An African plains game hunt in the Free State offers the ideal introduction to those intent on hunting the open plains of central South Africa.
The 5 Day Beginner's Free State hunting package strives to offer beginner hunters or seasoned hunters hunting in Africa for the first time an enjoyable safari experience. Our hunting packages contain no hidden costs. The only safari-related costs which are not included are the dipping, packing and shipping of trophies and taxidermy work.
You will be met and welcomed upon arrival at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg by your professional hunter or hunters. From here the safari makes its way to the Free State. The afternoon is devoted to sighting of rifles and, time permitting, the first afternoon hunt.
The days are spent hunting in the Eastern Free State. The area is bordered by Lesotho, a small land-locked country which is often referred to as the 'roof of Africa'. The Maluti Mountains, which cover a large part of this country, offer the most dramatic mountain scenery in Southern Africa. The high altitude ensures that the summer months have pleasant days, but the winters can be very cold, with snow occurring from time to time. Open plains and some wooded ravines characterize this area. Longer shots are often required on the open grassland. An abundance of different plains game species are found in this area.
Species which are available in the Free State area include:
Black Wildebeest, Blesbok (Common), Blesbok (White), Blue Wildebeest, Bontebok, Buffalo, Bush Pig, Bushbuck, Common Reedbuck, Eland, Gemsbok, Giraffe, Grey Duiker, Grey Rhebuck, Impala, Jackal, Kudu, Lechwe (Red), Mountain Reedbuck, Nyala, Oribi, Ostrich, Red Hartebeest, Roan Antelope, Sable Antelope, Springbok(Black), Springbok(White), Springbok (Common), Steenbok, Tsessebe, Warthog, Waterbuck, Zebra (Burchell's), Zebra (Mountain).
You are welcome to take trophies in addition to those included in your package, should the opportunity present itself. All dangerous game has to be pre-booked. Additional trophies are charged at list prices.
A last morning spent in the African wilderness is followed by a journey to Pretoria and the ASH Adventures office. Some time is devoted to paperwork and is followed by a late lunch, after which guests are transferred to the airport where their memorable African hunting safari ends.
Clients are met upon arrival at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg and are returned there upon completion of the safari. Accommodation is in first rate hunting camps and lodges where all modern amenities are available. Meals are of the highest standard and a large variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are available and included.
The success rate on the trophies is close to 100%. If, however, you do not take one of the trophies which is included in the package, 90% of the list price of the trophy is deducted from your hunting safari price. A deposit of 20% is payable upon booking your hunting package. The balance is payable upon completion of the safari.
If your flight arrives after 13:00, we suggest that you overnight at the Castello di Monte Guest House on the day of arrival and start the safari on the following day. A cost of $200 per person includes accommodation, meals and a transfer to the hotel from O. Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg. If you do not wish to bring your own rifles, you are welcome to hunt with one of the rifles of your professional hunter. The only cost involved is the replacement of ammunition (About $100).
The Free State hunting areas range in size from 700 - 4 000 hectares (approximately 1 700 - 10 000 acres) and all provide an exceptional hunting experience. Our primary focus is ensuring that you take the trophies which are included in your safari. We make a determination on which camp to use based on current conditions prior to the starting date of your safari. Our success rate is very close to 100%.
In all cases the camps and lodges we use are luxurious with en suite bathrooms, electricity, stylish decoration and sumptuous food - places where families acting as observers would also feel at home and comfortable. Each of the camps and lodges we use feature on our website in the areas and camps section. We can provide an extensive list of references in your area who have hunted with us and who can bear testimony to the quality of accommodation.
A typical hunting day starts just before dawn at which time coffee and rusks are enjoyed. A selection of breakfast cereals, yogurt and juice is also available at this time. We then embark on the morning hunt. We normally hunt until about 11:00 at which time we return to the camp for brunch (a full meal which is a combination of breakfast and lunch). Some time is then devoted to relaxing in the camp. The hunt is resumed at about 14:30 and continues until sunset.
The method of hunting employed depends on the preference of the client and can consist of either walking and stalking, hunting from blinds or special vantage points from which we glass and ambush animals. The option of hunting from one of our well-equipped vehicles is also available should you have any medical problems, or are limited by not being able to walk long distances. Your Professional Hunter will discuss these options with you after arrival. All of these options are always available. It is not necessary to let us know which method you prefer prior to your arrival.
Observers are welcome to accompany the hunters on safari or relax in the camp. Should the observers in your group be interested in visiting some of the highlights in the area while the hunters are in the field, this can be arranged at an additional charge of $280 per day. The additional cost is incurred as we need to send a dedicated guide and vehicle to attend to the observers. On a typical safari, observers normally prefer to accompany hunters, which does not incur any additional charges.
The black wildebeest (also known as the white-tailed gnu) is endemic to South Africa and typically hunted on open plains, which is what makes hunting a black wildebeest in the Free State so ideal and authentic.
The springbok, South Africa's national animal, is an attractive, medium-sized antelope that also favors open plains and semi-arid wilderness areas. It is named for its tendency to 'spring' upwards when excited.
The snowy white blesbok is a morph species of South Africa's endemic common blesbok. This strikingly unique-looking antelope will make a fine and attractive addition to your trophy collection.