The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Hide > The Hunt

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old November 1, 2012, 08:28 PM   #1
nocturnal
Member
 
Join Date: October 24, 2011
Posts: 50
I took the K-31 hunting again this year, time for the report!

Hello fellow hunting and shooting enthusiasts!
My name is David, I am more of a reader than a poster on this great forum. (well, forums...)



I am a member of a land lease near Sparta, GA in Hancock County. Up until this summer I lived just outside Atlanta, GA. Well things changed this summer and I now find myself in Charlotte, NC. It's quite a drive down to the 'ol hunting lease now, so my brother and I decided to make the trip last as long as we could. We managed twelve long and cold days, and windy... and were both rewarded with the memories we will share as well as the thrill of success. In a way every hunt is similar and yet very different from the last.

My brother had success with an 8 point buck, shown below


Now that I have introduced myself, on to the story!

I brought my trusty K-31, in 7.5x55.
Swiss Products clamp-on scope mount, Warne 7.3 medium height rings. And last but not least, my Leupold Vari-X III
3.5-10x40


I told you all how the K-31 did last year on a 1 1/2 year old doe, (I will add those old pictures on here near the end).
My rifle's accuracy and resilience impressed me even more this year. I still have my box of Norma Oryx 180 grain, soft-point bullets. I am not too pleased with their performance. Accuracy is fine, however they have not given me exit holes in either case. Both animals died though...

I will add a short story about the inherent strength and durability of these military surplus K-31's. It is a great (but heavy) platform. I would recommend one of these not-your-run-of-the-mill rifles to anyone who wants something unique, accurate, and historic. It is also a killer I might add.

I will be brutally honest...I ran over my beloved rifle three times in my truck. I leaned my K-31 up against the rear tire of my truck and hopped in, turned on the truck for the a/c and music. I had just met up with my brother, Greg after a morning hunt. We talked about our "action" from the morning hunt and decided to drive on up the path and sit on the edge of a field, tailgating, and eat lunch. And hey, maybe a deer would walk out if we were lucky.

I threw the truck in gear, did a three point turn. I recall feeling the truck run over a stick, and I remember thinking, "I dont remember there being a stick in this grassy area..." We proceeded on to the field. Upon arrival, I bolted upright and asked Greg, "Where is my rifle?"
"I dont know..." the reply
Then I knew! I remembered the stick... "I think I ran over my rifle while turning around back at camp." I said to Greg
"Seriously?" asked Greg
"Dead serious," my reply


On the way back to camp, I imagined the splintered, bent, and broken horror that awaited me. I started laughing like a madman. At least Leupold has a good reputation on fixing scopes right? I guessed I was out a rifle...

We came back to camp, I stopped some fifty yards up from ground zero. My brother and I trudged across camp...still laughing but expecting the worst.
Imagine that, there's a long rifle sitting there, compacted into the dirt with tire marks and a flattened and crimped leather sling.
In retrospect, it is not a good idea to test-fire a rifle that has been smooshed. However, as one can infer from the initial run-over, I must not have been thinking too much.

We walked back to the truck, set up some targets, and I fired from 50 yards, hoping I could adjust my scope back.
Test firing was spot-on! The rifle lived!




Well, after that mishap, I was even more proud of my rifle...but not of myself! It was time for all the long, cold, and windy hours in the stand and on the ground to pay off.


This year, on October 29th, I was in the tree stand hunting over a swamp that backdrops against a set of raised railroad tracks. From the stand, the tracks are close to 75 yards away, and actually very close to being the same height as my stand, but just taller. I was deer hunting, and had to let a doe walk the day before because it took me a while to figure out if she had spikes or not. You cannot take a buck unless he has 4 points or better on one side; Hancock County rules...
She had positioned herself behind a bush and I didnt want to take a risky shot on her and she ambled off mostly concealed.


Two days later I was in the same spot and was being entertained by a group of turkeys walking down the tracks and making a ruckus. They dropped down into the swamp and started foraging. They eventually moved on.
A few minutes later, I heard footsteps. Sounded like a deer but very careless and loud deer. I generally see deer before I hear them. They are as silent as ghosts when they want to be. I ready my rifle and start scanning the area.
Two hogs walk out along the base of the tracks, black and stubby. Because there is not a season on hogs, I instantly knew I wanted to take one. And it was, in essence, something I could shoot!

I scoped in on the hogs and tracked the lead hog's progress through the brush. Once it walked into a clear, I found the head, dropped down the neck and a little behind the shoulder and shot. "Squeeeeeeeee!" was the reply. It fell down on it's front legs and started kicking. It was not getting up but I decided to make sure. I fired again. Still moving a little bit. Still in the tree, I fired four more times...until it stopped kicking.

