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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 07:51
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Originally posted by 8shots 8shots wrote:


So the only thing separating this style of hunting (walk and stalk or ambush) from the 1000 yarder is distance. Is this wrong? No not at all, the object of a hunt is to make the kill.


Excellent point.  You'll not that I have trouble making a sweeping assertion on this topic, as it would be unwise.  The object is indeed to make the kill, and I am tempted to state that the distance doesn't matter, and that when your game builds a superior weapon and gets you at a greater range, then it can take a victory lap. 

I suppose the only reason I keep from making this assertion is simply that there are folks out there who would be doing some long range animal sniping for some insidious reason, but that too is not likely prevalent.  I've not actually seen much of the Best of the West guys, but I've seen a lot of long range takes on video.  A certain part of my brain says that I know God gave man dominion over all creation, and, as long as he/she is practicing good stewardship of those resources, it doesn't matter at all, because it's an animal.  Maybe that's the line to be drawn. 

BTW, everyone posting here seems to have their heads screwed on pretty straight and are quite congenial.  As a newcomer, I can tell you that it's part of what will keep me in this particular "community".  Thank you all for that.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 08:21
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  I agree with 8.  BUT,and it's only happened to me once,it's NOT fun having someone sending a bullet over your punkin head. Of course they didn't know I was there but that was their problem not mine. We were both after the same animal.
  D,you'll find that we at OT are here because we enjoy the company of each other and those who visit. We also like to help with info and experience when we can. You'll find that 99.9% of the time we have no "problems" because in the past they've been dealt with quick and direct.  Guess we've got a rep for that now. LOL 
  Anyways,THANKS for the compliments and WELCOME aboard!
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 09:35
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I believe we get ourselves into quicksand very quickly when we start saying my "hunting methods are superior to yours."  Techniques vary with local laws, customs, terrain, game animal habits and habitat.  In general, as long as it is legal, done in a manner respectful of the quarry and private property, and doesn't portray a slob image of hunting to the public, I have no problem with it. 
 
What I do have a problem with, however, is people kidding themselves about their true abilities and thinking they can just buy gagetry to compensate for lack of experience.  I have a serious problem with people who have such a lack of respect for game animals that they are willing to take chances on low percentage shots and the potential for injury and suffering in exchange for an ego boost.  I certainly do not elevate animals to the level of humans, but I do see them as a natural resource worthy of respect.  We hunters, who pay for the cost of maintaining wildlife resources and habitat through taxes and license sales, collectively own the wild game resources.  When someone doesn't take care to cleanly harvest a game animal and that animal runs off, experiences undue suffering and dies without the meat being used, it not only shows a lack of respect for the animal, but it also robs natural resources from the rest of us. 
 
I think Huskemaw & BOTW are promoting an attitude that encourages shortcuts and severely understates the true challenges and potential pitfalls of extreme long range hunting for the sake of sales.  Their videos makes these shots look too easy and therefore grossly misleads the uninformed novice.  It also sends a bad message to the non-hunting public who vote and therefore have an effect on the future of hunting through regulations.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 09:50
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Very well said, Ted. Pretty much sums it up, for me...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 11:23
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I agree with Ted as well!!! Very well put, all of this just makes me want to try and be a better shooter.....


Edited by JF4545 - November/12/2009 at 11:48
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 11:35
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Since this is a discussion of ethics, one point that should be brought up comes from perhaps the greatest examination of hunting ethics, Jose Ortega y Gasset's book MEDITATIONS ON HUNTING. One of his points is that humans are always superior to the animals we hunt in both brain-power and technology, so the notion of fair chase is an illusion unless humans somehow handicap ourselves.  (This idea of course applies only to so-called "sport" hunting, not survival hunting, in which anything goes as long we bring home food.) 
 
But even when we handicap ourselves, hunting is not an equal contest, in the sense of two evenly-matched football teams. Instead, Ortega y Gasset points out, what we are attempting to do is outwit some of the animal's own survival traits. If we somehow use technology to bypass an animal's natural ways of avoiding being killed, then we are no longer hunting but just killing. Pure killing is pretty easily done, even by humans with very primitive technology. One of the excuses justifications used by modern hunters is that we are engaging with nature, not just trying to kill something.
 
