For Micki


I am, by no means, a safari expert. I’ve only been to Africa once, and that was only for plains game. This book is the story of that safari; it’s an expanded version of the journal that I diligently kept as I planned and executed every phase of the trip.

As you read the story, please keep in mind that this was indeed taken from my journal entries, so in the first few chapters we’re actually looking into what I was thinking in real time rather than looking back historically at the trip. When I edited the journals and made them into what ultimately became this book I chose not to change those initial chapters, but instead decided to present the planning to you as if it were happening in real time.

The purpose of this book is twofold. First, I wanted to share my story with you. I wanted to take you along with me as I first dreamed of seeing Africa, then began putting the trip together, and then made it actually happen. Second, I wanted to lay out the steps involved in booking a safari in a unique format. Rather than tell you to do this or that, I simply documented everything that I did, and now present it here for you as a rough blueprint of what you might do if you want to plan your own African adventure.

There are a lot of people who helped me along the way on this long journey, and if I forgot you here I apologize in advance. Thanks go to my parents for buying me that first little Harrington & Richardson shotgun and for letting me hunt with it on the little fields and farms near where I grew up. Also to Arnold Kirk, for being such an inspiration to my own hunting by opening up his property to me and for helping me to get my first deer all the way back in 1991.

To Ted Leonhardt and Pete Tschantz, two of my hunting buddies. I’ve enjoyed our time in the woods together boys, and as always I look forward to our next hunt. Thanks also to folks like Kathi Klimes, Carol Rutkowski, and Tim Macmanus for the help you gave me in making everything come together.

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