I have a Weatherby Vanguard youth model .223 that I keep in my ranch pickup. It is a great little rifle and the shorter/lighter youth model makes it easy and quick to get into action when I see a varmint. It is synthetic with a blued barrel. I put a Nikon scope with BDC on it and it is a VERY accurate little rifle and contrary to several reviews you might read, it has a really nice trigger on it, although it is not an "accutrigger". Not sure if it comes in lefty version. I also have a model 11 Savage in .22-250 with accutrigger, it too is VERY accurate, but it is a little larger and heavier (not a bull barrel) so I don't like it as a pickup gun. I think the Savage youth would be a great gun for your needs, but take a look at the Vanguard youth also. I like shooting both guns equally well. Found the Weatherby on the new gun "sale" rack at Cabelas. Gun was $300 + $139 for the scope. Both guns are good values, and available in the larger calibers. Good luck.
P.S. I was looking for another Savage when I found the Weatherby!