The next question then becomes: Exactly how we are engaging with nature when we shoot an animal so far away that none of its survival instincts are brought into play? This becomes an even more interesting question when the rifle, scope and load are probably used in conjunction with a portable weather station and a computer, whether or not the computer itself or just a print-out of various conditions is carried into the field.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 11:45
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John, excellent points.  What I tried to allude to, but not nearly as eloquently.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 11:52
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Oretega y Gasset was a very smart man! His small book has never been out of print, and makes very interesting reading for ANY hunter.

If we follow his line of reasoning, then it becomes apparent that whether or not we are capable of an extremely long range shot is irrelevant, at least if we claim to be actually hunting.
 
I suspect part of today's fascination with long-range shooting (which I share, though not much when hunting big game) is the modern tendency toward immedaiet gratification. Obviously we can't become really good long-range shooters without some hard work and mastery of the tools, but a couple of years another writer(!) told me why he shot an elk at 900 yards. "I watched it for four hours and it never moved to where I could stalk it!"
 
Four whole hours! Gee, and I hunted grizzly bears twice in Alaska, for a total of 18 days, before finally getting one at the vast range of 70 yards! I have hunted elk almost as long here in Montana before finally getting a shot at a legal bull on public land. But today we are a hurry-up society, who wants to "git 'er done."
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 12:17
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I agree with RifleDude that Huskemaw and BOTW is promoting an attitude bordering on misleading the public and minimizing the challenges of the dedication, knowledge and practice that it requires to be a long range marksman.  I do not have this ability anymore, despite years of experience and constant practice.  This is why I limit my shooting to 300 yards.  A person has to be realistic about one's true abilities.  Ego and ignorance have no place when it omes to long range shooting.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 12:41
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This is a breath of fresh air to me to hear the truth from some of you...Its pretty hard to claim one is on a equal playing field with an animal when we have the technology we have today when it comes to hunting...I still hunt, but one really does have to be honest with themselves sooner or later....Many, many hunters will not want to even look at this.. Many of us, myself included sometimes just want the easier softer way when it comes to killing game. Much more could be said, but I simply cannot put it into words..Even being upwind putting a sneak on an animal at any distance and blasting it, has never ever given me a feeling of being one with nature...They are two completely seperate things I feel...Although most hunters probably never care to look into it that much... Thank You John B.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/12/2009 at 12:41
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They seem to make it look very easy on the BOTW show.....and at the same time, they always slip in a little word about going out and practicing, and checking your equipment in real life, not just a ballistic calculator. They make that point in such a small way on the show though, that it's pretty much overlooked. I can see how an average Joe (not our Average Joe) would think he can just buy a Huskamoo scope and go kill stuff at 1000 yards. I'm sure the guys running the show are excellent marksman, but they need to teach more of that, and advertise their gimmick product less. I remember when they used a Leupy, and hadn't teamed up with Gunwerks yet. They used to try to inform of methods used, and tips. Now they just want to sell scopes.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 01:31
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I agree 100% with the sentiments expressed above.
Another factor to consider is that hunting is made up of many skills. Tracking, reading the bush, stalking, shooting to name a few. In some cases we use 90% stalking skills and 10% shooting skills. On another hunt we may use only 10% stalking skills and 90% shooting skills. That should not make one hunt more ethical then another??
 
Hunting ethics remain a hot topic. We had such a debate raging back and forth in our local hunting magazine recently. Different hunting methods were touted as being more ethical then the other (walk and stalk versus chasing them with a vehicle in the Kalahari sand dunes for example or driven hunts with beaters v's leopard with dogs etc etc). No-one "won" the debate.
The only undisputed fact that remained was that whatever hunting method a person used, that person must make sure that it leads to a clean kill and show respect towards the animal and life. Killing just for the sake of killing is absolutely taboo, as is making an animal suffer uneccesarily.
 
My worst experiences with fellow hunters have been when they shoot/kill an animal and then laugh about how it fell/reacted etc at impact with the bullet etc. That makes me sick to the stomach.


