A Hard Night's Work

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by Joel Russo, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    Jumped on a bird, headed south, and my business partner Chase Curtis picked me up in Dallas. Kudos to US Airways for giving my bags and gear a free ride by honoring their Military! After a couple hour ride, we pulled into the ranch for a few days of business and pleasure.

    With business out of the way, our plan was to shoot some steel and chase coyotes until we were tired…

    The following day we set up steel and played at various ranges out to 1,450 yards. The gusting winds made it somewhat difficult, but hey, who wants to shoot when it’s easy..

    Chase drove his 6.5x47 Lapua to some mind blowing groups at 1,450 yards, see attached steel plate picture. That particular rifle has always shot exceptionally well, and Chase is no slouch either. We also punished that steel plate steel with both of our .338-.408’s which proved to be a bit easier in the wind.

    This ranch is covered with coyotes…and we were intent to do our part in the full interest of wildlife management.:rolleyes: We made a few daytime sets and they proved to be difficult at best due to the high winds. Time to re-group and figure out how to accomplish our mission...... With thermal imaging, suppression, and NV at hand, we decided on switching to nighttime operations… No worries on that end, it’s more desirable to run night ops..

    Temps were hanging around 20* which made it quite comfortable. We decided to ditch the NV as it became problematic identifying targets at a distance. Weapon of choice was Chase’s 6.5x47 topped with SB 5x25 PMII because I made the lame excuse that I didn’t want to bang up my pretty stock on my .243 AI… :D FLIR thermal device, FoxPro remote call, and a SAS suppressor rounded out the equipment list.
    After a few sets, it became quite apparent that we couldn’t engage all the coyotes we were calling in. Now that’s a good problem to have. We managed to shoot one double, but could have had triples and quads if we had another body behind a second rifle.

    Talk about a sight to see.... two adrenaline junkies running night ops in a target rich environment… a blast from the past

    For your viewing pleasure…
     

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  2. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    More...
     

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  3. soundwaves

    soundwaves Well-Known Member

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    wow nice rifles guys.
     
  4. Canadian Bushman

    Canadian Bushman Well-Known Member

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    Good shooting. Sounds like a fun time, and as always thats is a gorgeous stock on that rifle.
     
  5. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    Very nice Joel, and a beautiful rig to shoot as well. Not sure what part of the state you're in but if you're anywhere near us you're a brae soul! We hit a low of 14 with winds running upwards of 35 mph all night and into this morning so that would be some darned tough conditions to be shooting in!
     
  6. Hunter2678

    Hunter2678 Well-Known Member

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    Life can be tough at times when you're a riflesmith and friends with another riflesmith...
     
  7. MudRunner2005

    MudRunner2005 Well-Known Member

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    That looks like it was pretty fun! Nice rifles! Good story, too.

    Joel, what kind of stock is that on the rifle in the first picture?
     
  8. mtnwrunner

    mtnwrunner Well-Known Member

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    Now, THAT looks like an absolute great time. Always nice to share a huntin trip with the buddies.
    So, what was the longest confirmed kill??

    Randy
     
  9. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    A Manners.

    Those dogs were all shot between 275 and 350 yards...we have never been able to shoot long range at night.
     
  10. Chase Curtis

    Chase Curtis Official LRH Sponsor

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    A great time was had by all!!

    I can not express how fun shooting those dogs is with thermal and suppressed... :D

    I think we are actually going to build a rifle just for that in the future.

    Joel pulled off plenty of great shots on the dogs and steel. gun)

    It was fun shooting that distance on steel with such an array of calibers... From the 6mm to the big .338s you get to see the full spectrum.

    If I keep working Russo ill get him to conform to our TX ways... :rolleyes::D

    Some more pics:

    Russo working at 1450 with 243 AI..

    [​IMG]

    At 900..

    [​IMG]

    We had never shot anything with the 140 berger hybrid... I can tell you this... It is DEVASTATING on coyotes...

    [​IMG]
     
  11. joeycoates

    joeycoates Well-Known Member

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    That looks like fun... It's funny as I have the exact same truck down to color and F-350 SRW and I set up my table in the bed to hunt as well! :D I have shot many a pig early to late evening out of the back of my truck. And when it is time to head back to the ranch house I just close the tailgate and amble back home. Makes for a great shooting platform... gun)
     
  12. varmintH8R

    varmintH8R Well-Known Member

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    I will respectfully disagree under the premise that 350 yards is long range at night.

    Nice shootin'!
     
  13. Chase Curtis

    Chase Curtis Official LRH Sponsor

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    We tried to find some hogs...They just didn't want to play this time... hopefully next trip!!:)
     
  14. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    I agree. After some discussion about what to do differently on the next outing, we decided not to change our routine as it obviously has been working to our advantage, but we are going to change the shootin' stick.

    We are putting together a "laser shorty" that will be much more user friendly under the star lit night. Figured the long range capable 6.5x47 was a bit big, so we're going to fix that.
    Decided on an 18" finished barrel, in .22 cal, which will make it a total of 27" including the suppressor. Barrel should arrive tomorrow, so the work begins.....