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No coyotes, but Sean bloodied the 17 HMR...

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Brian in Oregon, Feb 21, 2010.

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  1. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Deplorable Bitter Clinger in Liberal La La Land
    <img src=
    "http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c43/BrianInOregon/Hunting/SeanGrayDigger1.jpg">

    My son Sean and I went coyote hunting yesterday (Saturday) at the White River Game Management Area to the east of Mt. Hood.

    Coyote hunting was a bust. Didn't see or call any. As it turns out, with the huge number of mule deer running around due to the state feeders there, this is the beginning of the prime time for shed hunting. (Shed hunting is collecting shed antlers.) There were several dozen people doing so, and their area coincided where we were trying to hunt. We could not really go deeper, because we're already on foot and walking in a long ways. The roads are closed until April 1st due to annual muddy conditions. Some coyotes have been recently taken, though, as there were some bodies draped over fences, especially around feeding stations.

    Surprisingly, though, a few gray diggers were out. These are California ground squirrels, and they're considered a pest here. This winter has been unusually mild, so they're out early. And they're the survivors of last year's campaign to wipe them out, so they're very wary.

    Sean packed his .17 HMR bull barrel synthetic stock Savage just in case there might be a gray digger. Sean had several opportunities but blew the shots. These were at around 50 yards. I knew nothing was wrong with his rifle and scope, having helped sight them in. (Savage bull barrel 17 HMR with a synthetic stock.) We checked the sight in at a muddy sport in the road, firing at a gray digger size rock. It was obvious Sean was shooting just barely over the "back" of the rock. The gun is dead on at 100 yards, but has just enough rise that it was passing barely over a prone gray digger. I test and found that at his favorite setting, 6x, the bottom of the top duplex was dead at 50 yards. Told him to shoot the rock with that hold. Bingo.

    Sean then nailed the gray digger in the photo above, and that was his first kill with this gun, so it's "bloodies" now.

    [​IMG]

    Sean also packed it into the coyote stands, so he could shoot gray diggers on the way out. Here he is camo'd up for coyotes, with his varmint AR15 on his back. (Note how his camo is almost perfect for this area.)

    A fun trip, despite no coyotes. And Sean was able to properly break in the 17 and find out why he was missing. I need to find a 17 trajectory chart showing a 100 yard sight in so he knows his holdover or under.

    BTW, Savage does not make a camo stock for the 17 with a bull barrel. Sean wants to paint this stock. And the comb drop provides poor cheek weld. We're going to install an adhesive comb from Brownells to fix that. The 17 HMR Marlin has a better synthetic stock because it has a straight comb, but the Savage we think is the better gun due to the trigger.
     
  2. Anchorsteam

    Anchorsteam TS Member

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    Good job today!!! I got a grey squirrel with my 28 gage while the wife was still waking up today. Then another one shows up while we are having breakfast at the island. Next weekend. About my tenth of so in two years.

    Regarding the bull barrel-to-stock issue: you might be able to scrape out your existing stock to accommodate a bull and still retain stock integrity.
     
  3. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    The existing stock is for a bull barrel. It's a factory bull barrel gun. It might be possible to scrape out a replacement non-bull camo stock. But he'd like it painted to match his old 1187, which is in the original Mossy Oak Bottomland scheme.
     
  4. Anchorsteam

    Anchorsteam TS Member

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    Duhhh - sorry. I have been very careful to not let my wife see your photos!

    If your sons stock is 'plasticky' you can camo-paint it. Then put a couple coats of clear satin on it. Like you said, a stick-on comb for cheek weld. There's a company out there that makes special paint in spray cans do DIY your stock. I forgot the name of the company - let me think about it for a minute and it will come back to me.
     
  5. Anchorsteam

    Anchorsteam TS Member

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    Here's the company!
    http://www.duracoat-finishes.com/
     
  6. kehrby

    kehrby Active Member

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    Indiana
    I have found that you need to teach a new rifle to kill. Once it draws first blood you won't miss again!

    Good job.

    Steve
     
  7. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Gray diggers are ground squirrels, and live in burrows. They prefer fairly dry soil, and if possible prefer to be near trees, large brush, or rock piles. They don't really care for dense forest, but more open woods, and particularly near open fields. They can be quite a pest. Their populations here are not quite a dense as they are in agricultural areas in California. (Our version of the agricultural pest is the smaller Belding, townsend and other smaller ground squirrels also known as gophers, picket pins or, more popularly, sage rats.) Gray diggers can displace Silver Gray squirrels, which are a game mammal. Gray diggers are not really edible, simply because they are pretty scrawny. Not much meat on them, as far as squirrels go.
     
  8. JACK

    JACK Well-Known Member Supporting Vendor

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    Interesting story Bri.
     
  9. Andy44

    Andy44 Active Member

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    U have a PM.

    AndyH ;-)
     
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