22 Magnum for Varmint Hunting
Everything about calibers these days is power, how it can knock down a fifty gallon tank of water or hit mach 5. Many manufactures gets better at perfecting and innovating more advanced cartridges.
If you’re just out on a walk-about and doing some varmint hunting, do you need such power?
Whats a common caliber and often overlooked that you’ve come across for varmint hunting? Many small time hunters talk about the .22 Magnum.
The .22 Magnum may be the sweet optimum shooting little caliber for this purpose.
The .22 Winchester Magnum Rimfire cartridge has a long history since its invention in 1959 by Winchester.
Winchester’s Model 61, a pump-action rifle, came along in 1960 and became a great gun to have around for small game and vermin.
The .22 WMR cartridge had much more power than the .22 LR. The longer shots at groundhogs were now possible from a light and very easily carried .22 WMR rifle.
Here’s a closer look at the cartridge itself. When you have a 40-grain full metal jacket, soft-point or jacketed hollow-point projectile, speeds around 2,000 feet per second. (Ballistic Mathematicians say this)
A 50-grain projectile slows the speed a bit but hits harder on target.
A good quality like the Remington Premier 33-grain V-Max .22 Magnum cartridge is good one to have.
It’s lights out for groundhogs, and the V-Max projectile pretty much eliminates ricochets.
Utilizing a synthetic-stocked Savage Model 93 bolt-action rifle with the above loads will allow you to connect all the way out to 200 yards.
You’ll find this rifle to be accurate, light and quiet made perfectly for hole-digging groundhogs.
Its a good thing the .22 magnum is still popular even with the much-anticipated .17 Hornady Magnum Rimfire.
With a .22 WMR case necked down to a miniature .17-caliber bullet, the velocities sizzled and small targets like prairie dogs were in trouble.
Big eastern groundhogs and coyotes received shallow wounds by these fast opening lightweight pills.
The .22 Magnum still had more smack than those original .17 HMR cartridges did.
The .22 WMR ammo still did what it was meant to do: drop small game and pests.
The price of .22 WMR cartridges also is much easier on the wallet. With the multitude of rifles and handguns chambered in this caliber for nearly six decades, rifle ammunition companies have been cranking out rimfire ammunition for a long time.
The market is currently flooded with fine rifles made by brands like Henry Arms, Marlin, Taurus and Ruger that you can find new or used at gun shows and gun shops.
Choose single-shot, semi-automatic, lever-action, bolt-action or pump-action. There are even tiny revolvers North American Arms has made for the .22 WMR cartridge.
Think most varmint hunters will agree that most groundhogs when hit by a .22 WMR rifle usually goes down quickly. Some just slumped and never moved on the way to the other side.
Having a lighter rifle is like having a suppressed rifle that doesn’t leave your ears ringing!
Grasshopper photo from Imgur