Thursday, April 11, 2013

What is this man DOING?

And how long is he likely to be doing it?

From the cover of a new issue of a venerable outdoor mag that employs several friends, a "re- creation" of a 1912 cover. Well, sorta, kinda...

But: how many times has this man been on a horse?

How long do you think the horse's ears will be pointed forward. after he shoots over them?

How long do you think his feet will be in the stirrups?

As he is not even using a hasty sling, where do you think the rifle will be?

Where do you think he will be?

Where will the horse be?

What will happen to his quarry? Where will IT be?


Myself, I would never shoot over a horse's head with anything; hold a rifle like that while shooting offhand, never mind from a horse which I wouldn't do; or hold the reins with the gun like that.*  Most likely I would get off the horse, and look for a more supported shooting position. This may be because I  have some deficiencies in horsemanship and accuracy, but also because at 63 I am aware of that fact.

If I did shoot off a horse, I would likely find out if the horse was used to it or not, use a .30-30 or other mild old lever rifle, and point it away from the horse's head. And still not hold the reins like that.

Also, look at the position of the butt on the hunter's shoulder. If it is (and it no doubt is) a .300-plus Short Magnum or other loud barrel- burner invented less than ten years ago, it is not only going to make the horse shoot straight up in the air,  it's gonna hurt his shoulder and his cheek, before it hits the ground and breaks its stock. That's OK, because he probably wouldn't have hit his elk anyway, having bought his rifle and scope on the way to the airport (as one of the clients at a hunting camp Libby used to cook for did), and then laughingly refused to sight it in (ditto).

His clothes sure are clean and pressed (though why on earth does he need camo in this situation?), but if he cheeks the stock properly, his hat brim will be in the way. Trust me on that.

O tempora! O mores!



* The 1912 cover, unfortunately about the size of a postage stamp, shows a cowboy shooting what I think is a lever action at a 3/4 angle away from the head of the horse, with dropped reins trailing on the ground.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

This piece reminded me of a dear shooting friend, who was principal of a Madeira Wine Lodge, and an enthusiastic shot. He talked of Guns stalking Great Bustard on the Island, whilst covered in a cloak, and sitting on a donkey!( Evidently also shooting through the ears!) Might not be considered sporting in 21 st Century?

JohnnyUK

Anonymous said...

This piece reminded me of a dear shooting friend, who was principal of a Madeira Wine Lodge, and an enthusiastic shot. He talked of Guns stalking Great Bustard on the Island, whilst covered in a cloak, and sitting on a donkey!( Evidently also shooting through the ears!) Might not be considered sporting in 21 st Century?

JohnnyUK

CyborgSuzy said...

If it makes you feel any better, at age 17 (the only time I went hunting on horseback) I would have gotten off the horse for better firing position, too.

Horses are great for packing out once the hunt is over, not so much as an actual hunting tool, IMHO.

Dave said...

Very curious photograph.

How much of it is just posing for the public?