Predator hunting can be a speedy experience. Your encounter could last mere seconds while hunting in thick cover or in a situation where a trio of coyotes runs you over. That rush could include a shotgun showdown at point-blank range with a volley of AR fire on any retreating escapees.
It can be difficult to practice a situation like that in your pasture shooting course or at the local shooting range. If you’re looking for a weekend shooting activity that is fun and practical, consider a 3-gun event.
Traced back to a beginning in 1980 by Soldier of Fortune magazine, 3-gun competitions combine a military and personal defense style of shooting into a fast-paced contest. Competitors use three firearms to combat a medley of targets that vary depending on the event’s theme. The typical arsenal is an AR, a shotgun and a semiautomatic sidearm.
Doors, windows, cars, airplane fuselages, along with plywood and barrels combine to create a challenging shooting course in many events. A good example of a themed event is Hornady’s annual Zombies in the Heartland 3-gun competition. Every shooting stage includes some form of zombie invasion you need to battle for winning points. Your score includes how many targets you hit or miss, how long it takes to complete the stage and penalties incurred during the engagement.
Needless to say there’s lots of shooting involved in a short span of time while switching between firearms in the middle of the course. Not only do you need to be an accurate shot, but you need to be skillful in reloading firearms and smooth in your transitions throughout the shooting sequence. Muscle memory is important as is a thorough understanding of how firearms work. Combine these two and you have a good chance of hitting as many targets as possible to up your score. Fumble slightly and your score will suffer although you’ll still have a blast at the event.
The AR and the shotgun shooting scenarios definitely boost your predator hunting game. In fact, you’ll likely only experience one or two situations each season as fast paced as a single stage during a daylong 3-gun shooting event. What about the sidearm relevancy? Even though you likely won’t engage too many coyotes with your 9mm, the aiming and speed of using a sidearm helps your overall efficiency in handling an unraveling, rapidly-evolving predator situation. Plus, it never hurts to practice with your sidearm for the security of being ready in a self-defense situation.
Your preparation for a 3-gun event and the subsequent competition will undoubtedly boost your predator game. The fun you’ll experience will bring you back for more.
Featured image: Mark Kayser