African Hunting

About Africa Hunting and Free Range Hunts

Introducing Nick Bowker Hunting

Complete your dream of Africa Hunting; it’s far more affordable than you might think. So start researching your free-range African Hunting Safari here.

Fair Chase and Free Range African Hunting. We specialize in Plains Game hunting for First Time, African Hunters, and Repeat African Hunters.

Nick Bowker Hunting and the Team

Nick Bowker Hunting is based in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. Hopewell Lodge, our center of operations and where you will stay, is near Bedford. Bedford is about two hours northeast of Port Elizabeth, now called Gqeberha.

Nick was born and raised on a fifth-generation sheep ranch and was involved in all aspects of the local farming community.

As a result, Nick has access to over 2 million acres of farmland for hunting in and around Bedford. Bedford has a unique topography with mountains, plains, valley bush-veld, and savanna. Allowing a wide variety of plains game with an extremely high density of animals.

Free range south african hunting with Nick Bowker

 The animals are well managed by the local farmers with a vested interest. That land owner owns all games resident on their property.  This includes transient animals.

Nick Bowker Hunting is owned by brothers Nick and Rob Bowker. Nick is the majority shareholder and responsible for day-to-day operations and all hunts.

About Nick Bowker Hunting

Rob bowker is responsible for marketing and finance. Rob is a retired finance professional who grew up on the family farm and deeply loves hunting and being a landowner alongside Nick.

Low fenced Red Lechwe hunted with Nick Bowker

Benjamin Pringle and Meyrick Bowker assist Nick with guiding. Benjamin and Meyrick are seasoned guiding professionals.

In addition, Benjamin and Meyrick are landowners in the Bedford area, and both were born and raised on farms and are an integral part of the local community.

Our taxidermist is African Wildlife Artistry. African Wildlife Artistry Taxidermist is located in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, only 180 km from Port Elizabeth in Somerset East.

The Taxidermy is operated under the family guidance of Rudolph and Caroline Ferreira

Eland wall mount

Bring Your Kids

Children are welcome. I will be delighted to guide your children. Both my daughters, pictured below, started hunting at an early age. We offer Big 5 guided tours to our National Parks in the Eastern Cape for observers and family members who are not hunting.

Kids hunting in Africa with Nick Bowker.
Children's hunting in Africa with Nick Bowker.

About Nick Bowker Hunting

We are a small, personalized African hunting outfitter in the Eastern Cape midlands in Bedford, South Africa, and have been hunting professionals and outfitters for 25 years.

Our family has been living in the area for five generations, and hunting is in our blood.

We have been conducting fair chase hunting in the Bedford area and are familiar with every corner of our hunting concessions.

Your Hunt will be a fair chase in a free-range African hunting environment, and I do not hunt behind high fences. However, for a few specific species, this will be required.

The Eastern Cape is one of the safest areas to hunt in Africa. We have never had a security incident as a professional hunter.

Nick will be present for your entire Africa Hunting Safari and will be with you from when we pick you up to when we drop you off at the Port Elizabeth airport.

First-time African Hunters are welcome. We will be with you through every journey on your African Safari.

Free-range hunting with Nick Bowker

Our African Hunting concessions

  • Your hunting concession extends throughout the Bedford area, and you will not see another hunter during your hunting trip.
  • The core hunting area is 150 thousand acres with access to the adjacent Bedford area, which is around 2 million acres.
  • The lodge is situated in the middle of our hunting concessions. As a result, there will be no need to drive long distances before you start hunting.
  • South Africa has become the premier hunting destination in the world. It offers first-world-class infrastructure and hospitality. The diversity of available trophies and the cost of a hunting Safari are not comparable anywhere else in the world.
  • Bedford area has a unique topography and offers over 30 species of African Big Game and Plains Game.
  • We offer unique, highly competitive Rates and Packages. Our packages are All-Inclusive, and there are no hidden costs from when I pick you up to when I drop you off.
Sable antelope herd in Africa

The Cost of Trophy Hunting in Africa

Structure your hunting to fit a budget

Gemsbok safari style hunting with Nick Bowker.
  • Alternative 1:
    • Clients select animals and pay the trophy fee for each animal. Also, there is a day rate irrespective of any trophy shot.
  • Alternative 2:
    • Hunters can select a package of animals offered by the outfitter at a fixed price, including the day fee, accommodation, and meals.
  • We ensure that your Taxidermy is of high quality, follow up on delivery, and ensure that your trophies are delivered safe and sound

Consider a starter package at a fixed price

Sable antelope safari style hunting with Nick Bowker.
  • My first-time African hunter package starts at $4000 and includes seven trophies.
  • Cull animals that comprise mature animals that don’t qualify as trophy animals can be added to trophy packages.
  • I offer Blesbok, Impala, Warthog, Springbok, and Mountain Reedbuck cull males at $250 each and females at $100 each.

