How to get started in long range hunting/shooting

flatlanderhuffandpuff

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
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403
Location
PA
I've always been interested in long range shooting and figure it's time to take the plunge.

There is so much involved and I don't want to clog up the forum with too many threads with basic questions. Can any of you recommend good books articles, or video resources?

My first order of business is to get some good glass on my rifle. My typical hunting shot is inside 200 yards but I want to work up to target shoot 800-1000. I'm at a loss for where to start. So many different options and it's hard to get a handle on why to go with one over the other. My current rifle isn't exactly what you would think of as a long range tack driver (.270) but it will have to work until the funds for a new rifle show up. What are features that I shouldn't be overlooking if my intention is to buy an all around hunting scope with the ability to grow into long range shooting.

I have always been an admirer of Leupold but am open to options.
 

orelkaddict

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 24, 2013
Messages
362
Location
western Oregon
Our very own Ryan Avery can answer a lot of questions for you! Over on Long Range Only forum there's also a world of information, Broz and Ryan Furman have tons of knowledge to share. Tons of video and reading info on Panhandle Precision!! Good luck in your info search and welcome to the addiction of long range
 

Journeyman

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2015
Messages
117
Location
Bozeman
Honestly the two best words of advice I can give is to find a range local to you and more importantly find a mentor. Number 2 will dramatically reduce the learning curve.

Don’t be afraid to ask us all the other questions, basic or not. I think forums are as relevant as books and they're free.

If you like Leupold I’d consider a Mark 5 or VX5. I run a Mark 5 on my match rifle and it’ll end up on my hunting rifle this year. I trust it’s dialing 100%.
 

Wrench

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
681
Location
WA
My 270win with 150 LRAB takes 25.5 minutes or 7.3 mils of elevation. If you don't have that you'll be playing the hold over or sighted high game.

I run my 270 that far often. With today's bullets the 270 is underrated and often overlooked.
 

3pointer

Junior Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2019
Messages
48
Leupold is probly the go to for majority of people , they are as solid as they come , the biggest thing is shoot shoot shoot , then understanding your trajectory and effective distance of your load , there is a lot of fancy equipment out there these days , but u don’t necessarily need all that , some of the best shooters I know use the simplest systems . Once again because they shoot shoot shoot and understand they’re weapon and bullet they’re sending , it’s takes time and practice , best of luck on your long range journey
 

BCD

Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2019
Messages
74
Location
Hudson, WI
There is a lot of info out there suggesting Leupolds have issues with dialing reliably. I was about to buy one a month or so ago until I started reading about all of the tracking issues with them
 

Journeyman

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2015
Messages
117
Location
Bozeman
There is a lot of info out there suggesting Leupolds have issues with dialing reliably. I was about to buy one a month or so ago until I started reading about all of the tracking issues with them
I think it's important that you give out specific details if you're going to pass along second hand information. Leupold had a huge issue with their Mark 6 rifle scopes. It was a known issue, don't buy a Mark 6. But like I said the Mark 5's and VX5's have been great scopes. I have somewhere in the neighborhood of 3000-4000 rounds on my Mark 5 with zero issues. There's lots of great scopes out there but the OP likes Leupold's so I suggested a couple that will work great for him.

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OP
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flatlanderhuffandpuff

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2017
Messages
403
Location
PA
Thank you all for chiming in. I respect the opinions of the members of this site more than most other forums I've been on.

1)What is the typical process of getting on the steel at 500 yards? Are you Zeroed at 200 then dial up to 500 or are you using MOA/Mil hold over dashes? Is there a consensus among the long range community about what type of reticle is best? There are way more options than I would have thought.

2)When I'm on the Leupold site they have a breakdown between hunting and tactical. To me they all seem to have the same features. I wasn't sure if there is an easy explanation between the two.

3) It seems that everyone shooting long range is developing their own loads. Why is that necessary? To my uninformed mind it seems like the ammo brands would be able to come up with a truly premium product especially since they are still making and selling all the components of a bullet.
 

Journeyman

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2015
Messages
117
Location
Bozeman
Here we go, I'll do my best.

1) There's not a single consensus on getting dope but many practical approaches. I'd start out buying some factory rounds from Hornady and then download their free 4 Degrees of Freedom app (4DOF). Input as many of the variables into it as possible and it will get you very close to getting on target. Once you get your actual dope/elevation you can go back and adjust your variables and weather to get it to line up perfect. Lots of other ways to go but that's a cheap and easy one.

2)Tactical scopes typically have a larger tube diameter. Mark 5's have a 35mm tube which means there's more room for elevation travel available. Tactical scopes also have larger elevation knobs and typically different reticles but those are the big items. Most everyone who shoots long range seriously is using a tactical style scope though you'll quickly get out of the habit of ever saying the word tactical.

3)There are some very good factory rounds available. Handloading allows you to tune a load to your rifle and while it's not necessarily cheaper than buying factory it gives you the ability to shoot the highest quality most accurate ammo available for your gun at the cost of cheap factory ammo. The upfront cost of reloading equipment and your time at the bench should be taken into consideration as well.

These answers barely scratch the surface but it's a start.
 
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