Random Thoughts on the Opener

Lil Goober inspects the doe, 2002

Lil Goober inspects the doe, 2002

Now that I have been writing this weblog for a decade, it is easy for me to go back and see what I was thinking and doing in the run-up to the Rifle Openerin previous years. Even before that, I have been dealing with getting ready for Deer Camp since that included diapers for little Angus (we called him Goober back then) and making sure there were toys for Mooseboy. I’ve got most of the chores done for the year.

This year will be the first time since 2010 that I will be trying to hunt all of Opening Week. Last time I did this, I was unemployed. Money was getting tight. I was close to selling my deer rifles before I finally got a call to come up to Scumsuck, Ohio for a consulting gig. The only happy memory I have of that job was the night I got snowed in and couldn’t commute home. I watched Escanaba in Da Moonlight at a nearby motel. Yeppers! This year, finds me employed and prosperous enough to afford my first new deer rifle in many years. Angus may come for the week if his high school schedule allows. I doubt I’ll see Moose. He is busy with his new family. SuperCore can’t wait. Nowbody can stomach Leinenkugel, but we are laying in a supply of pasties and some of da sweet sap.

Deer Camp 2004

Deer Camp 2004

Give a man a little luck and anything will do for brains.
–Albert Soady

As patriarch of Deer Camp, the important thing for me is to buy myself enough slack ahead of time so as to make it workable when it all starts happening. Ammo, licenses, everything down to socks and gloves, are already down at camp. I sharpened the knives last week. I try and have a backup for everything and a backup to the backup. Years ago had to lay the law down with my sons: you can’t just roll into camp on Friday night and start playing. There is about an hour’s worth of chores that have to be done before you can relax. It includes getting all your gear ready for the hunt. I still find Angus walking out to the blind forgetting his bibs, but it is a start. I’m just as guilty. I spent last Eve of Opener looking for missing thermal drawers.

I had to throw out the hay dude and replace him with another. Hay Dude 2.0 had been doing hay in exchange for food plots since 2007, but the food plots stopped in 2009. Hay Dude 3.0 says he can do clover and such. He was in this week getting out the last of the hay. We’ll see how such a late cutting effects the deer.

Is it just me, or do y’all find yourself, as the Opener draws near, going to the gun cabinet and giving in to the irresistible urge to pull out your rifle and look through the sights? I’m just asking.

Handy hints:

  • Use garbage bags to pack your clothes. They are compressible and squish to fit tight spaces
  • Use a big plastic bin for all the small stuff
  • Pack your cooler with the drain spigot pointed towards the back of the truck. You’ll thank me when it starts leaking.
  • Save an old rain suit for gutting deer. When you’re done, just walk into the shower and hose yourself off.
  • The way I got my sons organized is I gave them each a nylon duffle with shoulder straps.  After coming back in the evening, they were responsible for packing all their gear including outer layers for the next day before knocking off for the night. I do the same.  It saves a lot of hassle come morning. It also saves space. Come morning, we shoulder the pack, grab the rifle and go.
  • Make coffee outrageously strong coffee and then have folks water it down to taste. It saves time making multiple pots. A couple sips of the straight stuff and I’m wired. If it’s cold I suggest coffee doctored with hot chocolate.
  • Speaking of cold, those chemical handwarmer packets work best if you stick it in a inside pocket as close to your heart so you’re warming the blood in your chest.  It will reduce the need for gloves, and make you feel warmer overall.
  • By the time I get situated in my stand, I’m usually sweating.  That’s a bad thing, because sweat equals stink.  I find that grabbing the metal rails of my stand cool me off as quick as a cold drink on a hot day.
  • Everyone likes to wear a headlight.  I don’t.  I take a AA flashlight and hold it close to the ground. The light travels next to nowhere, but I can still see where I’m walking. This way it spooks less game.  I’ve walked right up on a bedded buck.
  • Although I sleep on the property I hunt, it is still 3/4 mile back to my Opening Day Stand. If I walked it all in one stint, I would be a sweaty mess by the time I got there.  I take time along the way to stop, cool down and open my clothes to the wind.  It is okay to get a little cold; you’ll warm up when you start hiking again. The trick is to go slow.

