Hunters pride themselves on being marksmen. Sadly, not all hunters are created equal. Gear, optics, practice, and more practice will help hunters craft and maybe master their shooting skills. Not all hunters have the best eyesight which will limit their long shot potential.
Long Shots are relative to the type of weapon being used. Archery may include vintage or modern bows. Many compound bows will accurately hit a target at 300 feet per second. Crossbows can allow for great accuracy and are quick to learn. A wooden recurve bow will place arrows instinctively, accurately, but slower at shorter ranges.
Rifles also vary in what would be considered a Long Shot. Most hunters have never shot a critter further than 300 yards and yet their weapons are capable of much more. Snipers are trained to consistently hit targets at over a mile!
It comes down to what you are comfortable with. Your eyes, weapon, and skill level will measure your potential long shot. Now consider the wind, weather, and other factors that will impact your shot.
Hunting means shots that are lethal and effective so that the critter will not suffer. The meat will be eaten so one-shot kills are important, sporting, and ethical.
“Do you want to make love or have sex?” This was the question I was asked by my hunting mentor. Either outcome is great, but which is more meaningful and exciting?
I have never harvested a critter, with my bow, over 18 yards. The closest elk was 7 yards with a bow and the longest with a rifle was 450 yards. More hunting skills, other than shooting, are required to get close and personal. Scent, camo, stalking, experience, and patience are needed to seal the deal.
If you want to master the Long Shot, find a mentor that is willing to work with you. Many shooting clubs are full of master shots. Ask questions and follow instructions. The more you pull the trigger, the better shot you will become.
Go the distance to shoot the distance!
For more Montana Grant, visit his blog at www.montanagrantfishing.com.