Friday, April 17, 2009

Slammin' and Jammin': Hogs in the Long Grass

© 2009, 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

Well my friends, this is the two hundreth post. Enjoy!

"I had the Weatherby stoked with my favorite hog load, the Safari Grade 30/06 ammo from Remington. I would later regret I didn't own a field grade Searcy in 500NE."

amn!" I muttered half under my breath.

The son-ofa-bitch damn near ran me over. Stupid freakin' cow.

The air was oppressively still. You would think, that living on a gigantic peninsula we would have a breeze all the time, but no. I couldn't see squat through the sawgrass, sweat was pouring down my forehead, burning my eyes; my do-rag couldn't keep up with it. I didn't dare take my finger off the trigger or my hand off the fore-end. I could hear it all well enough though, the grunts of the friggen hog, and the snorts of one bull, maybe two. I wished I had my Ruger Vaquero 45LC if not more.

I was burning all over; a million infinitesimal cuts from the sawgrass and the salt from my own sweat where working together to make me feel like I was being skinned. A hundred mosquitoes were having their fill of me at any give moment. Their constant high pitched buzzing was an infernal racket, driving me madder by the moment. I shouldn't move, and I couldn't stand still. There was a bay tree maybe two inches in diameter ten feet to my left. I figured I would head that way.

I carefully pulled one foot from the thin muck, slid it forward parting the grass another ten inches.

I knew that damned bull was somewhere in front of me, and the bull knew I was somewhere ahead of him. How he heard that foot move was something I didn't get to contemplate for long.

Now the question is, how did I get into this particular, yet not infrequent, bind this time?

Well, you see it's like this. I had been promising a friend that I would take him hog hunting for at least a millennium. But you know how things are, something always seems to get in the way. Finally we were able to agree on a day and planned our foray.

I had been feeding the hogs pretty regular, using well fermented and beer basted corn as bait, so I was pretty sure of success, or at least getting him in front of some wild pigs.

I wasn't wrong.

My technique is to figure out how they are getting to the feeding area, and ambush them. That way they don't associate the feeding area with a no hog zone. Some hunters say it doesn't matter, but I would rather be safe than sorry.

My buddy was supposedly a pretty good shot. At least that's what he said. He had an impressive number of whitetail racks at his home so I don't doubt that he can shoot, except he has never shot a wild pig.

He showed up with a Remington 700 sporting a nice 3X9 scope, in 270. Not my favorite cartridge though I have no beef with it. It was the Nosler Ballistic Tips attached to the cartridge that I didn't like. In his defense, he has hunted whitetail in New Jersey his whole life, and the Ballistic Tips were lightning in a cartridge as far as he was concerned. And on deer it is a very effective projectile.

Well I figured that we would limit ourselves to a mid sized hog, and I gave him a good lesson on shot placement.

We left the Hacienda about an hour before dawn, and walked down the rail road tracks a few hundred yards. There's a drainage creek that crosses under the tracks, and about fifty yards in the hogs had made themselves a little crossing area. We set up thirty yards from there where an open patch allowed for plenty of time to shoot. I had brought a couple of burlap bags to sit on and I had my Weatherby with my favorite hog load, the Safari Grade 30/06 ammo from Remington. I would later regret I didn't own a field grade Searcy in 500NE.

What else? A Searcy Double in 500NE
Click for a bigger picture

The sky was starting to lighten up with the sun moments from the horizon, when the pigs started to filter out of the swamps and march their merry way to the Haciendas feed troughs. I put my hand on Ernie's shoulder and pointed to one of the hogs that was now about a third of the way through the opening. I slight nod of the head, and he hunkered down, his finger drifting into the trigger guard.

I was as surprised as the hogs when the shot went off, but instead of a hog dropping on the spot, they were all scattering in every direction. I had my eyes glued to the hog I pointed out, and it went straight through the creek and I lost it as it turned in towards the tracks.

We were already on our feet and after a quick discussion we decided to start where the hog was standing when he pulled on it. Ernie was sure he had a good sight picture, and that the shot was in the breadbasket. I was noncommittal. I figured the Ballistic Tips had been deflected or had failed to penetrate.

We got to the spot the hog had stood at. Using the flashlight I brought with me even though the sun was rising, we found a small amount of blood, what I believed to be some bone fragments, and a bit of hair. The narrow beam of light really helps to focus your vision on a limited bit of real estate. Following the tracks, we found small quantities of blood at regular and steady intervals. They went over the tracks and into one of the neighboring ranches.

