Test Fire the Rifle

Test Fire the Rifle
There is a lot of pressure on a big game hunting guide. Let’s face it – people pay huge amounts of money for big game hunts these days and they expect to take an animal. A moose hunt can easily cost $10K and a dall sheep is upwards of $20K. Even a no frills caribou hunt can go for $3500. So, let’s stack the odds in our favour.

When your hunter arrives in camp, there is a possibility that his/her rifle is not sighted in accurately. For two reasons: One, believe it or not, it may not have been sighted in to begin with. You’d be surprised how many people who call themselves hunters don’t know how to sight in a scope, but they’re too embarrassed to say anything. He may have even borrowed the gun from his cousin, “Ronnie” for the trip. And, two, the most common reason, the rifle may have been jarred during transport on the way to the hunting camp. So, the scope may have been banged a little bit, just enough to throw off the accuracy. When the time finally comes for your hunter to take the shot, you better hope their gun is sighted in properly. Not only might he miss the animal, he might just wound it, the worst possible outcome.

On a trip to the Northwest Territories a few years ago, I watched a guy empty his rifle at a caribou that was 150 yards away, not a difficult shot. He never touched the caribou… not even a hair. We were video taping the sequence and upon review in slow motion we could see the bullets hitting the bushes at least a foot over the animal’s back. Further investigation showed that his scope was way off. It must have got banged around on the flight up from Colorado. He never test fired his rifle when he arrived in camp. And, I blame this whole thing on his guide.

Always take your hunters to a safe location before they start hunting and test fire a few rounds. Make sure “she’s dialed in” properly.

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