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Old February 7, 2019, 03:55 PM   #1
Join Date: February 6, 2019
Location: DFW, Texas
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Woods Guns

Let me preface this by saying, I like carrying guns in the woods because I like guns and there is some practicality to it but it's mostly just because I like my guns. With that being said, my family owns a chunk of land that is big enough to do some shooting and I like carrying a gun on me when I'm out there and I'm curious what other people's woods walking guns are. For me I am decently likely to encounter snakes, small game (which I would opportunistically hunt at the opportunity), and some fairly bold feral hogs so I always carry my .357 mag Taurus 65 revolver and a .22 rifle or a .410 single shot shotgun. What would y'all or do y'all carry in that situation? I just think its a fun topic.
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Old February 7, 2019, 04:19 PM   #2
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My woods guns range from an 8 shot Taurus .22 mag revolver to an Uberti .45 Colt SAA or a Charter Arms Classic Bulldog in .44 Special.
Say when.....
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Old February 7, 2019, 04:41 PM   #3
Old Stony
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I'm just a little east of you and I am in the woods every day just after sunrise checking traps and doing the feeder thing for deer. I carry either a 9mm or .40 caliber normally, and whatever rifle I happen to pick up as I'm going out the door ( I have lots of options)..
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Old February 7, 2019, 05:07 PM   #4
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I hike into the back-country with a fishing rod and a Ruger Vaquero in 45 Colt.
Texas, of course, is a whole different world than where I live in Oregon. We have a lot of mountainous National Forest lands here. About 30 miles from where I live, a hiker was killed by a Mountain Lion last September:
I fish the hike-in lakes all around the vicinity of this incident. Our Mt Hood National Forest has several designated Wilderness Areas with Deer, Elk, Black Bear, Cougars. And occasionally on the East slopes, we have Pronghorn Antelope, which I've actually seen in the woods on the Bear Springs Ranger District, much to my surprise, as they really should be just a few miles further East in the high-desert.
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Old February 7, 2019, 05:54 PM   #5
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I live in the woods, meaning my home is almost completely surrounded by 1700 acres of woods. The other part, the front yard, is a 40,000 + acre lake. So, lets just say my minor arsenal is with me.
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Old February 7, 2019, 07:05 PM   #6
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Thanks to a few warm days I was able to get a midwinter walk about today, my property is 55acres and I hadn’t been out since deer season in mid December.

On my belt was a Blackhawk in .45acp, holster was Galco SA outdoorsman.

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Old February 7, 2019, 09:04 PM   #7
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My go to woods and fishing gun is a S&W 60-15 pro series .357 with a 3" barrel. Light, compact, and accurate. No concerns about bear or other large predators in my area. During hunting season I'll also have the appropriate rifle in hand.
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Old February 7, 2019, 09:37 PM   #8
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My woods walking in south Mississippi is in places I will likely encounter either a wayward coyote or wild hogs. Have seen signs of bear (likely black) but never actually seen one. Have seen snakes, but not too worried about them.
My woods walking gun is a Ruger GP100 in .357 Magnum typically loaded with 158 grain projectiles.
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Old February 8, 2019, 09:47 AM   #9
Join Date: February 6, 2019
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I feel like I have chosen well in my .357 Mag. It seems like everybody who doesn't have the threat of bear has gone in that direction. Whats the snake remedy in that situation? One round of rat shot and 5 of whatever your preferred .357 round is?
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Old February 8, 2019, 11:07 AM   #10
ice monkey
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Call me crazy but... I pack the same thing in the woods as I do outside of the woods, because it’s still the animals that generally populate the city’s that give me issue when they stray into the woods too.

Hence Glock 9mm. I know, I know. Not very romantic! But I still don’t have a .357 wheel gun.
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Old February 8, 2019, 01:57 PM   #11
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much depends upon the type of woods; truly wilderness woods or suburban woods.
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Old February 8, 2019, 02:52 PM   #12
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^Yup, all depends on what you think you might run into. Since we're talking about "woods", and I don't think you're in grizzly country, the only other animals I'd be worried about are cougars and black bears. Do you have any of those around?