Now I have permission to trespass, but I hate to go in without asking permission first. Under the circumstances I forged ahead.

There was a good blood trail, though limited, so I thought we would catch up to this wild pig before too long.

I could see ahead of me that the pig had gone straight for an open swampy area chuck full of sawgrass. I hate that sawgrass, it nicks and scratches you with every touch. But duty called and I was going in after the pig.

What I didn't know, was that this particular patch of Florida swamp was also occupied by a rangey, rank, good for nothing bull.

Ernie was at my heels as we were creeping through the sawgrass. I was getting sliced and diced at every other step, following the blood smears and print holes in the muck, when I heard them.

What I said I can't repeat in mixed company. It's one thing for me to be in a bind risking my neck. It's quite another to put someone else in that position. I stopped and whispered to Ernie to start backing out the way we came. Slowly we made our way back out.

Another quick discussion, and I decided to post him by a palm tree at the other side of the sawgrass, with strict instructions not to shoot into the sawgrass. He could take any shot tangentially to the sawgrass but nothing in. I figured I might push the hog out and he might get a shot.

I went back to the starting point and slid in, keeping low, my finger on the trigger and thumb on the safety. By now the mosquitoes where waking up and joining in the fun.

I was about halfway through when I heard the bull again. The air was still, so it didn't know what was creeping through. But I bet the smell of blood had gotten to his nose, and he was on pins and needles. I was mid-step when he decided to charge the first time; I was not prepared for it. None-the-less I could tell he wasn't sure where I was at and he barreled by me a good six feet away. Unfortunately he didn't cut my trail, otherwise he might of just taken off. A few more feet further on he stopped and blew a huge snort through his nostrils, he must have bumped into the hog because it started squealing and grunting. I was determined not to shoot him because number one, I couldn't afford to pay for him, and number two, I didn't think I could get a proper shot off into him in this mess.

Some bulls do a little skip step when they charge. I learned that when I did a little amateur bull riding. They lift their weight off the front end to launch with the rear; it's a little hesitation, but it's enough to give you enough time to take off, or set up to do the "Matador," and move at the last moment. I've never been a quick sprinter, but I can dodge pretty good.

I heard him, and I waited to take the charge. As he smashed the sawgrass out of his way, I slapped my foot into the muck and braced myself. I needed him to come right at me, so I could dodge him.

I could see the grass parting as he barreled his way towards me. At the last possible moment I threw myself off to my right as 1100 pounds of steak and burgers went flying by me. A loud and thunderous rebel yell left my throat and followed his now obscured tail. Luckily for me he kept going his merry way.

Ernie's quavering voice came across the sawgrass.

"Al...? Al, are you alright?" He always calls me Al. I hate it when he calls me Al.

I was dripping muck and mud. I checked my Weatherby. "Yeah," I hollered back. "I'm fine. Anything come out?" "Just a brown and white cow with horns." He replied. "A bull," I corrected, "that was a bull." I picked up my do-rag from where it was hanging and wiped the mud off the Weatherby before jamming it on my head again.

I doubted that hog had stood still for that show. And I was right. There was a bit of blood where I had heard it last, but after that it just stopped.

Ernie and I kept at it for a few more hours, but at about midday, sore, tired, mosquito bit, and thirsty, I called a halt to the search. I had run out of steam, and I figured BLT sandwiches where waiting at home, calling my name.

Here is what I think may have happened. The bullet clipped the hog's leg and either disintegrated or deflected. That would explain the bone fragments and the limited blood. A solid or controlled expansion bullet like the Winchester Failsafe or Swift A-frame would have plowed straight through and anchored the pig. I was real sorry that we never recovered the hog, and I kept an eye on the skies for several days looking for signs of vultures, but never noticed any.

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Kandahar Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...

The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

Though he spends most of his time writing and keeping the world safe for democracy, Albert was actually a student of biology. Really. But after a stint as a lab tech performing repetitious and mind-numbing processes that a trained capuchin monkey could do better, he never returned to the field. Rather he became a bartender. As he once said, "Hell, I was feeding mice all sorts of concoctions. At the club I did the same thing; except I got paid a lot better, and the rats where bigger." He has followed the science of QDM for many years, and fancies himself an aficionado. If you have any questions, or just want to get more information, reach him via TheRaschOutdoorChronicles(at)MSN(dot)com.

Veteran Paints Lures in Smokin' Hot Colors!

