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Old October 17, 2008, 08:07 PM   #1
Harry Bonar
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Long Range?

Sirs;
I hear alot, anymore about long range shooting.
Yes, I'm aware it can be done but I frown on it for game hunting.

Very, very few of us realize how far, truly, 100 yards is. Fewer yet concieve of 200 yards! I would suppose that most of the big game shot in this country and in Africa and Alaska are shot at not more than 150 yards in reality. I know there are shots who can connect at 400 and 500 yards - not me, certainly. Finn Aagaard, lately passed, an experienced African and American hunter said, "Most of us have no business shooting at unwounded game at much over 200 yards." I, for one, agree whole heartedly!
I have people (one with an old P17 Enfield with open sights on it) stand and tell me he regularly shot groundhogs at 500 yards with it! I just looked at him, not saying a word - I didn't work on his rifle!
I know one young man with a 338 Remington ultra-mag who loads 3 grains over max. book with a two ounce trigger and a large muzzle brake, who shoots at gound hogs at a mile! You cannot see one at a mile! "Oh, yes I can with my 20 power scope." Yes, I imagine he might - but hit one? no chance!
Bullets lose velocity at extended ranges; only rotational velocity remains fairly high.
In this country, we are obsessed with high velocities, high pressure, high recoil and high power scopes - and still - most game killed reliably and humanely is well within 200 yards!
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Old October 17, 2008, 09:39 PM   #2
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Harry, I like the challenge of 1000 yard shooting and attended the Long Range Firing School at Camp Perry twice when Middleton Tompkins was holding it and the Marine Scout Snipers were not deployed and were able to be our volunteer line coaches. One of the things Mid said was that he didn't feel there was any value to having sight adjustments finer than 1/2 moa at 1000 yards. The wind changed too fast to fuss with finer adjustments, so you just learned to hold off slightly if you saw a sign that you needed to allow for a 1/4 moa difference or so. Minute of groundhog just doesn't happen out there, even if the mirage would let you make one out through a scope, much less at a mile. The imagination is a mighty thing.
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Old October 17, 2008, 09:45 PM   #3
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I'm right there with ya Harry.
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Old October 17, 2008, 09:54 PM   #4
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VX4aqmbaGIo
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Old October 18, 2008, 09:01 AM   #5
Harry Bonar
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1000 yds.

Nick;
1000 yard shooting and shooters are in a different category and I can see the fun and skill in it. Have no problem with the target shooting - many, many do it.
Good luck!
Harry B.
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Old October 18, 2008, 09:19 AM   #6
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IMO...The guy with the 338 that can kills groundhogs at one mile: I kinda think the bullet drops roughly 90 feet at that distance. Maybe his groundhogs are tall,very tall.
I have shot priariedogs for years. I zero my rifle at 300 yards. My kill ratio at that distance is nothing to brag about.
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Old October 18, 2008, 10:28 AM   #7
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My kill ratio at that distance is nothing to brag about.
I don't get on an ethical soapbox for varmints. For legal game however a kill ratio should be pretty high IMO. Wounded game gets my guts in a knot.
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Old October 18, 2008, 12:22 PM   #8
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IMO, long range for targets starts at 600 yds, for varmints long range starts at 400 yds, and for deer or other game animals long range starts at 300 yds and ends at 400-500 yds (I can still place the bullet very accurately at that range). Any further and it's time to get up and start hiking closer. Shooting game animals at longer range would be irresponsible, and I think long range kills on game animals are more of a stunt than anything else.
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Old October 18, 2008, 02:46 PM   #9
Harry Bonar
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long range

Sir;
Scorch, I agree totally. Long shots are basically "stunts."
The guy with the 338RUM shot five times and his brother about the same at this pig about 1000 yards and never hit it! But, he said, "I almost hit that pig!"
Long range for me on groundhogs is 300 yards and that's too far really - 150 is more like it for consistant kills!
Farthest shot I ever made with my kids watching was about 350 yards, estimated, and I couldn'e hardly see the groundhog for the crosshairs! It was pure luck that I connected - 6MM REM! However I did get two with one shot at about 125 yards - again a 6MM Rem. 87 gr. bullet!
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Old October 18, 2008, 07:11 PM   #10
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B. Lahey,

Don't you think that scope in the video needs more rings and knobs?

At Gunsite's Precision Rifle school, they had us fire at a popper at a lasered 748 yards. That's how I found out the 168 grain Sierra MatchKing out of a .308 starts tumbling at about 700 yards. One to the right, then one to the left then all around the town. None at the crosshairs. I only hit it once, but nobody else with that ammo could do any better. The sight picture was good, though the target was a sniper's silhouette popper and far from ground hog size. The 8" center is perfectly hitable at that range with good ammunition.
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Old October 19, 2008, 10:18 AM   #11
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LongRifle, with all due respect you're talking about trained people with the equipment to do it. The average person has no business even thinking about trying to make those kind of shots. I have a long range target rifle and I tried to get into it years ago but 1000 yd. shooting isn't for me. I've taken deer from 300 yds. quite a few times in my younger days and never lost one but I wouldn't try it now.
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Old October 19, 2008, 10:42 AM   #12
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I pretty much agree, but you don't have to be awfully well trained to have fun at Long Range. A paper target doesn't care if you shoot a seven, but a wounded animal or even taking a substantial risk of wounding one is unsportsmanlike.

