Monday, December 15, 2008

New Addition to the Family (On the Range)

As old Jack Frost released his icy grip on the northeastern United States, I along with 220,000 other Mainers managed to get electrical power back to our homes. The winter storm left a quarter of Maine’s population scurrying to hotels and buying generators as the hours stretched into days without power or heat. My wife and I and our two toddlers were minutes away from heading across town to the Best Western when suddenly the power clicked back on and we were rescued from our stone age living arrangements.

After several hectic days I finally managed to find a few moments to make it back to the range and finalize sighting in my .243 Winchester H&R Handi-Rifle. There is something almost meditative about shooting and nothing better at getting your mind off your troubles than a couple of hours at the gun range. Over the power struggle, I had build a 4 x 5 shooting platform and tacked to it 4 bulls eyes and then waited silently in the dark until my chance to escape!

My previous visit to the range had me to shooting relatively close groups at 25 yards with my "thrifty" Tasco Pronghorn 3x9x40 but I had to leave before I felt things were “fine tuned”. In my test at 50 yards I made 9 shots and three adjustments to the scope reticule to compensate for shots that seemed consistently low and to the right. In my final testing at 100 yards I made 6 shots and one adjustment to the scope reticule to compensate for shots that continued to seem consistently low and to the right. On my final target I shot 1 shot 2 inches high, 1 shot two inches low and one shot dead in the bulls eye. (My final shot group at 100 is pictured to the left.)

The ballistic charts I examined online indicated that the ultra flat shooting .243 Win. when zeroed at 150 yards was capable of only being 0.5 inches high at 100 and 2 inches low at 200 yards . . . very cool! My next session to the range I am going to start increasing my yardage until I am hitting consistently at 200.

Sub MOA this gun is not however I could easily see how with some additional long range practice session how I could in excellent conditions be able to hit a coyote size animal out to a distance of around 200 yards.


  1. Ya killed 3 right there! Plenty good enough...

  2. BM,

    You make a good point. My confidence is extremely high on the 100 yard shots but I need some work on my comfort level beyond 100.

    Practice, practice, practice . . . heading out again this weekend for an hour or so on the range.

  3. For anyone following the .243 posts I am heading out tomorrow afternoon for the field test on the local "yote" population! Should be posting the outcomes after Christmas. Night hunting for yotes starts January 1st.


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