Combined diary entries by Carl van Zyl & Paul Brisso
Day 7 – September 16 – The Bushbuck gods came smiling………
Carl owed me a good Bushbuck, and not just because of yesterday. When I hunted with Carl a couple of years ago in the East Cape, South Africa, a Bushbuck was the one animal on my “wish list” where we came up empty. Late on the last morning of our hunt I was on the sticks waiting for a magnificent Cape Bushbuck. He was following two females and was about to take two more steps forward to clear a bush and present an easy shot, when he inexplicably deserted his companions and melted into the heavy brush to bed down for the day. We returned that evening and he came out too late and at the wrong place . Carl still claims he has that same ram waiting for me and a return match.
I was frustrated with my shooting. The previous day was not good and I couldn’t do anything but blame myself. The rifle I brought for plains game seemed ok at the initial sight-in on day one, and I had written off my fatal, but high right shot on the Red Duiker to operator error.
Fortunately Carl had more confidence in my shooting ability and ran us to the range before setting out this morning. I was surprised to find my rifle was shooting considerably high and right. After a few rounds we had the rifle dialed in. A fairly good excuse for the poor shooting was a confidence builder.
We spent a slow-morning cruising the forests looking for Bushbuck without much success. After an early lunch, Poen suggested we wait out a pan for the afternoon as one in particular was the favorite watering hole for a number of good rams.
I am not good at sitting, but was willing to follow the decision of the PH’s. About noon we were in position. Carl and I were situated in camp chairs, me with a book and Carl with his diary. Poen and the trackers were perched above us on a termite mound watching the pan. Not 15 minutes had elapsed before Poen saw “the” Bushbuck returning from a midday drink. After some maneuvering and detailed guidance by Carl and Poen on how to find the ram in the heavy brush we had him down.