The Shamanic Portable Stump

As I wrote in a previous missive, I really appreciate the writings of Dr. Ken Nordberg. He, through his yearly almanacs, was very inspirational to me early on in my deer hunting career. I cannot say Ken got me started using a portable stump. I  was using my version clear back in the early 80’s. However, when I saw Ken’s description of his method, it made me feel affirmed.

First off, I want you all to study Ken Nordberg’s method of Portable Stump hunting

and this one, on how to build a portable stump for yourself

Then I want to give you my variation on it.

The Shamanic Variation

The Nordberg method is pretty much the same as mine. However, the hardware is a little different. I use a 5 gallon bucket that I carry with a shoulder strap. I bought one for Angus for his first year of solo hunting. Into that bucket, I add a 12 foot length of camo blind material, a dozen spring-type clothes pins and 50 foot of camo camper’s cord.

The idea is this: still hunt until you get where you have a good set-up. The pre-requisites are

a) A place where you can see and not be seen
b) A flat spot big enough for the bucket
c) An appropriate configuration of trees.

I will not go into the first pre-req. If you stillhunt, you should already be savvy in picking this out. The point is that there are a LOT of places in the woods to put a bucket or a stool, but most of them are bad. With a stool, you have soft ground sucking the legs in. With a bucket, you have bad slants on hillsides. The bucket works better for me, primarily because I do not have to worry about individual legs getting buried. I still have to work a bit to find a spot where the bucket is level and I can sit with both feet comfortably planted.

The configuration of trees is also important. Normally, I try for 3 trees. I make a ‘V’ with the line, and this ‘V’ can be many feet longer than the blind. It does not have to be even. It can point towards the game or away. Sometimes I just use two trees as long as one tree is big enough to hide me from the back. I use clothespins to hang the blind material up so I can be in the middle or along the edge. The point here is to be fast and efficient and quiet. I want to throw up a blind in 5 minutes or less without a lot of fuss so that the deer don’t know I’m there. Sometimes I reverse the ‘V’ so that the deer cannot see me until they are right in front.

Back when I got started, my rig was a bit different. I didn’t carry a 12 foot piece of camo blind. I had just a 4’X6′ die-cut blind, with a cord afixed around the edge. I could hang this across a bush or between two saplings or just drap it over my head or over my lap. I still have it. It’s the oldest piece of hunting gear I still use.

Advanced Tricks

1) Barbed wire fences are great, hanging the blind material off the top strand, but be careful. Barbed wire eats blinds. It may be better to use your campers cord and hang the blind from that in front or behind the barbed wire.
2) Pre-positioning buckets is a variation of this. I’ll put several black plastic buckets out before season and move from one to the next. I carry a camo boat cushion and use that for my butt. I can also hide blind material, cord, and pins under the overturned bucket
3) I will frequently leave my bucket somewhere and go in for lunch and then pick it up on the way out to my afternoon hunt. Nobody ever has stolen mine. I doubt you can see if if it’s in a bush or against a tree.
4) With a blind up, it is hard to see you even if it is one strand between 2 6-inch saplings. Deer are not used to seeing a third of a human, and you can hide most of your body in a situation like this and hunt right along length of the blind. I have taken a buck with a bow at less than 10 yards in this manner and the lead doe was standing less than a yard from the blind, look through it and could not figure out what I was.
5) Remember where the sun is going to be as you are setting up. If the sun comes up and you are back-lit, the deer will respond as if there is no camo blind there. the deer see it bright sun on the front of the blind, you will be invisible.
6) Wind will be your undoing. If the blind starts flapping, deer will notice the movement and vacate that end of the county. I’ve seen bucks at 200 yards catch sight a flapping blind corner and kick on the afterburners.
7) Either figure out a way to steady your shots against one of the tree trunks or use shooting sticks or make sure you can fire offhand at the distances required. Remember that string will not hold the firearm and the deer do not like a jack-in-the-box presentation where you suddenly pop up with your rifle.

Die-Cut vs. Burlap.

