How did use get so good?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by skip AI, May 5, 2005.

  1. skip AI

    skip AI Well-Known Member

    Mar 13, 2005
    Ive never been an excellent LR shooter but am starting to move up the ranks /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif
    I was wondering what you all started your long range hunting careers with (cal)?
    By the looks of it some of you got given a .22lr at a young age and started shooting 200m with it right of the word GO! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif
    Ive been using me 22 alot more latley to shoot 150m for fun do you think this will help me improve for when I go shooting with say my .25-06AI ?


    skip /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif
  2. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Writers Guild

    Jun 12, 2001
    First off, good, ok, excellent are relative terms concerning ability and guns ability and purpose.

    Here is what I was taught and what I taught my son and my daugther.

    At about 6 years old take a 22 rifle with iron sights or pellet gun. Get a rest/ saw horse / chair because the gun will be too heavy. Shoot at about 20 feet. First shot is to create a target. All subsequent shots are to hit the first bullet hole. This teaches concentration on a small target. Shooting should occur weekly this reinforces mechanics. No safety infraction is ever allowed to go without discussion.

    For hunting, all rabbits, squirrels are to be shot in the head by aiming at the eyes.

    Shooting should be a "fun" session with the "adults". Go over to the "new hunter" thread and see all of the little gongs and dangles that 4ed Horn has built. He mentions in passing about the need for challenge (without getting the child frustrated). Be very careful about making hunting or shooting a torture session. See Shawn Carlock's bearhunt, children have short attention spans and are very intelligent about what they find to be fun.

    For me after all these years, to resharpen skills, I mostly rely on small caliber guns and I don't really care which. Shooting doves with a 20ga will really sharpen swing mechanics with any type of gun. Shooting a 17 rem bolt gun will get you used to a lot of racket and when you short stroke that Rem 700 action you will know if you have a flinch problem. 22 rifles are good for shooting beer cans rock and just about anyting and once again trigger control, follow through etc becomes obvious because of the low recoil.

    My main point is that low recoil guns help you identify bad shooting habits and reinforce good ones.

    You must shoot your primary gun in real life hunting type situations so your are comfortable with the stock weld, sight picture, etc. You msut practice getting quickly into a stable shooting psoition - prone, sitting, kneeling, standing. When it is time to make the big shot you must know by rote habit what is stable for you and what is not. There is no way I will ever make a 400/500 yard shot offhand. I just know my ability from years of missing and it is beyond me. I still like to use low recoil light bullets for practice with teh hunting gun and not beat myself into bad habits with heavy recoiling hunting bullets. Of course you have to shoot some practice with them in the field at things that are alive and at different distances, light and wind.
    I do not have much patience and concentration for paper shooting and am always amazed at the people who can focus and concentrate while at the bench, mostly I just want to test my bullets and go home.

    When I was where I could do a significant amount of long range shooting (or medium range shooting) I would create certain "rules" which prohibited "easy" shots such as no wood chucks under 200 yds, No jackrabbits that were sitting still and / or under 100yds. If a jack rabbit stopped at too close of a range the "rules" mandated shooting him in one ear to get him going agian. These games and rules varied with gun and animal but they tended to create a challenge so I would miss enough to strive harder.

    All of this said I am not a great shot, I have seen great shoots and shooters. With most of my hunting guns when I am shooting regularly I can shoot somewhere around 0.7 -0.5MOA but I warn you that you do not want to be anywhere close to me in a dove field unless you want to spend your afternoon dodging falling birds. After all of these years, the act of killing something has gone way down on my list of priorities and just enjoying a peaceful day in the woods has gone way up to the top. There are so many foxes where I hunt and I have gotten to know them and most of their children and to shoot one at 30-50 yards would be just a sad and pointless thing.

    One road through the maze we call life.
  3. fenceline

    fenceline Member

    Feb 28, 2005
    How do you get to carnige hall pratice prarice
    I have always liked streaching my shots pellet gun archery 22 then 243 30-06 7mm 300wm and shot guns and slug hunting. I turmed my hobby into a job, guiding then outfitting. And raising a family takes alot of time & $. Now i have the means and the time to do lots of shooting . I like to shoot 300+ rounds of 22, 17, a week benchresting tring to shoot the tinest groups possable this is very good pratice and 200+ of center fire 223 ,308 243, 300wm and 300 rum [total shots] or so.I am not a benchrest shooter but a long range hunter and in order to be along range hunter i have to shoot bench rest . it pays off and i get in lots of shooting and my long range shooting is even more fun and sadisifing becuase of time behind the trigger. It works for me . /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif Also the help of other shooters and forums like this !!!
  4. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch Well-Known Member

