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Day 6

Join Pat Lefemine in the Northwest, and Limpopo Provinces of South Africa for a Buffalo and Lion Bowhunt

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day 6

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day 8

day 9

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day 11

day 12

day 13

day 14

day 15

day 16



Discuss this hunt


We tracked for miles over terrain like this

We pushed hard today. Up at 6:00 AM and in the bush by 6:45. Our goal was to find the buffalo track from where we left him last night. And we did that at 7:15 when Simone, our tracker, noticed his track where he had crossed the dirt road. That was the start of one very long day. The buffalo fed through a green pasture, stepped through some wallows and then headed up the mountain. I was amazed at the tracking abilities of Simone. He tracked that buffalo over rocks and cliffs to the top of the mountain where it became sandy again. At first I thought he was kidding. He would point at nothing, a broken twig perhaps. Then we found fresh buffalo crap along the rocks so there was no reason to believe his skills were anything other than supernatural. Jimmy and Jacques were equally impressive. As a team they were unreal. They could track a mouse across granite with enough motivation.


This wallow was a good find. But the Ranch Hand says he will only use this at night.

At the top, the track was a lot harder to distinguish. It got mixed in with a herd of eland and I could tell they were starting to lose it. We eventually got on it again and followed it for miles. But doubt set in and they began to wonder if it was the same track, and if so, if it was fresh. It was very moist last night and we were in the mountains with rivers and swamps. Tracks stay fresh longer than the Northwest Province where Madiakgama property lies. We hiked back off the mountain and down to the truck. It was lunchtime now so we had a quick bite, then we went back to where we thought we got confused. We found the real track and started following that again for hours. It took us down the other side of the mountain and onto a trail that ran atop a creek bank. At the end was a cattle fence - and we lost it there. But it appeared that the buffalo might have headed into a cutting of blue-gum trees. The bases had been logged for pulp and the stumps sprouted incredible thick bushes 10 feet tall. It was too thick to track a buffalo through there. As Jimmy put it, you can do it, but it’d be suicide.


The Bluegum tree plantation was only 10 acres but it was so thick that heading in there after a buffalo would be suicide

It was now 3 PM and we had another 3 hours of daylight left. We had no track and nothing to go on so Jacques decided to hike to a far mountain where we could glass the lush valleys and swamps below. This was an excellent idea, even though we were all dog-tired from hiking miles and miles since early this morning. We stayed at the top of that mountain glassing for an hour before hiking down at six. We drove some roads but never found any sign. This buffalo hunt was going to be a tough one. We were hunting one particular bull in an area the size of a US town. The bull was estimated to be around 10 years old, he knows this area well and has never been successfully hunted with either bow or rifle. There was another big bull shot here last year but during that hunt they never even saw the bull I am hunting – even though he was around. He’s old, smart, and he now knows he’s being hunted. He’ll make a hell of a trophy when I get him – if I get him. All we need is for us to see him, before he sees us. Then the rest is up to Jacques and me.


My Broadhead/Arrow Selection

Months before this trip I had to decide which equipment I would use for this cape buffalo hunt. Cape buffalo are legendary for their toughness. Their ribs are wide and they overlap each other behind the leg. They can live for days, not hours, with a gut shot and their vitals are relatively small compared to their stomach and intestines. With big old bulls approaching one ton, choosing the proper archery equipment is obviously critical for both the success of your hunt, and more importantly - your safety. So without question I did my homework and chose what I considered the perfect combination of broadhead, arrow, and Bow. Today we'll discuss my choice of broadhead and the testing which led me to this particular tip.


Muzzy Phantom SS (220 gr. 4-blade shown)

You may recall that back in the summer we did several tests using different arrow and broadhead combinations LINK TO FEATURE. The head I was most impressed with and chose for this hunt was the 2-blade, Stainless Steel Phantom broadhead by Muzzy Products. There were two things which really caught my eye about this head. First was the weight. At 200 grains it was just what I was looking for when assembling my super-heavy arrows. The second was the durability of the blades and ferrule. My tests were conducted on 3/4" plywood sheeting which is pretty tough. While it may not be the same as the ribs on a buffalo, it provided me with enough relative information to make a confident decision.

Testing showed the 2-blade broadhead penetrated far better than the 4-blade.

 

Testing also showed a dramatic difference between the heavy slower arrow, and the faster lighter arrow.

 

During Testing, I found that a 980 grain Easton 2018 shaft, with a graphite Easton Trooper shaft glued inside it, along with a 2-blade Muzzy Phantom had dramatically more penetration ability than any other combination I tested. The total arrow weight was right at 1000 grains. The super heavy mass of the arrow out of my 82lb bow produced KE of approximately 80 ft/lbs. The downside was my speed suffered. At only 190 fps, my pins would need to be spaced wide and range estimation became much more critical. Since I only shoot 20 yards, this would not be a problem. If I needed a second, longer shot, it may be a factor. Time will tell.

 

 

 

 

 

This Bowhunting Adventure is sponsored by these fine companies..

 

 

 

 

 

Next - Day 7


Our Professional Hunters for this safari is: Madiakgama Safaris
P.O. Box 138
VRYBURG
8600
Republic of South Africa
International Phone: 011-27-82-684222

USA Agent - Jeff Frey
Bowhunters Select Outfitters

717-261-5951
Email:
[email protected]



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