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Destinations: My Favorite Airgun Hunting Trip

Posted by on February 11, 2013

This female springbok was the first plainsgame animal legally taken with an airgun in South Africa, dropping to 120 grain slug from my Quackenbush .308

I am going to enter an occasional post on my favorite air gun hunting venues; over the last ten years I’ve hunted in Indiana, Kentucky, Illinois, Tennessee, Michigan, New York, Virginia, Florida, Louisiana, Texas, Arizona, Nevada, California, Utah, Kansas, Missouri, South Dakota, New Mexico, and South Africa to name a few, with many new destinations making the list every year. These hunts have targeted squirrel, rabbit, crow, turkey, prairie dogs, groundhogs, nutria, beaver, raccoons, fox, bobcats, coyote, hogs, deer, and all manner of African plains game. And I associate the places with the type of game, and hunting in different places always enhances the experience.

This month I am going to talk about my favorite hunt, one I’ve done several times over the last several years; the Eastern Cape of South Africa. There are several reasons I love the place, some related to hunting and some for personal reasons. My wife is from there, we got married there, and a lot of family is there …… so in some ways it’s become my adopted home. But when it comes to hunting; it’s the shear volume of game, the variety, and the adventure of hunting in a place I’d been dreaming about since I was a boy.
Two of my friends, professional hunters Rob Dell and Andrew Myers and I received the first permissions from the SA Ministry of Tourism to conduct airgun hunts several years ago. We had to host a visit from officials of the Ministry and the East Cape Game Management Association, in which we demonstrated the guns, inspected the game we’d bagged, an write a report on the two week hunt. These guys are the undisputed experts on airgun hunting in the region, and now how to set up to address the specific needs of airgun hunters.

There are animals such as the hyrax, which are called dassie locally, you won’t get anywhere else.


The springhare, which looks like a cross between a gerbal, a kangaroo, and a jackrabbit have a really unique movement and don’t stop for long if they do.

My game log from these hunts include springbok, impala, bush buck, Kudu, warthog, Steinbok, duiker, and on the small game side are pigeons, Guinea fowl, crows, Egyptian geese, ducks, rabbits, springhare, dassie, mongoose, porcupine, jackal, vervet, and others I am forgetting. I have never had so many days of non-stop shooting, and with such a range of game, anywhere else in the world!

Were putting together a hunt in the late summer of 2013, Robert and Kip from AoA will be there, probably Fredrick from FX, and I’m trying to get a couple of my buddies from Virginia to come along. We are going to spend a week on Robs farm, they have outstanding facilities with great rooms, great food, but most importantly great hunting. We have room for 4-5 more guys to join, the deal is; we’ll arrive on Sunday and depart the following Saturday, we’ll pick everybody up in Port Elizabeth on the Eastern Cape, transportation, lodging, and food are included. The airgun hunting will include a springbuck or impala, and a Steinbok or duiker, plus all the small game and predator hunting you can handle. The base fee is $2000. (airfare separate) and you can add other big game animals for an additional fee. We’ll have air and lots of cool airguns, and if you want to hunt some big game animals, we’ll have firearms available.
For the guys living in the states, I’ll help you with the paperwork for your guns, and if we can arrange to meet up in the States or arrive in SA at the same time, I’ll walk you through customs. This is going to be the hunt of a lifetime for airgun hunters! Shoot me an email if you’re interested in learning more.

One of many warthogs taken over the years hunting the Eastern Cape.

11 Responses to Destinations: My Favorite Airgun Hunting Trip

  1. Lou

    When I read your blog and the offer of the trip I was very excited! But then came down to earth and realized that with retireing in March and moving would not really be able to do it this summer. I hope you may do another possibly next year. Iwould still be interested in the details of the trip.
    I have read your books and follow your blog. I’m looking forward to small game hunting in S. UT this spring with my Tallon SS.
    A fan

    • Jim Chapman

      Hi Lou,
      Maybe you’ll be able to join us another time! I do these trips every year or two. Understand about moving, we’ve been relocating between Indiana and Minnesota and it’s played havoc with my hunting this season. Thanks for reading the books and the blog. Talon SS is a fun hunting gun, I’ve used mine a lot over the years, and S. Utah is a great place to use it. I’m about 12 years off from retiring, but we want to move to St. George by then, if not before.

      • Lou

        I have 3 days left to work and then should be in St George by the end of the month (March). Can’t wait to get some time out in the open as here in Hawaii is not conducive to shooting. If you are in the area of St G. I would be honored to be able to sit down and talk with you or have you stay at our place. We have a bueatiful home with guest facilities and are about 20 miles out of town up toward Pine valley. So if you are in town call!

        • Jim Chapman

          Hi Lou, hope you have a good trip back to Utah. We have a lot of friends in St George and I’ve been promising my wife and daughter a trip out there this summer or fall. I will keep your contact info and be sure to give you a call when we’re in town, I’d enjoy meeting up for lunch and to talk airguns if you’re available.

  2. Lou

    I would love that and look forward to it
    Thanks Lou

  3. Sanka Perera

    May be you’ll have your next birth in hell for killing this much innocent animals..!!!

    • Jim Chapman

      I think you must have a pretty skewed understanding of nature to think of animals as innocent. they are neither guilty or innocent, they simply are. And there are many valid reasons for killing them; food, pest reduction, limiting populations to a viable carrying capacity. If I am reborn in hell, it is probably due to the fact that I don’t have enough patience for those I consider ignorant, but by taking the time to respond to you I am taking steps to rectify that.

  4. Cliff

    Can u kill a springbok with a 20. cal air rifle if its place the shot on its head

    • Jim Chapman

      Not the right gun for it, and illegal to boot. You can kill anything with a slingshot if you try enough, but you do a lot of damage while trying.

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