    Mar 6, 2005
    Thanks for thinking of how to psot this question skip. I think that the information that will be exchanged here will help all of us neo-longrangers. I have been training myself with the rimfire cartridges and a pellet gun that I was given when I was 8. Put a pop can within 100 yards and it's dead with the good old daisy 10 pump /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif Now I want to make it so that the p-dogs and yotes are in trouble out to 1000+ with the hunting rigs.
  5. Two-0-four

    Two-0-four Member

    Dec 11, 2007
    I guess I'm not that much different than most in how I became addicted to long range hunting. I had the usual .22 to .243 to 30-06 and hunted all my life but never thought about long range hunting or shooting. It wasn't until I bought this rig in 2004, a new Remington 700 VLS in .204 of course

    and tried my luck at groundhogs and was hooked from the first one. After hunting with a .204 you start liking this new talent. A flat shooting .204 will make you look good. My best with my .204 and 32gn VMax on a Groundhog was 572yds.
    I started reading articles about long range target and long range hunting, started reloading to make my gun even more accurate.
    Then it hits you. The need to shoot even further and more accurately than ever before. Then you buy better reloading equipment for even better accuracy.
    Then, you order your first custom barrel, action, and begin work. I just happen to enjoy it so much I built a wildcat.
    My long range custom gun built in my basement is my Savage 110 in .224 Clark or ( 22/257 ). It's built from a .257 Roberts case necked down to .224 and what a shooter. I load .75 gn Hornady A-Max bullets and I can't believe the accuracy. All the reading on the forums to gun barrel manufactures was worth the effort. Here is a pic of my sweetheart with a record book groundhog, a giant ground grizzly.


    And thats how it really happend!!
    If your not careful it COULD happen to you!!!:D

    They say "A picture is worth a 1000 words" so I guess I just saved you guys from reading another 2000 words. Hope nobody minds the pics in here.
  6. Two-0-four

    Two-0-four Member

    Dec 11, 2007
    After sitting back and reading the post over again, I could easily fill in the 1000-2000 words without any problem but I won't. I don't want to put anyone to sleep.
    But I will say this and maybe some of you can relate to it.......I built my gun myself, and I have to fabricate the brass so to speak to load ammo for this round from forming the brass to necking down to reaming the necks to fire forming and producing the final load.
    When I connect with my a groundhog that takes 20 minutes to walk to, that is an awesome feeling. Knowing that I did that from start to finish with parts I hand made is just sweet and so, so satisfying!! Forums like this have lots of great advice and most people are willing to help you out.
    Also...Practice, Practice, Practice and do it the way your going to hunt. If you lay on the ground and shoot prone such as I do, then target shoot that way and so on and so on. It makes a big difference.
    I'm hooked and there's no hope for me. :D
  7. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Writers Guild

    Jun 13, 2007
    I think a couple points that other people have made are really applicable.

    1. Start early with a BBgun, pellet rifle and 22LR. You really learn wind and drop if you want to hit anything.

    2. Same thing with a mid level rifle. I started there with a Mauser 98 in 6mm Rem and burned the barrel out with a Lee Hand loader and dippers, and resulting in tons of coyotes ($50 pair of ear bounty), deer and crows. Many at long distance which at that time was about 400-500 yards. it was all Kentucky elevation at that time too.

    After that, it really is continued practice. today we are fortunate and I think one of the best new practice opportunities is F class. You get to shoot out to 1000 and 50-60 shots a day. A 308 or even a 6mmBR are easy to shoot and relatively cheap. Plus just about every state has at least 1-2 ranges holding informal or formal NRA sanctioned matches.

  8. MT4XFore

    MT4XFore Well-Known Member

    Oct 20, 2005
    +1 on what BuffaloBob said. He is such a sage, and his dedication to his kids is exemplary. My father (rest his soul) did the very thing with me. Started with BB guns, then 22's. Graduated from plilnkin' to squirrels, absolutely no shotguns for squirrels, not sporting as far as he was concerned. Then along came the groundhogs. First with 22's, then up to a .218Bee, then came the .222mag, and then a .257WBY. As the calibers increased, so did the distance. It finally got to the point I carried 2 guns when hunting groundhogs, the 222 and the 257. If we couldn't back up and increase the distance for the 257, I'd use the 222. We hunted where the farmers wanted the pigs SHOT, so we had to show some progress to keep in their good graces. I grew up in WV and we hunted a lot where very long shooting was kind of rare. I did have a couple of places at 600 yds where I kept the whistlepigs thinned out very well. After I moved out West, my distances increased and when I would report back any successes to my Dad, he would marvel at how far I could connect on game animals. If he only could see what some of the folks on this forum can do!! I have done the same with my two kids, young adults now. My son and my daughter both love hunting and both are crack shots. Thanks Dad.

    God Bless and good luck