My Antelope Hunt
After reading postings here about long range shots, for a couple years, I decided to go out and try it for myself. So with antelope permit in hand I know of this rock in Wyoming around which the antelope run all day. Feeling particularly lazy I drove right up to it and parked right behind it. It's a rock of probably twenty to thirty tons upon which one can easily climb. It sits on top of a hill and you have a beautiful 270 degree view of the surrounding prarie. The rock has little slots and cuts in it that provide an excellent place to get a good rest for a rifle. I took my AWM in 338 lapua, using some of Warren's J36's, and hauled it up. I had the additional equipment of a Leica 1200, binoculors, and I took my laptop, altimiter, thermometer and barometric pressure measurer. Yes, yes, I know it's pretty much a cop-out to take your laptop to calculate a balistic table; but WTF - I always wanted to try it. The day was sunny about 72 degrees, gusting wind and low humidity.
I hadn't been glassing very long, the computer was barely booted up, when I spotted a lone large buck antelope. (as a side note it's quite a trick to find a lone antelope at range on the prarie with binoculors, put the binoculors down, and then find the antelope with the 8X Leica laser range finder - it gives quite a small field of view and I found myself searching wildly tring to find him with the Leica) It took forever to get the Leica to range him, over a dozen tries. I punched in the barometric pressure, temp, humidity, and altitude into the comnputer's ballistics program and got my come-ups.
So while watching him through the scope, he was slowly walking, I waited until he paused and the gusting wind strangly paused (those of you who hunt Wyoming know that the weather can abruptly, suddenly change). I relaxed, exhaled, and pulled the trigger. So at a range of 756 yards I dropped him with one shot. I was quite amazed. My longest prior antelope shot was about 485 yards. He just dropped right in his tracks - an incredibly humane hunt.
It's not one of those thousand plus yard shots that some of you guys have made, but I'm quite pleased with it. I think that the major limitations to future longer shots is going to be the laser rangefinder. That Leica, although good on reflective targets, just had a dilly of a time ranging antelope. Anybody got a Russian for sale?