In 1996 we lost our Brownings.
Dad is a Browning Automatic man from way back, and after 30 years behind a BAR and a Belgium A5, my old man just doesn't have the muscle memory to work a scoped bolt gun rapidly and accurately:
- Double feeds when we get onto pigs in close quarters aren't uncommon;
- Closed bolts on empty chambers - click - "f#%&@n bastard" he'd mutter in his new-Australian accent as he fumbled empty cases and loaded shells. Meanwhile - boom - I'd bowl over another hog;
- Inconsistent cheek weld resulting in a poor field of view, and eyesight that just wasn't making scope use a reliable affair for the old man, and finding pigs on the trot was just too hard.
So what's the next best thing for a fella' in Oz, where the rights of individuals are highly controlled by a load of oppressive do-gooder legislation? Tony and Tere at The Stockade made short work of procuring a timber stocked rifle for me and Jocelyn from the Hunting Haven eBay store had the reflex sight I was looking for on the shelf...
I picked up the Remington 7600 the other day, chambered for the trusty old .308 Winchester. Topped the stubby pump action with a Trijicon RX06-11 that's mounted using a Leupold Weaver rail. An excellent bit of kit.
And it comes up to the shoulder very nicely...
I've bought a few boxes of Norma factory loads firing 178 grain soft points. The plan is to get the sight on target at 100 yards using the factory ammo and burn off a few rounds on some rapid fire milk bottle practice. Handloads will be fairly mild loads firing a 130 grain bullets.
Once we have some accurate loads in our shiny new Norma brass, we'll make sure she's smack on at 100 yards using the apex of the 12.9 MOA triangle for those careful and considered shots. Most of the shots will be a matter of pasting the amber dot on the rapidly departing, bristly black arse of big boars at 5~25 yards; nothing careful and considered about it!
Dad spent quite a bit of time in the garage the other night when I handed over his new toy. You couldn't wipe the grin off his face as he snapped the Remington to his shoulder, pointing it at the shoulder mounts of boars he's collected over the years. As he cycled the action, I could see that it was natural and he was happy. The old man does appear to be quite pleased with his new banduki.
Floods across all of our pig country means that there won't be any hunting for a while. If we have a run of warm and dry weather, conditions should be right by next summer for plenty of opportunities on healthy sounders. I wouldn't expect to see any mature boars till the water is all but gone; that's just how it is on our patch.
Unfortunately, the old man has planned a cruise around the South Pacific for the summer with mother, so it looks like I'll have to break the rifle in on the hogs. I wonder if Robah is up for another crack at the hunt that wasn't - should old mate Zues keep a cap on the precipitation that is? Bring on December I say!