Quality and Quantity of trophies

African Fair chase african hunting with Nick Bowker.
  • To keep high-quality Trophies, I limit the number of Africa hunting safari parties.
  • The sheer number of animals in our hunting areas will astound you.
  • You will see more animals in one day than you will see in 10 years in the United States.
  • For the cost of an elk hunt, you can shoot seven African Trophies. See what my clients say – Client Recommendations.

Rifles included free of charge

Free range African hunting with Nick Bowker.
  • I have the latest 4×4 Hunting vehicles at my disposal, capable of any terrain.
  • Expert trackers who have hunted with me my whole life will help us with the guiding.
  • The cost and red tape of traveling with rifles have increased dramatically over the last few years. As a result, I now offer my rifles and ammunition for free use for all my clients.
  • I have available 300 Winchester Magnums fitted with suppressors. Mounted on rifles are Swarovski tactical scopes.

What Does a Typical Day of Hunting in Africa Involve?

Nick Bowker pictured fron while hunting an Eland
  • Up at dawn for a cup of coffee and a light snack.
  • Set off to our hunting area for the targeted species.
  • All hunting areas are within half an hour’s drive.
  • Generally, we will target the brush-dwelling animals such as the spiral horns in the very early mornings and late evenings when they come out to graze.
  • We would target Plains Game animals during the day as they are easier to find.
  • Many hours are spent glassing animals before mounting a stalk on a selected quarry, so a high-quality pair of binoculars is a must for African hunting.
Fallow deer fair chase hunting with Nick Bowker.
  • Typically, we find an elevated position and glass the surrounding valleys in search of a Trophy.
  • We would then set up a plan and begin our stalk.
  • Alternatively, we may try and set up an ambush.
  • Generally, return for a big brunch around 11h30.
  • Sometimes we will take packed lunch and be gone for the whole day.
  • Out again in the afternoon for more hunting.
  • Dinner around a fire, discussing the day, and making plans for the next day’s hunting in Africa.

Authentic African
Free Range Hunting

I conduct my Hunting in a Free Range environment with no high fences

Blesbok hunting in Africa Safari style with Nick Bowker.

Hopewell Lodge sits on an escarpment (2200 feet above sea level) and has four unique biospheres within half an hour’s drive.

This unique change in biospheres results in broad and diverse animal diversity.

To the south of the lodge is the deep valley bushveld. These deep, broad valleys with thick riverine bush are the home of the Eastern Cape Kudu and Bushbuck, Nyala and Warthog.

The valleys and canyons’ sides and tops make great vantage points for glassing animals.

We spend a lot of time at these elevated points, glassing for trophies. At the plateau’s start above the valley, bushveld lies savanna and woodlands in amongst small plateaus.

The savanna and woodlands are home to such species as Impala, Sable, Zebra, and Waterbuck. The savanna areas are ideal for spot and stalk hunting.

The sides of the valleys and canyons make for great vantage points.

The unique topography provides one of the finest hunting areas in the world.

Sable antelope hunting in Africa with Nick Bowker.

Nothing beats a day of free-range African Hunting and doing long stalks and trying to outwit your quarry.

Plateaus also make great vantage points for glassing and the start of many long stalks into the savanna.

The savanna gradually gives way to the long rolling Bedford plains. These grass plains were once the place of vast animal migrations across the Eastern Cape in the summer months.

These plains are where Springbok, Blesbok, and Black Wildebeest are to be found.

Consequently, the plains game often needs to be ambushed, and the endless anthills found on these plains make for the right hiding place.

The Plains give way to the Kaggaberg Mountain range, which can be viewed from the lodge. The Kaggaberg contains thick, steep valleys and box canyons. Here, you will find Eland and Kudu.

These plains are where Springbok, Blesbok, and Black Wildebeest are to be found.

Free-Range Hunting in South Africa

Free Range African Hunting versus Free Roaming

A lot has been written about Free Range Hunting and Fair Chase Hunting. Free-range hunting can be defined as keeping in natural conditions with freedom of movement. Also, no human-made barrier prevents the animal’s movement.

Another concept is “Free-Roaming” in South Africa because the animals are born, bred, live, and die on the property.

We offer 100 percent fair chase hunting in South Africa.

Free range hunting sable

Wilderness Hunting in Africa

If you are looking for a true wildness hunt, you will need to hunt in Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and Tanzania. In these areas, you will be hunting without any fences or human-made obstacles, such as public roads.