Burlap is heavy. Die-cut synthetic felt is light. In a long slog, the synthetics are best. If there is a wind, Burlap is the winner.
You see more through the die-cut. You see movement more for sure.
Folks think Burlap is smelly, but I’ve never seen a deer think so. Don’t worry that smell is natural jute.

Knots for Portable Stump Hunting

There are two knots I use. You need to be able to make a knot and remove a knot quickly. You also need one knot that stays tight, and another that you can adjust.
I use a tautline hitch for my first knot when I’m tying the ‘V’. I leave it somewhat loose on the tree. I then go out and around the apex tree and then back to the third. I terminate the ‘V’ with a double-improved clinch knot. If you go fishing, this is just an clinch knot done with a double line and then finished with an overhand knot. When the knots are both done, I go back and use the tautline hitch to tighten the whole thing up. The campers cord is great. I’ve probably done these knots dozens of times on each length of campers cord I own and the cord looks brand new even after decades of use.


Muzzleloader 2014

It has gotten so that our early KY Muzzleloader Season has become a dry run for Rifle Season here at camp. We do not have any Yutes at camp anymore, now that Angus is hunting on his own as an adult. So this past weekend was like a dress rehearsal, getting all the bugs worked out. I am sure that if a serious buck had walked out in front of us, he’d have been hanging on the pole, but normally early ML weekend has been a good time to get the gear in order, get our heads wrapped around the job at hand and straighten out stuff around camp.

Friday was a hectic mess. Over the past couple decade or so, I have gotten the whole Deer Camp thing down. I have the license situation all figured out. Everybody’s ammo is down at camp weeks before. All those things you might leave behind at home are pre-positioned. This time, however, Angus ran into some trouble getting his muzzleloader straightened out, and we went clear up to last weekend working on getting it sighted in. Murphy was watching. We got down to camp and could not find the ammo can with the possibles bags. I started to head back to town, and was walking KYHillChick through a thorough search of the basement, the garage — anywhere we might have left the box. I was almost back to Berlin before I decided the box had to be with us. I called back to camp, and another thorough search produced the box.

Saturday was an odd situation. I cannot say exactly when I have seen the weather reports, even the live radar, be so fouled up on predicting rain. When we left camp for our stands, there was no rain showing in the area, but rain popped up just north of us and moved in shortly after first light. We had rain all morning and between that and the wind our morning hunts were dismally poor. In the afternoon, the rain started shortly after we left for our stands and continued until dark.

It was overall remarkably quiet both Saturday and Sunday.  On the Opener, I heard a shot about once every 7 minutes.  On Sunday, I heard fewer than 10 shots all morning until about 0900, and then it sounded like everyone unloaded their barrels at once and went home in disgust.

Sunday was a bit better. It was about 8 degrees warmer than had been predicted. Even before first light, I was getting deer walking by. After the sun came up a half dozen deer came by the stand. They were all doe, nothing I wanted to shoot, but the good news was that they never fully busted me. I had a couple of them snort, but then they turned around and came by the stand anyway. It made me feel good– no stray stink on me.

SuperCore finally decided that he could not take any more, and busted a cap on a doe that was part of a small herd of 7 coming out of Skunk Hollow. The smoke cleared, the deer had fled. He and Angus searched Skunk Hollow for the deer and any blood sign to no avail. From his description, it sounded like the doe had turned into the shot and the bullet had gone either over her back or in front of her.

The really great news out of all this was that Angus got three hunts under his belt and managed to set up a ground blind and get in and out of a treestand without anyone else around to help.

The other really great news is that the deer are back. Some years our resident doe just leave. The food plots and bedding areas stop getting fresh sign and we just do not see anything until fall. This year, they stayed away longer than usual, but they seem to be back on our ridges, and are beginning to hoover up the acorns. Things are on track for a good year.


