Boars And More: A Hunt In Bulgaria


Published: October - 2004

I hunted in Bulgaria this past spring as a quick add-on to a brown bear hunt next door in Romania. I discovered that much like her neighbor to the north, Bulgaria offers not only good populations of a variety of big game, but well-organized hunting programs with knowledgeable guides and luxurious accommodations at very reasonable rates. Bulgaria is located on the Balkan Peninsula in southeastern Europe. Its territory covers 69,000 square miles and features a wide variety of terrain, including several mountain ranges, large valley systems and lowlands, rivers and upwards of 400 lakes. I hunted wild boar in the West Rhodopi Mountains in the southern part of the country near the Greek border. The alpine landscape here is very rugged, ranging from 6,565 feet at the highest point of Prespa Peak and dropping down to 1,247 feet where the Chepelarska River runs into the Silvov Dol River. My hunt was conducted by Rada Fileva, who with her husband operates Ropotamo Hunting out of Bourgas, Bulgaria. Although her English was excellent, she brought interpreter Petia Cholakova with her just in case. Cholakova has a degree in history and museum preservation and works at a national museum in the capitol city of Sofiya. She and Fileva both accompanied me for four days during my hunt. Because I was coming in from Romania, Fileva met me at the border in Rousse, Bulgaria, and drove me seven hours to the hunting lodge just south of Plovdiv. The lodge is called Karamush and was once the personal hunting lodge of Todor Zivkov, the Communist dictator from 1962 to 1989. Zivkov was known as a great hunter and took a world record Eurasian boar here that scored 158.20 CIC. That record stood until just this past May. The impressive tusks were on display at the lodge. I have been a guest in many fine hunting lodges throughout Europe, including castles built for kings, and I must rank Karamush at the top for both facilities and service. It is an impressive wood and stone structure featuring two presidential apartments, six double........(continued)
 
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