February is among the toughest times for deer stalkers, with the hind cull at its peak and no excuses not to get out there. Of course, that involves long pulls uphill in the murkiest, muddiest conditions imaginable. And don’t think the roe or fallow culls are going to be much easier…
Luckily, this edition of Sporting Rifle is packed with tips, technique and tales from the field to make stalking excursions that bit more enjoyable. Will O’Meara leads the line, ascending the Wicklow Mountains in search of a red-sika hybrid hind, which is some 20% weightier than its pure-blood equivalent – enjoy the drag out, Will… Plus, David Barrington Barnes extols the virtues of deer moving days, and Chris Dalton explains the principles of deer management while getting to grips with a new stalking ground. We’ve also got the very best stalking scopes and footwear money can buy.
There’s more kit on offer than that, too, as Stuart Wilson tests the Sako Finnlight II and Chris Parkin puts his eye to EOTech’s new Vudu short-format scope. And we’ve got the chance to win a pair of Ridgeline Warrior boots worth £190.
Elsewhere, we’ve gone calibre crazy as Mike Powell assesses the common .17 rimfires and centrefires for foxing use, and Byron Pace tests a few super-fast .22 centrefires. Plus, Mark Ripley looks forward to lambing season and tells fox controllers all the prep jobs they need to be getting on with right now.
That’s on top of all the usual news, views, problems solved, conservation and hunting history – it truly is a packed issue.
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