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Old April 10, 2011, 12:19 PM   #1
BigShep85
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Hunting preference: Handgun or rifle?

I love hunting but haven't been in a few years due to military, I have come into the hobby of collecting handguns, for hunting this year I have been thinking about hunting with a handgun, which do you guys prefer and why?
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Old April 10, 2011, 01:18 PM   #2
stu925
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I always have a handgun with me when I hunt. I carry a S&W 25-5 in .45 Colt loaded with heavy bullets (250-300gr). The logic behind it is for close up shots if they present themselves (under 25yds). I have yet to shoot anything other than a coyote with it. If I were going to hunt only with a handgun I would opt for a Ruger Blackhawk in .45 Colt with a scope and a Ruger only load from one of my manuals. I have no doubt that this combination would be capable of taking just about anything wandering through the woods here.

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Old April 10, 2011, 02:53 PM   #3
nathaniel
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I mainly rifle hunt but I carry a handgun so if the shot presents itself Ill take it with the pistol. But it has to be under 25 yards.
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Old April 10, 2011, 04:16 PM   #4
Rembrandt
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After a while long gun hunting becomes too easy and predictable......handgun hunting adds a higher degree of difficulty and challenge. One of my most memorable hunts was an Antelope taken with a handgun at 200 yards.
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Old April 10, 2011, 04:33 PM   #5
Hog Hunter
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I always carry a pistol on me while hunting and have shot critters with it but, I prefer a bow for hunting then handgun would be next. I do take my rifle with me everytime I go though. Depending on stand selection I may carry just my bow or my bow and my rifle and during the rut I usally stick with the rifle.
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Old April 10, 2011, 04:42 PM   #6
YARDDOG(1)
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Last yer was a good year, I stopped at 3 Bucks & one doe, Plus let many little leagal bucks walk
1-Bow
1-Smoke Pole
2-Rifel
All within Hangun range ; )
Y/D
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Old April 10, 2011, 05:11 PM   #7
hooligan1
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I myself prefer a rifle, but I'm proficient with both weapons!
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Old April 10, 2011, 06:57 PM   #8
infmp32
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I've always hunted with a rifle, and being from NJ and hunting NY it's always been more convenient to hunt with a long gun. I love to shoot handguns, but not sure how I feel about hunting with them. My preference now is for rifle, but I don't think I'd turn down a handgun hunt to at least give it a fair chance.
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Old April 10, 2011, 06:59 PM   #9
jmr40
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Hunting is something we do for fun. Very few of us actually need to hunt for the meat and it would be cheaper to buy at the grocery store anyway.

I believe in hunting with whatever you enjoy using. A bolt action rifle is the most efficent tool for killing deer, but lots of guys just prefer to hunt with all types of weapons. I know several guys who have used nothing but a long bow for the last 20 years.

If you are willing to master a handgun and hunt within it's limitations go have fun.
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Old April 10, 2011, 07:54 PM   #10
cerberus65
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I currently hunt with a rifle. But some day I want to do at least a little hunting with my .44 Mag. revolver.

I always have a .357 Mag. revolver on my hip when I'm deer hunting but its 2" barrel is very unlikely to be pressed into service for anything other than cleaning up after a bad rifle shot (which hasn't happened yet thankfully).

Last edited by cerberus65; April 11, 2011 at 06:13 AM. Reason: grammar
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Old April 10, 2011, 07:55 PM   #11
LOLBELL
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This past year was my first but I hunted almost exclusively with a 44 SBH Bisley Hunter with a 2-7 power scope on it. I got one buck and one doe with it. Longest shot was 47 yards. I carried a rifle for a back up but only used it once. The scope is an older CHEAP Bushnell which has no light gathering at all. I could have actually shot later with open sights by 30 minutes. Next year I hope to have a better scope.
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Old April 10, 2011, 08:41 PM   #12
bswiv
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I've taken a lot of deer & hogs with a bows, pistols and rifles.

The last 10 years or so about all I use is a cut down Marlin/Glenfield in .35 Rem.

