PDA

View Full Version : New to hunting "Sidearm Question"


sk8804
11-29-2010, 4:59 PM
Hi, i just got my hunting license and will be hunting primarily deer and hog, maybe some bear also during their seasons. I will also be predator hunting coyotes. I have a .30-30 as a primary and would like to carry my M&P .40 as backup just in case (i know its not the best choice but its what i have). If I have my pistol loaded with lead free ammo and I dropped a pig/deer with my rifle, would it be legal to put it out of its misery with a quick accurate shot with the pistol? The dfg says: (c) Pistols and revolvers using centerfire cartridges with softnose or expanding projectiles may be used to take deer, bear, and wild pigs. I just want to make sure i am not missing something somewhere. And would it be legal to do the same with coyote? Thank you all very much and sorry if this has been discussed, i searched without getting a straight answer.

FLIGHT762
11-29-2010, 6:10 PM
Yes, as you described the law, you may use your centerfire handgun to shoot big game or finish them off as long as you have soft nose or expanding bullets and as you said, in the lead free areas, lead free expanding bullets. The Coyote can be shot with anything except if your in the lead free area, lead free ammo is required.

sk8804
11-29-2010, 6:39 PM
awesome thank you for the reassurance. Much appreciated.

Divernhunter
11-30-2010, 3:02 AM
I have carried a pistol over the years when big game hunting. Truth is it is a waste to time and just weights you down. The rifle will but it out of its misery if you had a poorly placed shot. Leave the pistol at home or in your truck/etc and hunt with the rifle alone. It is all of the KISS principal and it works.

Interloper
11-30-2010, 7:37 AM
This concept of carrying a pistol "to finish 'em off" is totally impractical. If it needs to be shot again, it should be with your rifle. If it's down but not dead, either cut it's throat or reload, don't approach, let it bleed out.

sk8804
11-30-2010, 4:43 PM
This concept of carrying a pistol "to finish 'em off" is totally impractical. If it needs to be shot again, it should be with your rifle. If it's down but not dead, either cut it's throat or reload, don't approach, let it bleed out.

impractical to me is firing another $2.50 bullet when i can fire a $0.80 bullet and get the same results but i see where you are coming from.

Interloper
11-30-2010, 4:54 PM
impractical to me is firing another $2.50 bullet when i can fire a $0.80 bullet and get the same results but i see where you are coming from.

That's what the bayonet is for! :43:

Fjold
11-30-2010, 5:42 PM
impractical to me is firing another $2.50 bullet when i can fire a $0.80 bullet and get the same results but i see where you are coming from.


Lead free 30-30 ammo is $50/box?

:eek:

Try Midway

Federal Premium Vital-Shok Ammunition 30-30 Winchester 150 Grain Barnes Triple-Shock X Bullet Hollow Point Lead-Free Box of 20
Product #: 778571
Status: Available
$37.99 $25.56 Save $12.43

sk8804
11-30-2010, 8:17 PM
Lead free 30-30 ammo is $50/box?

:eek:

Try Midway

Federal Premium Vital-Shok Ammunition 30-30 Winchester 150 Grain Barnes Triple-Shock X Bullet Hollow Point Lead-Free Box of 20
Product #: 778571
Status: Available
$37.99 $25.56 Save $12.43

I have fired the federals and at 100 yards and for some reason they barely grouped under 6 inches. i have had much more luck with the cor-bon, they group about 3-4 inches at 100 yards. They are $53 at all my local stores, but midway does have them for a few bucks cheaper.

Divernhunter
11-30-2010, 8:58 PM
Just how much have you spent on the hunt before you pull the trigger. One more round, even if it was $10 is a minor cost. Plus if you did your job correctly you would not have to "finish off" the animal. I understand we all have that happen at times but then the cost of one more round should be the last thing on your mine. Rounds for my weatherby are $60+/box but if I screw up and need a finishing shot I do not think twice about it.

Besides it is alot less hassle than carrying the pistol. Plus what if it is not as wounded as you think and gets up and takes off while you are fidding around changing firearms. Yes I have seen it happen.

The whole concept is nice on paper but in reality it does not work out well. Once you get more hunting time in and expierence you will find this out.

k1dude
11-30-2010, 9:32 PM
I have carried a pistol over the years when big game hunting. Truth is it is a waste to time and just weights you down. The rifle will but it out of its misery if you had a poorly placed shot. Leave the pistol at home or in your truck/etc and hunt with the rifle alone. It is all of the KISS principal and it works.

I used to think the same until I read a story of a bear mauling years ago.

