We welcome another article submitted by Mark B depicting his recent experience cape buffalo hunting in South Africa!
As written by Mark B.:
In a previous post to this site I documented my Hippo hunt. Unexpected as the Hippo harvest was, the main safari animal on my list, which was to begin the next day, was the Cape Buffalo, Dagga Boy or more appropriately, Black Death. This Buffalo hunt was supposed to be my first day on the safari.
Many months before my scheduled safari was to begin, I purchased a new Vanguard DG Rifle in .375 H&H and topped it off with a VX-6 1-6X24 Leupold scope. This rifle has a beautiful stock only to be equaled by its superb accuracy. I hand loaded all my ammo using 350 Gr bullets manufactured by Forth Fork. These rounds shot less than 1 MOA at 100 yds.
I spent many hours pressing the trigger with my rifle resting on the sticks. I haven’t always made the best shots deer hunting in Georgia and I couldn’t afford less than an excellent shots in Africa. Much of my practice was from my living room window at a three inch red dot out in the woods. As far as I could get was 70 yds.
As I first arrived in Africa we immediately went to a 50 yd range to test my rifles point of aim and to let the PH’s know I could shoot it. I put a soft and a solid into about a half inch group. They were happy and so was I.
We got up in the morning grabbed some breakfast and after good light we headed out to look for Buffalo sign. We drove through the thick woods road looking for fresh droppings and tracks. The trackers were amazing, looking at tracks and being able to tell how long ago the Buff were there.
The Buffalo herd were seen much of the morning. We always stopped and made stalks on the herd but the Buffalo always alluded us. After all bumping the herd all morning it was getting very hot and they would soon lay down so we gave it a rest. Lunch was served as we rested and tried to cool off.
Not long after eating lunch the tracker called on the radio and reported the herd was in the field. Everyone grabbed their rifles and we jumped in the truck to head that way.
Our approach was from the woods side of the field to try and get within shooting range. As we broke from the cover of the woods, the Buffalo herd was still in the field. I was moved around at the edge of the woods to get closer to them.
It was no secret to the Buffalo, they knew we were there. After stalking them all morning they seemed to stand their ground. The herd bull showed us his big horns by shaking them at us more than once. I was to take the herd bull as he was beginning to breed with his own offspring.
I got on the sticks and I waited and waited for a shot as the herd kept shifting around. I needed to make my shot with no animals in back of the herd bull. I was told the Buffalo get behind and in front of each other to block your shot. I must have been on the sticks with sweat running down in my eyes for 10 minutes before I had an opportunity for a clear shot. I was told to take the shot when it was clear and I was ready.
The rifle recoiled from the blast of the 350 Gr soft point NF bullet leaving the barrel of my .375 at 2273 FPS. I shot the Bull square in the middle of the chest as it faced me. I was told and read that many times the Buffalo would be looking at you before the shot. As one famous hunter/writer said, they look at you like you owe them money!
The Buffalo went about 15 yds or so and fell, he tried to get up once but could not. After trying to get up he expired. The rest of the heard surrounded him trying to get him up. They were even licking the blood on the wound. Eventually they moved away.
I wasn’t done. I still had a Buffalo Cow to collect. Clint, my PH, asked if I wanted to take my cow now and I said yes. There was a cow with a red tag in her ear they wanted taken as she kept charging the workers at the farm. Just before my arrival there was a serious drought and the herd needed to be thinned.
The sticks were set up again and I was looking for an open shot at the cow. I waited and waited for a clear shot. The cow was finally in the clear as my .375 bucked from the shot. I hit her shoulder and she went down. I needed to make two more shots to finish her off.
Wow what a great opportunity for two Buffalo and in one day. This is certainly one day I will never, ever forget.
Thanks again Mark for another great article and video on your Cape Buffalo Hunting experience in South Africa! Check out Mark’s video below! Step up your game, and check out our African Safari Hunting Packages to book your own Cape Buffalo Hunting experience.