Scott McCahon photo

Hunting: keep it simple, son!

With a phone call to the greatest station owner in the Cape, we were underway. But the deal was my son Tom and I kept it simple: nothing fancy, just swags, snags and a rifle each. 

“No problem, Dad,” Tom said.

Well, we ended with a bit more gear but essentially it was a basic camp and these are often the best as it’s all about the experience and companionship. 

Late on the first evening we rolled the swags out and were twice disturbed by boars coming in to drink. Tom managed to dispatch them by torchlight. A promising start.

Next morning, with day packs stocked with water, safety gear and essentials, we were off along the creek towards a far billabong. We netted a good boar each during the stalk along the creek. 

It’s great to work with and be aware of the natural environment. Slightly darker green or more condensed foliage indicates possible water, prompting you to slow your pace and use all your senses to detect potential prey before it either explodes out or sneaks away, totally undetected. 

Reaching the waterhole, we were certain there would be a boar here; we just had to find him.


Movements in the shadows; it was not a mob of wild cattle. To our left a family group of brumbies was heading in for a cool drink. 

Gotta be a pig here. A grunt and a snapping of branches. A solid boar erupted from the mud. 

Just as the boar reached the fringing long grass, Tom fired a remarkable running quartering-away shot slowed him. Turning, the boar now charged back into the waterhole, where Tom was able to quickly dispatch it. 

Removing his boots, Tom retrieved his well earned trophy from the muddy water for a classic photo. 

We headed back to our camp for a sausage sizzle and a few hours reflecting around the campfire to truly appreciate the simpler things in life.




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Scott McCahon