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How far really?

 
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  #15  
Old 04-28-2011, 01:33 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Spokane, WA
Posts: 2,347
Re: How far really?

600 yards would be my personal limit on big game, and I've done that once. The new technical advances are great without todays rangefinders, I'd probably limit myself to 300-400 yards. Without a good rangefinder (I'm not) I might say 300 and end up 400, or the other way around.
Even preparing for a long shot, for whatever reason stuff more often than not pops up close for me, and I've killed Mt. Goat 25 yards, Roosevelt Elk 20 yards, Black Bear 20 yards Mule Deer 40 yards, and last years Pronghorn about 100 yards. With a .338 RUM, and 180 grain Accubond at about 3500 fps I was thinking long. I had one dialed in at 605 yards, no wind, solid prone position, bipod, time, just not the buck I was looking for.
When I was a kid I hustled out in the dark, skipped breakfast, and set up to watch a good crossing at a bit over 200 yards. After light a guy from camp stumbled threw my crossing, I was situated in heavy brush, about 20 minutes later the Blacktail Buck I was watching for showed up on the other side of the log I was using for a rest. Close enough to get blood on my hat.
At any rate I guess I try to be prepared for longer shots, but usually end up a walker and stalker hunting for the game not a particular shot.
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  #16  
Old 04-28-2011, 09:40 AM
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Location: Arvada, Colorado
Posts: 368
Re: How far really?

Here's my take on longrange hunting. Last year I hunted Antelope, Deer, Elk and Bear. Closest animal was the Bear. I shot him at 535 yards. Furthest was a cow Elk at 1,093 yards.

I think this LRH is extremely difficult to do right. I cannot tell you how much I respect the fellows on this board that do it right. It takes a lot of time to setup and get the shot. It seemed that everytime I would get ready to squeeze the trigger something would change. Either the wind would pickup, die down or the animals would move a little and I would start all over again. I generally hunt by myself and not having a spotter makes it 10 times more difficult for me. Then to top things off, I invested in a good video camera and try to film my hunts whenever possible. So between running my camera, running the spotting scope, PDA, Kestrel, rifle, I have a lot to do in a short amount of time.

I have found at least for me that staying in one place and being ready to shoot is key. Things fall into place much better. This is not always possible depending on what you are hunting.

Last year I took my daughter on a trophy Mule Deer hunt. After a week of hunting and passing on more bucks than I can remember, we blew it on the biggest buck we saw. My daughter was on the buck and was shooting my 338LAI. I was getting the camera setup and by the time I was ready the buck slipped away. She would have had the buck of her dreams had I been able to operate the camera faster. I felt really bad as she kept telling me "Dad! I am ready, why can't I shoot!"

My daughter settled on this buck a couple days later. Although not as big as the bruiser we saw earlier, it was still a nice buck. She shot this buck through the heart at 555 yards. 1 shot and lights out.



We have a long way to go to perfect this LRH. At least for me, it is a lot tougher than it looks.
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  #17  
Old 04-28-2011, 09:57 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Wyoming
Posts: 2,676
Re: How far really?

In the last two seasons I took game at 420, 600, 1037, 597, 120, 350 (yards).
This was antelope and mule deer.


Quote:
Originally Posted by alloutsmith3 View Post
Whats the actual number or percentage of game animals being taken over 600 yds or are most taken under 600 yds?

Thanks guys.
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  #18  
Old 04-30-2011, 08:58 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Fort Shaw, Montana
Posts: 6,807
Re: How far really?

For me personally, just sitting here looking at my trophy room and remembering the hunts. Over the last 10 years, 50% of my big game kills have been in the 500 to 700 yard range. 15% from 700 to 800 yards, 5% from 800 to 1400 yards and finally 30% from 100 to 500 yards.

This is determined more by the area you hunt and what ranges are typically presented in that area. For me most big game presents shot in that 500-700 yard range.

Most of the locals I know in my area that "SAY" they are long range hunters rarely shoot big game much over 300 yards. Admittedly, in most areas, this is probably much more common even for those that are capable of shooting game at much longer ranges.

Personally, we set up in a fixed location simply because of a lack of cover that prevents us from moving in on game without being spotted. We could set up closer to where potential game may appear but we would reduce the amount of area that we can cover from a single fixed location.

I will also say that I am a hunter first and foremost. Trophy quality is more important to me then the range the animal is harvested at. Practice to have the ability and compentency to take big game out past 1000 yards but shoot them where they show up.

Have never and never will pass up a quality mature animal just because he showed up at closer range. To the other end, will never shoot a young or poor quality animal simply to take a long range shot opportunity. Thats just me however, to each there own. I know for some that the range of the kill is a big part of the trophy, nothing at all wrong with that either as long as the shooter is up to the challange and the kill is clean and quick, do what you gives you the most reward in hunting.
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  #19  
Old 04-30-2011, 07:19 PM
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Prosperity, Pa
Posts: 373
Re: How far really?

