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May 25, 2007

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Quote of the Day

“By and large, today’s deer hunter is not a skilled hunting rifleman. I say hunting rifleman in the effort to make a clear distinction between the hunter and the target shooter, for there is a marked difference. The majority of these men are not hunting riflemen of any marked degree of skill even after a lifetime of deer hunting.”—Larry Koller, Shots at Whitetails


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So True! So True!

Just read this blog.

About 25-years ago I made a promise not to buy another new rifle, but to put those funds into hunting trips. The other half of the promise was to spend half the big game season [deer] using a primitive muzzleloader to make me improve my hunting skills.


Ditto's. I think the short fat's will survive in the form of "bench potatoes" that don't get out much. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but most hunters could give a rat's ass about 700 yard shooting. It doesn't take much skill to get within 700 yards of a deer.


How much shooting ability do you need to take a sub 50 yard shot? If you are a skilled woods hunter you can get close enough to the animals where you have to be a down right miserable shot to miss. If this is the case however, just be sure to stick to woodland whitetails and not venture to the Mid West or the Karoo or the Tundra.


You know I realized this a few years ago when I took a deer at less than 50 yards with my .270 Winchester. I looked and said to myself; "Self, you could have taken that deer with a revolver." So since that hunt I have used only my .41 magnum Blackhawk, a .45 Ruger Vaquero, and just for giggles, a cap and ball Hawkin clone, now that's hunting. I took a deer this past season with the Vaquero at less than 15 yards and it felt much more like I earned it. On a side note, those whom I was hunting with missed miserably with a Remington 715 in .30-06 and a Marlin in .35 Remington. It is not the kill that hunting is all about I could get a .408 Cheytac and snipe deer at 2200 meters from an arm chair in a heated living room with a cup of coffee (decaf) in the cup holder, but I think something is lost in the hunting experience with that scenario.

Dr. Ralph

I haven't taken any game at 700 yards, but I have taken deer with a S&W .40, patched round ball and shotgun. When you get inside 30 yards everything changes. That's what excites me and gets me out of bed at 3 am...


I successfully hunted deer and elk with bow, shotgun, and rifle. While I demand an accurate weapon for the occasional cross canyon shot, I believe the only reason I get an elk and a deer each year is my hunting skills. When you learn to move like a silent sloth when close to a herd of elk, and make the shot, you are a true hunter. All this is on public land overrun with 4-wheelers, marathon hikers, etc. When hunting cover, take the shot if you can keep it "minute of deer/elk."
Don in Wyoming


That "Silent Sloth" comment is priceless.

Clay Cooper

Of all the hunting I do, nothing beats a good BOW HUNT!!!

Clay Cooper

Don in Wyoming

So true you are. The problem today, with all the gadgetry how can one maximize the tools at hand. To skillfully transition from Bow to firearm then back again. To reach out accurately to the maximum affective range and squeeze a pinch more, one must be combination of both hunter and target shooter is a must. You cannot be either or. Learn all disciplines and compile them all together. Besides of missing your game caused by flinching, follow thru is the #1 reasons why both hunters and target shooters miss. Both on and off the range, it’s the same old story. The ability to shoot across canyons “and” in the brush is a must. Game do move into extreme conditions and you the hunter must be able to adapt to be truly successful. I’ve witness Master competition shooters completely miss a deer as hunters miss the target entirely at 200 yards. To skillfully able to transition between target competition and hunting, you can’t have it better than this. Another most overlooked is being in shape.


It seems to me I read that some states wanted to put limits on how for a hunter could shoot because, the advancement of modern optics gave even a mediocre shot just to much of an advantage over big game animals. Their main fear being the lost of to many mature seed bulls.

 Disabled/handicped Rocky Mountain Hunter

I read a short time ago,that over 50% of game taken is under 100 yds. All depends on what part of the country you hunt. I live in the Foot-hills of the Blue Ridge Mtns,and that distance is correct. All most hunters need is a 30-30, of which I used till I became disabled/handicapped. Now I cannot walk the woods and fields, so I had to adjust my shooting for that reason. Plus, I now go to the Rockies to hunt Elk, Mulies, Antelopes and long shots are a must for me. I zero all my Western firerms at 200 yds and that works fine for me.(always carry a Rangefinder out west) The longest shot I've attempted with success was last year on a 4 x 4 deer at 345 yds with a 06. My hunting firearms for home use is zeroed for 100 yds and works fine. Now and then I use my 12 ga.Rem Auto 1100, espcially if hunting from my 4 wheeler. Never had a desire to hunt 5-700 yds, as my personal feeling is, that is a gamble shot. And, I don;t gamble on a "MAYBE" shot. Have a ambition to hunt a w-tail with a hangun, but undecided on what firearm to use un-scoped. Thought about the Blackhawk, Vanquero, and Taurus in 5 l/2 or 7 l/2" bbls. Any suggestions on which is better. Back to 500+ shots. Most city hunters, don;t want to walk over 200 yds from their pickup to hunt, so therfore they gamble on extreme, chancie long shots. I've talked with many game wardens in the Rockies, and it's unbelieveable the # of animals they find that died a slow agony death by a poor placed shot. They either bleed to death or the Wolves, bears, Coyotes ate them alive.So in my book, pratice a lot, and know you can make a killing first shot at a reasonable distance.Above all, just enjoy being out in the woods, etc. regardless if you see/kill game or not. It's by far better than the office all day or sitting on the front porch(or Den in winter) in a rocking chair. Shoot-um-straight and pratice often: RR