Edited by 8shots - November/13/2009 at 01:46
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 09:17
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Don't watch the Outdoor Channel then.  The TeeVee hotshots with their bows don't exhibit a lot of respect for anything but the horns of the deer that they shoot in such great numbers.  Actually I get a little tired of watching these goateed clowns kill so many animals for their TeeVee ratings and careers but not for any apparent appreciation of sportsmanship or hunting except the ability to sit in a stand that a production assistant built for them.  I wonder how anti-hunters feel about these shows.

Edited by Oldtrader3 - November/13/2009 at 09:20
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 10:39
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Originally posted by RifleDude RifleDude wrote:

Let's forget shooter skill for a minute.  The fact is, the average out of the box, sporter weight factory rifle IS NOT INHERENTLY ACCURATE ENOUGH to ethically attempt an 800 - 1000 yd shot at a game animal!  Even a true 1 MOA rifle IS NOT ACCURATE ENOUGH (occasional 1" groups don't qualify either)!!!  Consider that with a 1 MOA rifle, the conical dispersion from POA is a bit over 10" in diameter at 1000 yds... BEST CASE!  Factor in wind, unpredictable animal movements, an imperfect rest, awkward shooting position, and shooter error in with the rifle's limitations, and a hit in the vitals is a low probability.  That is simply unacceptable when your target is a live animal!  Huskemaw and the Best of the West is actively promoting this type of thinking to hunters who don't know better.


One other thing to account for is your ammo.  You may have a gun and a round that will shot 1 MOA at 100 yards.  But say your ammo has an average 50 fps spread which I dare bet a lot of hunting ammo does.  Maybe not even that good.  I have not tested this myself as I have not shot near enough long range to know.  But was told by a knowledgeable man that 10 fps can cause a 3" poi difference at 1000 yards.  So if you have a bullet with 50 fps avg spread that could cause 15" POI change ontop of your already 10" 1moa rifle.  I realize 1000 yards is the extreme end of things.  But you will need some near perfect benchrest quality handloaded ammo to realistically make those kinds of shots consistantly not some store bought hunting ammo.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 12:07
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And if they did a lot of shooting the last time they was at the range, then went home and cleaned the crap out of the gun....now they shoot that one cold shot expecting it to match the drops in practice and go where the last 20 rounds did at that range without fouling the bore.
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 14:22
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I started shooting a lot when I was a little younger to better my odds when hunting. Now I'm addicted to shooting long range. My equipment is geared towards it- my scopes, my rifles, my LRF, and my reloading equipment. Even my job as an Army Sniper...it's what I love to do, and "YES" I do get some gratification out of knowing I have a much greater stand off distance then almost anybody on the battlefield or on the hunting lands. I agree 100% that most folks have no business lobbing rounds at animals at extended distances and that the BOTW guys are just trying to sell a product (since John Burns left that is) in their info-mercial shows. However, I gotta laugh when somebody says something to the likes of " You shouldn't shoot game at over xxx yardage!". You are intitalled to your opinion, but it's probably sanctioned by your limits. I also agree with the others that talk about the guys who can't shoot for sh*t. Since we are giving out opinions, I think you should have to pass a qualification of some sort to get a hunting license! I put in a lot of time, effort, and money to ensure that I am the best I can be. I went on my first elk hunt last year and got a nice 5X5 @ well over 800 yards. I had seen no less then 9 hunters cross that meadow in the 3 hours I sat overwatch on a ridge(sat there three days). The conditions were right and I was ready. One dead elk. I had a huge advantage over those guys. They were just walking around aimlessly and taking pop shots at the game they jumped. I could argue about how idiotic that looks to me. Am I saying I'm the man and never miss? Of course not, but what I'm saying is that I know my limits and will only take a shot I know I can make and pass up those that I have doubt in. I practice almost every day with my bow to ranges out to 70 yards (makes the close ones seem easy) and passed on a BIG buck a couple days ago because he was moving a little faster then I liked.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 14:36
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I do not have very strong opinions on the subject of long range hunting aside from a simple statement that people who embark on it better be exceptionally good marksmen.

One thing that I do not see discussed very often is bullet flight time.  How far has the target moved while the bullet was in flight?  For most big game rounds it takes a bit over a second to make it out to 800 yards.

