Growing up on a steady diet of legendary scribe Jack O’Connor’s gun writing forged my love for fine bolt-action rifles. His self-proclaimed opinion that he was first a great writer with a love of the English language, who just happened to write about guns, serves as my guiding aspiration. Forever hungry to read more about O’Connor, I devoured Wayne van Zwoll’s piece about Winchester’s new tribute rifle to the legend. I’m sure you’ll enjoy reading about this made-in-America-again Model 70 as well.
Once you get your fill of featherweight rifles, then you’ll want a breath of fresh air… air rifles that is… and this issue is full of them. If you’re one of those magazine readers that likes to start from the back, you’ll learn right away that The Incredible Hulk enjoys air rifles, too. Digging deeper into the issue, check out Steven Dick’s piece on hunt-worthy “Magnum .25 Airguns” and John Fasano’s “HW97K Blackline Underlever,” examining the latest entries into an exciting and ever-evolving segment of the shooting market.
Speaking of ever-growing segments, both women and young-gunners have two new Savage rifles truly worth cheering about. Check out Richard Mann’s coverage of the innovative Lady Hunter and Savage’s new .22-caliber Rascal!
With all of the semi-auto AR-style rifles on the market today there’s been a dearth of quality bolt-action .223s with a logical feature—bottom metal to accept an AR magazine. I can’t count the times during a hot prairie dog or ground squirrel shoot that stopping to reload a bolt-action after five shots got to be a drag. If the idea of slapping a 30-round magazine into a Mossberg MVP bolt gun makes sense to you, then you’ll appreciate Clair Rees’ article.
David Draper is a great guy with which to share a campfire or toss back a few cold beverages, and he’s one heck of a writer, too. He shines some light on the subject of “Illuminated Reticles” in such an insightful manner that you’ll want one too when you make your next scope purchase.
One of those campfires I shared with Draper several years ago found fellow scribe Mark Kayser using the toe of his boot to nudge an errant coal back into the flames on a cool spring night in South Dakota. That was after a late afternoon turkey hunt where we dueled with a single longbeard and a huge flock of hens on the prairie. A television cameraman in tow, four aggressive jakes nearly ruined the hunt when they ganged up on the lone longbeard to kick his butt. Kayser’s calling and my long-range shot sealed the deal. In addition to being a fantastic professional photographer, Kayser has a gift for sharing his hunting and rifleman skills via the written word. Check out “Predator Pounders” for Kayser’s advice on a host of new coyote hunting rigs.
Tucked into Kayser’s article on predator rifles is a short piece coyote calling tips by fellow gun enthusiast and noted writer Bryce Towsley. The last hunt we shared was on the Nail Ranch, where we took a mixed bag of turkeys, hogs, coyotes and other varmints. Towsley had just finished building a new shop and excitedly told me about all the new gunsmithing equipment with which he was going to decorate his new “man cave.” If you reload ammo for your rifle, you’ll probably wind up with a stuck case in a resizing die. Towsley’s step-by-step tips for removing a stuck case will come in handy, so check it out. I know I will, since I’ve got a son who has not yet learned the necessity of case lube when resizing bottleneck cartridges.
That’s not the only DIY gunsmithing tips in this issue. Yours truly shares some tune-up tips I employed to make a 98 Mauser range ready. If you’re in the market for a synthetic stock to make your favorite rifle an all-weather rig, I dig into some of the popular choices on the market today.
The articles highlighted are just a small part of the fantastic information packed into this issue. Enjoy. We’ve had a blast putting it together for you.