|Again, another early morning start, but today we went to the neighboring Shelanti Game Ranch located about 18 miles away.
This is a hugh game farm specializing in the breeding of wild game with an area of some 40,000 acres and owned by Hanno's wife, Bardini's father, Edwin Classen, a large feed-lot operator in the Free State.
Within the property are 13 fenced off breeding camps and another 5 reserved for buffalo. All these areas are protected by two fence lines separated by 10 meters.
Today, we all loaded in two game vehicles focused on bagging a giraffe for Nini. The ranch assigned an apprentice Professional Hunter, Christopher, as our guide accompanied by our two from our home base, Danie Kruger, and Shaun Shrives, the latter acting as Safari cameraman.
First stop was to climb up a large rock outcropping to an overview called Pride Rock. Here we could scope out the valley below looking for our target, an older bull giraffe. The game farm was anxious to bag two bull giraffes before seasons end in November.
Next we came by a larger pond in which a large crockillle was lazing. The group that arrived before us spotted three Hippos.
Soon thereafter, our guides spotted the giraffe, Nini, Danie, and Sean alighted and took off up through the brush at 8:30. The rest of us stayed behind with the vehicles. An hour later we heard a shot in the direction they had headed. Two more shots followed to confirm the kill.
By radio, Danie called back to confirm and the rest of the crew started scrambling up through the bush. I stayed behind with Chris and we soon took off in the Land Cruiser in four-wheel drive overland through heavily rocked terrain up to the kill.
The animals body had to be removed from the site. Hence, it was necessary to skin the animal and quarter the body so it could be loaded up in the vehicle. We had brought with us three men from Hanno's ranch to accomplish the job.
While this was going on, Danie started a fire, to cook our lunch.
After lunch, Marco, Maurizio and I headed out seeking their game.
Our method of hunting was to creep along in the Land Cruiser at about 5 mph scanning for game. Our guide and assigned driver/tracker have exceptional skills in spotting game, discerning sex, etc, through heavy brush at great distances.
We stopped and alighted one or the other shooter depending on spotted animal. It wasn't long thereafter that Maurizio got his Impala.
After photographing the event, loading the animal, we started back to base camp. However, we soon recognized a flat rear tire. Unfortunately, the tool for removal of the spare tire underneath was the wrong size and we couldn't access the spare. So, we started limping back, but in a sort while needed to lighten the Land Cruiser and stopped at an outlying hunting camp while Chris took the vehicle back to HQ and bring back Shaun's Toyoto double cab.
And that was a very successful day.