Action. I signal Carlos to join me. We cautiously approach, meter by meter, successively hidden by a tree trunk, a large stump, a thick bush and a small portion of high grass. We rotate between moving forward rapidly and short breaks, just enough to catch our breath and adjust our binoculars. At this time, animals benefit from the serenity of dawn to graze before resting. We had travelled a hundred yards, the female Eland had disappeared in a shallow depression of the land. So had the Major Hartebeests. I was now observing two warthogs with spectacular teeth walking up the opposite side of the hollow, when two spiral horns substituted them within my binoculars: a young Lord Derby bull!
The herd should be in the bottomland. We need to take advantage of the situation and move forward before they do. 50 yards ahead, a calcined trunk would be the perfect spot. We progress towards it, taking every precaution. I could feel Carlo’s growing sense of excitement. Another 3 yards to go. Already, two Elands rumps were wandering up the opposite side. Then, three, four, ten, the herd standing 60 yards downwards.
What a tremendous spectacle! We let our eyes and souls be filled with this extraordinary sight, forgetting our quest for a time, overwhelmed by great emotion. It is so rare to come across Giant Elands under such circumstances. It is nearly too easy. Nature is intriguing and fascinating.
Just a bit back, three animals cover themselves with mud, picking dirt up with their massive horns: three very big bulls! One of them, a heavy coiled trophy with a powerful neck and black dewlap, joins the rest of the herd with a majestic pace. I point him out to Carlo.
Unfortunately, at that moment, he passed behind a calf and his mother. It was therefore impossible to shoot. The two Hartebeests located us and were staring without respite. It was only a matter of time before they give early warning of our presence.