It seems some LRH's are very interested in the maximum distance they can take game. More of a technical focus on equipment.
Even if I was 100 percent confident I could make a particular LR shot I would opt for the SR shot if possible. Now of course, we don't always get what we want in the field and that's why I'm here; to learn the skills and methods for the longer shots. I guess I'm more interested in the hunt, game, and harvest then the actual shot itself.
I enjoy the whole process of any type of hunting, some types more than others for differant reasons. What got me into LRH is what you said "Now of course, we don't always get what we want in the field".
Although I don't relish in the killing I DO get equal satisfaction from the shot as I do the hunt, I't seems some have a problem with that but it's true.
Until I bought a computer I never knew anyone else hunted like I did, anything beyond a couple hundred yards was just taboo to anyone I knew, problem was I just found it so easy (to 500yds then) to hit out there and the possibilities were much greater at harvest I couldn't justify not learning more.
Myself, I'm interested in meat in the freezer, not a trophy. Every hunt presents a differant challenge, as does every shot also. The wind or my ability to recover the game is the only reason I can think of why I would want a shot closer, it really makes no differance to me. If it's within range, It's within range, if the wind is gusting, that changes things and if very hard that sucks.
Where I hunt, if shots are 800yds and beyond the retrieval is closer to the trail and MUCH easyer to get to, If they're 300-700yds it's HELL to pack, but meat is meat and I'm still young. "Generaly" the longer shot is definatly an acomplishment over a shorter one, the target is smaller. If you are not confident in the range or conditions, don't shoot, if you are, range is not an issue IMHO.
Yes, we as longrange hunters opt for the longer shots and maybe that comes from years of hunting the Longrange way.
I hunt a lot with my wife and she and I are always looking for the nicer buck or bull elk and at extreme range. We don't want a short shot.
I also have hunted many years with my good friend Jim Berfield. He and I have a VERY good understanding everytime we go out hunting.
We NEVER shoot doe deer or cow elk. We never shoot spike bucks or fork horns and we put a horn point limit on what we will attemt to kill. It starts at a full NICE 6 Point and goes up from there.
We get much more satisfaction in a longer shot of say at least 1200 yards plus, then a short shot of 500 or 600 yards.
Jim and I would rather kill a nice 6 point at 1500 yards then an 8 or 10 point at 100 yards anyday. It's the challenge that is the important factor. A 500 or 600 yard shot with the equipment we use is NOT a challenge at all.
I guess I'm a true LR hunter but, still walk my land with a carry rifle to see what is there. I took a break from using the bigeyes while LR hunting last season and to stretch my legs on my 100 acres. I left 4 legal bucks go last year because they did not have nice racks. They will be there next year and be even bigger. I won't kill a buck unless he is a nice rack.
Maybe I can go on the far mountain across from my land and shoot LR back onto mine, if those bucks are there next year?
I really don't want a short range shot if I can take the animal Longrange. That includes deer, elk and bear.
To each his own but, I guess at my age, I can be much more selective plus I have the equipment to reach out and touch something at extreme longrange.
I guess I'm not a true LRH. [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
OK, I'll admit I'm old fashioned in that I would rather get close to game where I can watch them and study them. It's just a real thrill to be super close to a Huge Bull Elk and his harem. Hearing them bugle and knowing one wrong move and they'll scatter. Just not the same thang 1000 yards away looking through a rifle scope. Doesn't give me the same sense of awe. The hunts I remember most are the ones which where the most difficult.
I DO enjoy a challenging shot, but not as much as being in the woods and stalking close to game. Darryl, I bet with your target competition experience that sneaking in to 50 yards would be much more challenging for you then a 1200 yard shot.
Only 6 point bulls or better? hmm, I can just see myself sneaking up on a nice elk herd, getting right in with them, and BOOM....
Darryl drops the biggest Bull with a shot from his 338-416 howitzer from 4.3 miles.
Brent, thanks for the reply. I'm with you when you say a "shot is a shot" if it's within your personal range. But my reason for getting close wouldn't necessarily be to make the shot easier (or so I don't have to pack so far), but to see how close I can get to the game. That's not to say that I wouldn't take a long shot on a nice buck or bull if I thought sneaking closer would be too risky or I just didn't want to take a chance on them getting away.
Last Sept. I had the opportunity for shots at both ends of my current spectrum - which is about 6-700 yards under ideal conditions with the .308 Win. rifle that I am hunting with a lot.
