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Location: West Virginia
Joined: 05/05/2008
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Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

With recent events in Zim with the election and violence surrounding that process, is Zim still a viable choice for 2009 onward? Has anyone had any recent experience there?

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Location: Pa.
Joined: 06/15/2008
Posts: 45
zimbabwe

I could be wrong but I think I would opt to steer clear of Zimbabwe for a while. My father-in Laws friend went ther last fall for Cape buffalo and he had seen the fires in the distance from burning villages. I've never hunted in that country, only South Africa, but I think I would opt to stay further south.

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Joined: 11/01/2007
Posts: 92
Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

I have friends that live in "ZimBOBland" an email from them earlier this week said " we're keeping our heads down, not much else we can do".
These are decent hard working safari company owners, Crystal & Gary Hopkins owners of Dingwall Safaris whom run a great company despite the hardships there.
Would I make plans more than 1 yr out? NO WAY unless my deposit $ is held in escrow here stateside...as many comapnies do. Hell I don't trust any country in Africa to their political future...and I have hunted in several of them.
Unless you're after DG or a few select species only found in Zimbabwe Namibia is the place to go...safe, most stable and the PG rates may be the best in all of Africa.

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Joined: 07/06/2008
Posts: 4
Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

Many people have got the wrong mindset when they talk about going to Zimbabwe: they worry about their safety because the country is going through a bit of turmoil. The reality is that most of Africa is either in turmoil, has recently been in turmoil or is heading that way. If you want to avoid turmoil, go to Texas and shoot a few beasts that are fenced in for the convenience of the hunters. It's not hunting, it's just slaughter but hey, a lot of people do it.

Zimbabwe is the premier African destination for dangerous game after Tanzania, although the costs are nowhere near as high and the professionalism of the PHs probaby remains the best in the world. Dangerous game is the main reason hunters go to Zim and this is what they should be worrying about and focussing on. There is a limited argument for going to Zim just for plains game.

So, if dangerous game is your endeavour, why would you be bothered about some hassle at the airport by an immigration official, or being stopped at a roadblock on the way to your hunting area by a guy with mean eyes who hates you because you've got everything and he's got nothing?

Someone who is capable of putting down a Cape Buffalo, which is coming at them like a train, or shooting an Elephant between the eyes at 15 yards, should be able to handle unpleasant officials. If they are nervous about dealing with these people they have no place on a Zimbabwe dangerous game hunt.

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Joined: 11/01/2007
Posts: 92
Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

eye roll the difference between facing a cape buffalo and an AK wielding local is a long unpleasant stretch in a Zim jail house....would seem as though someone with any experience in Africa should know the difference!

I'm neither afraid of the boggie man nor a buff but smart enough to know there is a serious ethical difference in shooting a sport animal and a human.

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Joined: 07/06/2008
Posts: 4
Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

You're interpreting what I said out of context and you are entirely out of order, Single Malt. I'm not suggesting that you might have to shoot another person.

People carry guns in many parts of Africa, Government officials carry guns in most parts of Africa; it doesn't mean they are going to shoot you and it doesn't mean you have to shoot them.

In Zimbabwe, there is internal turmoil, which is a given fact. My point: if someone is unnerved by having to deal with the unpleasantness and suspicion that is the natural extension of political turmoil, then I do not believe they are up to dealing with the completely real and unfettered danger of hunting dangerous game.

No one is shooting hunters in Zimbabwe. The only person likely to shoot a hunter is another hunter.

CVC
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Zimbabwe still a viable destination?
Quote:
My point: if someone is unnerved by having to deal with the unpleasantness and suspicion that is the natural extension of political turmoil, then I do not believe they are up to dealing with the completely real and unfettered danger of hunting dangerous game.

Your statement is absolutely not true. Having the skills, physical and mental fortitude to deal with hunting dangerous game is very different than dealing with political conflict and uncertainty.

You know what the dangerous game is going to do under certain circumstances and you have the skills to cope with it. But, being in a country where the political landscape is changing, where it might erupt into violence and where you might find yourself at the mercy of locals or the government is entirely different.

