ranging whitetail @ 1k

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by rscott5028, May 30, 2012.

  1. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    Another thread about shooting steel at 1k to demonstrate cold bore capability on whitetail deer prompted me to post this.

    Given that animals aren't as reflective as steel, steel is stationary, and you can take all the time you need with steel and don't worry that it'll take a step or two...

    How confident/practiced/effective are you at ranging whitetails (or similar sized game animals) at around 1000yds are you in hunting situations?

    What equipment and techniques do you employ?

    What terrain and weather make it easier/harder for you?

    Have you ever had enough confidence to take that shot?

    thanks,
    richard
     
  2. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    I am very confident on getting a range within 1 yard or less. The RF reads in yards so you could be + or - 2 feet.

    For equipment I use a Vectronix PLRF10 and sand bags or I have ranged over the top of the scope prone with a bag on top. I would also be confident using a PLRF05 (Terripin) , Leica CRF1200 (in lower light) or a CRF1600. These 4 RF's have the smallest beam divergence of any I know of and at 1000 I do not have to worry about the beam being too large and grabbing some sage brush or ground clutter 30 yards before the animal. That is, as long as I am solid on bags with the RF and eliminate all the movement and I am solid on target.

    I can range in hills or on the flat. My best , often practiced techniques are to get solid. Center on the game, and get a distance, then move up above the animal, over it's back to shoot to infinity on the flat terrain, or into the dirt behind the animal on a hillside. If shooting into the dirt the distance will increase a few yards. Then lower back to center animal for a third reading to match the first. Some times I even do a 4th as I like to see 3 agreeing numbers on the game.

    If the shooting situation will not allow enough time from 1000 yards away, I simply wait or pass the shot. If the animal is moving you won't have time for a shot at this distance. I will never make a hurry up shot. They suck and the success rate is greatly lowered. If you are in a hurry use that energy to get closer. "A slow hit is better than a fast miss"

    I have taken this shot on several occations with perfect or near perfect conditions and up to a steady 12 mph wind. This includes 3 coyotes over 1000 on flat ground. With my 338 LM and a 300 gr bullet if you are off 10 yards on your range you will likely miss the yote or only graze him as you will be off in elevation correction. Plus this does not include the 1/2 moa of error within the capabilities of the rifle, ammo, and shooter.

    Jeff
     

  3. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    Jeff,

    Thanks for the great feedback.

    I use the CRF1200 and find it increasingly difficult past 800 yds on whitetail. I have yet to get 3 solid readings past about 850 on deer such that I'd be comfortable with the shot. But, your comments on technique are noteworthy to say the least.

    It seems that the height of grass, shrubs fore/aft, light too dim/bright, fog, drizzle, etc... always interfere at the wrong time. ...or, by the time I get a lock on the target, it moves another 10 yds one way or the other.

    When you add in the precision of the rifle/load, margin of error for reading wind, etc... I find it difficult to pull the trigger at 800 and beyond. I guess that's what practice is all about and that includes practice with the laser range finder, reticle, or whatever tools you choose.

    Thanks!
    Richard
     
  4. Nimrod1203

    Nimrod1203 Well-Known Member

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    Scott, your range finder is probably more limited than you would be led to believe for 1k ranging on animals. As the responder said, the CRF 1600 is a whole new game for ranging animals to 1k. My arc 1000 doesn't go over 650 on deer. The finders he listed would make life very easy.
    Nimrod
     
  5. Scot E

    Scot E Well-Known Member

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    Here is what I can tell you specifically dealing with the Leica 1600. I have a neighbor that has goats in his pasture right now and depending on where they are they range from 900 to just a bit over 1200 yards. I would guess they are 3/4 the size of a whitetail.

    I have had no issues getting 1st time readings if I am rested and often times can get them without a rest. So it is very doable. The method Broz listed is very similar to the one I use in verifying that I am in fact ranging the animal and not the hillside behind or in front of the animal. It works well.

    Scot E.
     
  6. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    Richard, I did quite a bit of field testing a few years ago with 5 different Swaro , 4 Leica, a Zeiss a newcon and then my PLRF10. The more I did this the more I saw the importance of a solid rest. A tripod will work well to but some will wiggle when you push the button, for this reason and because I dont always have a tirpod I prefer a bag for a rest.

    Also, some RF's like the PLRF10 fire the laser upon release of the button. This is a great feature. It is set like an 8 oz Jewell and will fire without movment of the RF.

    I stress quite a bit to people to practice with their RF if they want to improve their ranging success. Also even though you are sending a laser beam that may be 4' or more at 1000 yards, would you feel you would take that shot off hand? With a fixed 6 or 8 power scope? I know I wouldn't and not off my elbos either. Get her solid and practice with the RF. Then when the tme comes you will know how to handle different field cnditions.

    Jeff
     
  7. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    Whole lotta wisdom and good info in this post and the one it replied to.