High-five for Polish roebucks

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Thomas Lindy Nissen accompanies Danish hunters Claus Christiansen and Rene Knutzen on a trip to Poland after roebucks, with a new accessory for the Quadpod shooting sticks on test too

The four days’ trip to Poland includes six outings, and 10-12 roebucks – with that in mind, it seemed to be a very exiting experience with lots of opportunities to hunt and shoot. Furthermore, the two Danish hunters in question did not visit Poland just to hunt. They were going to test the new accessory for their invention – the Hammond Quadpod.

Recently, they had created a fifth leg for the Quadpod shooting sticks. The extra leg made it possible for the shooting sticks to “stand alone”, and thereby present itself nicely in hunting stores around the world. They discovered that the stick with five legs not only looked good in the store, it also provided perfect support on the shooting range – but would this quite heavy combination work in real hunting situations too?

Four days of hunting were planned to test out the Quadpod’s additional fifth leg in the field

Four days of hunting were planned to test out the Quadpod’s additional fifth leg in the field

The fifth leg

Rene is the first of the two to try out the five-legged stick in real hunting action. Rene and his guide, Daniel Katzerke, soon find a female roe and kid. They get closer to check if there should happen to be a buck nearby the two animals: there is. However, they have only just glimpsed the buck – a very nice mature six-pointer – before he goes back into the field of corn to take cover again.

The hunters slowly stalk towards the field, to be close if the roebuck should appear once again. About 100 metres from the spot, they stop and wait to see if the six pointer will show up once more.

They wait for some minutes without anything happening. Daniel tells Rene to be ready to shoot if the buck shows up, and then sets off to walk around the edge of the cornfield. They hope that the smell of a human will encourage the roebuck to leave the cover and appear in front of Rene.

Some minutes later, the roebuck actually moves out in the open area, and goes to the left. Rene follows the buck in the scope with the forestock sliding on the front piece of the quadpod or, more correctly, as it now is, a five-legged pentapod – a ‘high five’.

The roebuck doesn’t stop at first and Rene has to turn the shooting sticks a little bit more to the left. Slowly he lifts up the right side and the fifth leg, and turns it a little while he tries to figure out where the buck will stop. As soon as he is ready, the roebuck moves into range, as planned. Soon, after a few more metres, it stops to look back towards the cornfield.

The sticks would be tested over varying terrain by developers Rene Knutzen and Claus Christiansen

The sticks would be tested over varying terrain by developers Rene Knutzen and Claus Christiansen

Rene is on top of the situation; he aims directly on the shoulder of the roebuck as it stands perfectly broadside. The cross hair is locked on the shoulder, the distance is 200 metres and the possibility for Rene to take the shot is outstanding.

The .30-06 calibre gives a big bang, the echo from the bullet strike returns and the roebuck is momentaneously pulled by gravity to the ground. Behind the roebuck a mist of soil rises as the bullet penetrates all the way through the animal. The situation looks great and everything went well – both the long shot and the preparation work with the shooting sticks.

New accessory

The four-legged Hammond Quadpod is produced in Denmark, and it was made commercially available in the autumn of 2013. It’s sold in lots of European and some African countries under different names. Even before this hunt Claus and Rene were already aware that the quadpod with its four legs worked in real-life hunting scenarios, but they were also wondering if it would be practical in use with the fifth leg attached. The adjustable shooting stick with four legs weighs 1,100 grams, and the fifth leg adds another 300 grams to that.

Before the hunt, the two Danes had been doing serious testing of the 1,400-gram stick at the shooting range. On the range, it was easy to use and, when adjusted with five legs, it was actually possible to lay the rifle to rest in the grips without touching the rifle or the stick – it seemed very stable.

They did some test shooting standing on a 200-metre range and found the stability and adjustability so easy that even in a standing shooting position it was like shooting sitting at a shooting bench.

Loaded up and ready to go, the trip offered up to 10 or 12 roebuck

Loaded up and ready to go, the trip offered up to 10 or 12 roebuck

After the successful stalk and long shot at the roebuck, Rene is convinced that this new accessory is workable on a real hunt too. It is not heavy to carry around and it was easy – despite the many legs – to move into a position from which he could take down the moving roebuck as soon as he stopped.

Claus and Rene do all the developing of their common project together. Claus also needs to make sure that the new concept is workable to launch to the world market.

Claus stalks with hunting guide Krzysztof Jagookinski on his way through a cornfield to investigate if there are any roebucks in the sugar beet next to the cornfield. The ringing signal from the phone in the pocket of the guide disturbs the hunt, and Claus is actually more than a little annoyed with this interruption. The sound is loud and the phone has been ringing lots of times this afternoon. This time however, the message is popular. One of the other hunting guides, who is out spotting in another area, has discovered a roebuck.

As soon as he is ready, the roebuck moves into range, as planned

The hunters nearly run back to the rusty old Opel Astra and off it goes, in high speed, towards the dark forest on the horizon. They stop and stalk 50 metres through a small area with bushes. Behind the bushes, they meet the guide, who shows Claus where to find the buck.

The day is just beginning to darken now, and the distance is long. However, it is easy for Claus to see that it’s a buck. It’s a big one, at least a six-pointer – a buck that Claus would love to shoot.


Long range shooting

In the rangefinder, Claus measures the distance to be around half a kilometre, and the hunters start a stalk to get close enough. The stalk follows the cover of a big bush in front, and quickly they take one metre after the next. On the way, a pheasant with youngsters raises, but the distance to the buck is still far enough not to disturb it.

After a few minutes, they are at the edge of the available cover and from here it is not possible, despite the fact the light is fading, to get any closer. However, they are so close that Claus will be able to take a safe shot with a rest on his five-legged shooting stick.

The distance is, however, long – the rangefinder says 237 metres on the display. Claus is steady, his breath calm, and the sight is resting easy on the roebuck. It will have to move a little to be standing broadside, but after a few minutes, it does.

Claus locks the crosshair on the shoulder of the roebuck and squeezes the trigger, easy and controlled. The reaction is immediate as the roebuck goes down in the sugar beet field, where he doesn’t move any further.

Later this buck trophy is measured to weigh 530 grams, which was one of the reasons that Claus took what was – for a roebuck – a long-range shot. The other reason was the support of the new shooting stick and its brand new fifth-leg accessory.

Claus Christiansen with the roebuck he shot from a distance of 237 metres

Claus Christiansen with the roebuck he shot from a distance of 237 metres

Claus too is convinced of the product’s suitability in the field. It is deemed ready to go on the market to give even more support to hunters who already have a Hammond Quadpod, or to give new users of the shooting stick the best of the best in supporting shooting in the future.

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