I got my best long range shot ever the day before yesterday. I've done pretty well up to now, 787 yard mulley and a 995 white tail last fall but this shot was my all time best. I've really been practicing shooting in windy conditions on ground hogs and Thursday was windier than usual. I was hunting with Harry Swarez of Swarez rifles and one of his friends so there are two credible witnesses! We were getting wind gusts up to 40 mph and pretty much a steady 15 for a few seconds and then back up to 30 to 40. Harry spotted a hog at 1050 yards with the wind coming from 3:00. I thing he wanted to see how the Huskamaw worked because he insisted that I shoot. First shot was about a foot low but right on line. Harry said to shoot again! I cranked on an additional 3 clicks and waited for the wind to slow down to 15 mph and squeezed off the 7 MM gunwerks . I had to turn down 10X and still didn't have enough bars on the crosshair, in all I was holding 10 MOA for wind. I didn't see the hit (no muzzle brake) but about 5 seconds after the hit the guys were pounding me on the back and high fiveing me and shaking my hand. I was really happy with that shot more than any other because I was able to dope the wind and make the hit! Would not even think of shooting big game in that much wind but feels great to know I could!!
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  #20  
Old 05-01-2011, 07:53 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Potomac River
Posts: 5,057
Re: How far really?

Quote:
I think this LRH is extremely difficult to do right. I cannot tell you how much I respect the fellows on this board that do it right. It takes a lot of time to setup and get the shot. It seemed that everytime I would get ready to squeeze the trigger something would change. Either the wind would pickup, die down or the animals would move a little and I would start all over again. I generally hunt by myself and not having a spotter makes it 10 times more difficult for me. Then to top things off, I invested in a good video camera and try to film my hunts whenever possible. So between running my camera, running the spotting scope, PDA, Kestrel, rifle, I have a lot to do in a short amount of time.
That sounds just like me.


In the original post there was a question about snipers hunting people and hunters hunting animals. I do not know anything about civilian LEO snipers and will confine my remarks to military snipers. In the later stages of the Vietnam war each Army infantry battalion had 6-10 snipers attached to it and a variety of weapons were used under a variety of conditions and terrain and a variety of tactics. One of the regionally famous snipers, Pappy Leach, shot an NVA soldier in the head at a range of 18 inches. With the current war zones including a lot of urban warfare the sniper training has begun to include a lot of urban tactics. The current Special Forces tactics is a retrogression to Vietnam tactics with the blending in of the urban setting. Most of this stuff is readily available on the internet.

DVIDS Publication Issues



I seldom trophy hunt as I grew up hunting squirrels and so my philosophy is let's go hunting and enjoy ourselves and maybe we will shoot something and maybe we won't. I have killed enough animals at 1000 yards that I no longer consider it a difficult shot so I switched back to bowhunting and to an XP pistol. The last two elk I killed with a rifle were both a 450 yards and not very challenging as far as making the shot. The last deer I killed was about 350 yards or so and on the last day of the season. During that two year period I deliberately set up and passed on animals until I had managed to kill three animals each at over a 1000 yards. With a rifle expressly built for killing animals at extreme range and with the correct amount of skill it becomes routine.
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  #21  
Old 05-01-2011, 08:31 AM
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Re: How far really?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buffalobob View Post



I seldom trophy hunt as I grew up hunting squirrels and so my philosophy is let's go hunting and enjoy ourselves and maybe we will shoot something and maybe we won't. I have killed enough animals at 1000 yards that I no longer consider it a difficult shot so I switched back to bowhunting and to an XP pistol. The last two elk I killed with a rifle were both a 450 yards and not very challenging as far as making the shot. The last deer I killed was about 350 yards or so and on the last day of the season. During that two year period I deliberately set up and passed on animals until I had managed to kill three animals each at over a 1000 yards. With a rifle expressly built for killing animals at extreme range and with the correct amount of skill it becomes routine.
I think BB summed it up real well. Once a person has developed a certain skill level, shots at a certain range become "routine". That does not mean a shooter can get sloppy or careless, it just means that he is totally confident he can and will make that shot. For me, that range has grown to 600 to 700 yards, while I have killed critters at over 1000, the 1000 to 1200 yard range is at the very end of my current skill level so with those shots I tend to be "extra careful" about getting everything right and making a go or no-go decision based on conditions. A 500 or 600 yard shot is just "shoot him" and go home.

Long range shooting is like any discipline. Once a person masters a certain level, that level becomes "routine". I often see a reply to a post like this where someone will say something like.... "you guys must be really good shots or something, or how many did you miss or wound to make a shot like that"...... generally laced with sarcasm.

I'm sure some do get on here and "extend" their range a bit, but there are many others who are quite capable of making one shot kills at the ranges they say. "They aint braggin.... they are just answering the question". Although I have never met either, I'm pretty confident when Kirby or BuffaloBob (and several others) says I killed a critter at "X" yards they did it.
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