On a recent visit to the EcoTraining Selati Camp,
I was offered the opportunity to spend time on the shooting range.
Field Guides with the correct qualifications
carry either .375 or .458 rifles.
However, rounds for those weapons are expensive,
so I, together with the students and the camp staff
were going to be using a .22 for target practice.
As I had not picked up a rifle since 1971,
I had a restless night wondering how I would fare
against both the student guides and the staff
who shoot on a regular basis.
who shoot on a regular basis.
The most important items on the range?
Flasks of hot water for tea and coffee.
The rifle range at Selati in an abandoned emerald mine.
The Gravelotte Emerald Mine, (ironically named G.E.M)
no longer operates here.
The site was ideal for safe shooting
but not so good at dishing up "lost" emeralds.
I was not the only one shooting that day.
This is Larisse, one of the Trails Guide students
going through her drills.
And then it was my turn...
Having watched as all the students perform competently,
it was my turn to step up to the firing line.
I have to say that I had no idea how I was going to do.
But, nothing ventured, nothing gained.
EcoTraining Instructor Sean Robertson was standing by to make certain
that I complied with all the range rules.
This is the sound that a .22 makes:
Exercise complete, it was off down to the targets to see the results!
The targets are set at 12, 8 and 4 m respectively.
On guided walks, if there is an incident, most shots are taken at less than 4m.
(Thanks to Emma Summers for taking all the images of me.)
My happy face says it all...
Even Sean was impressed.
All six of my rounds in the center circle at 8m.
This would not set any distance records.
The current confirmed long-distance record
belongs to a Canadian soldier who had a successful shot
at 3540m back in 2017.
Thanks to all concerned for allowing me this exciting experience.
This is the EcoTraining mission statement...
1] Vision: To be the Global leader in environmental education
by reconnecting people with nature...
For me, the most important part of
that statement is the word *reconnecting.
2] Mission: To provide inspirational & immersive learning experiences
for professional safari guides and guardians of nature
3] Values: Inspire. Professionalism. Caring and Accountability.
Are you ready to make a commitment to yourself and your future?
If so, then visit their website for more information:
A big thank you to each of these brands
for coming on board.
This has been my constant travel companion
for the past several years.
It might look worn,
but that represents the kilometers/miles
we have shared together.
From Kilimanjaro to the beaches of India.
To coach trips across Europe and Vietnam
and to a variety of game lodges and road trip destinations
in South and Southern Africa.
BEST SUITCASE EVER!
Check out their Facebook page:
This torch has been turning heads!
The Olight SRS2UT Intimidator.
Marketed locally by:
When it is time to print out my special images,
this is the company that I rely on to do that.
When back home, I rely on this ISP
to provide me with high-speed fibre connectivity to
enable me to get my postings published in record time.
This powerbank is my constant companion
while I am traveling.
It can do up to 4 full re-charges of my phone before
needing to be charged.
ALWAYS choose to be Batman.
My constant traveling companion.
To find out more about the collectible Funko range of figurines,
I could not do without this awesome laptop bag from Solo.
Padded for protection and with enough pockets to keep
almost everything INCLUDING the kitchen sink in,
this is definitely a stylish addition to any business presentation.
Be it in the boardroom or the bush.
This bag can also be worn as a backpack.
There are straps in a hidden compartment that can be deployed
when you need both hands for other purposes.
To find out more about the stylish Solo range,
This locally made product was indispensable when using a long lens.
The ball and socket might look simple...and it is,
which is why it should be in the gear bag of every serious photographer.
This locally made, deceptively simple device is ideal
for tracking birds in flight or animals in motion.
The base can be used on a beanbag or a tripod,
with the ball being fitted to the camera.
The simplicity of the device allows moving from supported
to handheld in a fluid motion.
There is also a version that can be used on a car window.
To see more about the product,
visit their Facebook page:
Or order directly from:
To see who else were winners in 2018, visit: