“The only real power comes out of a long rifle” Joseph Stalin once said. The Ker & Downey Botswana guides felt that power when they all met at Footsteps for the rifle training. As the morning sun rays reflected on the water puddles around four pans with birds orchestrating their melodious calls, one could sense the positivism, enthusiasm and the energy from all the guides as they shared their experiences.
The priority of the training this year was walking safaris and rifle handling, this is as a result of an increase in “Footsteps Across The Delta” bookings. It is so important for us to equip our guides with the relevant skills and knowledge of both walking in the bush and the handling of high caliber rifles. The Okuti guides also came to join us on the Shinde concession for the training, even though the Camp does not conduct a walking safari, Okuti is situated in a Game Reserve and therefore it is required that the guides learn these skills.
We worked as a team and shared with one another how to conduct a walking safari, to mention a few of the topics; the terrain ideal for guided walks, approaching animals and the equipment needed for a walking safari.
The rifles that we handled were the .458 and 30.06 calibers, each guide had to learn how to safely load and unload both rifles, how to safely carry the rifle while walking and, in case of emergencies, how to shoot a potentially dangerous animal. There were three targets set at different distances from five meters to fifteen metres. All the guides did extremely well considering the rough and rainy weather conditions and it is safe to say that everyone is well prepared for the start of the season.
Images and Blog by Omphile Kaluluka (Specialist guide)