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Old September 18, 2018, 09:26 PM   #1
Double Naught Spy
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Location: Forestburg, Montague Cnty, TX
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JohnKSa: Sus Venator

I had the honor of taking JohnKSa hog hunting on Monday night. It was the 2nd time in several years that I have managed to get him to come hunt with me, the first time being a bust. I was bound and determined we would get him a hog on this trip.

We started off with a session at the range to get him familiar with the thermal weapon sight, dry and actual fire the rifle, verify zero, and shoot off of shooting sticks. When all was good, we grabbed some dinner and headed out to tour the properties that we would be hunting.

Soon after dark, I spied a hog and despite starting from a location up wind of the hog, we managed to work around to being in a position with a slight cross wind, using distance (initially) and a big tree (close to target) to keep our approach as clandestine as possible.

We came around from the backside of the tree and set up on our shooting sticks with the hog about 95 yards out. Then it became apparent that my instruction had been lacking and that we should have had a refresher after dark so that he could really get a sense for using a thermal scope in conditions where your normal eyesight is next to worthless. At the range in daylight, he could visually spot the target with his unaided eyes, point the rifle at the target area and quickly acquire the target. In the dark, he did not have that option of seeing the target before sighting on the target. This made it difficult for him to find the target.

Usually when I introduce folks to thermal scopes, we are already working in low light or dark conditions and these sorts of issues resolve themselves as the new person learns to use the gear. I had inadvertently shortcut his instruction as a result. Well, when you are standing out in the open with a hog out in front of you, that is not the time to be learning new things. So I did the best I could to talk him onto target, then to make sure that he had the target properly identified and that what he was seeing in his scope matched what I was seeing through my scope. Once verified, we were good to go and John got his first hog.

Here is the video...
https://youtu.be/Gr2QR7l4U58

We spent the rest of the night trying to find more hogs, but never saw any on the properties that I hunt. Even so, mission accomplished and JohnKSa is now a sus venator.
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"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher." -- said to me by my 11 year old daughter before going out for hogs 8/13/2011
My Hunting Videos https://www.youtube.com/user/HornHillRange
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Old September 18, 2018, 09:56 PM   #2
Colorado Redneck
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Looks like fun! Good shooting!
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Old September 19, 2018, 12:06 AM   #3
JohnKSa
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Location: DFW Area
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It was a night of firsts for me. First time hunting with a suppressor. First time shooting/hunting with thermal. First time hunting off sticks. First hog down.

I definitely had a problem getting on target with the thermal once I started using it in the dark. The problem was my inexperience compounded by my own issues getting the scope properly focused--also an issue of inexperience.

DNS went to a lot of effort to make this hunt work out and provided the equipment as well opportunity for me to learn how to use it prior to dark. I thought I was good to go after accurately putting a couple of rounds on target in daylight, but my lack of experience with thermal left me unable to accurately assess my competence until I was on the spot in the dark and trying to find the hog in the scope.

Fortunately the hog seemed pre-occupied with the local vegetation and that provided time enough to get on target. It got a little tense for awhile during the time I scanned around, finding a rabbit and a lot of monochrome scenery, but no hog.

Many thanks to DNS for the work he put in providing a memorable experience!
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Old September 19, 2018, 11:15 AM   #4
jfruser
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Nifty post. Glad it worked out and there is another resident in Hog Heaven.

DNS:

From what I have read of your posts and seen in your videos, it looks like you alternately spot/stalk with your IR gun/spotting scopes. Have you ever considered or tried an image intensified or IR head/helmet-mount monocular to allow for some sort of night vision on the move?

As far as target discernment, in a past career one of our leader-types would illuminate the target with an IR laser. Got sporty with several units & leaders in close proximity, but ought not be a big whoop for your situation.
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Old September 19, 2018, 12:09 PM   #5
Double Naught Spy
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Quote:
Have you ever considered or tried an image intensified or IR head/helmet-mount monocular to allow for some sort of night vision on the move?
A lot of guys like to wear bump helmets on which to mount PVS-14 night vision or FLIR Breach thermal monoculars. It is a fine system for those who like it. I have tried the helmet route and found getting in and out of vehicles to be a pain in the butt with the helmet. On top of that, my neck didn't appreciate the extra 'balanced' weight on top of my head. Balancing is involved because when you put 6-12 oz on one side of the helmet (the front), you need to counter the weight on the opposite side to reduce fatigue. Even balanced, I found the extra poundage on my head to not be comfortable for very long. Aside from issues in and out of vehicles, I found the attachments on the helmets snagged foliage when going through the woods and would get hung up on barbed wire when trying to go through a fence. As a big boy, I already have enough trouble going through barbed wire fences, LOL! Never mind heat and sweat issues in the summer with a helmet. I have nothing against the gear per se. It just doesn't work for me and my situation.

As seen in this video and shown in most others, I wear a thermal monocular around my neck that I use for spotting on the move.

Quote:
As far as target discernment, in a past career one of our leader-types would illuminate the target with an IR laser.
It is a fine idea if the hunters are using NV or NV in addition to thermal. I don't. The only reason I can see for using NV is if you are in a situation where driving a vehicle is required. NV sees through glass and thermal will not. However, 99% of the time, I am not trying to drive through people's properties with my lights off.
__________________
"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher." -- said to me by my 11 year old daughter before going out for hogs 8/13/2011
My Hunting Videos https://www.youtube.com/user/HornHillRange
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Old September 19, 2018, 10:13 PM   #6
paknheat
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Good shootin ‘ that one won’t root no more.


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Old September 21, 2018, 06:39 PM   #7
tmlynch
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Good shootin', Tex!

Regards,
Tom
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