A hunter was dressing his buck in bear country. He was already nervous and kept taking breaks to scan the area for approaching bear. He kept his rifle 4 feet away laying against a rock for quick access.

Mere seconds after his last scan, he heard a crashing sound immediately behind him. As he spun around a huge bear was on top of him. He had no idea where it came from. He tried to play dead and the bear began feeding on him, so he began to fight for his life. The whole time his rifle remained just out of his reach a few inches from his fingertips. It might as well have been a mile. But even if he had been able to reach it, the rifle was too long to maneuver it to shoot the bear while he was in it's grasp. All he could think of was how he wished he had a handgun.

Fortunately, the rest of his hunting party approached and saw the mauling as it was occuring. They shot at the beast (I can't remember if they killed it or not). But either way they saved their hunting partner.

He was very badly mauled but survived. After analyzing what he could have done differently to prevent attack, he realized he had done everything right and was attacked anyway. The main lesson he learned was to ALWAYS carry a handgun. He said the attack only lasted a few minutes but seemed like an eternity. And everything was in slow motion. He had many many opportunities during the mauling to shoot the bear with a handgun, if only he had one.

Tanner68
11-30-2010, 9:59 PM
How do us muzzleloaders ever manage? I admit, sometimes I carry a sidearm, usually a 22 revolver, in addition to my Lymans Great Plains Hawken. I guess what I am saying, and I think some other posters are too, is that concern for your sidearm is a lot of misplaced emphasis if you are serious about hunting.

k1dude
11-30-2010, 11:30 PM
How do us muzzleloaders ever manage? I admit, sometimes I carry a sidearm, usually a 22 revolver, in addition to my Lymans Great Plains Hawken. I guess what I am saying, and I think some other posters are too, is that concern for your sidearm is a lot of misplaced emphasis if you are serious about hunting.

Even knowing the bear mauling story, I rarely carry a handgun while hunting. But when I know I'm in the thick of bear or cougar country, I will carry. To keep the weight down, I carry a Total Titanium .41 mag 4" that only weighs 24 ounces. The weight is light enough that I barely notice it. It's nothing like the 38 to 54 ounce .41's and .44's that most people have.

TrailerparkTrash
12-01-2010, 12:59 AM
I have carried a pistol over the years when big game hunting. Truth is it is a waste to time and just weights you down.

When one is in rather good shape, one doesn't even notice a sidearm strapped to one's hip :D:D:D

I carry a sidearm primarily not for 4 legged creatures, but the two legged scum that come up to the National forest from either LA, San Bernardino, Bakersfield or Fresno etc... (you pick).

I remember deer hunting up there one year when I landed me a nice forked horn about 15 minutes before the legal time to hunt was over. By the time I gutted the deer and started to drag him back to my truck, it was pitch black. I had drug a deer back up there to my truck and it took a long time to do so, well into darkness.

My truck was parked under some tall trees and I wanted to skin/quarter the deer right away using my grambel hook and a tree. While I was doing that with my lantern lighting up my campsite, a truck slowly crept up to my camp and immediately two thugs got out. They had positioned their truck with their high beams on and pointed directly at me. The driver thug immediately walked back to the rear of his truck and was now "outa sight."

The passenger thug started to walk over to me at which time I turned my body and bladed myself where he could get a quick glimpse of my sidearm (Colt 1911 .38Super handloaded with 125gr HP's at that time). At the same time I turned my body, I reached for my Streamlight flashlight next to me and my knives. Because I had two lanterns illuminating my campsite, I could see the passenger thug who stopped in his tracks immediately while his mouth dropped a bit. I lit the guy's face up with my flashlight in order to make it more difficult for him to see me clearly.

He huridly walked back to his truck and told "Chuey" (nick name I'm gave him) in spanish to get back in the truck. They didn't say another word and departed faster than they had crept up on my camp.

I don't know what they wanted, but they were not out for a nature hike, nor were they deer hunters either. They were dressed with their bandanas around their shaved heads, top collar buttoned on their Pendleton shirts, kakhi pants past the knees with socks pulled up over their knees, gold chain "Mr. T starter kits" and I'm betting some nice prison tattoos on their arms and chests. They really didn't want to stick around and show me those tat's either. :43:

Moral of the story: It was very important then as it is now to have a sidearm on you, when the rifle is set down and away from you even for a brief period of time, grabbing a holstered sidearm might be faster and safer than trying to pick up a rifle that is further away than arm's reach. ;);)

Tanner68
12-01-2010, 7:41 AM
If your rifle can't be kept handy, a handgun sure can be reassuring when shady characters may be lurking about. I have run into a few myself.

tony270
12-01-2010, 8:38 AM
When a bear, mountain lion or rabid animal is on you trying to rip your scalp off or open up your neck you would have wished you had a sidearm, even a pocketknife. More than one man has saved his life by fighting off bear and mountain lion attacks using a simple pocketknife.

