Excellent Long Range Hunting Article

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by phillietimothy, May 29, 2011.

  1. phillietimothy

    phillietimothy Well-Known Member

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    Gentleman, I found this article on Chuck Hawk's website. I found it very informative and easy to understand. It is probably most appropriate for those of us who are new to Long Range Shooting and/or Hunting. I hope this will help someone.

    Long Range Hunting

    Tim
     
  2. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    i have been out west a while. +1 for the laser range finded. binos are 10X42.
     

  3. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    The article could stand a bit of discussion. . . but I'm not going to be the one that shoots holes in an article written by a Hart!

    If too, feel it at decent article for whom it was intended.
     
  4. phillietimothy

    phillietimothy Well-Known Member

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    I have received a great deal of help and guidance from this site and it's members. I was hoping that the article would be beneficial reading. Where do you feel the article comes up short?
     
  5. RDM416

    RDM416 Well-Known Member

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    Royinidaho may have some other items he sees as shortcomings of the article, but I will take a stab at what I saw. Maybe Roy will check in later with his thoughts.

    First, I will complement the article. It is nice to see a positive article in LR hunting and there is a lot of good advice in it. Much of what I see that is not necessarily "wrong", but is just not the way I would do it based on my experience can probably be chalked up to the difference of "long range". This article seems to make reference to 400 yards or so, to me "long range" starts at 500 yards and goes to 1000 and beyond. Ok, enough of that......... here are my thoughts on the article itself.

    1) "Bino's of 7 power, not more not less" I carry either 10X32 or 10X42 Swarovski bino's. I do a lot of glassing out west in very open country and would not want anything less that 10X. I also use my 10X32 turkey hunting and do not at all feel that I have too much magnification or too small a field of view even for the relatively close ranges encountered.

    2) The portion of the article on "rests and shooting position" is totally inadequate to me. The writer states that sitting using a sling is the best position and does not speak highly of bipods, shooting sticks....etc. Sitting, wrapped up in a sling may be fine for 200 or 300 yards, but if I am shooting long range I want far more than that. A bipod and rear bean bag is very commonly used. I use a heavy duty camera tripod as my front support with a bipod on the rear for support on both ends of the rifle. There is simply no way I can hold steady enough for a 500 or 600+ yard shot sitting with a sling........ others may be able to but not me.

    3) "Chose a high quality 6 power fixed magnification scope". Again, maybe for 300 yards or less. I typically use a 5.5-22X or an 8-32X. If you are wobbling around enough you need a lower power to look like you are staying on the critter, you probably are not steady enough to shoot. I typically shoot either of those scopes on max power even on close shots of 200 yards or so. The only time I reduce power is when the mirage is bad as the higher the power the worse the mirage will be.

    Those are the main things. The article talks about ballistic programs and hand held weather meters, both of which I consider absolutely necessary. However, there is little to no use for them at ranges of 400 yards and less. With any reasonably flat shooting rifle a simple range card is all you need if 400 yards is the max range. But, If you are shooting at ranges where the ballistic program and weather meter is needed, then you are shooting at longer ranges and need a higher power scope and more solid rest than just sitting with a sling.

    All in all it is a good article and thank you for posting the link. As I said earlier, the difference to me is wrapped up in the question of "what is LONG RANGE" and that answer is different for almost everyone.
     
  6. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    I haven't read the article but what RDM416 said is dead on. Use ten power binos, use a bipod and not sling or shooting sticks, a fixed 6 power scope is worthless for most hunting. Matter of fact I can't even think of a hunting situation where a fixed 6 would even be in a discussion. Slings and shooting sticks can help a guy steady at close range but are worthless at long range. Ten power are The Binos you want. More power and they are not steady enough, less power and can't see detail well enough.
     
  7. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    Just read it. To many issues to comment on. I don't have time to rework the article and make it right. My advice would be to hang around here awhile and read from experienced long range shooters who do this all the time, hunt all over and have modified their equipment to a science.
     
  8. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

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    +1 on RDM16's comments.

    I will also add that the article seems to imply the query (mule deer) and the potential distance (out to 400). It needs to be more explicit.
     
  9. davkrat

    davkrat Well-Known Member

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    I agree some of the equipment suggested was a little odd 6X scope and 7X binos. The general message of the article though I believe was a good one. For a guy who normally hunts from a blind overlooking a feed lot with 75-150 yard shots being the norm there is no reason to buy a 7mm Wizzbang for making a 600+ yard shot. I know things are changing these days with all the BDC knobs and reticles being offered but still if you ask the average hunter what long range is they will tell you 300 yards and up. To many on here with the big boomers 300-600 yards is like a chip shot.

    Again for the average hunter coming out west to make a once in a lifetime hunt for mule deer or antelope where a 300-400 yard shot is not out of the question I'd say that was pretty sound advice. Obviously the article was not written for a guy who wants to set up a sniper style ambush position and dump an elk across the canyon.

    I'd definitely jump up to a 10X42 binos, I see no problem with a 3-9 or better yet 4-16 variable scope and definitely get a bipod and sticks and practice on them. Obviously you need a rangefinder and some method for range compensation. Like he said save that $1000 for a special purpose rifle and put it towards other gear and maybe get a 6 month gym membership to trim your wasteline.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  10. joe0121

    joe0121 Well-Known Member

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    Good read for a newbie to hunting in general let alone "long range" (there a subjective term if i ever saw one) and good advice about using something you might have already.


    BUUUUUUUTTTTT..............

    A decent scope will not change point of impact on varying magnifications. I have tested this on MK4, Night force and even a cheap sightmark. This is assuming of course if you take the time to set the parallax. Heck even my leupy VXL Held within .2 moa from max power to min at 300 yards, and though decent glass that is not a long range scope.

    I also agree about the bino's, 10 power is ideal.

    A rifle Data book, complete with mil dot master (If you use a mil dot/line scope) calculator and kestrel weather station, as well as verified range cards. You CAN NOT completely depend on ballistics software. As far as I am concerned if you plan to hunt out to 1k You need to shoot test groups with your load out to 1k. The software is for changing your dope for changes in climate/altitude ETC. I would say at least three sets of verified groups 1 in either climate extreme for your area summer/winter and one on a "moderate" day.

    A good sling is paramount even if you plan to shoot prone it really sucks having to hand carry your rifle. If the sling cost less than 30 bucks and you are getting it at wal-mart you don't have a good sling. This is a "tactical":rolleyes: sling but It is perfect for hunting in the field Rifle Slings - Tactical Intervention Specialists Sniper Rifle

    A bipod, a rock you find near by and an old sock (that has been washed) filled with rice/shot/foam pellets/insert material here is the bees nees for the field expedient prone. You can buy the little bag deals but why not make it with crap you have sitting around the house? Or how about your back pack with your camel back and sweater for when it gets cold stuffed inside. Makes one heck of a rest. I never really got into using shooting sticks, though I should just don't like em.

    All in all though I think we aren't seeing the forest for the trees. Though we might disagree with the particulars of magnification the overall point is well made and valid.

    I think for me the big take away is this, Big expensive and fancy doesn't always mean better and sometimes simple and cheap is the best answer spending 10K an a uber rifle and glass isn't what gets meat in the freezer common sense and preparation does.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011