This remoteness comes at a cost with expensive day fees being mandatory as well as extra time and costs to get to these wilderness areas.

In particular, these costs come before you have even seen an animal. For many, the cost and time are prohibitive. As a result, South Africa has become the premier safari hunting destination in the world.

Warthog free range african hunting.

South African hunting areas that are not high fenced

These areas do not have high fences but rather four-foot barbed wire fences designed to stop sheep and cattle movement. Consequently, the vast majority of animals can move and roam at will. Certain animals will be held in check, such as Wildebeest.

These non-high-fenced areas belong to the local farming community. Outfitters who hunt exclusively in these areas are often farmers and have dual income from farming and outfitting.

You will struggle to find a property in South Africa or Namibia with no fences somewhere along the line, be it a park border, a high fence on a neighboring property, or a barrier to public roads.

The majority of hunting in South Africa is conducted behind high fences. The size of the high-fenced areas varies greatly. High fencing is often a necessity for Outfitters from an economic perspective.

For these typically larger, high-fenced outfitters, outfitting is often their only source of income. Generally, free-roaming and fair chase hunting applies to high-fenced outfitters.

These larger, high-fenced outfitters need to replenish trophies due to Hunting and genetics. As a result, South Africa is the most affordable hunting destination in the world. No-where else can you hunt so many species at a cost not dreamed about two or three decades ago.

Long range hunting South Africa
Long-Range Hunting in South Africa

Long-Range Hunting in South Africa

I also offer long-range Hunting for enthusiasts. Bedford provides an ideal terrain for long-range Hunting with broad valleys and plains. I limit our distances to approximately 650 meters.

I target Impala, Springbok, Blesbok, Mountain Reedbuck, and Warthog for long-range Hunting. Our standard rate for non-trophy animals for the above target list is $250 for males and $100 for females.

Long-range Hunting provides the chance for hunters to truly test their shooting and hunting skills and the opportunity for making a significant amount of shots during a day of hunting.

There are few places in the world with similar diversity and such numbers of wild animals available at these prices.

I am also a long-range hunting enthusiast with significant experience with tactical scopes and handloading ammunition.

I have tactical and digital Swarovski scopes available for use.

Also, I offer driven hunts for the species mentioned above under the same conditions.

About Nick Bowker. Travel climate and health.

Travel, Climate, and Health

The area you will be hunting in South Africa is a safe and secure place to visit.

Easy to Travel to

The Eastern Cape is malaria-free and makes for safe south African hunt.

You will fly to Johannesburg or Cape Town and then take a connecting flight to Port Elizabeth.

We will meet you in Port Elizabeth at the Airport and drive you to the hunting lodge.

The hunting lodge is two hours from Port Elizabeth in the Bedford district.

Mild Climate

Blue Wildebeest trophy shot on a hunt in South Africa with Nick Bowker Hunting

We hunt in South Africa from March through October.

Bedford has a mild climate and receives around 390 mm of rain annually, with most rain falling in thunderstorms from January through April.

South Africa

Wide, deep valleys make great vantage points for a South Africa hunt, a safe place to travel.

The average midday temperatures range from 18 degrees in June to 28 degrees in January.

We hunt in a malaria-free area at all times!

Also, we have private hospitals and medical care available in the surrounding area.

Bedford, Your South African Hunting Destination in the Eastern Cape Province

Ladies hunting with Nick Bowker.

Our lodges are about 20 minute drive from Bedford. See lodging options.

Bedford is a rural town in the center of the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. It was established in the mid-19th century.

It is located on the southern edge of the Winterberg mountain range.

A vibrant country district famous for our annual Garden Festival (second-to-last weekend in October), fun-loving farmers, and fabulous hospitality.

Bedford is waiting to welcome you.

The historic village is tucked up against the Kaggaberg mountain (part of the Winterberg range).

Our farms stretch across extensive grasslands and up into the dramatic Mankazana, Cowie, and Baviaans River valleys.

Angoras, merinos, beef cattle, goats, and game are all to be seen.

Route from Port Elizabeth to Bedford

Route from Bedford from landing in Port Elizabeth to Bedford.

What is Free-Range Hunting, and is Free-Range Hunting available in South Africa?

Free-Range Hunting can be defined as being kept in natural conditions, with freedom of movement. Free-Range South African hunting areas have four-foot barbed wire fences designed to stop sheep and cattle movement but not wild animals.

Free-Range Hunting can be defined as kept in natural conditions, with freedom of movement. Free-Range South African hunting areas have four-foot barbed wire fences designed to stop the movement of sheep and cattle but not wild animals.