If you’re a hunter residing in one the 40+ states which permit both rifle and shotgun deer hunting, you hopefully have weighed the pros and cons of either type of weapon. Both have restrictions and both have tremendous benefits. Picking the best choice is based on a number of factors.
Selecting the long gun the operator is most comfortable with comes down to the hunter. If the hunter only plans on long distance target shooting, a larger long-range rifle, such as a .7mm, ensures the ultimate accuracy up to 325 yards. But shooters who typically hike long distance for their hunts may want to sacrifice the accuracy for a lighter weight gun with a shorter barrel. Of course you sacrifice velocity due to the shorter barrel, but a nice .260 or a classic 30/30 are some of the most popular hunting rifles used today.
Once you’ve selected your rifle size and barrel length, choosing the right action also impacts accuracy. The bolt-action option is the most inherently accurate action, but is completely manual. This hinders follow up speed. Lever and autoloader actions are extremely disruptive to follow up accuracy, but allow faster follow-up shots than the bolt action.
Shotgun hunters sacrifice trajectory and accuracy. But for shorter range shooting, shotguns traditionally tend to provide quite the powerful spread shot. However, slug guns now offer rifled barrels and are effectively accurate up to about 125 yards. This compares to your grandfather’s buck gun which was completely inaccurate after only about 40 yards.
Some states tend to restrict rifle hunting because of trajectory restrictions. There are plenty of shotgun options that accurate and will get you game kills, but shotguns are best only when legally or spatially required. Make sure you don’t live in one of these states before running out buying the longest, most accurate hunting rifle for the ensuing deer season.
You want to consider a number of factors when in the marketing for a long gun. These include the weight of the firearm, the size, and how powerful it is. The best means to make sure to pick the right gun for you is to ultimately visit a gun shop in person, ask questions and pick the combination of features you need. This is because the ultimate hunting firearm really comes down to one thing; you.