The Firing Line Forums

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

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old April 10, 2011, 12:19 PM   #1
Join Date: April 9, 2011
Posts: 95
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?
BigShep85 is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 01:18 PM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: December 20, 2010
Location: New York
Posts: 950
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.

stu925 is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 02:53 PM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: March 11, 2010
Location: North Dakota
Posts: 600
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.
nathaniel is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 04:16 PM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: August 10, 2002
Posts: 2,078
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.
Rembrandt is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 04:33 PM   #5
Hog Hunter
Senior Member
Join Date: August 14, 2009
Location: Georgia
Posts: 386
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.
Hog Hunter is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 04:42 PM   #6
Senior Member
Join Date: October 24, 2008
Posts: 712
Last yer was a good year, I stopped at 3 Bucks & one doe, Plus let many little leagal bucks walk
1-Smoke Pole
All within Hangun range ; )
There's a GATOR in the bushes & She's Callin my name
>Molly Hatchett<
YARDDOG(1) is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 05:11 PM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: July 18, 2010
Location: Independence Missouri
Posts: 4,337
I myself prefer a rifle, but I'm proficient with both weapons!
Thanks for coming!
hooligan1 is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 06:57 PM   #8
Join Date: March 15, 2011
Posts: 15
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.
infmp32 is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 06:59 PM   #9
Senior Member
Join Date: June 15, 2008
Location: Georgia
Posts: 9,182
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.
jmr40 is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 07:54 PM   #10
Senior Member
Join Date: April 30, 2008
Posts: 384
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
cerberus65 is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 07:55 PM   #11
Senior Member
Join Date: March 4, 2010
Location: Fayette AL
Posts: 184
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.
Don't squat with your spurs on!!
LOLBELL is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 08:41 PM   #12
Senior Member
Join Date: June 4, 2006
Location: NE FL.......
Posts: 1,081
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 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.
bswiv is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 09:18 PM   #13
Senior Member
Join Date: January 21, 2010
Location: Powhatan VA
Posts: 633
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!
Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.--Mark Twain

"I have opinions of my own 'strong opinions' but I don't always agree with them."--George Bush
highvel is offline  
Old April 10, 2011, 09:32 PM   #14
Senior Member
Join Date: March 2, 2009
Location: Lewiston, Idaho
Posts: 337
Close, Ruger or S&W .44 mag,,,,long range 7mm Rem. mag
The next time someone asks you " What do you know ? " Respond with a smile and say " A frogs ass is water-tight."
IDAHO83501 is offline  
Old April 11, 2011, 12:15 AM   #15
Senior Member
Join Date: July 8, 2010
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 1,673
Enjoy both use a rifle in fields & powerlines Handgun in the thicks & swamps hogs & deer.
BIG P is offline  
Old April 28, 2011, 10:15 PM   #16
Senior Member
Join Date: January 25, 2005
Location: Mississippi/Texas
Posts: 2,503
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.
"Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress, but I repeat myself." Mark Twain
publius is offline  
Old April 28, 2011, 11:02 PM   #17
Senior Member
Join Date: February 27, 2009
Posts: 403
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 . . .

rmocarsky is offline  
Old April 29, 2011, 03:49 AM   #18
Join Date: February 26, 2011
Location: washington
Posts: 34
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.
argyle1812 is offline  
Old April 29, 2011, 07:11 PM   #19
Senior Member
Join Date: July 8, 2009
Location: davison, michigan
Posts: 662
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.
Guns have only two enemies, rust and politicians!

Deer are amazing please don't burn the sauteed onions and I'll pass on the steak sauce, thank you.
.284 is offline  
Old April 29, 2011, 07:34 PM   #20
Senior Member
Join Date: January 25, 2005
Location: Mississippi/Texas
Posts: 2,503
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.
"Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress, but I repeat myself." Mark Twain
publius is offline  
Old April 29, 2011, 07:38 PM   #21
Senior Member
Join Date: March 6, 2006
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 3,324
Here in Florida we hunt everything with a shotgun.
Proud NRA Benefactor Member
Microgunner is offline  
Old April 29, 2011, 08:31 PM   #22
Senior Member
Join Date: April 18, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 511
Bow, handgun, rifle in that order.
SRH78 is offline  
Old April 30, 2011, 02:04 AM   #23
Senior Member
Join Date: August 25, 2008
Location: Potatoes and Hops
Posts: 11,195
Rifle, muzzleloader, handgun; in that order. (Partly dictate by the game I hunt, and conditions I hunt them in.)
Don't even try it. It's even worse than the internet would lead you to believe.
FrankenMauser is offline  

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

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 05:24 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2018 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent:
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.10433 seconds with 7 queries