TROC: Helping Bird Rescuers

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Disassembling the Ruger 10/22

© 2009, 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.
Part I: Disassembling the Ruger 10/22

Last week we covered the disassembly, cleaning, and reassembly of the Ruger 10/22 magazine. The response was so favorable that we are now going to cover the disassembly, cleaning, and reassembly of the Ruger 10/22 Rifle. Again it will be picture rich, so you should have no problems with the process.

Together, we are going to field strip the 10/22.

As everyone knows, the first thing we are going to do is make sure the Ruger is unloaded, before we do anything. It is important that you instill these habits in yourself and anyone else that handles firearms in your proximity.

Hilti multi-bit tool kit

It's convenient to have one of these multi-bit screwdriver kits. Brownells has an excellent kit with many of the most common bits. With the proliferation of allen head and torx screws now used in firearms these kits are both convenient and compact. This kit is a well made set from Hilti.

Let's begin the field strip with the barrel band, and remove the screw that clamps the band in place. Use a properly fitted turnscrew (screwdriver for garage mechanics) and carefully loosen the screw.

Loosen barrel band screw

Remove the barrel band

You may have to pry the ends slightly to remove the band.

You will notice that just forward of the magazine well is the takedown screw. Again, with a proper screwdriver, loosen and remove the screw. Make sure your screwdriver fits, and don't booger up the screw!

Loosen and remove takedown screw

Now place the safety in the middle between Safe and Fire. The barreled 10/22 action should slide right out of the stock.

Safety halfway between fire and safe

Initial disassembly of the Ruger 10/22

Now you have the the action and barrel out of the stock, so let's remove the trigger assembly.

There are two cross pins that hold the trigger group in place.

Pins that hold the trigger group in place. The Ruger 10/22 trigger group is easily replaced with an aftermarket version.

Push them out from the left side of the action to the right side. See the picture if you are not clear. Use the tip of a small caliber cartridge, or a proper brass drift or punch. The pins are a slip fit. At no time do you need a hammer or any other striking object. Once the action is in the stock, the pins are held in place.

Push pins from action left to rightPins come out easily

The trigger group will drop right out, or lift off depending on how your holding the Ruger. Replacing the trigger group is probably the first and quickest way of increasing the accuracy of your Ruger 10/22.

Remove trigger group. This is a late 90s Volquartsen aftermarket unit.

Now to remove the bolt, we need to remove the bolt stop pin in the same manner as the cross pins.

Bolt stop pin, push action left to right

Bolt stop pin removed

With the bolt stop pin removed, the bolt assembly can be removed. This is pretty much a two handed affair. Pull the bolt handle all the way back.

Bolt and bolt handle held to the rear

Lift bolt out

Remove bolt

When you have the bolt out, let the handle go back slowly forward with your hand. Be careful, if you let the bolt handle fly forward it may crack at impact.

Use both hands to let the bolt handle down

Now you can remove the bolt handle spring and guide rod.

Bolt handle comes right out

The rifle is now completely field stripped.

Removing the Barrel

If you are going to really give it the all over and scrub it clean, then remove the barrel.

Removing a Ruger10/22 barrel is very simple and adding an aftermarket one is just as easy.

You will need a 5/32 allen wrench. There are two machine screws that hold the barrel to the receiver.

Loosen and remove the two screws that tighten the V-block onto the barrel at the front of the receiver.

Remove the V block

Carefully remove the barrel from the receiver. It may take a little twisting and pulling.

The Ruger barrel comes right out

That's it! The Ruger 10/22 is completely field stripped and ready for a thorough cleaning.

We will continue with cleaning on our next Ruger 10/22 installment, and then follow up with the assembly process.

Don't forget we also have done a Ruger 10/22 Rotary Magazine tutorial! Please check it out at:

Disassembling, Cleaning, and Reassembling the Ruger 10/22 Rotary Magazine.

Follow the rest of the maintenance series on the Ruger 10/22:

Disassemble the Ruger 10/22
Clean the Ruger 10/22
Assemble the Ruger 10/22

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Kandahar Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...