I pretty much knew he was dead. But had no idea how large this dumpy lump of black fur was, he was far away.
I descended from the tree, heart racing. I have never shot a hog before, or even seen one. I was wondering if it was a boar...
As I made my way through the chest-high grass, I caught glimpses of something much larger than my initial estimate. I realized I had killed something larger than a deer. Possibly larger than myself!


Upon closer inspection, this was indeed a boar, and a large one at that. I watched him for a while, poked him with my rifle, and made sure he was not alive and then did what any good younger brother would do. I hiked back to my truck and went and picked up my brother from his hunting spot and enlisted him to be a hog-dragger. He was more than happy to help. Neither of us had seen a hog on our lease, there had not been one taken in at least five years from our property. We were both excited!


As you can only imagine, getting this big boar out of the woods was quite a drag...We had a game cart to help some. However the cart rapidly deteriorated under the weight of the boar, first losing one support and then another.
I almost crushed my brother when we were going up an almost vertical 15 foot climb. I slipped on the loose dirt and the hog went rolling...Lucky my brother was in its way to accept a beating.


After a long, and at times, painful pall-bearing, we strapped him onto the affectionately named "deer tray" I had recently purchased from Harbor Freight. Money well spent.

Then off the Garner's Grinders for a weigh-in and donation to "Hunters for the Hungry."
This boy weighed in at 180 pounds and a few ounces. Biggest thing I have ever hauled out of the woods.

I had him caped and he is off to Chris Fortner; a taxidermist in Covington, GA. I am getting an open-mouthed mount.

Here are some pictures of this year's boar and last year's doe. Both taken with the K-31 and Norma Oryx 180 grain bullets.





Here is the doe from last year:







Once again, for a quick-and-easy side by side of the two animals taken on this trip, check out these "deer tray" pictures:


I never imagined I would get a boar this trip, or any trip! They sure do make deer look lean...










Thank you all for reading, I hope you all have a great hunting season.

As a friend once told me, "Keep your nose in the wind--- and your eyes along the skyline--- stay safe, and shoot straight!"

Last edited by nocturnal; November 3, 2012 at 01:22 PM.
nocturnal is offline  
Old November 1, 2012, 08:42 PM   #2
DennisCA
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 3, 2012
Location: Union City CA (a.k.a. Poople's Republik of CA)
Posts: 288
Great job!
I love the last pic (of the pig) looks like he's ready for the pit!
DennisCA is offline  
Old November 1, 2012, 08:50 PM   #3
nocturnal
Member
 
Join Date: October 24, 2011
Posts: 50
He definitely is, I just happened to have an apple handy.
I was sorry to see it go to the boar, those Honeycrisp apples are delicious
nocturnal is offline  
Old November 2, 2012, 01:57 AM   #4
shortwave
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 17, 2007
Location: SOUTHEAST, OHIO
Posts: 5,930
Hey... great hunting.

And looks like you're no slouch with that run over rifle either.

Sounds like you and brother had a wonderful time.

Enjoyed the post.
shortwave is offline  
Old November 2, 2012, 03:47 AM   #5
Ben Towe
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 6, 2009
Location: Middle Tennessee
Posts: 1,120
Nice. Don't feel too bad about the rifle... I ran one over once myself!
__________________
'Merica: Back to back World War Champs
Ben Towe is offline  
Old November 3, 2012, 01:01 PM   #6
publius
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 25, 2005
Location: Mississippi/Texas
Posts: 2,448
very cool, it's fun hunting with something a little different every once in a while.
__________________
"Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress, but I repeat myself." Mark Twain
publius is offline  
Old November 3, 2012, 08:54 PM   #7
sc outdoorsman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 23, 2009
Location: Western SC
Posts: 208
Sounds like you had a great hunt trip other than running over the rifle. I am glad you took the hog out. Those are some destructive critters and need to be removed when you get the chance. That was a nice buck as well.
Keep shooting straight and good luck.
sc outdoorsman is offline  
Old November 4, 2012, 12:21 PM   #8
2damnold4this
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 12, 2009
Location: Athens, Georgia
Posts: 1,307
Good work and I'm glad your rifle held up to the truck!
2damnold4this is offline  
Old November 4, 2012, 09:58 PM   #9
Hansam
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 21, 2012
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 763
Good shooting with a rifle that got run over. Nice size hog you got there too!

Now if you want some real cold weather deer hunting come hunt up north here... where we wear what you've got on in those pics as the first layer beneath the other four layers.
__________________
This is who we are, what we do.
Hansam is offline  
Old November 5, 2012, 12:15 AM   #10
FrankenMauser
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 25, 2008
Location: 1B ID
Posts: 6,730
Congrats.
__________________
"Such is the strange way that man works -- first he virtually destroys a species and then does everything in his power to restore it."
FrankenMauser is offline  
Old November 7, 2012, 09:26 PM   #11
22-rimfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 19, 2005
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 4,594
Good story. Good brother stuff! Congrats on the buck and big boar.

