10 Ways To Stronger Rifle Field Shooting Positions
8. Make sure your rifle fits you. This is more important than people think. Too long of length of pull will have you stretching to gain a full view from the scope, and does not allow for consistent mounting of the rifle. Too short causes a craned neck position and causes the same inconsistent scope alignment/rifle mount. Cheek weld: This is the big one. Too long or too short ultimately causes improper and inconsistent cheek weld. Lack of a proper height comb or lack of adjustable cheekpiece is the most common cause. The bottom line is if you don’t look through the rifle scope the same you won’t shoot the same. Consistency is precision.
9. Use an ACD (Anti Cant Device), I have them on every precision rifle I own. The evils of canting your rifle become painfully apparent at long range. I get guys in my shooting class every year that come without them and tell me they never have trouble keeping the rifle straight. They usually do well at the range of the bench at the known distance range, but it is often a different story when we start field shooting positions. Back in our crappy shooting position that we are typically blessed with while hunting, it is difficult to keep the rifle in a level position when you’re not in one yourself. Anti Cant Devices are cheap insurance.
10. Get off the range. Once I have the initial accuracy tests done on a long range hunting rifle, I do a few things. I quit shooting groups unless I believe there is a problem with the rifle. I shoot field shots at targets like steel plates that are vital zone size (I don’t care if I can hit a 3 foot place at any distance) and rocks that are again vital zone sized. I shoot these shots from real field positions with my hunting equipment. This kind of shooting practice goes a long way in preventing a failed shot that is taken in the heat of the moment from what seemed like a good position when, in reality, a little practice with your rifle would have let you know it wasn’t.
Shawn Carlock is a veteran law enforcement sniper and the current USPSA national precision rifle champion. He runs his business building custom rifles and conducting precision rifle training for civilian and law enforcement interests.