See my friend Michael Lee's custom traditional bows at Michael Lee's Stickbow Archery

The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

Though he spends most of his time writing and keeping the world safe for democracy, Albert was actually a student of biology. Really. But after a stint as a lab tech performing repetitious and mind-numbing processes that a trained capuchin monkey could do better, he never returned to the field. Rather he became a bartender. As he once said, "Hell, I was feeding mice all sorts of concoctions. At the club I did the same thing; except I got paid a lot better, and the rats where bigger." He has followed the science of QDM for many years, and fancies himself an aficionado. If you have any questions, or just want to get more information, reach him via TheRaschOutdoorChronicles(at)MSN(dot)com.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Range Reviews: Tuff Products Quick Strips

© 2008, 2009, 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

Tuff Products Quick Strips

When I head out with my Vaquero, I usually toss another handful of my homebrew +P 45LC rounds in my pocket. I use 320gr Cast Performance LBTs over 21.5 grains of Hodgden H110 powder fired off with Federal magnum primers. That load isn't for the meek or faint of heart. If I got into a gunfight with a cape buffalo, it would be a toss up if I would want my Ruger #1 in 458WM, or the Vaquero stoked to the gills with the LBTs.

I have frequently thought that there must be a better way to carry extra rounds in a neat and orderly manner. Trying to pull loose rounds from your jeans when you're in a hurry doesn't work all that well.

Tuff Products Quick Strips

Fortunately, Tuff™ has produced a series of "Quick Strips" in a variety of cartridge head sizes. They hold the cartridge securely but allow the cartridge to pop free with a minimum of effort.

Quick Strips are available in:
  • Ten round 22 rimfire, which will hold 17, 5mm, 22 short or long rifle, and 22 magnum.
  • Eight round 32 caliber, that not only carries the 32 S&W to the 32 Magnum, but 30 carbine and 22 Hornet also.
  • There is the six round 38 Caliber for 38 special and 357 magnum.
  • The 44 caliber Quick Strip holds six rounds of all the 44s, all the 45s, the 454, 460, and 410 shotgun.
  • The 50 holds 500 Linbaugh sized case heads.

I filled up several of the Quick Strips and put them in my pants pockets, jacket pocket, the Mrs' purse, and I also used the Tuff™ Quick Strip Pouch. I found that pistol cartridges fared very well in the Quick Strips carried in my pockets. The 30 Carbine and 22 Hornet lost a round or two when I would pull it from my jeans. In jackets or coats the Quick Strips held their cartridges firmly.

The Mrs reports that she didn't lose any rounds to the unfathomable depths of the purse. I found that very surprising, as any money that goes in there is irrevocably lost, never to be seen again. Kudus to Tuff™ and their Quick Strips!

S&W M10 and Tuff Products Quick Strips

With a S&W M10, I found that, with practice, I could load two rounds at a time quickly and with little difficulty. Pulling the strip from the belt pouches was easy. Like everything else in life, if you are going to stake your life on it, practice, practice, practice.

Quick Strip Single Strip Pouch

The Nylon pouches are well made and hold the strips and cartridges securely. It wraps around belts up to two inches wide. It is stitched at the bottom to create a small pouch where you can stash another couple of rounds, or a small item you may deem necessary.

Quick Strip Double Strip Nylon Pouch

Overall, I consider the Tuff™ series of "Quick Strips" a great accessory for a variety of shooters. If you are a wheel gun fan, but don't want or need the bulk of speed loaders, this is a viable alternative. Hunters can carry extra rounds in a convenient fashion, keeping them clean and close at hand. A quick perusal of Cartridges of the World will determine which cartridges will also fit in the Quick Strips.

Tuff™ Products

Quick Strips
MSRP: $8.49

Tuff™ Single Quick Strip Pouch

MSRP: $19.99

Tuff™ Double Quick Strip Pouch
MSRP: $22.99

Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Shindand Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...

The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Importance of Training; With Average Joe


Average Joe's Handgun Review has a fantastic post on training with a handgun. The Importance of Training covers many salient points and should be a must read for all of you that are intent on using your sidearms for defense.

"It is very apparent to me that anyone who buys a handgun for self defense is doing themselves a huge disservice if they do not take advantage of the training that may be available near them." says Joe, and I fully agree with him.

Joe goes on to say and encourage everyone to spend a few bucks for advanced training. "The advantages of advanced levels of training are twofold:
1. It allows you to practice in a more realistic manner and practice skills that you cannot practice in most public ranges.
2. It allows you to discover what equipment works best for you."

It's a great read and I highly recommend it to everyone!

Again it's: The Importance of Training

The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
The Range Reviews: Tactical
Proud Member of Outdoor Bloggers Summit

The Range Reviews: Eureka Timberline 2 Tent

© 2009, 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

Top: Eureka Timberline 2 tent with fly attached.
Bottom: Eureka Timberline 2 tent.