Bearclaw
12-01-2010, 9:15 AM
I have fired the federals and at 100 yards and for some reason they barely grouped under 6 inches. i have had much more luck with the cor-bon, they group about 3-4 inches at 100 yards. They are $53 at all my local stores, but midway does have them for a few bucks cheaper.

Give the Hornady LeveRevolution Ammo a try. I think it is available with Lead-Free GMX bullets, if I'm not mistaken. Hornady makes great ammo!

k1dude
12-01-2010, 9:26 AM
When a bear, mountain lion or rabid animal is on you trying to rip your scalp off or open up your neck you would have wished you had a sidearm, even a pocketknife. More than one man has saved his life by fighting off bear and mountain lion attacks using a simple pocketknife.

Yeah, I remember reading a story about a F&G Ranger (lib hippy type) who always thought people who carried knives and handguns on their hikes were a bunch of Rambo wannabees. He almost never carried anything when he went hiking on his time off. He thought all you have to do is be aware and do the right thing and lions and bears will leave you alone.

So he's on a hike one day and gets attacked by a mountain lion. This is after he's already seen the lion for a half hour stalking him. He thought his training and knowledge of big cats would help prevent attack. NOT! During the attack he had an old rusty and dull 2" pocket knife in his pocket. As he's getting mauled he manages to get it out of his pocket and open it. The cat has it's fangs sunk into his skull so he reaches above his head to find the eyes of the cat. He then plunges the 2" rusty blade into the cat's eye and the cat goes nuts and disengages. The cat runs off but the Ranger's a barely-alive bloody mess.

He manages to stumble down the trail and encounters 2 other hikers who basically save him.

Guess what? Now he carries both a big fixed blade knife and a handgun when he hikes. No more hippy dippy belief's for him. He had to learn the hard way. And no more preaching that "if you make noise and leave them alone they'll leave you alone" b*llsh*t.

igorts
12-01-2010, 10:27 AM
at "archery only" hunt law does not let you carry any firearm.
"Smart" law, isn't it?

FLIGHT762
12-01-2010, 10:51 AM
Yeah, I remember reading a story about a F&G Ranger (lib hippy type) who always thought people who carried knives and handguns on their hikes were a bunch of Rambo wannabees. He almost never carried anything when he went hiking on his time off. He thought all you have to do is be aware and do the right thing and lions and bears will leave you alone.

So he's on a hike one day and gets attacked by a mountain lion. This is after he's already seen the lion for a half hour stalking him. He thought his training and knowledge of big cats would help prevent attack. NOT! During the attack he had an old rusty and dull 2" pocket knife in his pocket. As he's getting mauled he manages to get it out of his pocket and open it. The cat has it's fangs sunk into his skull so he reaches above his head to find the eyes of the cat. He then plunges the 2" rusty blade into the cat's eye and the cat goes nuts and disengages. The cat runs off but the Ranger's a barely-alive bloody mess.

He manages to stumble down the trail and encounters 2 other hikers who basically save him.

Guess what? Now he carries both a big fixed blade knife and a handgun when he hikes. No more hippy dippy belief's for him. He had to learn the hard way. And no more preaching that "if you make noise and leave them alone they'll leave you alone" b*llsh*t.

Doesn't the old saying go "A Republican is just a Democrat who's been mugged"?

dodgerfan175
12-01-2010, 3:51 PM
at "archery only" hunt law does not let you carry any firearm.
"Smart" law, isn't it?

I don't care, I do it any way. Better to be caught with it than without it. :eek:

igorts
12-01-2010, 3:55 PM
i have a friend who hunts coyotes with firearms next to me.:D
and we switch.

kalguns
12-01-2010, 4:28 PM
I have carried a pistol over the years when big game hunting. Truth is it is a waste to time and just weights you down. The rifle will but it out of its misery if you had a poorly placed shot. Leave the pistol at home or in your truck/etc and hunt with the rifle alone. It is all of the KISS principal and it works.

Agree

Interloper
12-01-2010, 5:06 PM
Statistically, you are very unlikely to be harmed by an animal while hunting. That said, I do carry a sidearm along with my rifle or shotgun when I hunt. I don't worry about black bear much. They're really not going to mess with you unless you mess with them. A cougar is another story. They will straight up hunt you. In either case, I would rather have my '06 than my .357 any day. The .357 would probably do for cat but I don't trust it for bear. I keep slugs in the butt cuff of my shotgun but who knows if you would have a chance to load them. Besides, a load of #6 lead or #2 mag at point blank range would probably still be deadlier than the .357.