When considering your question it occured to me that what really mattered is how CLOSE the deer was regardless of what was used.

A bow at 20 yards was about as exciting as the .35 Rem.

And hogs in the palmettos at meer feet is exilerating......no matter what you use.

What stinks, again no matter what you use, is to leave a wounded animal in the woods. I think my distaste for that aspect of the game is what has driven me to being a short range shooter......even with the rifle.

My favorate for a pistol is a TC Contender in .44 Mag.....14 inch barrel with a Red Dot.

That's not to say there are not plenty of other choices but I've had a lot of luck with it and it is very accurate.

Besides that when you know you have one shot you are more careful......which means fewer lost animals.
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Old April 10, 2011, 09:18 PM   #13
highvel
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I've killed deer with my TC Super 14 in .44 mag with a TC 3x scope, out to 80-90 yds. Killed a nice 8 pointer with my SW Model 57 at about 50 yards.
Shot one with my Anaconda at about 70 yds with a excellent (Lucky Maybe)shot just at the top of his heart. None of the deer ran over 50 yds.
I like the challenge of hunting with a pistol!
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Old April 10, 2011, 09:32 PM   #14
IDAHO83501
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Close, Ruger or S&W .44 mag,,,,long range 7mm Rem. mag
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Old April 11, 2011, 12:15 AM   #15
BIG P
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Enjoy both use a rifle in fields & powerlines Handgun in the thicks & swamps hogs & deer.
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Old April 28, 2011, 10:15 PM   #16
publius
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i always carry a revolver (.44 mag or .45 colt) along with my rifle when I deer hunt. Fun to shoot tham w/ handgun under 50 yds. i never carry just a handgun b/c i'm afraid a B&C will walk out a 200yds and i would be Actually had a situation where the .45 blackhawk was my only option. Climbing down the ladder with my rifle slung and a coke in my left hand. Got 2 steps down and a coyote is under the stand looking at me. Drew the .45 out of the crossdraw and hit him just as he decided to leave.
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Old April 28, 2011, 11:02 PM   #17
rmocarsky
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my experience

My experience has always been:

Always had a SBH ready in case a close enough shot presented itself and a rifle for if not.

Problem I always had was . . .

The times pistol range materialized, I feared movement to get to the revolver would bust me to the deer.

Until . . .

2010. Rifle leaning against tree, revolver IN MY HAND.

Deer down; 1 shot; double lunger; most gratifying.

What will the future hold for me? To never do it any differently?

Probably not. Because if the deer is too far away for the revolver, chances are it won't detect any movement made to grab the rifle.

Think about it . . .


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Old April 29, 2011, 03:49 AM   #18
argyle1812
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Always wanted to hunt with a 41 magnum. but enjoy the same challenge with a rifle by stalking to within 100 yards or less before taking the shot.
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Old April 29, 2011, 07:11 PM   #19
.284
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I love handgun hunting. I use a S&W 629 Classic in 44 mag. I have an 8 3/8" barrel with an Eotech holographic mounted up top. I roll my own loads and consider it to be a 100 yard gun, based upon my capabilities that is. Fortunately, where I hunt in Michigan, I seldom have a shot much over 75 yards. However, off a rest I can shoot a baseball sized group at 100 yards.
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Old April 29, 2011, 07:34 PM   #20
publius
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rmorsky, i know what you mean being worried about movement. that is why most of my handgun kills have been does. I go ahead and put the rifle down and wait for her to come in range. if she doesn't, no big deal, I can shoot a doe any time I want in MS. I'll probably never kill a huge deer with a handgun b/c I take the first good shot I get.
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Old April 29, 2011, 07:38 PM   #21
Microgunner
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Here in Florida we hunt everything with a shotgun.
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Old April 29, 2011, 08:31 PM   #22
SRH78
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Bow, handgun, rifle in that order.
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Old April 30, 2011, 02:04 AM   #23
FrankenMauser
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Rifle, muzzleloader, handgun; in that order. (Partly dictate by the game I hunt, and conditions I hunt them in.)
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