Local History

I tell everyone that my place is in Neave, Kentucky, but I’m really closer to Browningsville. It is just that no one ever heard of Browningsville, Kentucky. Neave? Neave is the reason my zipcode reads Falmouth, which is way the heck over in another county instead of Brooksville, the county seat. The story goes that a guy named Holton started a stage service between his store at the crossroads in Neave and Falmouth and used that to leverage getting the mail. Of course this all goes back to the Civil War and before. In the 1870’s Neave and Browningsville were thriving places. Browningsville had a post office, a mill, a school and two doctors. Then the two doctors got to arguing one night over a bill, and one shot the other dead. That was pretty much it for Browningsville. It fell off the map in the 1890’s. When I first came along in 2001, they were just tearing down Holton’s Store in Neave. Nothing ever happens in Neave. The largest part of the population all reside in the Neave Methodist Cemetery. In fact the last major event I could find was from ’63 when the commandant of the military district of Cincinnati reported that a company of free blacks had shown up at camp, having all volunteered at Neave. He remarked on their fine deportment and impressive will to fight. There was an Afro-American family living near Neave when I got there, but they got bored and moved on over a decade ago. I am not even going to mention Ely. It was just over on the next ridge. It showed up on a 1850’s railroad map and never again. My buddy O.T. said he remembers the remains of a store, but that’s it.

There are still a few houses in Browningsville. The last structure to be built was an outhouse in 1991 for a church reunion picnic. The mill was abandoned ages ago, and in recent memory a bear took up residence in the basement. It is probably the same bear that used to come by my place every year and pester my sumac bushes. Even he’s moved out. Still, I like to go down to W.T. Browning’s Store in Browningsville in Neave and sit around the stove on old lawn chairs and swap stories with the likes of O.D., O.T who owns the mower shop, O.P. my neighbor, and the few others that come in. Dubya, the proprietor, is a gentleman and lets us take our time shopping, sometimes coming in after breakfast and not leaving until near lunch.  Just by the way: do not confuse W.T. Browning’s emporium with the store at Browning’s Corner.  That’s a whole different thing.

My land lies between Yellow Willow Creek and Pity Creek. I thought for a long while that it was called Willow Creek, but I was corrected several years ago. Willow is the larger branch that runs up to the east towards the Fish and Game Club. O.T. told me that my branch was called Pity Creek, because a widow lady had raised 10 kids in a frame shack down in the bottoms. He said the shack is still there, but I have not seen it.

My road used to be one of the main roads leading to Browningville. The pavement ends at my mailbox. You can still see signs of it snaking along my ridge, and if you follow the track long enough, it crosses Willow Creek at a ford and eventually ends up running into the main road to Powersville. Word is the family that owned my place had relations over on the next ridge and kept the road open so they could all travel to church in the same wagon. A similar fate was met by the segment that used to run to Browningsville. Today, if I want to go to Browningsville, I have to travel halfway to Neave.


An Experiment

This is an experiment. I’ve had this idea rolling around in my head for 25 years or more. Back in the 90’s I started playing with the idea of simulating acorns dropping from trees as an attractant to deer. Deer hear acorns falling, and the go to investigate, right? My first experiments were with acorns and rocks shot from a slingshot from my treestand. Nothing. I suspect the problem was two-fold. First, the sound of the slingshot probably a put-off, and secondly there was the extra motion of shooting it.

A view from the Stand at Campground

Let’s fast-forward about 10 years. When the kids were small I’d have them up in the treestand with me, and invariably they’d have to pee. Rather than send them down the ladder, I’d just have them whizz off the stand. Invariably we’d end up seeing deer. That gave me the idea that it was okay to pee off the stand myself, and I became a major whizz and a major pro-whizz. You might have called me a revolutionary. At the time, folks were promoting pee bottles and ziplock bags. Here I was letting fly.

A few years ago, it dawned on me: Why was it I seemed to see deer shortly after doing a #1 off the stand? It finally hit me, when I remembered my experiments with acorns. I have an hypothesis: deer are attracted to the sound, because it is similar to the sound of acorns falling out of trees.

So here’s the idea I’d like y’all to test: Get a bottle. It can be a squirt bottle, a sports bottle, anything that can put out a stream of water. Fill it with plain water. Some time over the season, give it a squirt and see what happens. Practice with it to make it sound like acorns falling on the leaves. I find a short squirt with a little loft gives the best sound kind of like . . . well, you know. Anyhow, give it a try and let me know how it works. Just remember that you heard it from me first.