This is all pretty academic because the OP asked about a "finishing" gun. This concept comes up all the time and I think it's the wrong way to plan for shooting your game. Shoot the animal and reload, reacquire site picture. Stay right where you are. If the animal is down or if it runs you have the option of shooting again or letting it bleed out. You really shouldn't give chase anyway if you think you hit. That only pushes the animal while the adrenaline is still working. Now if it was a bear or pig you shot and it comes after you, which is faster. Pulling the trigger again or switching guns? Which will have a better chance of putting the animal down? Your rifle or a .40 pistol?
So what I'm saying is, carry the pistol if you like. I do. It weighs me down and gets in the way but I like guns and the more the merrier. Just get your strategy clear in your head before you shoot. If you've made a good hit then the animal is going to die. Maybe not instantly but that's hunting. If you want to hasten the end then cut it's throat. You need to bleed it out anyway, let the heart help you.

sk8804
12-01-2010, 5:32 PM
When one is in rather good shape, one doesn't even notice a sidearm strapped to one's hip :D:D:D

I carry a sidearm primarily not for 4 legged creatures, but the two legged scum that come up to the National forest from either LA, San Bernardino, Bakersfield or Fresno etc... (you pick).

I remember deer hunting up there one year when I landed me a nice forked horn about 15 minutes before the legal time to hunt was over. By the time I gutted the deer and started to drag him back to my truck, it was pitch black. I had drug a deer back up there to my truck and it took a long time to do so, well into darkness.

My truck was parked under some tall trees and I wanted to skin/quarter the deer right away using my grambel hook and a tree. While I was doing that with my lantern lighting up my campsite, a truck slowly crept up to my camp and immediately two thugs got out. They had positioned their truck with their high beams on and pointed directly at me. The driver thug immediately walked back to the rear of his truck and was now "outa sight."

The passenger thug started to walk over to me at which time I turned my body and bladed myself where he could get a quick glimpse of my sidearm (Colt 1911 .38Super handloaded with 125gr HP's at that time). At the same time I turned my body, I reached for my Streamlight flashlight next to me and my knives. Because I had two lanterns illuminating my campsite, I could see the passenger thug who stopped in his tracks immediately while his mouth dropped a bit. I lit the guy's face up with my flashlight in order to make it more difficult for him to see me clearly.

He huridly walked back to his truck and told "Chuey" (nick name I'm gave him) in spanish to get back in the truck. They didn't say another word and departed faster than they had crept up on my camp.

I don't know what they wanted, but they were not out for a nature hike, nor were they deer hunters either. They were dressed with their bandanas around their shaved heads, top collar buttoned on their Pendleton shirts, kakhi pants past the knees with socks pulled up over their knees, gold chain "Mr. T starter kits" and I'm betting some nice prison tattoos on their arms and chests. They really didn't want to stick around and show me those tat's either. :43:

Moral of the story: It was very important then as it is now to have a sidearm on you, when the rifle is set down and away from you even for a brief period of time, grabbing a holstered sidearm might be faster and safer than trying to pick up a rifle that is further away than arm's reach. ;);)
this right here hit it on the head, as yes i will use it to finish the job on occasion but primarily this is my main reason that i had not previously stated as I am out of fresno and there are a ton of dope growers in the area as well.

sk8804
12-01-2010, 5:34 PM
Give the Hornady LeveRevolution Ammo a try. I think it is available with Lead-Free GMX bullets, if I'm not mistaken. Hornady makes great ammo!

i tried to find some the other night on midway and cabellas with no luck in lead free versions. but I have heard it is the best.

sk8804
12-01-2010, 5:35 PM
I don't care, I do it any way. Better to be caught with it than without it. :eek:

my thoughts exactly.

lewdogg21
12-01-2010, 6:37 PM
Have carried a sidearm and really there is no point for "finishing shots". When hiking sure a pistol is great but what will a pistol do better than a rifle? Certainly not knockdown power. As far as the bear and cougar stories, I think you have a better chance of getting hit by lightning.

Lotta FUD when it comes to carrying a pistol. If anything put two extra rifle shells in your pocket. Then you can go years without running out when hunting CA deer. :)

lewdogg21
12-01-2010, 6:39 PM
Here's a thought on carrying a pistol for finishing shots. I'm going to start carrying my 45acp with bird shot loads to "finish off" wounded ducks and geese. rather than ripping them with another 12 ga load.

