The ART of Follow-up Shots on Big Game

by Ron Spomer


Have you been preparing for quick and accurate follow-up shots on big-game, ahead of upcoming seasons? Practicing this essential skill should be the goal of every big-game hunter. Watch this video supported by Winchester and see proven tips from HuntStand Pro Contributor Ron Spomer.

Know Your Rifle

The first tip might seem basic, but it’s essential. Know your rifle so you can use it almost without thinking. Where is the safety? Know all of your rifle’s functions inside and out.

Easy on the Power

Resist the urge to be up at super-high scope powers. At top-end powers, when you come out of recoil, it can be difficult to relocate your target. The answer? Train with some lower scope powers, and save top-end powers for when you really need them.

Stay in the Gun

Next, practice staying in the gun. What does this mean? When you come out of recoil, don’t lift your head off the scope and admire your shot. It’s a common mistake, and if you do this, you’ve lost precious seconds. Also, don’t rush that second shot. Take your time and make sure you’ve got a good second shot before you take it.

Use Your Gun’s Recoil

Also, learn to use the gun’s recoil to help yourself cycle. When you’re coming out of the shot, the recoil should come up while you’re coming back down and in. Then decide how you’re going to cycle your rifle. There’s no one best way. There are many different ways, but find a technique that works for you.

Then learn how to do all of the above in different shooting positions. Know that shooting prone is a little bit different. It requires a special technique for cycling. You’ll have to practice this extensively.

Smooth Is Fast

In the end, remember that smooth is fast—and fast is smooth. Don’t get excited and fumble around. When you practice, run things smoothly and slowly at first until you’re proficient. Increased speed will come in time. Then you’ll be ready for those quick, solid, on-target follow-up shots on big game.

Winchester XPR Bolt-Action Rifle 

Have you chosen a gun with which to make those accurate follow-up shots? Winchester’s classic bolt-action rifles are known around the world as “The Rifleman’s Rifle.” However, there’s been a notable update: Winchester’s XPR bolt-action rifle. When it comes to extreme weather conditions, you name it and the XPR can handle it. It’s a rugged, no nonsense game-getter that will put meat in your freezer for many years to come.

The trigger is the heart of every rifle, and the XPR has a lot of heart. The trigger housing and all internal components in the M.O.A trigger are constructed of polished and hardened carbon steel with a blued finish for added durability and corrosion resistance.

M.O.A. Trigger System

The M.O.A. Trigger System works on the simple principle of the pivoting lever. The system offers a 2:1 mechanical advantage that results in a superior trigger pull. The trigger piece offers a wide, smooth face to better distribute finger pressure for a lighter, more sensitive feel. Because of its geometry and 2:1 mechanical advantage, the trigger piece travels only half the distance of the actuator (2X). This means that your “feel” for the trigger is greatly enhanced. So your effective accuracy, both in the field and off the bench are improved. Intrigued? Check out a Winchester XPR today.

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