Hi All! I’ve been out hunting for about a week, so my posting is a bit late…. Sorry. Was visiting and hunting with friends in Virginia, we went after deer and bear. Had only moderate success, shot a couple doe for the freezer but only saw small no-shooter bucks before the season ended. Was rained out 2-3 days on bear hunt (last two days were a wash), though did see some bear a sow with cub and another sow on her own.
I was using a .40 caliber and am quite impressed with this caliber after having taken deer, hogs, and javalina with it. Flat shooting but delivers energy on target effectively and opens a good wound channel. Have the holidays at home, then off to Texas on an exotic/ram/hog/predator hunt! Afterwards will be at SHOT Show, then have to get caught up on my office work for the next couple months, so will be short predator hunts thereafter.
Have some very cool night vision gear that I’ve been using, and will be writing to tell you more about that soon. This is opening up some opportunities for urban predator control, I’ve shot a couple very large yotes right around our neighborhood this month, where sitting out with high power lights would creat problems.
ON A FINAL NOTE – RANT WARNING: Also wanted to tell you about a recent problem I encountered when flying to Texas for a hunt, and if you intend to travel with your air rifle I wanted to give you a heads up. I had managed to open up a couple days to test two new rifles, and having spent some range time wanted to use them to take down a few hogs. This is a busy time of year and I rearranged my schedule and called a friend in Texas that did the same, so we could meet up and hunt his ranch. I was pushing it, having just gotten home from another trip. Pulling my gear together I drove to the airport, checked in, and brought my rifle to TSA…. as I’ve done at this very airport many dozen times in the four years I’ve lived in the Minneapolis area. TSA asked for the keys to open my gun case, which is not uncommon, but then asked me to detach the air bottle so they could do a visual inspection. I explained that the bottles were not removable, to which they replied they could not/would not allow the bag to go on the plane. They said it was the airlines final call, and requested the manager from Delta Airlines to join us. The acting manager from Delta came over, listened, and told me I could not check my rifles. She acted like the airline was doing me a favor refunding my fare.
As a traveling hunter this creates a big problem for me. Finding out at check-in that an airline representative has decided to interpret the regulations differently than what has been previously stated and in opposition to all precedent, means it’s too late to make alternative plans.
Because of the uncertainty of flying with my air rifles, even though this has only happened to me twice in the last 10 years (both times on Delta), I’m taking two actions: whenever possible I will ship my rifles ahead. This is not always possible because of the short lead time I sometimes have when new rifles are sent to me. Secondly; I am following this up with both TSA and Delta and will post more in furture..