“Now Comes the Excitement”

This story comes from previous client Sandy Trout:

Now comes the excitement. We got a deal offered for a lion on a game ranch being plagued by them, and I decided to take one. So we sat in a tree blind about 70 yards from a bait. About 5:30pm, two lions showed up. After determining which one to shoot, I hit the lion broadside in shoulder, and before I could get off another shot, it stumbled from the shot and took off with the second male into the brush.

After a half hour wait, we started tracking and found blood, but as it was getting late we decided to return in the morning to take up the track. With two trackers, Vaughan and myself, we started off on the track and observed the two lions had split up. We started on one track, and after about an hour and half of walking we decided this was not the wounded lion. We returned to where the animals had split up and took off on the second track. In about a half mile, we located the lion lying broadside under a tree with his head against the base. He was not looking our way. After it was decided this was the lion, I took aim just behind the shoulder from about 80-90 feet away.

As I fired, the lion jumped up and with a roar he started a charge at us. I fired straight on at him and scored a hit, but it did not slow him. Vaughan fired his 458 from about 30 feet which slowed him down momentarily, but did not stop the charge. As Vaughan was reloading, he tripped on a bush and fell with the bolt open, and the lion was almost on top of him. I fired from about 2 feet away through his side behind the shoulder, which turned him off Vaughan, and he came at me. I had run out of ammo in the gun and backing up for more room, I tripped and fell on my back with the lion almost on top of me. I had the rifle in both hands and as the lion came at me. I hit him as hard as I could with the rifle, which broke his tooth as it skidded up the forend. My finger got in the way, and I got cut by the canine.

This startled him for a second. He backed off, and his left paw snapped my lower sling swivel. As he appeared to be coming back for seconds, Vaughan had got to his feet and fired broadside at the lion, which fell over about 2 feet from me.

The entire incident probably lasted no more than 5 seconds but the adrenaline high lasted a bit longer. After our hearts had slowed to a reasonable rate we congratulated each other for saving one another’s skins. It took six stitches to sew up the bite, and although this could have gone very bad, it didn’t. Vaughan and I now share something that very few people have experienced. He is definitely a person that passed the test of fire.

Sandy Trout