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  1. #1

    Default What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Can anyone tell me about the Low Veld country from Hoedspruit north to the border. What is the hunting like there? All farm hunting, I guess?
    Looks like nice country. Any comments would be appreciated. Thanks, Abrum.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Just north of Hoedspruit, up to the Olifants river, consists mostly of large concervancies. That means several game farms joined together into a larger reserve. Mostly there are no fences between the concervancies and the KNP. Hunting is strictly controlled, with approval of KNP. Big 5 country off course. Lots of other game as well. Beautifull terrain, mostly bushveld with some scattered rocky outcrops. Weather is mild to hot in winter and scorching hot in summer. A Canadian might take a while to acclimatize!

    North of the Olifants Phalaborwa town, mines and surrounding townships and settled rural areas. Further north, mostly game farms and even further north tribal land. The game farms also stock some of the big 5 and are open for commercial hunting. Still bushveld but flatter than further south. The tribal land is not managed in any recognized way. Often lions and ellies escape from the KNP and cause damage to the tribal subsistence farmers. Damage control permits are then issued allowing the offending animals to be hunted. Opportunities are not predictable.

    Hope this helps?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Others with better knowledge will chime in shortly, but here goes:

    You would be hunting some very traditional hunting grounds in that area. Way back in the late 1800's and early 1900's the farmers visited those areas during the winterto hunt for biltong and skins.

    Depending on the area, you can expect African savanna (plains with a very strong presence of trees), bush veld (densely wooded acacia growth), koppies (rocky outcrops) and even mountainous terrain.

    The climate is mostly sub tropical but it can be harshly cold in winter. The SA winters are dry and therefore felt temperatures are colder than one expect.

    The animals native to that area are mostly not the desert and high veld types like springbok and blesbok; rather kudu, giraffe, hartbees, tsessebe, impala etc.

    The Klaserie Private Nature Reserve is close to Hoedspruit. To the best of my knowledge that is the reserve which contained the last living specimen of the "Cape Lion". It was a male called Grootpoot and he died during the mid 1980's. When we hunted there in 1984 the farm owner tried to show us tracks as big as dinner plates but he could not find any clear ones.

  4. #4

    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    A-R, Thank you, that is very helpful. Thank you again!
    Abrum

  5. #5

    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Ds J, Very interesting, Thank you. Abrum

  6. #6

    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    As I mentioned elsewhere, I am going to hunt buffalo near Hoedspruit in two weeks. I hope to get a chance to explore the country a bit too. I think that it would be pretty nice/interesting country north, close to KNP border, up to Crooks Corner. I hope to spend some time in the future along the Limpopo River exploring with my wife. That country fascinates me. I have been in the Waterberg Mountains several times. Love it! That's all wonderful country. Lots of history too. Abrum

  7. #7
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    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Get and read "Jock of the Bushveld" while you are here - it's a SA classic.

    Also, get to taste Sabi coffee and read up on SA history: Oom Paul Kruger, The Voortrekkers as well as Shaka Zulu, Moshesh (Moshoeshoe) and the different ethnic groups.

    If history is important to you, read up on the 1820-settlers, the vow of 1838, the Dificane/Mfekane, Mzilikazi, Mantatese, both Anglo-Boer wars.

    If you have been here a few times you would know South Africa drinks Castle or Black Label Beer. Windhoek, made in Namibia, is in my opinion one of the best available beers. You would also know pap and biltong by now.

    There are interesting ruins in the Kruger Park; from early iron ore works in the north to the early Portuguese trading post near Pretoriuskop.

  8. #8

    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Thanks Ds J, Those are all great suggestions. I have read many books on South Africa history from "Jock..." to "Commando". I have actually read Commando three times and have even been to the spot near the Sundays River where his three pals were executed. ( the three trees are still there on the hill top.) I have read and travelled to many of the battle fields with a guide/historian. I also must mention that Oom Paul is a hero to me. My wife and I love South African history.
    You have mentioned several books /topics that I have not read and I will get after them. Thank you.

    We have been to the Blood River Battle site and the Pretoria monument. Every second year we spent at least a month after hunting, visiting and studying South African historical sites and Museums. Been to Issandwana (spelling) and Ruarks Drift. So, your suggestions are definitely not wasted on me. I will make sure that I have read everything that you suggested above. Will be good for the flight over. I greatly appreciate your suggestions. If you have more suggestions, please tell me!

    Also, I didn't know about the ruins and Portugues post in the park. Thanks!

    I am a coffee nut and Sabi coffee is heavenly.

    Two modern books that you may have read are 'The Bang and Bang Club" (movie was good too") and 'They are Burning the Churches".

    Also "Days of the Generals" by Hilton Hamann was good for me and a small book about the Border Wars called "Shadows In the Sand." (I think) was fascinating for me. Told by a Black Tracker who was involved in many insurgency chases. ( very bad duty but he survived.)

    Danki, Abrum

  9. #9
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    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Abrum
    Many of the small towns have museums. These are well worth investigating for local history.

  10. #10

    Default Re: What's it like in the Low Veld near Hoedspruit ?

    Epsilon, I agree. And the staffing is often local folks with a real feel for the history of the area. Sometime they will tell some oral history or a story from "Omm Marius." Or they might offer local directions to something special that you would otherwise miss.

    Great idea. Thanks.

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