First caribou wandered over a big hill into view, eventually bedded down. About 45 minutes later I was in position for a shot. Took wind readings with the Kestral 3000, lasered at 510 yards, checked the come-up on the chart taped on the side of the rifle, adjusted the parallax on the NXS, settled the Remingtion into a comfortable, very steady position and killed him. As we approached him he kept looking bigger and bigger. The excitement happened when I kneeled beside him and saw how huge and incredible he was. ALL THE CHALLENGE WAS TECHNICAL, correct scope settings, elevation and wind, good rest, good trigger control, boom.
Second bull walked into us the next day. Hiding behind a big boulder he walked into 18-20 yards and he was all points - stood bug-eyed staring at me. Most magnificent sight, huge bull, points going everywhere, triple bez and double shovels, water in the background, perfect light. He was just a magnificent animal and I could not believe my good fortune to see him so close. 9 other bulls in the background, maybe 50 to 70 yards back. Not too much excitement, more thanks to the hunting gods for giving me this wonderful memory. I just watched him for several minutes, he ran back, came in, ran back, came in as he just couldn't figure out what we were. Wished that I had a big lens along, would have made incredible photos or video. Finally after several minutes he started to walk away, I decided that I would be foolish not to take such a fine bull. Kill shot was anticlimatic, I simply put the reticle where it had to be and broke the trigger. No finess, no real challenge, the target was huge, he died very quickly.
Which was better. I have no idea. They were both hunting opportunities that I am fortunate to have experienced.
Fact is, the whole HUNT was what I came away with - traveling such barren country with the Inuit for the first time, sharing so much of their culture. The bulls were the frosting on some fine cake.
Some talented people drive special cars at 200 hundred miles an hour for 500 miles at Daytona. Some folks drive mini-vans to Walmart. Its all driving.
Maybe that is what long range shooting is about. We enjoy our challenges with the equipment that we can afford. It's still hunting.
That was 6 Point Bucks (deer) I was refering to here in PA and West Virginia.
Not bull elk. Sorry if I didn't explain that enough.
I really didn't complete my hunting likes and dislikes either.
I am also a Bow hunter and Spring Turkey hunter. I have killed many deer at close range in the early days while still hunting in the woods with my carry rifle.
I certainly know what it's like to get close to animals and the Bow hunting has taught me that. I use to hunt with a pistol also. Still go out from time to time with a muzzle loader too.
As far as my "rathers" are, I MUCH prefer the LONG shots over watching a fine bull and his ladies at close range. I can do that with my bigeyes at 5000 yards if I want to. As a matter of fact not long ago I had 8 Bull elk in my back yard here in PA. There were 20 of the Damn things (mostly cows) over at the feeder on my 100 acres yesterday.
So you see, I do know what getting close is and have MANY times with deer in PA and elk in Colorado. I have been hunting for almost 50 years now and still enjoy all ways but, Longrange is the way I perfer.
Maybe that's why I frequent this forum "Longrange hunting" so much?
That's why we can hunt any way or style we choose.
I guess I still need the meat a little more than you all do, or I still think I do anyway. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img] I stalked a little bull to within 30 feet last year after he ran off twice. It's a long story but I couldn't tell if he was legal (too many points to be a forkhorn).
I kept a tree between us the last stalk and kept grunting as I aproached.
All I had was my Taurus 454 and no bino's so I had to get close. What a rush it was, he was a 3x3 though. It all started when the cow I was watching spooked TWARD us, so I knew a bull was pushing her to get out of there.
Sure enough he was 100yds away 180° of the direction she ran, just out of sight. When I first seen him he was 75yds away and I almost shot but I forgot my bino's in the truck and couldn't be sure, glad I waited!
Wouldn't you have to shake Darryls hand if he just finished the animal you were watching from 4.3 miles though! One more reason to get competitive. Kinda like the old days when the guy with the 30-30 and iron sights was stalking in on one and another hunter with the 30-06 and new scope doubled him over from 300yds away.
F&G actually confiscated a moose (temperarily) my friend shot because a guy said he shot it from the drivable road surface (not legal) when come to find out he was just jelous and simply waiting for the moose to come closer, the moose was huge. Tony pulled over, saw him from the road jumped out the passenger side in the ditch and dropped him. The other guy was on a hill behind him. Fair? Both do have their advantages. [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]