Shotgun for expeditions - THR

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Old Yesterday, 07:19 PM   #1
Join Date: January 15, 2009
Location: Japan planning the move back to Canada
Posts: 629
Shotgun for expeditions

I like reading books about expeditions and explorers. A lot of these guys lived off or partially off the land. They did a lot of hunting. I was wondering what gauge and shotgun you folks would recommend for a modern day expedition in say the North or the Himalayas or wherever. This would be for getting small game and birds for the pot.
If you spend enough time in the bush you realize that mother nature is unkind to those who can't defend themselves.
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Old Yesterday, 07:23 PM   #2
Join Date: October 5, 2011
Location: Southeast Texas
Posts: 3,811
I would take a 12 ga. It can take most any game (and non-game) animal on the planet and ammo is fairly easy to come by.
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Old Yesterday, 07:52 PM   #3
Join Date: May 26, 2007
Posts: 7,488
I'd carry a 22 rifle. 500 rounds will fit into the same size container as 25 shot shells. Perfect for small game, and useable for deer size game with close range head shots. Not an option if protection from large predators, but that wasn't one of your criteria. If it were a 2nd large caliber rifle carried by someone else in the party would suffice. While the shotgun should be more effective the logistics of carrying enough ammo to last very long could be problematic.

If resupply at regular intervals were an option then I like my 870 turkey gun. The 21" barrel is compact and light enough. While not perfect for wingshooting it is useable. They are threaded for a variety of different choke tubes which makes it much more versatile with a variety of shot shells as well as slugs. It would be the perfect survival shotgun in my opinion.
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Old Yesterday, 08:15 PM   #4
Join Date: January 15, 2009
Location: Japan planning the move back to Canada
Posts: 629
I think most of these explorers carried a small .22ish caliber and a .30cal as well for hunting game. I'm thinking birds here. Tho I guess a shotgun would work for small game too. To give you an idea of background I'm currently reading about Sven Hedin's explorations in Central Asia.
If you spend enough time in the bush you realize that mother nature is unkind to those who can't defend themselves.
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Old Yesterday, 08:41 PM   #5
Join Date: April 24, 2008
Location: Hot and Humid FL
Posts: 13,437
Drilling - 12 gauge in one barrel, 30-06 or bigger in another, .22 or 22 hornet in the third

you're GTG for just about anything
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Old Yesterday, 10:03 PM   #6
Join Date: September 12, 2010
Location: Il
Posts: 1,246
Savage 24v in 222 or 223 and 20 ga. Also a 22lr adapter.
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Old Yesterday, 10:33 PM   #7
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Join Date: September 17, 2007
Location: Eastern KS
Posts: 49,834
For foraging food?
A 20 ga pump with choke tubes, 95% birdshot shells, 5% slugs for ammo supply.

You can carry about 20% more ammo for a 20 ga then for a 12 ga.

And maybe a .22 rifle if you have a gun bearer?

Going into north country where big bears live?
I'd go with a 12 GA pump and a couple 10 rounds of Brenneke slugs.

Don't put all your eggs in one basket.
Or all your primers in a glass jar!

Last edited by rcmodel; Yesterday at 11:18 PM.
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Old Yesterday, 10:51 PM   #8
Join Date: April 7, 2003
Location: Evangeline, Louisiana
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What ever was legal in whatever country I was in for starters. If I was anywhere near ISIS I would carry an M-60 and a suicide pill.
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Old Yesterday, 11:50 PM   #9
Join Date: November 19, 2011
Location: Kansas
Posts: 1,299
I'd carry a drilling in 12 gauge, with .300 Win Mag, and .22 LR for the other bbl's.
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Old Today, 12:23 AM   #10
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Join Date: September 17, 2007
Location: Eastern KS
Posts: 49,834
The OP ask about foraging small game & birds for the pot with a shotgun.

NOT, fighting ISIS, or killing bison or bears with a .300 Magnum or 30-06/.223 Drilling.

Don't put all your eggs in one basket.
Or all your primers in a glass jar!
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Old Today, 12:50 AM   #11
Join Date: June 29, 2012
Posts: 1,840
I would want a 20 gauge single shot break open, and a good mix of no. 4 birdshot and some buckshot, with a few boxes of brenneke slugs.

Light enough to carry all day, simple and reliable, and able to take small and big game.
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Old Today, 01:02 AM   #12
Join Date: September 8, 2009
Location: west Texas
Posts: 671
12 gauge of course and i'm thinking a Citori or Onyx.
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Old Today, 01:16 AM   #13
Join Date: March 25, 2011
Location: NC
Posts: 2,903
For the purposes of putting food on a fire? I really wouldn't mind having a simple 12 gauge single-shot and a rifled .22LR/WMR chamber adapter. Or even a 9mm adapter. .22LR/WMR/9mm will all be easy to carry in bulk, just fine for 25 yards or so, and reasonably accurate. Dave Canterbury has a few videos on chamber adapters. It will offer you the ability to use a much more compact cartridge for shooting things that aren't flying.

Last edited by Inebriated; Today at 02:41 AM.
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Old Today, 01:45 AM   #14
Join Date: November 29, 2010
Location: Logan, Utah (Moving my business form NY State)
Posts: 2,020
410 and 22lr combos are the ideal backpacking shotgun. carry lots of amo with much less weight and it is very effective. bot can take deer and hogs w/o problems at realistic ranges. Poachers kill all sort of things. All it takes a bullet in the occipital region. with a slug the 410 is great for neck shots.
Bot are more accrate than the average shotgun. Zero recoil and light to carry.
The 410 can also fire 45 laods. A 12 or 20 ou can be great too and can take insers for other claibers but they are much heavier.
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Old Today, 02:39 AM   #15
Join Date: December 23, 2002
Location: Centennial, CO
Posts: 13,107
12 ga. but ammo is heavy/bulky. A Savage combo gun like .22 over a 20 ga might be better.
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Old Today, 02:55 AM   #16
Join Date: January 6, 2011
Location: Gun Lake, Michigan
Posts: 4,027
Me? I think I'd want a Savage .223 over 12 ga.
Capable of taking everything from small game, birds, deer and since you mentioned the Himalayas, the occasional yeti that crosses your path.
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