A Master class target shooter of my acquaintance took some experienced deer hunters to the range. Even from a steady position, they were pretty much all done by 300 metres. I recently heard the Rest Of The Story about such a guy's 450 yard bragging elk kill. A lot more luck was involved than the basic description mentions.
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Old October 19, 2008, 12:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
I also consider some of the blanket statements made here as an attack of their character. Not cool.
Blanket statements are the problem here . If you feel that your effective range is 300 yds fine , I've seen very experianced deer hunters that shouldn't shoot beyond 100 yds because that's the ranges they hunt at ( thick cover ) . I saw ( witnessed / couldn't believe ) a guy shoot a 1200# black cow during a doe day last year because he thought he heard something in the brush ( good thing it wasn't wearing blaze ). Everybody posting here has varying experiance levels and we train differently for different hunting conditions. So blanket statements don't fit.

We hunt ridge to ridge where the shortest shot might be 300 yds. and the longest 800yds. We practice at those ranges it is NOT a "STUNT" it requires many hours of practice, load development , understanding of ballistics and time in the trigger year round, not the week before season opens. I spend anywhere from 10 to 20 hours a week (every week) in the field or at the range firing lots of rounds in two calibers. So a stunt it is not, nor is it luck, when I fire a round I know where it is going within an inch or two. Each time, everytime.

So who is going to define the "Average guy " ?
Is it the guy who picks up his rifle and heads out to hunt but hasn't touched it since last season ? Is it the guy who makes the long haul to the range twice a month and does his best to keep his finger in the trigger ? Or , is it the guy who just enjoys shooting and getting the best out of his equipment and hunting is an added bonus ?

I don't encourage anyone to undertake this type hunting lightly. It is a commitment of time money etc..
But I wouldn't discourage anyone that was willing to do the work .

I enjoy shooting at long range . Probabally because I have an engineering background and the math and science of it I find interesting . Hunting is an added bonus.

Mike

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Old October 19, 2008, 01:22 PM   #14
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Long range has a place in the shooting world but mostly with competition and sniper type operations. Hunting is best done with a firearm and cartridge that you can use well and does not kill on both ends at reasonable ranges.
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Old October 19, 2008, 02:16 PM   #15
mkg
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Quote:
Hunting is best done with a firearm and cartridge that you can use well and does not kill on both ends at reasonable ranges
Which cartridge ?

What is reasonable range ?

Whatever definition you come up with is YOUR cartridge and YOUR range. Your limit.

I don't feel that the 300WSM is beyond reason for most people. It isn't for ME or the people I hunt and shoot with.

Certainly you are entitled to your opinion, just as I am entitled to mine.
Nobody on this forum should condem anyone because they have a differing opinion.

Mike

Last edited by mkg; October 19, 2008 at 06:16 PM.
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Old October 19, 2008, 02:44 PM   #16
Harry Bonar
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long range

Fellas:
I appreciate that long range shooting can be done. Long Rifle - thanks for your service to the country - but you're just in a different class than the average, even good, shooter!
The fact remains that after 300 yards bullet velocity falls way off and hold over increases expotentialy! Hunters, and shooters who claim long range shots just plainly don't know how far 100 or 200 yards is! And, as I said, most game, unwounded, should not be fired at much beyond 200 yards. I've been gunsmithing and yes, rifle building, for Viet Nam era snipers, F.B.I. and Desert Storm pilots for years. Yes, we're speaking about hunting here, not sniping at man size targets! We're talking about rifles sighted in for maybe 200 yards, not special class weapons - and we're talking about the laws of ballistics also - long range shooting, yea, it's done - but by specialists with sighted in rifles like Jims for 1000 yard shooting. And we're speaking about cleanly and as humanely as possible killing game animals at reasonable ranges.
I'm clearly aware of German and other experimental weapons that achieved tremendous muzzle velocities, and their long range capability.
All I'm saying is just what a man like Finn Aagaard said who really hunted even the big stuff that most of us (get that - "most of us") have no business shooting at unwounded game at much over 200 yards. I'll stand on that - notwithstanding crazy claims made by shooters who have no conception of yardage.
If you treally wand to talk about accurate shooting how about Herbert Warner with a muzzle loading rifle a primitive telecopic sight at 220 yards in "practice" shooting signing the first letter of his last name (W) consistently!
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Old October 19, 2008, 05:35 PM   #17
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Now, none of this has anything to do with killing critters that appear as mere specs in a rifle scope, but what about Dan Kinneman? He shot a prairie dog at 2552 yards with a 300 Rem Ultra that I built for him in 2004. It made the cover of Small Caliber News. He called that shot by the way and the article goes into detail as to how much time, money, and effort went into the whole venture. Bruce Ardis (sorry if I spelled that wrong) from Pueblo, CO killed a prairie dog at 2.5 miles with an Ackley 308 using a 220 grain Sierra MK! He called it and nailed it in three rounds if memory serves me correctly. Check out Precision Shooting, I believe it was in the spring edition of 2001. Bruce builds his own rifles btw and I believe that this particular shot is still recognized as the single longest distance recorded kill on a living creature with a bullet shot from a shoulder fired small caliber rifle.