If you're thinking what I'm thinking, and you want to be able to draw and defend yourself while being attacked by either of those two animals... a medium caliber revolver is probably best. Semi-autos can be rendered out of battery if you jam them into an animal hard enough... which you are likely to do if being mauled. Still, I'll take my chances with my G19 and 124gr GoldDots, the same thing I carry everywhere.

And, you can sling a Ruger Charger with a red-dot on the outside of just about any backpack and have a compact critter gitter. Or another option, get a youth .243, cut the barrel to 16", keep the optics simple (Leupold VX-Freedom's are very light), will sling nice and snug at minimal weight.
Living in Hawaii... damned if I don't feel like a criminal just to get permission from the gov't to buy a gun.
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Old February 8, 2019, 05:40 PM   #13
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I love to walk my property in western South Carolina near sunset with my 1911 in 9mm but I just got a Ruger Blackhawk .44 cal a couple of months ago so I'm carry that now. One feral hog made the mistake of crossing my path. That was some real good sirloin and back strap pork.
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Old February 9, 2019, 01:57 PM   #14
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For the last decade a Ruger Single Six in 32 mag with 5.5" barrel and adjustable sights has been my trail gun of choice. Its light weight and the ammo is light enough to carry a supply of plinking rounds. And about the most dangerous thing around here is wild hogs and those are pretty elusive. I am more worried about dope growers that anything else and the 32 mag should handle them just fine.
"Those who cannot cleanly dispatch their game using a .30-30 are either shooting too far, hunting inappropriate (too large) game, or are simply incompetent." Mic McPherson

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Old February 9, 2019, 08:54 PM   #15
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When I was a kid we called this "Runnin' the woods".
You just found a patch of woods and walked around in t to see what you could see.

Naturally we took a gun of some sort, mine was early on a Marlin 39-A or Ruger 10/22, later a pistol, often .22LR.
It didn't really matter, it was just to be armed for no specific reason.
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Old February 9, 2019, 10:47 PM   #16
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I don't worry about snakes. If you see one, and have time to draw, aim and shoot something that small, you have time get out of it's way. It is the ones you don't see until after they bite that are the problem and a gun doesn't help in either scenario.

I spend a bit of time hiking, camping and hunting in some pretty remote spots and always carry some sort of handgun. Even when hunting with a rifle or shotgun. Many of the places I walk have healthy populations of black bear and a Glock 29 in 10mm loaded heavy is my preferred carry option. A well made 357 revolver with a 3-4" barrel would be my 2nd choice. With good loads either is about the same and more than adequate.

The Glock is much lighter and compact and having more rounds available is never a bad thing. If I'm in an area with no bear a Glock 19 is about the same overall length and height, but a little slimmer and gets the nod.
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Old February 11, 2019, 03:31 AM   #17
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woods guns

It's varied over the years. As a kid I had (and still have) a .22 single shot from a German maker, VOERE. I bought a Ruger Single-6, 4" as a back up revolver to my issue handgun when I started with the agency and carried that as a woods walker alot, loaded with mid-range 158 gr LSWC. In that same era I acquired a Marlin .357 carbine, shot it better than the handgun of course, and started toting it in my wanderings a good bit, also loaded w/ mid-range LSWC ammo. The Marlin shot those reduced lead loads just fine, Micro-Grooves and all. But you couldn't carry the carbine everywhere, and it was cumbersome if you were toting much else.

