I'm a newb. But I want to go on a safari in 2012. This is where you give me advice.
I'm a serious hunting newb. I've hunted rabbit, pheasant, quail, deer, and thats about it. I've seen a deer while hunting exactly once, and I shot over him (it was a little after 6, damn near dusk, and I had buck fever).
I am enthralled by the idea of going on a safari. The history of it, the culture, the animals, the guns, every aspect of it fascinates me.
I'm not a newb to being outdoors, I'm an avid camper and backpacker, gear whore, etc... I'm also not a newb to shooting, though I have little experience with scoped bolt guns, a situation I intend to remedy shortly.
A buddy of mine went a couple years ago, RSA, took his bow and killed a zebra, kudu, and a HUGE warthog. I think he took an impala also, not sure. He will probably go with me on my first trip, we will be going back to RSA. I want to take plains game, not interested in DG's, with the exception of buffalo, should the opportunity and funds be available. EDIT Ok, apparently buffalo is off the list.
I am thinking that I want to get a CZ 550 in 9.3x62. The African heritage of the Mauser action in 9.3 is what attracts me to that rifle. Should I be looking at a 7mm to .30cal rifle as well? I understand that a backup gun can come in real handy, but I've also read many places that say a .375H&H will do it all, and the 9.3 has very close ballistics.
I'd like to keep the cost of the whole trip under $8k if possible. My buddy tells me I could just have a monster trip for that much, but I don't want to get there and run out of money. Also, what are the customs on tipping? I am a firm believer in tipping, so I want to do that right.
Thanks in advance for the help!