A good number of these people are close and personal friends of mine. They are more than that, they are mentors and I consider it a privilege to call them friends. So with that, I also consider some of the blanket statements made here as an attack of their character. Not cool.
Vermin don't concern me. Ultra long shots on legal game do bother me. Just because one can, doesn't mean one should. Pushing the level of shot outside of a "routine" shot risk a miserable death all for one's ego. I may be a Fudd, but I like the connection I get in the woods. I don't know if I'd feel as connected with a 20x atop my pole.
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Old October 19, 2008, 08:31 PM   #18
mkg
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Harry , Not to argue just to clarify a few points you made

Quote:
after 300 yards bullet velocity falls way off and hold over increases expotentialy!
I certainly wouldn't advocate holding over as an accurate means of extending range, I am zeroed at 200 yds. and dial for elevation and windage.
Quote:
Hunters, and shooters who claim long range shots just plainly don't know how far 100 or 200 yards is!
Very true, That's why a laser rangefinder is a must.

fisherman66

Quote:
Vermin don't concern me
Really ? Do they somehow die a less miserable death ?

Quote:
Just because one can, doesn't mean one should
It dosen't mean that with the proper equipment and LOTS of practice that they shouldn't either.

Quote:
Pushing the level of shot outside of a "routine" shot risk a miserable death all for one's ego
Every person here probabally has a different definition of "routine". Believe me when I say that for me it has nothing to do with ego, I shoot stock ( with the exception of lightening the trigger ) Savage model 12's with weaver grandslam scopes not $5,000 customs with nightforce optics.
I enjoy the science involved in shooting at extended range. I also enjoy hunting so the two go hand in hand. I too enjoy my time in the tree stand durring bow season and muzzleloader season.

Mike
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Old October 19, 2008, 10:31 PM   #19
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I agree with Mike. If you know you the abilities of you and your euipment, I see no problem with making long range shots at animals. Some shooters view long range shooting as much of a challenge as getting very close to their quarry.
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Old October 20, 2008, 08:27 AM   #20
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Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Vermin don't concern me
Really ? Do they somehow die a less miserable death ?
Are you asking me to justify why I don't care about pdogs and gophers? How about the starting size offers such a small target that most hits are quick kills and those that aren't are difficult to prevent.

How do you humanely deal with pests in your house or in a pile on your lawn?
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Old October 20, 2008, 08:53 AM   #21
mkg
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Quote:
Are you asking me to justify why I don't care about pdogs and gophers?
Absolutely not , But the miserable death statement applies to all " game animals " not just the ones you have to buy a license for.

Quote:
How do you humanely deal with pests in your house or in a pile on your lawn
I don't have to , the cats take care of any pest issues.

Mike
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Old October 20, 2008, 09:21 AM   #22
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But the miserable death statement applies to all " game animals "
Vermin are not listed as "game" in TX. While I would frown upon anyone intentionally torturing any animal, I've got no problem with my "double standard". Life nor death is fair.
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Old October 20, 2008, 09:42 AM   #23
mkg
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Quote:
Vermin are not listed as "game" in TX.
Actually ground hogs are listed as "small game" in VA where I hunt.

Mike
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Old October 20, 2008, 07:44 PM   #24
Harry Bonar
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long range

Sirs;
Finn Aagaard, African hunter, small game hunter, North American hunter and a man to boot - lately passed is who I'm going to listen to; and my own experience of watching people making fools of themselves and causing great suffering to unwounded game - seeing fools haul around a beautiful buck with five holes in him, or an elk, or undershooting a groundhog with his guts leading you to his hole, or other assorted idiots telling, "all about it" at the back of a pick-up truck with the poor deer hnging out with holes all in his guts - this is not hunting, it is idiocy and irresponsible behaviour.
On the other hand - an experienced hunter hunting elk at 90 yards with a 358 Winchester (now obsolete due to magnum-mania) who takes his game at a range he is comfortable with - now, this is hunting.
My late son and I 20 years ago went groundhog hunting and I shot five at under 200 yards and we threw the bodies in the woods on the way home - the sound of those bodies hitting the ground did something to me - something responsible - and I seldom hunted from then on unless it was necessary; and I ate what I shot!
Magnum mania, velocity crazed, hunters in this country are way overgunned! I know I'll get in trouble here but this is how I feel.
I love guns and build muzzle loaders as well - but I guess at 73 I've lost the "killer" in me.
Good shooting budies! Good hunting!
Harry B.
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Old October 21, 2008, 11:22 AM   #25
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Gunsmith's Motto;" What's certain is uncertainty."
Long Range: One go hi. One go low. And where the**** did the other one go? No matter how far the shot, think safety first. What's beyond the intended target? At 3000 feet per second, trouble comes quick.
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