Son, This is a Muzzleloader

I had a job to do. Angus is going deer hunting on his own this year. However, we still had not gotten his muzzleloader together. We were all down for a camp-out this past weekend. Sunday afternoon, after Moose and MooseMama left with their friends, Angus and I sat down to take care of things.

The rifle is an early 80’s Lyman Deerstalker with a stainless barrel. It is a half-stock, percussion rifle of the standard Hawken variety with double triggers. Last year, I started to get it ready for Angus, and the ramrod stuck. After trying everything (soaking in pentrating oil, freezing, you name it) I got the ramrod removed by a ‘smith. Afterwards, it was one of the rifles I prepped with Dyna Bore Coat over the summer. The problem with the ramrod was caused by the crud ring that forms in the barrel by Hodgdon Triple-7. Yeah, I knew there might be a crud ring. Yes, the patch was a little tight going down. Yeah, I know all about it . . . NOW! Where were y’all last year?


My reason for writing this is two-fold. First, I wanted to give y’all the method I used for introducing Angus to the rifle. This will be his first time out on his own as a deer hunter and as a smokepole hunter at that. Second, I wanted to give you my impressions pre- and post- Dyna Bore Coat.

I did not take pictures, because this, above all discussions a father has with his son, is one of those deadly -serious things. I would put it between chainsaws and electric winches. The subtleties of front-stuffers is something they do not teach in Hunter Ed. Furthermore, when it is going to your son’s life on the line, it is a good thing to keep this sober and solid. Vince Lombardi started with “This is a football.” My spiel was something along those lines, and despite Angus, having been shooting front-stuffers since he was a wee one, was glad for the refresher.

We sat down with two kitchen chairs and a low table in the shade, looking out towards the pond. I arrayed the various pieces of equipment and explained them. I had Angus fill his flask, I handed him three bullets and bade him remove 3 primers from the tin. I explained that we would first fire three half-strength loads. The first load went off without a hitch. On loading the second, I stopped him in the middle of getting the bullet started and showed him how he was starting to point the barrel at his head. That was a quick lesson. I don’t think I will have to show him that one again. On the next round, I explained the necessity of doing all actions associated with starting the bullet and ramming it home in precise smooth movements– no half-efforts. The bullet is started with a single hit on the starter. The ramrod is forced down the barrel in one motion. For cleaning we used a spit patch sent down twice.

On the second, I stopped him after he had presented the rifle and set the trigger, and had him work the action to drop the hammer without firing and to return it to half-cock. No problems there.

By the third round, he had everything down. We moved from 60 grains to 90 grains. On this rifle and this bullet this is still not a full-house load, but for deep woods and close ranges, it is perfectly deadly. Angus loaded, stood, presented arms and gave fire flawlessly. Two more rounds, and we called it quits. By this time the barrel was getting a little grimy and so we gave it one more spit patch and put it away, mission accomplished. The young man did just fine. He has already become quite smitten with the rifle. I agree. It is a beauty, and frankly I am no happier than when I am in my stand in October with my TC Hawken.

Next weekend, we will both fire for effect at targets.

In regards to the Dyna Bore Coat, the results on this rifle were just short of miraculous. The crud ring was non-existant. Oh sure, it has to still be there, but it does not stick to the barrel. The patch just nocks it loose. In one instance, I wanted to experience what Angus was feeling, and it was perfectly smooth going down. I also noticed that the spit patch was considerably more dirtly on the first pass than the second. In the past, true with my own Hawken as well, the first and second patches were much closer in griminess. That tells me the Dyna Bore Coat is keeping more of the Triple Seven from adhereing to the barrel.

One other kudo: I bought some new Remington #11 primers this year and misplaced them before I could get down to the farm. I found a tin of Remington’s from 2009. They were just as good as new. Angus had good solid ignition on all his shots. On the other hand I tried some Winchesters last year and they were abysmal– two hits on each primer to get a spark. I went out last night and bought some more Remingtons along with a fresh pound of Triple Seven.


Asking about H4895

From 24HourCampfire.com

Campfire Ranger
Loc: Indiana     
Hello shaman,

I seen your post regarding H4895 on the Gunwriters section and on your website.

