Deer hunting season is not here yet, but it is a good time to be rifling in and maintaining it. Shooting at paper target is different compared to out on the field with a real live moving deer and no benches. So the challenge is to engage the target at the right time. How do you simulate hunting conditions? Most hunters still do not get enough shooting practice under these conditions. Here are some guidelines to instill into your practice sessions.
While sighting in and working on the basics of marksmanship, using the bench is ideal. However, for field conditions you won’t be lugging your bench with you while hunting. Instead use the packback that you normally carry and shoot from it at every position. Standing, kneeling, sitting to prone will help you become intimate with the positioning you will know its weak and strong points.
Shooting with Both Eyes Open
During the off season its not necessary to shoot with your caliber rifle. Instead train with a .22 yes, the recoil is not the same. But cost effectiveness and productivity is well worth the time to invest in. By nature it is normal to blink with explosion near your face. Training with the .22 will develop your ability to not flinch.
Idealy we always want to be shooting from a stable platform, but there are times when this isn’t feasible. That is you must shoot a buck while standing and holding the rifle with both hands. Will be most difficult to maintain a sight picture. Practice viewing your scope on lower level magnification, at this level there will be less wobble movement. If you had the scope at higher magnification, the wobble increases. If you have to shoot from this position out in the field, be sure to get as close as possible. Obviously train at short to longer distances that you can handle.
When shooting at the range for target practice the trigger squeeze (push) with a surprise break, so as there is no anticipation which results in a jerk. But shooting a live buck is more difficult as the timing is not there as if you were at the shooting range. So train yourself to squeeze (push) the trigger within 1 second when you have acquired the target in your scope.
Always practice reloading your rifle once you’ve shot a round off. You can practice this anywhere so it gets ingrained into your muscle memory.