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Tim Herald-Back From Africa

August 16, 2010 by  
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Tim is busy preparing for his next trip up in Canada and asked me to post a series for him on his recent hunt in Zimbabwe. Sounds like he had another awesome adventure over in Africa.  Tim was filming these hunts for Nosler’s Magnum TV on Outdoor Channel. He has a great line up of hunts this fall all across North America for his show The Zone on The Sportsman’s Channel.

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Hunt dates: July 27-August 10, 2010
Location:
Dande Safari Area- Zambezi Valley- Zimbabwe

Outfitter: CM Safaris – Professional Hunter: Buzz Charlton
Trackers: Criton, Nyati, Driver: Eddie, Game Scout: Innocent

Guns, Ammo, Optics: TC ICON .458 Win Nosler 500 Grain Solids; Nosler 500 gr Partitions w/ Nikon Monarch Gold 1.5×6 -TC  ICON 300 Win. Nosler Custom 180 grain Accubonds w/Nikon Monarch 4x16x50 – Nikon EDG 10×42 BinoNikon Rifleman Rangefinder

Clothing and Misc Gear: Under Armour Guide shirts, pants, shorts, Cabela’s Active Trail hiking boots, Irridium 9555 Satellite Phone, Texas Hunt CO PH Ammo belt and gaiters, BogPod shooting sticks

Travel: Delta Biz Class Lexington- Atlanta- Johannesburg; SAA to Harare arranged by Kathi Klimes at Wild Travel

Animals Hunted: Tuskless Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Leopard, Sable
Animals Harvested: Tuskless Elephant, Cape Buffalo bull and cow, Hyena, Baboon, Leopard
Animals Seen: Elephant, Buffalo, Lion, Kudu, Bushbuck, Civet, Impala, Zebra, Duiker, Baboon, Grysbok, Klipspringer, Honey Badger, Hyena, Leopard, Sable

Videographer- Jon Aaseng- for Nosler’s Magnum TV on the Outdoor Channel

PreHunt: I booked this hunt about a year ago, and it started as a Tuskless Elephant/Sable hunt in Makuti, but as our group grew to 4 hunters, Lee Britt, Skip Nantz and Tom Jensen, Buzz and Myles both recommended that we move to Dande.  I loved the idea except that I knew the chances for Sable for Skip and I would go down moving away from Makuti, but as time went on, I added a Buff to my hunt, so all was good. Got to spend some time with Buzz and Myles at Dallas Safari Club and SCI conventions in January, and I began to get excited!

My last buff hunt, I killed 2 in Charisa with a single shot, but I wanted more shells in my gun this time, especially with elephant on the menu. I got in touch with the guys at the TC custom shop, and they built me a custom .458 Win on the ICON bolt action platform. It is a real shooter and shot ½” groups at 100 yards off the bench, and the 500 grain Nosler Solids and Partitions hit in the exact same place. I have a matching ICON .300 Win. that shoots 180 grain Nosler Accubond Trophy Grade lights out. I practiced almost weekly with .458 for 2 months before the trip and put about 100 rounds through the big gun. As I said, the gun will do the job, but I never claimed to be the best shot in the world, especially off sticks. I went into the trip confident though.

Physical Preparation: This was a tough one. I knew this could be a physical hunt, and after all the days spent in a treestands last fall and eating through the winter, I was as heavy as I have ever been weighing in at 216 lbs. I decided to do something about it, and starting the last week of May, I got serious. My first 49 days into preparation, I went to the gym 48 days, and out of a total of 65 days, I worked out 61. I started out running hills on an elliptical machine about 3 miles 4 days a week and 2 miles 3 days a week. On the 2 mile days, I also did about 30-40 minutes of weight training, and every day I did some sort of ab work. I lost 31 pounds the first 7 weeks, and was up to 6.5 miles 4 days a week, and 4.25 miles the 3 days I did weights for a total of about 38 miles. The entire time I was on a pretty strict diet and I have to admit, I hadn’t felt so good in a long time. I did miss the summertime Margaritas though! I would have liked to have lost another 10 lbs, but I was down 4 waist sizes and had to have all my pants taken in for the trip. Myles told me to be in shape and ready to do sprints in the sand as he was sure Buzz would get me into “something”  during our hunt.

Leopard !: About 6 weeks prior to the trip, I found out there was a Leopard that had opened up in Dande, and I asked Buzz if I could hunt it. He told me if it was available when I got there, I could do a Leopard add on. I can’t tell you how many times I prayed that Spots would still be on quota upon my arrival. Exactly two weeks before the trip, Buzz sent me an e-mail telling me that I could hunt the Leopard. He said they had a really big male that was a regular feeder, and he thought we should go for it. I told him I was all in and asked him to prebait for 5 days prior to my arrival. I knew that only 10 days was really short for what I had on the plate, but that also meant there would be no getting bored!

To be continued….

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