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Joined: 07/06/2008
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Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

I don't agree with what you say. Seeking a SAFE environment to hunt DANGEROUS game is a contradiction in the reserves of the mental fortitude you refer to.

Zimbabwe may be an unstable environment, but there is simply no proven evidence that it is an inherently dangerous one for a visiting hunter, any more so than many other countries in Africa. South Africa is dangerous if you go wandering around the shanty-towns unescorted. Detroit is dangerous; have you been there recently?

We're not talking about hunting sheep in Southern Afghanistan, where the locals certainly would shoot you. The hunting industry in Zimbabwe is hugely valuable to the Government, to the (possible) government-in-waiting, to the business community, to the wildlife authority and to the indiginous and resident population. I maintain my view that there are certainly underlying qualities that someone should have if they believe themselves to be capable of hunting dangerous game. Being overly concerned that the place might "erupt into violence" is not one of them.

Name somewhere that isn't capable of erupting into violence? It even happens in so-called civilized parts of the world and it's patronising to pigeonhole black Africa at a place where you might find yourselves "at the mercy of the locals." How about Spain? Ireland? Virginia Tech?

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CVC
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Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

Debating if Zim is politically unstable or safe is an issue entirely different than stating that someone who is concerned about the stability and safety of a country doesn't have what it takes to hunt dangerous game which is what you said and is what I disagreed with.

"Seeking a SAFE environment to hunt DANGEROUS game is a contradiction in the reserves of the mental fortitude you refer to."

There are always inherent dangers in hunting, whether it is dangerous game, plainsgame or whitetail deer. Being up to the challenge of dangerous game hunting has nothing to do with not wanting to hunt in an politically unstable or unsafe country. The risks are different and it makes perfect sense to choose a relatively stable country over one that is not.

Zimbabwe may be an unstable environment, but there is simply no proven evidence that it is an inherently dangerous one for a visiting hunter, any more so than many other countries in Africa. South Africa is dangerous if you go wandering around the shanty-towns unescorted. Detroit is dangerous; have you been there recently?

So - this is not what I was debating.

Name somewhere that isn't capable of erupting into violence? It even happens in so-called civilized parts of the world and it's patronising to pigeonhole black Africa at a place where you might find yourselves "at the mercy of the locals." How about Spain? Ireland? Virginia Tech?

I doubt one has to worry about violence in New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the US and South Africa due to politics.

I know there is political instablity in Zim - is it safe - don't know, but that wasn't the point of my post. Again, just because someone wants to avoid an politically unstable and potentially dangerous country doesn't mean they shouldn't hunt dangerous game. It just means they are intelligent.

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Location: texas
Joined: 04/23/2006
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Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

all the reports i have read on hunting trips to zimbabwe over the past year have been favorable, other than the usual gripes about lost/delayed luggage, airline hassles, asking for bribes in johannesburg, etc. many question the political stability and that is an issue for many considering a trip there. so far, if a reputable PH is used (avoid the shady characters out of south africa) the hunts have gone well, with no problems from the government side. shortages have been noted, more so in the towns. the situation has the potential for civil war and who knows if or when such will come to pass. as noted, the dangerous game prices are much better than tanzania. i would actually consider going, if i had the money, for elephant and buffalo. this is a very divisive topic and we are all free to have our opinions and feelings about it . Think

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Joined: 11/01/2007
Posts: 92
Zimbabwe still a viable destination?

kevin davis surely we can all opt for ourselves if Zimbobland is on our hunting destination lists in the future. I've done it a few times myself in the past but will not be doing it again in the near futrure..that isn't the point I was making to Africanhand.
I was taking exception to the comment he is trying to weasle out of now pointed at "not having the nerve to hunt an area where you may be confronted by an armed Gov't member or local war vet for DG"
I dare say I've found the backbone on more occasions that most on this site to face AFRICAN DG..buff,lion, elephant and leopard.... pulling the trigger on some at near spitting distance,passing on others. Bravery has little to do with hunting Dg...faith in your skill as a hunter has everything to do with it.
would I bust a cap into an armed Zimbawe thug trying to kill me...in a heartbeat if it's live or die. otherwise no as an Uncle Bob prison isn't some place I wish to be sitting for 20-30 years awaiting my trial.

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