Buffaloed in Benin

Today’s blog comes from one of our country’s most recognized wildlife biologists/outdoor writers/television show host of Trailing the Hunter’s Moon , Larry Weishuhn.  Although universally known as “Mr. Whitetail”, Larry trails the “Hunter’s Moon” throughout the world in search of big game hunting adventures. Tune in for this weeks episode of Trailing the Hunter’s Moon Saturdays at 9:30 AM ET.

“We’ll follow the tracks!” Said Chimo Chelet our Professional Hunter for Safari Chelet as we were once again about to head deep in the the Benin’s sub-Sahara Desert brush lands.  “It’s hot.  Grab a big bottle of water to carry with you in a pack. The trackers will carry extra water for us.  This could be a long walk. The temperature is already 110 and we’re just getting to the hottest part of the day.  It will be 118 if not 120 within the next couple of hours.  Wet the towels you’re carrying around your neck. It’s going to be hot…” warned Chimo.  “But, I think we can catch up with them.  There’s a big dark bull in the herd with good horns.”

Buffalo track, typical of what we followed in Benin.

Buffalo track, typical of what we followed in Benin.

I untied my neckerchief from around my neck and tied it around my head just above my eyes where it would keep sweat out of my eyes.  I did not want perspiration getting in my eyes at a time when I needed to make a shot at a buffalo.

I took the sling off my Ruger .375 Ruger Guide Gun then glanced at my Zeiss Duralyt scope and made sure it was cranked all the way down to 2x.  Next I made certain I had an ample supply of Hornady’s 300 grain DGX (expandable) and 300 grain DGS (solid).  I loaded 2 DGS solilds in the magazine then a DGX on top of those, and put aother DGX in the chamber as instructed by my PH, then made certain the Ruger was on “safe”.

Before following Chimo and the trackers I grabbed my BOG Pod RLD shooting sticks.  I’m a firm believer in shooting from a rest.  When we caught up to the western savannah buffalo we were about to track I wanted to precisely place my bullet.

Larry prepares to take a shot at a western savannah buffalo while Chimo Chelet and Tim Fallon watch.

Larry prepares to take a shot at a western savannah buffalo while Chimo Chelet and Tim Fallon watch.

We followed tracks for three hours, several times almost catching up with them.  We were fast depleting our water.  I dearly hoped we caught up with the buffalo soon, not only because I badly wanted to take a bull, but also if we did, it would mean the trackers would go get the vehicle and we wouldn’t have to walk back to where we had started from.

Up ahead we spotted the herd angling away.  We picked up out pace, thankful the wind in our face.  I made certain my rifle was loaded.. With a little luck…..

 

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