I would have to think that adds an additional element of risk.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 14:44
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That was one of the points I made here regarding flight time and not being able to predict what a live animal will do at "lift off". That fact alone negates any claims shooting prowess as far as I'm concerned. No harm in wounding a paper target though. Live game is another story.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 14:48
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  EXACTLY!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 15:05
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Originally posted by Roy Finn Roy Finn wrote:

That was one of the points I made here regarding flight time and not being able to predict what a live animal will do at "lift off". That fact alone negates any claims shooting prowess as far as I'm concerned. No harm in wounding a paper target though. Live game is another story.
 
I have to agree with Roy's thinking as well!
 


Edited by JF4545 - November/13/2009 at 15:25
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 17:03
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OK, then maybe I should stop bow hunting as well. I've had a perfectly calm deer at 30yards jump the string and cause my shot to wound it and trailed it for about 400 yards and loose blood.
 
Or is that apples and oranges??? I really don't think so.
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Or was that too far a shot with a bow...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 17:22
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Lots of good points have been made and this is a thought provoking topic. I don't have a problem with the concept of long-range hunting but seriously doubt there are very many shooters qualified to do it. I also doubt that those scopes and rifles are going to make a difference vs. lots of range time, a sub-MOA rifle, meticulous handloads, and a rock-solid scope when it comes to tracking. What I've borrowed from those folks and sites that promote the concept - like LRH - is the information and techniques to make my shooting at what they would consider short range - 0 to 400 yards - more ethical and reliable.

I shoot and hunt with a .308 so that right there is a limitation in terms of flight time and impact. I haven't done enough target shooting in heavy or variable winds either. So while I shoot as often as I can out to 600 yards (and occasionally beyond) that's just to make shots under 400 yards (or 300 yards if it's blowing up to 10 mph or 200 if it's windier than that) more natural to make. On two days this year under sunny skies, I shot an antelope @ 200 yards with maybe a 10mph wind and a mule deer doe @ 330 with no more than a 5mph wind. In both cases, those rounds went right where I intended and the animals dropped quickly - the antelope in his tracks and the doe ran 20 yards at most.

Wind is the biggest limitation to me because even if I did have a wind meter it would only tell me what the wind is like where I am. I can only eyeball the grass and nearby trees over there to guess what the wind will be like. If it was blowing harder than 10 mph, I just wouldn't have taken that shot. That, in combination with other limitations, means that it is very unlikely that the typical hunter can make those shots. I know that I am limited by flight time, bullet weight and distance. A bullet @ 400 yards is not the same bullet it was @ 200 yards in terms of accuracy or lethality. Given the exact same conditions all along its flight path,  @ 400 yards it will have dropped another 14" (requiring reliable turrets or holdover), drifted another 10", and will have lost a quarter of the energy it had @ 200. Additionally, any imperfections in the load, differences in barometric pressure, temperature, and shooting characteristics of the barrel will be magnified.

In general, I think if you live in a state like Montana, any shot under 300 yards should be within your ability to make. If you don't do illegal stuff like use radios and are willing and able to hoof it into the backcountry (disabled folks excepted) and only take shots you are reasonably certain to make, then why not be prepared to make them? If I can, I'll get as close as possible but if not, I'll try to determine whether a longer shot is in the cards.

Next year, if I first do a lot of shooting on hellishly windy days and find that my new Premier 3-15X50 helps make it comfortable for me to take reliable shots out to the 400-500 yard range I might consider taking a shot on an antelope at that range. I'll still be on a .308 though and I'll never lug that rifle around in the mountains so I won't be trying to kill an elk or a mule deer buck with it.
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Ghost Rider, all I can say is "thank you for your service".  I have no problem with one with the knowledge and skills taking the long range shot.  As I said, if I ever reach the situation where I know I can't make the stalk and I really WANT the game, I'm taking the shot and know I am likely to make it.  If one does not have the skill, don't take the shot. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/13/2009 at 17:27
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Originally posted by Ghost Rider Ghost Rider wrote:

Or was that too far a shot with a bow...
 
 
  Having an animal jump the string is one thing a bowhunter needs to realize can happen before he takes it up.  They can try to negate it by holding low but even that's not 100% reliable. Even at 10yds.  But having the possibilty of an animal moving during a bullets time of flight can only be negated in one way. You gotta get closer.
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