Yuma teen went on an African hunt

Maggie Anderson definitely had an adventuresome ending to her freshman year in high School.
The 15-year-old spent nearly two weeks on a hunting trip in South Africa last month, then took all her finals on May 30 after returning from the trip.
Maggie is the daughter of Kristen (Snelling) Anderson. Her grandma is Paula Snelling of Yuma.

She moved to Yuma last year, and started attending Yuma High School as a freshman. She has kept herself busy participating in student council, FFA and 4-H. She also concluded nine months of hard work by showing her Catch-A-Calf entry at the 2023 National Western Stock Show, after catching one at the 2022 NWSS.
That busy school year came to quite an eventful conclusion.
Her grandfather, Scott Anderson, who lives in the Kirk area, took her on a safari. Maggie said it was his fourth trip to Africa.
“He thought it would be fun for the both of us to do,” Maggie said. “He’s a rancher so he doesn’t get much time off, so when he does, that’s what he likes to do.”
She has grown up in a hunting family, getting her Hunter Safety license at the youngest age possible, and was perfectly comfortable going on such a trip.
They flew out on May 18, arriving in Johannesburg, South Africa, about 18 hours later, then drove two hours to the outfitter facility located in a northern province. Maggie said it was kind of like being in a hotel.
They went out each day for seven days, driving to different locations with the outfitter looking for game.
“There’s a common misconception that it’s easy,” Maggie said. “But there’s so much coverage, you don’t see anything if your timing isn’t right. In some places the trees and bushes are so thick, an animal could be 10 feet away and you wouldn’t know they were there.”
Maggie ended up getting an impala, nyala and a spring buck. Nyala is a spiral-horned antelope. Impala is a medium-sized antelope. The springbok is another medium-sized antelope.
She said she was probably about 200 to 300 yards away, using a .273 rifle.
Maggie eventually will have the mounts for trophies. The outfitter works with a taxidermist in South Africa, and then they will be shipped here.
Maggie and her grandpa spent their last two days in South Africa touring the Pilanesberg National Park, where they saw many more animals, such as elephants and zerbras.
They then took the long flight back home, followed by Maggie spending last Wednesday, May 30, taking five finals to conclude her freshman year.
“It was a little bit tiring,” she said. “I was pretty jet-lagged.”
The YHS administration was willing to work with her so she could take the trip, and then do her finals after the school year was over.
“If I had to sacrifice my credits, I wouldn’t have gone,” Maggie said.
It was a memorable experience, but it might not be a once-in-a-lifetime event.
“My grandpa was talking about going back again in two years,” Maggie said.