One of my favorite things about traveling overseas is discovering new flavors. Of course, the problem with these delicious discoveries is trying to translate them once you’re back home. Such is the quandary I’ve come to after a recent trip.
As many of you have surmised, I spent some time in South Africa last month, testing out that new Benelli autoloader that Phil Bourjaily hinted about awhile back. Like Phil, I’m sworn to secrecy until early next year, but I will reiterate his assertion that this new shotgun represents some significant design improvements to the popular and reliable Benelli system.
Last week, I spent a few days at Willow Oaks Plantation near Madison, N.C., testing the new Sportsman version of Remington’s Versamax shotgun. The testing protocol included swinging the shotgun at running rabbits being hounded by a pack of howling beagles. This was my first beagles-and-bunnies experience, and I can’t remember the last time I had so much fun in the woods. No pressure trying to kill the biggest rack. No worries about scent or sound. And, if you miss, there’s a good chance the dogs will run the rabbit by you again. As one of the more experienced rabbit hunters remarked, “This is the way hunting is supposed to be.”