Now how stupid does that sound. :D

Argonaut
12-01-2010, 6:46 PM
Have carried a sidearm and really there is no point for "finishing shots". When hiking sure a pistol is great but what will a pistol do better than a rifle? Certainly not knockdown power. As far as the bear and cougar stories, I think you have a better chance of getting hit by lightning.

Lotta FUD when it comes to carrying a pistol. If anything put two extra rifle shells in your pocket. Then you can go years without running out when hunting CA deer. :)

Amen.......Concentrate on your rifle, it is 2 to 4 times more powerful than most pistols anyway. We used to carry a 22 sometimes while bear hunting in the fall during the time grouse season overlap. A big bore hand gun is silly unless that is all you are hunting with, and then most have marginal effectiveness. We sometimes carry handguns while doing other outdoor activities like cutting wood in rattlesnake country or fishing during the height of bear activity. Get a good knife, it is much more useful

bld0121
12-29-2010, 11:20 AM
A pistol is not for the finishing shots on game, it's for the finishing shots on the pot-growing deuche-bags who come after you while armed. This guy was lucky: http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=356969 .

Hunt
12-29-2010, 9:48 PM
impractical to me is firing another $2.50 bullet when i can fire a $0.80 bullet and get the same results but i see where you are coming from.

yeah but you wanna carry the weight, the restriction of holster and belt for hours up and down mtns to save $1.00? I like to go as light as possible

mzimmers
12-30-2010, 7:54 AM
This thread is kind of amusing...it has to be the only one on calguns where there are people talking about NOT wanting to carry sidearms.

It's cheap insurance against all kinds of risks, most of which have been noted already. Carry one, or be prepared to suffer potential consequences.

Flux Capacitor
12-30-2010, 10:42 AM
I carried a 38 +p and did a finishing shot on a wild boar. Worked fine

180ls1
12-30-2010, 12:13 PM
This thread is kind of amusing...it has to be the only one on calguns where there are people talking about NOT wanting to carry sidearms.

It's cheap insurance against all kinds of risks, most of which have been noted already. Carry one, or be prepared to suffer potential consequences.

agreed on all accounts

trautert
12-30-2010, 12:31 PM
I carry a handgun any time I am hunting. Also, any time I am fishing. Why? Because I want to, and I have the right to. Put that in your sig line.

hybridatsun350
12-30-2010, 2:07 PM
I have carried a pistol over the years when big game hunting. Truth is it is a waste to time and just weights you down. The rifle will but it out of its misery if you had a poorly placed shot. Leave the pistol at home or in your truck/etc and hunt with the rifle alone. It is all of the KISS principal and it works.

I don't carry a sidearm while hunting to dispatch wounded animals nor do I carry it to defend against angry bears and pigs. I carry it in case some two-legged animal decides he wants to get into a firefight over some plants he's growing. :cool:

paul0660
12-30-2010, 2:17 PM
Originally Posted by mzimmers
This thread is kind of amusing...it has to be the only one on calguns where there are people talking about NOT wanting to carry sidearms.

It's cheap insurance against all kinds of risks, most of which have been noted already. Carry one, or be prepared to suffer potential consequences.]

Absofrigginlutely.

As for the "complexity" and "weight" of a sidearm..........are you kidding?

KaLiFORNIA
12-30-2010, 2:32 PM
I carry a handgun any time I am hunting. Also, any time I am fishing. Why? Because I want to, and I have the right to. Put that in your sig line.

+1 - stay thirsty my friends:chris:

pieeater
12-30-2010, 2:52 PM
Ill stick to my rifle. lol

portegee
12-30-2010, 2:56 PM
how accurate is anyone at 20 feet with a riffle that is scoped to 100 yards+ I don't know if I could hit a moving target up close with a scoped rifle

ScottB
12-30-2010, 3:16 PM
impractical to me is firing another $2.50 bullet when i can fire a $0.80 bullet and get the same results but i see where you are coming from.

Penny wise and pound foolish. You will have so much money wrapped up in your hunt $2.50 is nothing compared to the hassle of an extra 3lbs of dead weight you likely won't need.

pieeater
12-30-2010, 3:27 PM
Im dead on with my rifle I throw it up and the crosshairs are on or close to what im looking at no matter how far. And yes ive shot several animals from 7 to 15 feet with it. All very quick shots. I feel very comfortable with it at any range.


how accurate is anyone at 20 feet with a riffle that is scoped to 100 yards+ I don't know if I could hit a moving target up close with a scoped rifle