Snap-shooting tips and training?


August 11, 2007, 10:46 PM
I'm getting ready for this falls hunts, and because this year I'm finally out of grad school and only working full time I have a lot more time and money to get ready for the elk and deer hunts. I've been trying to practice what I call snap shooting, bringing the rifle up to my shoulder from rest/bench and getting an accurate round off as quick as possible. My elk/deer rifle this fall is a Ruger #1 in .338WM (my hunt is a combo, one of each during the same week so I'm not going to be using my Swede or -06 for deer, even though I a little over-gunned). To practice I've been shooting offhand at 100yds for several rounds and shooting about 50 rounds out of my CZ .22lr with full-length stock at 50yds. Both rifles have a Leupold VXII 2-7x32 and the feel is similar due to the weight of the .22lr.

So- I've never shot competitive rifle (I've shot a little defensive pistol and bullseye pistol) so I'm not 'experienced' or trained at all. Sometimes I have my left hand way out on the forend, sometimes right under the action with my elbow tight. Sometimes the right elbow is out, sometimes tucked. I'm not really interested in getting fantastic groups, but I'm very interested in hitting a pie-plate at 200yds with minimal time spent from the hoist of the rifle to the first shot.

Right now offhand at 100yds I've been getting 7" groups with 8 shots getting a shot off quick. I'd like to be able to do that at 200yds and a lot quicker than I've been doing it.

Any suggestions? Tips?



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August 11, 2007, 11:38 PM
For me keeping the elbow out is best as it makes the gun settle in the socket faster. Try to keep your offhand elbow directly under the gun and pull the butt into your shoulder first before you rotate up. Keep your scope at's all you're gonna need in a snap shooting situation. If you have to reposition your face to see though the scope then the gun doesn't fit you. You may have to have it altered or keep practicing until muscle memory takes over. Where I hunt in Canada it is VERY thick and tracking and stalking make snap shooting the rule and I practiced it and read what others had to say about it,finally just kinda developing my own style. Just keep practicing,maby if you handload make reduced loads so you don't get so beat up. I used a Weatherby MK5 in 338winmag for deer and made a snap at 10 yards in Ontario. One 200gr Hornady handload though the chest broadside and the thing still didn't go down at the shot, just stood there confused until one went in his neck. Post mortem proved the bullet blew up and turned the insides to pulp, no exit. The deer must have been dead and didn't know it. Looked like a grenade went off north of the diaphram. If it wasn't unethical I would have liked to have seen just how long it would have taken for him to die from the first shot, but he only suffered for as long as it takes for you to work a bolt.

August 12, 2007, 08:02 AM
What kind of sling are you using? For a standing 200 yard shot, you should consider learning how to use your sling to stabilize your shot. It takes very little time to get into once you've got it set up and done a little practice, and you'll find that it helps a whole lot.

August 12, 2007, 02:38 PM
Slings are a really good point, and I have no answer. I've pretty much just used whatever I had, mostly for hauling and not for shooting. Any suggestions on slings? I need a decent sling for three different rifles anyway, I might as well focus on shoot-ability with it.

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