I don't know why it wouldn't work very well for your intended purpose, especially if it can be sling-carried in the woods. For venomous reptiles a load of 7 1/2 will certainly be devastating from the 12 gauge. Same goes for a load of #1 buck the face of a felon who is trying to pull your door open to carjack you or worse...(If you have your Shockwave that handy). For woods walking two 12 ga birdshot followed by buckshot will make one pretty well armed indeed. The Ruger will be more portable for sure, but there's nothing wrong with the pump gun for truck/woods carry. Stay safe!