MORE THAN ONCE I’ve heard a shooter mutter, “WTF?” (not the PG-13 version), after missing a shot at the range. This is backward, however. We should say “WTF” before pulling the trigger. It’s what my friend Frank Galli, a former Marine scout sniper and shooting instructor, teaches his students. Short for “wind, trajectory, and fundamentals,” it is the mental checklist to use when prepping for a shot. Wind comes first because it’s by far the trickiest.
RULE OF THIRDS
Start by dividing the wind into three segments: at the muzzle, midway between muzzle and target, and at the target. Any wind at the muzzle will push the bullet in that direction for its entire flight. In the middle, the bullet is at its maximum height, where wind speeds tend to be greater, so you may need to account for a faster wind gradient. Near the target, the bullet is slowing down, and wind will push it around more easily.
Measuring wind speed and direction at your location is the easiest. A handheld wind meter, which can be had for less than $20, is a vital tool. Direction can be determined with a piece of flagging tape, a wind checker, or the hygienically questionable standby, licking your finger.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
LIVING THE DREAM
After the author arrives in Maine’s fabled North Woods with a moose tag in his pocket, an adventure he’s been wanting to take his entire hunting life, reality sets in, and he learns a valuable lesson: Be careful what you wish for
Get the Drift
How to make an accurate windage call under pressure
An icebreaker outing in a pristine spot produces the rut hunt of a lifetime
A Local Haunt
The author finds a sense of place in an overlooked creek, close to home
A Hop and a Pump
Jump-shooting rabbits with classic upland guns is about as good a time as you can have in the outdoors
Welcome TO camp
Is there any place better than a good hunting camp? It has everything: great food, games and pranks, and of course, hunting. Shoot, we don’t even mind going to camp for grueling work days in the summer. Here, our contributors share their favorite stories, traditions, and lessons learned from camps they’ve shared. So come on in and join us. The door’s open.
Before you even claim a bunk, you need to eyeball the hardware your buddies have brought. In the process, you’ll see that the guns at deer camp are changing. What was walnut and blued steel may now be Kevlar and carbon fiber. The 10 rifles featured here aren’t your father’s deer guns. They’re today’s new camp classics
THE JOURNEY TO PIKE'S PEAK
Last summer, the author and three friends ventured off the grid to a remote fish camp in Canada. They hoped for great fishing, but what they experienced was truly something else
When early-season whitetails vanish from open feeding areas, follow this woods-edge ambush plan
A pup’s first year, from preseason training to fall’s big show