Never ran over a rifle yet. But I have more than once driven off with expensive 35mm cameras on the roof of my truck. Got to learn not to do that!
22-rimfire is offline  
Old November 7, 2012, 09:52 PM   #12
Eghad
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 28, 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 6,231
If a company made a rifle with the same craftsmanship a K-31 is made with it would be pretty expensive.
__________________
Have a nice day at the range

NRA Life Member
Eghad is offline  
Old November 8, 2012, 04:55 PM   #13
twins
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 1, 2010
Posts: 393
Nocturnal,
Thanks for the post, you've inspired me to give the K31 a try this year. Normally I stalk hunt in CO so the K31 would be too much weight to haul at 10k+ feet. Giving a try at tree stand hunting this year in the east so the K31 will get a chance. Got my handload 150gr Accubond grouping well.
twins is offline  
Old November 8, 2012, 05:38 PM   #14
markj
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 27, 2005
Location: Crescent Iowa
Posts: 2,967
Nice pics and them animals look very tastey good work, keep it up. Looks like you had a bunch of fun too, cant beat it.
markj is offline  
Old November 11, 2012, 11:05 AM   #15
FairWarning
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 9, 2008
Location: GA
Posts: 814
Nice! I'm really looking forward to taking the K31 hunting for the first time this year.

On paper, I think the Hornady 150 gr ballistic tips at 2900 fps will be my favorite for whitetail (branded Graf & Sons), although I also picked up some vintage Norma 180gr BTSPs at 2650 fps and new Hornady 165 gr BTSPs at 2730 fps. No doubt any of these would make short work of pigs, too.

The Swiss craftsmanship and the experience of working the straight bolt is too much fun. I'm keeping mine iron sights, however, to be more traditional. I do have a WWII 8mm Mauser Euro Sporter for times when I need a scope. It gives me extra satisfaction to hunt with something different!
__________________
Mauser Werke, Schmidt-Rubin, Remington, Colt, H&K, Weatherby, Browning, Ruger, Marlin, Mossberg, Saiga, S&W, Sig Sauer....a few friends of mine
FairWarning is offline  
Old November 12, 2012, 01:08 AM   #16
nocturnal
Member
 
Join Date: October 24, 2011
Posts: 50
Thanks again for the comments everyone, I can attest for the K-31's accuracy; you should enjoy hunting with it. Unless you have to lug it all over!
I have looked into those Hornady loads, are they a fairly recent offering?
Havent noticed them in past years...

The Norma 180 grainers shoot very similarly to the factory GP11 military cartridges, so sighting in wasnt a pain.
(think its refered to as gp-11)
If I recall correctly, the Norma runs a 180 grainer ~ 2600 fps, I think a hair over that anyways

As far as a comparison, my brother hunts with a Remington 770 in 30-06
and uses Remington Core-lokt ammo that will push a 165 grainer about 3000fps
which isnt all that faster and with just a bit more energy delivered as the 'ol 7.5x55 swiss

My rifle doesnt punish my shoulder though!
That massive weight soaks up recoil and the K-31 trigger has a great, crisp break

Good Hunting!
nocturnal is offline  
Old November 12, 2012, 01:16 AM   #17
nocturnal
Member
 
Join Date: October 24, 2011
Posts: 50
Hansam,
I would be more than happy to come up North, freeze my butt off, and get some of those big deer up there.
Georgia isn't too bad considering our deer population was brought in from the North. Sadly the gas is hurting me this year, may have to find something in North Carolina next year...
nocturnal is offline  
Old November 12, 2012, 09:13 PM   #18
FairWarning
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 9, 2008
Location: GA
Posts: 814
nocturnal, check out www.grafs.com.

Apparently, they convinced Hornady to load ammo for them under the Graf and Sons name, but it is identical to the 3 loads Hornady has sold---150, 165 and 168 gr. Apparently the 150 gr are highly sought after and I've only been able to find them at this website. Having them with ballistic tips is a (very nice) bonus!

It seems GP11 was mostly made in 1979 who knows how much of it is left. I'm well stocked, although I may get more before long. It is the standard for our K31s and cool piece of history...
__________________
Mauser Werke, Schmidt-Rubin, Remington, Colt, H&K, Weatherby, Browning, Ruger, Marlin, Mossberg, Saiga, S&W, Sig Sauer....a few friends of mine
FairWarning is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:04 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.11020 seconds with 9 queries