Clay Cooper

Disabled/handicped Rocky Mountain Hunter

The best deer story I ever heard. Some guy last deer season was swooping down a national forest road and while traveling at around 70 mph hooked shot a Bud Light bottle over his cab hitting a nice 3x3 in the head dropping it in it’s tracks.

I heard of spot lighting, but Bud Lighting a deer?

Don’t remember seeing anything in the regs saying you couldn’t do it

Sounds like a Jeff Foxworthy joke, YOU MIGHT BE A RED NECK!

 Disabled/handicped Rocky Mountain Hunter

Mr. Cooper, thats a new one even for Jeff. Don;t spread the word to much, as the ATF guys will be on our case to check our coolers,.After the fat/chubby rounds, not suprised at what length the mfges will go to sell products. Suppose Budwiser started this new fad, so could sell more long necks???? Bet that is correct. My throwing arm is kinda off these days, may just try my slingshot which I always take to the Rockies. No kidding I do. If hunting a ridge, ( I drop down below l0 to 20 yds) line, I will use my sling shot and steel balls about 3/8" diam.and shot down the hill side about l/2 way, if any bedded deer they will high tail it upwards and I;m ready. Call me crazy, but it works on bedded deer, especally on Mulies.With W-tails they go in many directions. Plus I can;t throw a rock far enough, but the steel ball will travel just the right distance. Now we got a new subject to discuss, right?


Well I see so many guys headed off into the woods around here with there $8000 ATV, $1000 rangefinder, $300 camo sent blocking cloths, $900 in-line muzzle loader, $1400 Leupold New Leupold 8.5-25x50 Mark 4 LR/T 30mm Riflescope, and $500 tree stand with built in coffe maker and A/C with optional Toilet. all to get what a $10 deer. I live in Northern Virginia where too many people have more money than brains. I am not a deer hunter just never been into deer sitting which is what they want you to do now a days. I am a varmint hunter. Grew up doing it still love to do it. All i need is a stock Rem 700 with a $200 scope (Weaver kt-15) I love to go to the rnage and see these guys out there with there big fancy scopes and custom made rifles and then they get mad when I out shoot them with a almost bone stock rem 700 vls.

Chev Jim

I'd have to disagree with the late Larry Koller. Not to take anything away from those who slay deer at 500 yards and longer, but it also takes skill to shoot fast! You don't have all day to shoot at most whitetail deer in heavy cover. You may get a few seconds to bring up your rifle, find the deer in your sights (or scope) and get off a round. The deer may be running when you get a chance at a shot. Forget your rangefinders and mil-dot scopes in these hunting scenarios! It's an entirely different type of hunting that demands its own skill set. Hunters who can take deer at long range are often "surprised" by a buck busting cover only 10 yards away!

Dr. Ralph

I'm going out and buying a slingshot today, you just came up with a winner Rocky Mountain Hunter! Why didn't I think of that? Plus the added bonus of more weight so everyone can really pile on me now... still ain't skeered!

 Disabled/handicped Rocky Mountain Hunter

Good hunting Dr. RAlph, it really does work. I have proff on my Den wall to verify so. My fist attempt to try was many years ago in CO while hunting the Sage Brush Ridges. The sage was about 6 or 8 ft tall and those Mulies would bed on south side in the sun and no way could see them till they stood up or moved. Thought about a air-rifle, but to clumsy to carry another hunk of metal, so told myself, why not a Sling-shot,( no noise when shot) as growing up on farm,I shot many squirels and rabbits sitting with a sling shot. So next year made a new one and it went along on my fall trip to C0. Man, did it work well. After all the laughter and shouts( hey look at this idiot using a sling shot to hunt with, Ha, Ha,) from fellow hunters, they ate crow for supper that night, I ate Mulie Loins.(Dr. Ralph, inform me on the new Remington model 715 Sportsman rifle , just came out) is it a great improvement over the 710 or so-so. I want a 4 wheeler firearm with syn stock, save my Walnut stocker firearms for out West.

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