I’m brand new to reloading. Only have two cartridges: 223rem and 308win. I’m looking to simplify my reloading by only stock one powder if possible.

What can you tell me or what have you found out about H4895 that you like it over the others?

I have some Varget which seems to be a 24hourcampfire favorite as well as some Blc-2.

Appreciate your feedback and help that you can provide.


09/27/14 10:08 AM Re: H-4895
Loc: Neave, KY
I think there is somebody here that claims to put Varget on his cornflakes. I’m kind of that way with H4895

Start here, and let me know if you need more info.
Making the switch to H4895

I’ve used H4895 in both 308 and 223 REM. In just about all cases (223 REM, 308Win, 30-30 WIN, 30-06, 76.2X54R, 35 Whelen), I’ve seen H4895 be an accurate performer with moderate recoil. The one round I don’t use it with is 25-06. It works, but it was somewhat anemic in the velocity department. I’m the kind of guy that does not want to push any envelopes. I get a new chambering, I load up starting loads (5%off MAX or thereabouts) and if the load is accurate enough for hunting, I stop right there. I figure that it saves rifle barrels, saves powder, saves my shoulder, and if I wanted to push envelopes I’d transfer to the mailroom.

I had one 308 WIN rifle that was not accurate at all with H4895. I switched to Varget and got good results. I went back this year and tried H4895 after I’d treated the barrel with Dyna Bore Coat and now it shoots the best ever with H4895. Go figure.

If you don’t mind, I’ll post this conversation on my weblog. I need to do a piece on H4895, and this would be a good start.

Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries Lighthearted Confessions of a Cervid Serial Killer

  09/27/14 10:32 AM Re: H-4895
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 1572
Loc: Indiana     
No problem with posting on your blog. That’s where I originally found info on H-4895. I like your idea of using lighter chargers of H-4895 while keeping bullet weight up. The recoil programs I use show it recoils around 243wn levels.

Hodgdon website for youth loads drop bullet weight down to 125-130gr. While that may make sense in other caliber, it doesn’t make sense for 308win. Why not drop loads down to 30-30win or 300savage as it makes more sense since the bullets where design to still expand at those reduce velocities.

09/27/14 11:05 AM Re: H-4895
Campfire Guide

Loc: Neave, KY
It’s amazing how much a 5% off-MAX load does to the recoil.
I have a 35 Whelen that shoots like a 358 WIN
I have a 308 WIN that shoots like a 300 Savage
I have a Mosin Nagant that shoots like a 30-30.

It’s great.
Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries Lighthearted Confessions of a Cervid Serial Killer

 09/27/14 12:50 PM Re: H-4895
Campfire Ranger
Loc: Indiana     
I seen that you’re not keen on the idea of 223rem for deer hunting?

It seems pretty popular here on the ‘campfire. Never hunted deer with 223rem so I can’t comment on its effectiveness.

09/27/14 01:59 PM Re: H-4895
Campfire Guide

Loc: Neave, KY
I actually started working up a 223 load for deer, and was intent on doing it, but I got sidetracked by other projects. I finally realized after a few years that I hadn’t done anything with the 223 project and realized I had lost interest.

Can it work? I’m sure. Am I going to do it? Prolly someday. Am I hot on the idea? Last year I got a 25-06. I load it to shoot like a 257 Roberts (see a pattern here?) I’m going to slowly work my way down. I figure 35 Whelen was my high-water mark. By the time I’m 90, I’ll probably have given all the 30-06’s to the grandkids and be singing the praises of 223 REM.

Right now, my interest is in getting all my 358 pistols and rifles shooting cast lead. I hope to convert my Whelenizer to a 35-Rem-ish pump shooting 200 gr hard cast.

Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries Lighthearted Confessions of a Cervid Serial Killer

  09/27/14 02:24 PM Re: H-4895
Campfire Ranger
Loc: Indiana     
Hmmm, not sure if you noticed this or not but I’m seeing a trend here on the campfire of people being divided into two camps.

One side is taking a larger centerfire rifles then downloading for their purposes.

The other side uses smaller centerfire rifles then handloads premium bullets if they want to increase performance to take smaller size medium game.

