“Senor Colorado, macho grande venado, mucho puntas, es del norte presa, con un hembra!”
“Este viejo?” I questioned.
“Si, Colorado, vistante, muy ancho!” replied Hector.
He assured me it was the wide, massive buck with many points one of the bucks I had shown him photos of seen and photographed while doing the ranch’s annual helicopter game survey. The buck was in the mesquite flat where it drained into a stock tank (waterhole for livestock) in the far north pasture. He had left him there chasing a doe about 20 minutes ago.
“I’ve seen about enough of pictures of big bear you and those going with you been taking hunting with Ryan. If he’s got an opening this coming spring, I want to get on the list. That last big brown phase bear you took convinced me it’s time I started hunting black bear again!”
It was back in 2014 that I was in the North African country of Burkina Faso, following African lion tracks with three local trackers, a French speaking professional hunter and my hunting partner, Tim Fallon. For several days we had followed fresh tracks until we lost them on ground so hard there were no signs of anything having walked there since the the last rain or it was determined the lions were females or males younger than six years of age.
Frankly there were no lack of lion sign in the area and we had come close to seeing them a time or two. Actually we had seen one small, young lion, but only briefly. We had one morning been following a promising track when up ahead about two or three hundred yards there was suddenly the darnedest, loudest, high pitched squealing, grunting and horrible complaining. Tim and I looked at our professional hunter and trackers, all of whom were laughing, guffawing, almost rolling on the ground. And even though neither Tim nor I understood any French or the local native dialect we did understand the lions had apparently walked right into a troop of baboon which were now loudly proclaiming their displeasure of having lions in their midst. The horrible racket lasted a good 10 minutes before the baboons quieted down. Our trackers laughed nearly that long as well. Before following, after they quit laughing, the trackers finally got a better look at the tracks, seeing them where they had stepped on a patch of sand. The PH turned to us and wagged his finger, then pointed back to the vehicle. “Fa mmail” We understood.