I finally acquired a .22 handgun, a Ruger Standard model auto, 4", at about age 33. I learned that it carried very nicely in a GI flap holster (1911) on a GI web belt, and a FA pouch would hold a lot of spare ammo. You had to put the ammo in a zip-loc bag first though, otherwise you would loose some regularly. Then a horrendous kidnap murder occurred in our area at an isolated boat ramp, and I re-evaluated the .22 and went back to a .357. But by that time, I had traded the Security-6 for a Ruger Blackhawk 4-5/8", so the SA went to the woods, loaded with that same mid-range ammo as before. I carried the Blackhawk in a leather "Aviator's Holster", a repro of the WWII item, and still do on occassion. Somewhere along the line, I figured out that if the Blackhawk was zeroed with 125 gr JHP, it would also shoot .38 WC to the same point of aim. It was a useful trait, two loads, two purposes, but one sight setting on the same gun. I kept things arranged that way until just recently. Another SA revolver I occasionally carry afield is my Dad's 5-1/2" (?) Single-6 in .22 mag. Poisonous snakes are an issue around my rural place, I've had several close calls at night and with the dogs as well. While I won't roll the truck over trying to run one down out on the highway, any poisonous snake around the property is fair game. In the summer mowing and doing yard work, I often carry a Bearcat with rat shot in my pocket.

I retired the B-hawk .357 when I acquired a Glock 20/10mm and like if for all the reasons jmr40 stated. I've fashioned a lanyard with a snap from para-cord, and carry the big Glock in the simple Glock sport/concealment holster. When back in civilization, I simply remove the lanyard.

With 60+ yr old eyes, I don't shoot a handgun as well as before, and more and more find myself carrying a carbine of some type if circumstances allow. Coyotes are very prevalent, and bold as well. After nearly losing a big male Lab to a pack of them at the end of my driveway, they are fair game too. The old Marlin .357 is a candidate, but I will have to scope it (and hate to) to shoot as well as one ought, due to its stubby 16" barrel. A scoped Mini-Mauser in .223 is light and accurate to way out there, , but almost to pretty for rough use. I bought a Hi POint 10mm carbine, which is coyote accurate to about 50 yds, farther than I can accurately shoot a handgun, but really need a bit more reach. I keep watching for one of the old H&R single shot rifles in .223, or .22 Hornet, but may have to settle for an affordable .22 mag bolt.
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Old February 11, 2019, 07:34 AM   #18
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Bama- Not to pry you away from your dollars, but have you taken a peek at the CZ512 in .22mag? Talk about a good'n, I tell ya what!
Rednecks... Keeping the woods critter-free since March 2, 1836. (TX Independence Day)

I'm going to use the words "clip" and "Long Colt" every chance I get. It grinds my gears to see new members attacked when we all know dang good and well what's being refered to.
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Old February 11, 2019, 05:59 PM   #19
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Before moving from my native Georgia to Virginia and later to Maine, I lived in a rural county. In the woods there was only one truly dangerous thing; wild dog packs. I've been threatened by them simply walking down a dirt road. They killed a retired couple not far from us. They are much too common and have no fear of humans. So if I'm in an area where they are known to be I carry my Ruger BH .45Colt with my powerful handloads. Anywhere else in the woods I carry a Colt Woodsman .22LR or my S&W M15 .38spl.
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Old February 12, 2019, 08:56 PM   #20
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How times have changed.

Today few kids still run the woods where I lived, most are glued to a electronic device playing games, and would crap out if they had to walk up a wooded hill.

Of the few who still do, they also carry guns in the woods.
These days the gun is for feral hogs, marijuana growers, or meth cookers
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Old February 15, 2019, 11:19 AM   #21
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I don't worry about snakes. If you see one, and have time to draw, aim and shoot something that small, you have time get out of it's way. It is the ones you don't see until after they bite that are the problem and a gun doesn't help in either scenario.

And if you shoot it this time, you won't have to worry about getting bit before you see it next time.
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Old February 16, 2019, 12:18 AM   #22
Sure Shot Mc Gee
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I don't openly or conceal carry in the woods. No snakes gators or dangerous creatures this far North.
Like anywhere's else. Wild woodsy areas require its occupants to pay attention to their surroundings so to stay out of trouble too.
To be honest I'm more at ease in the woods than I am in a big city. Sadly I do c/carry when out-&-about in my town >always.
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