If you’re picking a hunting rifle you may be overwhelmed with the wide array of choices at your disposal. Seeing the many different sizes and style of rifle can be confusing. Imagine yourself checking out the goods at your local fish and game store. In the moment you may curse having so many choices to pick from.
Instead of spending hours on end at the shop make your choice and spend more time in the field by following a few basic tips.
Know Your Game
Know the type of game you’re after. By visualizing the specific target you can more easily narrow down your choices. Keeping the end game in mind will instantly remove a majority of rifles staring back at you from the display case. Get super clear on picking your game; doing so helps you zero in on the rifle you most need to enjoy your hunt and to have a successful hunt.
Know Your Cartridge
When you decide on your ideal ammunition you can better find a corresponding rifle. Get clear on picking your gear to pinpoint the rifle that best fits your needs. Bullets are merely part of the cartridge and are named by caliber, or diameter. Small-caliber bullets are the perfect match for small game. Small bullets make less of an impact over long distances but are more accurate than larger bullets. Think about the distance between you and your target. What size game are you hunting? Aiming for smaller game and at shorter distance means you’d choose a lesser caliber bullet for your hunting. This gives you a clue into the caliber of rifle you’d buy as the ammunition and rifle would correspond for a successful hunt.
Rifles are either repeaters or single shots. A single shot rifle can be fired once before you need to reload another cartridge. Repeaters are able to house several cartridges at once. Skilled, seasoned hunters tend to drift toward buying single shot rifles. These rifles force the shooter to be careful, deliberate and measured in their set up because you only have one shot and you need to make it count.
You can choose an array of repeating type rifles such as automatic rifles, lever-action rifles, pump-action rifles and bolt-action rifles. Automatic rifles are able to load and eject cartridges automatically while the other types require some manual act on behalf of the shooter to release a used cartridge and to load a fresh cartridge. A purist would likely not choose an automatic rifle since more handiwork is required while using the other rifle types.
Newbie hunters would be wise to choose a repeating rifle. Although using a single shot rifle seems to increase accuracy learning how to fire such a rifle can be highly difficult for a new, unseasoned hunter.
You can choose a stainless steel or carbon steel rifle. Stainless steel rifles are more expensive but less apt to rust. Carbon steel rifles cost less but are more prone to rust. If you’ll be hunting in extreme weather conditions invest in a stainless steel rifle to preserve your hardware.