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Thread: How good a shot are the stalkers in the UK?

  1. #1

    How good a shot are the stalkers in the UK?

    A quote from Stag1933 in the neck shooting thread
    It is a fact of life that 8 out of 9 stalkers cannot place 3 consecutive shots on to a one inch bullseye at 100 yards from a good rest with NO stress.

    Now i know that all the stalker on SD think they are great shots. Not forgetting those that never miss ,wound a deer. Or the rural snipers in our midst.
    I think that Stag1933 has a very valid and fair point. Now I know that you are thinking what the feck is this old fool from Sweden talking about.
    I go every chance I get to shoot the running moose range. For every person who shoots well there are nine who shoot very average to down right poor. There was a young man a couple of weeks ago at the range who was dressed in all the hunting gear plus big knife and stool rucksack who looked like he could shoot. I shot 4 series and he followed after me. Fair enough he hit the standing target but when it was moving had a miss every time. Well he shot 5-6 series and then left the range quite happy with his performance.
    Then there was the old chap who could not even score on the standing target. They are just two of many equally talented shot who will be out in the forest on the first day of moose hunting tomorrow.

    Now I lived in Sussex for 53 years till I moved here. I belonged to a shooting club with deer stalking as its main interest that had regular range days on the Short Siberia and the BSC ranges.
    Now the members of this club were just a cross section of the people who stalk in the UK. There were very few good shots in their ranks. 4 or 5 who spent range day after range day year in and year out chasing bullets round the target, twiddling knobs on their scopes. They never had any confidence in there rifles. At least one of these had Dsc2.
    One member who’s reloading skills were on the verge of scary. And one, now dead who would have found it hard to hit a barn door at very close range. People who had .375 and .338 rifles that scared the ***** out of them. And so on.
    So Stag1933 you hit the nail right on the head.

  2. #2
    A very fair and also very scary assessment. I always tell people when they are on about practising their shooting off a bipod from a stable bench that it is a waste of time. Once you have zeroed the rifle from a bipod etc then do your practice under field conditions, off a post, sticks, leaning against a tree, rolled up jacket, freehand! I quite often get looked at like the old fool that I am. Alan you are quite correct as is Stag1933.

    John
    A clever man knows his strengths, a wise man knows his weaknesses

  3. #3
    +1 I remember when i did level one we were told to use only what we would use in the field so rather nieve I took my rifle sleeve and stick As that is what I used when stalking rolled up sleeve under my wrist when on the hill and stick in woods.
    some there were using bench rests inside rucksacks and still failed,
    Seem to remember I only just scraped through and that was a 4 inch circle.
    then of course in the field you have to allow for a degree of nerves
    Last edited by roedeerred; 07-10-2012 at 12:54.

  4. #4
    I disagree entirely...

    The quote IMO is inaccurate with most stalkers ive ever met being good shots rather than poor..

    Terry
    Blessed be the sheeple for they shall inherit bugger all...

  5. #5
    Sorry should have said Non proffesional stalkers most pros use a rifle almost daily so get the practicewhich is essential.

  6. #6
    Yep, I'm not talking pro stalkers. Recreational stalkers are those I'm refering too.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by JAYB View Post
    A very fair and also very scary assessment. I always tell people when they are on about practising their shooting off a bipod from a stable bench that it is a waste of time. Once you have zeroed the rifle from a bipod etc then do your practice under field conditions, off a post, sticks, leaning against a tree, rolled up jacket, freehand! I quite often get looked at like the old fool that I am. Alan you are quite correct as is Stag1933.

    John

    It really amazes me how many people I come across who will only shoot off a bipod!!

    ATB

    Tom

  8. #8
    I've attended a few HCAP shoots, similar to the UK Deer hunter tests.
    In some cases the shooting is shocking. I don't mind the odd shot at the wrong target which can happen
    but I've seen 50% of the line fail in more than one case. Some shooters underestimate the test, come unprepared and
    have not done any practice shot prior. Rifles are often still shooting 2" high at 100 as they zero normally and so on.
    I would have not thought the standard as an average was that low.
    Of course there were some shots that shot absolutely perfect often had nothing to do with the cost of gear they were using.
    edi

  9. #9
    Its very true in general most seem to think they are better shots than they actually are, and while we should try to be the best we can, you don't actually need to be a great shot to be a stalker, all you need is to be able to consistently put a shot in a 4inch circle at 100yds no great feat of marksmanship. but as JAYB says being able to do it in field conditions is the secret,using the aids he mentioned, but also learning to shoot in various positions, uphill , downhill lying on a steep slope whatever its not always or even often you can get to an ideal position to shoot when a beast presents its self, so you need to practise shooting from a variety of positions.

    Jagare, if you lived in the UK for that length of time you will also be aware that taking running shots are frowned upon in the UK so a great many rifle shots here will never have practised doing so, I am not sure that a running target is a fair test of a stalkers shooting ability.

    In years of guiding clients I have seen varying degrees of marksmanship, and while I have met some really good shots, I am afraid to say they are in the minority.

    Now I am quite sure a lot of these guys could produce a reasonable performance on a target, but its not the same as field conditions.

    But I will say it again you don't need to be a great shot to be a good stalker.

  10. #10
    Every now and then I like to take a rifle out on the range and shoot three shot groups at 25,50,100,150 and 200m.

    I use a A4 piece of paper with a dayglo pink post it note on it about two thirds of the way up.

    I suppose the post it note is about 2.5 inches square. I take the same point of aim (central) at every range.

    What you end up with, with all normal stalking calibres from .222 Rem to .300 Win Mag, is a 12 round group on, or very close to, the post it note with another 3 round group just below it from the 200m shots.

    This is a very good confidence booster.

    With guests, unless they insist on shooting at a zeroing target, I always get them to shoot a couple of rounds off the bench at 100m at a red oxide painted roe target, as long as these are on the chest and reasonably close together we walk down the range an fire a couple more shots at 40m or so off the sticks and then call it a day as this accurately simulates the type of shots we would tend to encounter.

    I always have a chuckle when people talk about 'half inch groups', in reality, even when measured correctly (5 rounds measured exterme outside to outside minus the calibre) this is effectively a ragged one hole group... how many people can realistically do this consistantly, I know I can't and I do a reasonable amount of rifle shooting.

    Glyn.

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