every day and after only one hour in the blind it is double happiness.
After the customary photos and excitement the Kudu was dropped off at the skinning shed for a Pedestal mount and the two of them went back to the same blind. A short while later a few Warthog came in with a nice big boar leading the crowd. Freddy made a perfect double lung shot and the pig was in the salt. He said that the bow Redge lent him felt precisely like his and he never knew the difference.
That first day of hunting ended perfectly. The following day started off with Kelly placing a perfect arrow through both lungs of a magnificent Nyala bull. This lady was on the war path and her husband could not have been more proud. Just before lunch the bomb dropped. A big lone Sable bull slowly appeared and was loitering around the area. Kelly told her husband that he was not to move or to shoot at anything including the big Blue Wildebeest that was at the water. She wanted that Sable.
We never came into camp for lunch. Kelly wanted the Sable and we waited a few hours for it to come closer and present a shot.
Finally it happened and Kelly, after shaking the “buck fever” let lose an arrow that went straight through both lungs. The Sable did not make 50y before it expired. The tape measured out at 39,5” and that is big for any hunt. Kelly could not stop smiling and laughing that evening around the camp fire. She and her husband both were having a great time even though the trip started out with a lot of stress.
Freddy wanted to catch up with Kelly and arrowed a great 51” Kudu bull and a 27” Nyala the next day while Kelly took the day off to go to town and get some new clothes etc. Freddy got busted twice by a herd of Buffalo as he was drawing to shoot a pig. The buffalo came right up to the shooting hole to have a look at what was going on. Every time I told him to calm down and shoot the pig he just looked at me with big eyes and said that he heard too many stories of Big, Bad, Buff and that he was not so keen on playing with them.
The Buff finally left after turning the whole water hole into a mud puddle and we sighed with relieve. In the wake of the Buff came a lone male Impala with too much horn on his head. He had a huge headache from carrying them everywhere and Freddy decided to put an end to his suffering with a great double lung shot at 19y. The Slick Trick really does work well as both entrance and exit holes are much bigger than the diameter of the broad head.
The next day I took them to the opposite side of the area as they have not been to that side of the property yet. This proved to be a good thing as we were in the blind only 15mins when a nice big Waterbuck bull walked in as if he owned the place. Kelly lifted her finger and both of us men knew to “SS” Sit and shut-up. Kelly let the bull drink and as he turned broad side she gave him a Slick Trick tight behind the shoulder. He dropped within sight of the blind and before he gave his last twitch, Kelly had another arrow nocked and was lining up on a Warthog that wanted to sneak in under the radar.
The Warthog was tough as can be but made it 150y when his steam also ran out. This lady was COOKING! Freddy asked me if we could go fishing as his wife was turning into the great animal slayer and all he could do was eat the scraps. The twinkle in his eye was proof that this man could not have asked for a better, better-half.
As the days passed, the salt room filled up with all sorts of animals. Kudu, Sable, Impala, Waterbuck, Warthog, Red Hartebeest, Blue Wildebeest and Zebra all made the journey to the skinning shed. Freddy and Kelly were properly accustomed to the African hunting scene by now and we all were having a great time.
Before long the safari came to an end and we were saying our good-byes. Freddy took me aside and booked the same slot for next year with the instructions that we have to find his wife a Leopard. As they walked off to the departure terminal, I was deep in thought making plans for next year because those two people deserve everything that is good. Just like that old saying – What goes around, comes around.