The Eureka Timberline 2 Tent must be the most popular tent in the world. Used by Boy Scouts for more years than I can remember, it is rugged enough take the abuse of teenage boys. You can't ask for a better endorsement than that. The classic A-frame construction with the addition of the fly, makes it a roomy and weather proof tent for the short term camper. It is quick and easy to set-up, having shock cord laced 1/2 inch aluminum frame, ring and pin attachments, and clips.

The A-frame tent is covered by a polyester fly. Waterproof, the fly is your weather proofing and first line of defense. The floor consists of a coated nylon "tub" that keeps the seams well above ground level for protection from the elements.The walls of the tent are a breathable, fire retardant nylon which is resistant to anything weatherwise. It has a front door, and two windows, one in the front door and the other on the back wall. Both the windows are covered with a fine mesh that will keep the no-see-ums, mosquitoes, and other flying pests, out of the tent. The fly also extends front and back in hood like fashion, to allow the windows to be opened and permit good ventilation while protecting from the elements.

Here are the specifications:

• Area: 38 square feet
• Floor size: 7 feet by 5 feet, 3 inches
• Center height: 3 feet, 6 inches
• Wall fabrics: 1.9-ounce breathable nylon/1.9-ounce permeable taffeta nylon
• Floor fabrics: 1.9-ounce Taffeta nylon with 1200 mm coating
• Fly fabrics: 1.9-ounce Polyester with 1200 mm coating
• Pack size: 6 by 24 inches
• Weight: 5 pounds, 13 ounces

It's important to remember that a two person tent is actually a one person plus equipment tent with a little room to spare. Two people can fit into the two man tent, but it would be a tight squeeze with the equipment. If there are two of you that camp regularly, you would be much better off with a four man tent.

Assembly is easy. I find it best to connect the bottom of the tent to the poles, then attach the top of the tent. Now add the fly working from opposite corners. The EZ hooks are shock corded to allow easy, fast and secure connections. Finally stake out your guys and you are done. The shock corded side guy outs and fly attachments give stability & tear resistance in stormy or windy conditions.

There is also a version available, the Timberline 2XT, with a vestibule that allows you to keep muddy boots and things of that nature out of the tent, but also out of the weather. An optional vestibule and/or annex can also be added to the Timberline 2 for extra gear storage, shade or rain protection.

The only thing I would like to see is a better carry bag. Something with some belts around it to help compress the bag when everything is stored.

For those of you considering a new tent for the kids, or maybe one for yourself, the Timberline 2 would be a great choice. It is built to last, rugged, not too heavy, and suitable for extended trips.


Eureka Timberline 2 Tent
MSRP: $139.90
Street Price: $129.90

Monday, April 13, 2009

Blogs of Note: Rabbit Stew

© 2009 Albert A Rasch
Sighting Down a Fence Row
Photo Courtesy of Hubert Hubert and Rabbit Stew


Once again I have to bring to your attention another great blog from the netherworld of the Blogosphere. I recently bumped into Rabbit Stew while cruising the net late at night. Good ol' Hubert hails from the Midlands of the United Kingdom.

What I like about Hubert's Rabbit Stew is the quality of his prose.

"The rabbit ambled through the fence into the next field and disappeared from view; suddenly sleepy, I lay there in the spring sunshine - this Easter Day - put my head down on my arm and closed my eyes. Time passed."

You'll find a great outdoorsman who really enjoys not only the hunt, but the dirt beneath his soles, and the accomplishment of a shot well placed.

I highly recommend that you stop by, say howdy, and spend some time with our friend from the other side of the pond.

Best Regards,

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Ruger Hawkeye Alaskan 416 Magnum Revisited

© 2009 Albert A Rasch

Ruger Hawkeye Alaskan in Ruger 416 Magnum

As many of you have heard, Robert Ruarke once said, and titled a book with, "Use Enough Gun." Oftentimes we sit around campfires and ponder the question, "What is enough gun?"

Keeping that in mind, while sailing the Internet's hazardous shoals, I've noticed a series of conversations relating to the new Ruger Hawkeye Alaskan and the 416 Ruger. There is nothing that can compare to the verbal riposte that occurs on many of today's forums. Many times it sounds like the Parliament, where Lord Holland and Holland debates propriety with Joe Remington.

Many of the arguments revolve on the need or even necessity of another 40 caliber plus cartridge. We have the 416 Rigby, Remington, Weatherby, Taylor, Hoffman, Barrett, and the odd one based on the 45-70 case the .416 Barnes. But is it fair to compare them?