I can see the merits of both views. Yes, I can see your pattern smile

In handguns, I’m trying my hand at down loaded 44mags to 44specials. Will see how that goes. I’ve tumbled about 100 once fire 44mag brass I shot earlier this month. Now I’ve got to deprime, etc.

09/27/14 02:46 PM Re: H-4895
shaman Online content
Campfire Guide

Loc: Neave, KY
Yes! That’s the spirit. The 44 mag brass will last longer, and you don’t erode the throat the way you would using 44 Special in a 44 Mag chamber.

For me, it comes down to cost mostly. A 300 MAG downloaded to 30-06 levels is a HECK of a lot cheaper to shoot over the long haul than a 30-06 pushing up into 300 WM territory. I can use cheap bullets too.

So many people spend gobs of money for performance that only manifests itself on the far side of the deer. I’ve never been all that invested in making the forest floor fly.

BTW: I stepped outside, and someone just handed me a nice AR-type in 223, and I shot a magazine into the pond . Don’t worry, there’s a berm to catch the strays. Anyhow, I noticed that I was making plumes of spray every bit as high as shooting my buddy’s 300 Win Mag last fall. Hmmmm. Makes you think, donut?
Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries Lighthearted Confessions of a Cervid Serial Killer

  09/27/14 03:07 PM Re: H-4895
Campfire Ranger
Loc: Indiana  

I didn’t start hunting until I was 30. Didn’t grow up in a hunting family or one that really believe in firearms so it wasn’t until an adult that I tried it. Got in with some guys from my ex-wife. Didn’t learn a darn thing about hunting other than pay my lease money and sit in a deer stand for 14hours.

While I definitely enjoyed the venison, waiting all year to shoot one deer during a two week firearms season didn’t do much for me.

Now I like shooting! Since I don’t have anyone to really show me the ropes to hunt, I figure I’d try my hand at varminting. Just ask some farmers, etc. and go shoot some ground hogs. Figure expand from there if possible.

So for me, I think a bolt actin 223rem would have more merit than my 308win.

I can get cheap once fired Lake City brass, and bulk bullets for 223rem on the cheap. The 223rem is meager on powder which helps in these trouble times.
Yes, I can definitely relate to cost and being cheaper.

Figure about the biggest think I’d ever hunt would be whitetail and possible pigs/hogs. My current thought process is just load up a premium bullet such as tsx for 223rem for those times and in the mean time have cheap fun shooting the hell out of my 223rem.

I figure I might eventually get around to downloading the 308win to 300savage levels but what I’m going to hunt with it? I have no connections here in Indiana and it’s only whitetails.

So while I like the 308win and think it’s a great round, it has limited uses for me. Kind of disappointing but probably the truth for right now.

 09/27/14 05:03 PM Re: H-4895
Campfire Ranger
Loc: Indiana     
Step out to see if I could get some horseback riding in, no luck! smile

No to play devil’s advocate! : D

If you take out the long range requirement for varmints and coyote, one could pretty much make do with a 22lr.

As easterners, we don’t have gophers/ prairie dog colonies needing 300yr shots

If one still wanted to hunt coyotes, the 308win can definitely handle that. And 308win is definitely better on hogs and deer than 223rem.

Plus if one handloads, one can always tone down those 308win loads to 300savage and not lose too much effectiveness

Yesterday at 04:55 PM Re: H-4895
shaman Online content
Campfire Guide

Loc: Neave, KY
. . . and in IN, 308 WIN will be legal for deer, but .223 won’t.

BTW: While you’re figgerin’, look at the 30 cal Speer TNT for coyote.

Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries Lighthearted Confessions of a Cervid Serial Killer

  Yesterday at 05:42 PM Re: H-4895
Campfire Ranger
Loc: Indiana     
Yes, indeed! I seen Indiana game commission has proposed allowing high power rifles for deer hunting of 24caliber or larger. Not sure if it passed or not.

I’ll take a look at those 30 cal Speer bullets for coyotes! Thanks for the heads up!

Hornady’s 150gr round nose looks like the perfect option to download my 308win to 30-30 levels. The 30-30’s max load of 2300fps is the 308win starting load for the 150g RN! So I’m happy camper! smile