Report On Defensive Edge Long Range Shooting Class

By Len Backus, Publisher of Long Range Hunting

It was the last day of the long range shooting class given by Shawn Carlock of Defensive Edge. The three shots went into 3 inches at 835 yards. That’s pretty good long range shooting. But what if I told you this long range shooting group consisted of 3 first-round hits shot by 3 different shooters using 3 different long range rifles?

There was some side-wind, mirage and an occasional updraft. We three shooters were out to show our teacher what we could do as a result of 4 days of intensive instruction on long range shooting at one of the best long range shooting classes in the country. Located in the mountains of northern Idaho, the venue was ideal for learning or fine-tuning long range wind reading skills.


3 shots by 3 shooters into 3 inches at 835 yards

Shawn Carlock had called me early last summer and asked me if I’d like to attend his Long Range Shooting Class in late July. “I’d love to!” was my enthusiastic response. Then all I had to do was convince my wife that changing the dates of our already planned, annual late July vacation trip was actually a very good thing for her.

The prior year I had successfully morphed this same annual vacation trip into a mule deer scouting trip to the Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming. I simply characterized the trip destination as a mountain lodge where we would eat great resort food, hike the scenic trails and search for beautiful wildflowers. My craftiness had worked then and it ended up working this time, too!

The first afternoon of the Defensive Edge Long Range Shooting Class was spent inside a large wall tent watching Shawn give a presentation that included the use of a 50 inch flat screen TV. The seventeen page printed class syllabus included topics such as minute of angle (MOA), spin drift, wind calling, segmented winds, doping the wind, up/down hill shooting, wound cavities, deer and bear shot placement, drop chart, reading mirage, ballistics programs, shot log.


Updraft was talked about extensively. It was interesting to me that Shawn had not noticed any internet discussion of this factor until he actually wrote about it, on, in 2009. We spent much time later studying the effect of updraft on long range bullets out in the field.
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