Ask the experts: Choosing a rifle support

Q Mark, do you always shoot off a bipod or do you sometimes use other supports such as shooting sticks?

A Mark says: It very much depends on the type of shooting, or the shot itself, that I’m taking. For zeroing and longer-range shooting, it’s important to be as steady as possible, which in turn means getting as close to the ground as possible to gain stability. For long-range precision shooting I will always use a bipod along with a rear bag to support the rifle butt, allowing it to recoil directly back into the shoulder.

Using a bipod in the field is often possible, but not always owing to the lie of the land or the length of grass, which could obscure your view. Often when out foxing you will spot a fox and try to use the bipod only to find you can no longer see the fox. At night, the IR or lamp shine may bounce back from a few blades of grass and blow out an image. It’s also not too appealing in the winter months when the ground is wet and muddy!

I usually carry a set of sticks with me to shoot from or make use of a nearby tree or fence post to lean on in these circumstances when ranges are not too far.

Mark Ripley, YouTube star and extreme-range foxer

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