Others question the business sense of issuing a proprietary cartridge. Since Jamison decided he could sue over a cartridge that he claims he designed, who can blame Ruger, Sako, Remington, or anyone else for deciding they would much rather do it themselves and on their own. To this day, I refuse to even look at Shooting Times. And that my friends, is another story. I'll stand by Ruger on this one; I wouldn't want to pay royalties on a cartridge, when the gentlemens' agreement was to use a cartridge royalty free as long as you used the inventors name.

Still others argue whether it is even worth getting since it's not a Model 70. Myself I liked the original Ruger 77s with the tang safety. Now that was a man's rifle.

As many have noted, few people shoot enough to become proficient with large bore rifles. This is very true. I've met more than a few folks with powerful medium bores that have not even used up a standard box of ammunition. The few they have fired have been fired at the range and off the bench. I suppose it is difficult to shoot accurately off hand when you "know" that every yank of the trigger is going to result in a wallop. At the range one day, it was necessary to offer the use of my Weatherby 30/06 to a fellow shooting a 338WM at the range. He was younger than I, but much better off. He had all the do-dads and equipment. But he sucked royally in the shooting department.

He couldn't hit the darn target at 100 yards for the life of him. He finally came over to me and asked me if I knew anything about rifles. He explained that he had shot six times and he wasn't hitting the target. I went over and looked his rifle over. It was a new Savage and seemed sound. The spent cartridges looked fine. I ran a patch and the bore was clean. So I asked him for three cartridges. As he handed them to me he warned me, "That rifle is powerful, it kicks like a horse." Right then I knew what was the matter.

I set it up on the bench, did a quick boresight, and looked through the scope. It was close enough that I didn't fiddle with it. I fired all three shots in quick succession, and it printed them in a 2 inch group, low and to the right. That's minute of deer as far as I am concerned. I turned the turrets to zero the rifle.

I picked up the empties and studied them. I asked him for three more rounds, and loaded two into the rifle's magazine and then palmed one of the empties, dropped it into the chamber, closed the bolt, and put the rifle on safe. I set it down on the bench and asked him to get himself ready.

He sat down, shouldered the rifle, lined up his sights, and thumbed the safety off. I moved up a bit so I could see what was happening.

He yanked, and I mean yanked, on the trigger, and by the time the pin struck the empty cartridge, the rifle must have moved six or seven inches to the right. Before he could react I pinned the rifle down on the blanket roll he was using as a rest.

I said, "Look through your scope now."

It was an eye opener for him. He was a good 12 or 16 feet to the right of the target.

In conversation I found out that it was his first rifle, he had never shot before, and he really wasn't too aware of the fundamentals of shooting. Undoing the damage done was not too difficult thanks to my Ruger 10/22 and the 30/06. When it was all said and done, he had decided that he would get a .308 in the same configuration as his Savage.

The point is that few people have the time or wherewithal to shoot enough to truly become proficient with their firearms. In order to become a great shot, you have to put thousands of rounds down range. 22 rimfire serves admirably in that capacity, and even a Daisy Red Ryder BB gun will help!

Do you need a big bore hitter? Only you can decide. Here are some of the facts.

The new Ruger 416 gives you the equivalent Rigby performance out of a twenty inch barrel instead of the twenty four.

The Ruger Hawkeye Alaskan is $1079.00. The closest DGR would be the Remington XCR in 375 H&H at $1092 and the Ruger M77 MKII Magnums in 416 Rigby at $2334.00 Both the XCR and the MKII have 24" barrels which in and of itself isn't a deal killer, but the really neat thing is the compact size of the 416 Hawkeye Alaskan. Aesthetically the Ruger MKII Magnum is a winner.

Enough people go to Alaska to hunt grizzly and brown bear, and plenty of folks go to Africa and match wits with cape buffalo. Those two destinations alone are enough to justify Ruger's decision to create the Ruger 416 Magnum.

My experience shooting the 416 was enough for me to decide to add it to my arsenal of hunting weapons. The recoil, though substantial, was easily managed by the Hogue stock along with the new improved recoil pad. Both had a lot to do with the relatively reasonable felt recoil generated by the cartridge/rifle combination.

Hunting dangerous game is little different from hunting small game, albeit that dangerous game can bite, scratch, and stomp the living right out of you. The hunter who carries a big bore rifle does so in order to make sure that he does not end up lying comfortably in a pine box, when an error in tactics or execution whipped everything into a maelstrom of discontented wildlife and people parts. If you are considering that sort of activity, get yourself a big bore.

It's good insurance.

Albert A Rasch
The Hunt Continues...