Coywolf got your Venison? Updated with Fox Pro Inferno Electronic Calls

Back several years ago I wrote that Coyotes are evolving into Coywolf’s as evidenced by DNA research. In this evolution which some say began in the early 1900’s, the wolf began mating with coyotes as their territory overlapped in the Great Lakes and today the Coyote hybrid is found across the Northeast US. Toronto has packs of them in the downtown. It is not the small 20 to 30 pound animal any longer. A male can weight up to nearly 60 pounds. During the late fall you can see Coywolf tracks intermixed with deer tracks. My friend and I were stalked in Vermont by an almost black large Coywolf until it saw us and turned tail. We were scouting without our rifles. After that we carried our guns. These animals roam through our town in southern NH at night, my friend has them recorded on his new Ring doorbell. Better yet go hunt for them. See NHFG requirements. They are very smart and learn fast. Check my search engine for Coyote articles as there are several articles with tips and calls etc.

I will be hunting them…Carry a pistol too.  I have not had the success I expected with a cheap electronic caller, it wasn’t loud enough, had few vocalizations and the remote worked to near 100 yards but needed Line of Sight,

So being near Christmas, A friend and I went to Cabela’s and researched some electronic calls. Cabela’s had the Lions share of FoxPro Electronic Calls and accessoried.  I wanted the sounds to be realistic, lots of switchable vocalizations such as those of distressed prey animals and Coyote vocalizations. I found that for $199, I could get the Fox Pro Inferno and perhaps get value for  my dollar. This was the mid range price point. See image below.

FOXPRO Inferno Digital Game Call

I had it out in the woods last night and boy was it loud! The remote worked fabulous and had a orange back lit screen. It was about 15ºF at dusk but no coyotes came in. Just the same I was impressed as was a friend who tagged along. We will keep you informed as winter progresses and our hunts continue.

 

© 2017 All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

Weatherby Vanguard Weatherguard 6.5 Creedmoor with Nosler 142g Long Range AccuBond

On December 8, 2017, it was a cold 40 degrees, cloudy, however, the air was amazingly still. It was “bugging me” that the last test (a few days ago and an earlier article) for 100 yard groups for this Weatherby® Vanguard® Weatherguard® rifle was windy and the 1.75 inch lateral spread may or may not have been caused by wind. The 50 yard group was very tight, around 3/8th of an inch. Accordingly, I had to know if it was the wind or rifle at 100 yards but I had no more Hornady bullets left. The next best thing was my Nosler’s.

I had powder and a some 142 grain Nosler Long Range AccuBonds, so I gave them a close look and loaded some in Nosler Custom Brass for the 6.5 Creedmoor with CCI Benchrest Primers (BR2). This is like the best of the best of the best, some might say.

Research began with a hot long range hunting load using Reloader 15 powder. I loaded 36.5 grains at a COL of 2.801 inches and 81% load density volume. The Nosler Manual tested a muzzle velocity (MV) of 2635 fps with a 24 inch barrel. Not super fast for sure, ,low recoil, but with a ballistic coefficient (BC) of over 0.7 (G1)  it didn’t have to be so fast because most spitzer bullets have much lower BC’s and lose velocity rapidly due to increased air friction.

Most technical folks like to talk about killing energy for deer at around 1000 ft-lbs energy. This round can kill a deer at 725 yards (1000 ft-lbs at 1785 fps per JBM Calculations) if you know the distance, wind, altitude etc. and the shooter can stay within a  3 to 4 inch kill radius and the bullet can shoot an MOA or better at 100 yards.

Target #1 below at 100 yards with 1.25 inch group. Yes, the first shot was from a cold shooter, me and a cold barrel. Many say the cold shot idea from a cold barrel is more myth but I digress.

Target #2 was shot 5 minutes later than Target #1 resulting in a 9/16 inch group.

Ok, so the average of the 2 groups are 0.9 inches. The bottom line is that this Weatherby Vanguard Weatherguard rifle shoots sub-MOA with this load, bullet, COL and powder.

Accordingly,  this would be a great cartridge and load on an elk out to where energy crosses 1500 ft-lbs (2200 fps) more or less, which is about 350 yards. Most experienced hunters stay within their capability with is often around 300 yards or less unless you practice at those longer ranges in field conditions and use a rangefinder.

The Weatherby Vanguard Weatherguard has a high Monte Carlo stock to align my eye with the scope and does not punish me as it has a very forgiving recoil pad with the 6.5 Creedmoor.

A match made in a hunters heaven. All I can say is, go buy this rifle for Christmas and give Nosler LRAB’s a try!!

Good Hunting! Practice, Practice Practice.

© 2017 All Rights Reserved

 

Weatherby Vanguard Weatherguard 6.5 Creedmoor (Out of the Box) at the range with Leupold VX-6 and Hornady Precision Hunter Ammo

The Weatherby® Vanguard® Weatherguard® rifle is affordable with retail around $750 or less, is weather resistant with Weatherguard coating, advertised as MOA or better out of the box and easy to carry in the field. It weighs around 7.25 lbs bare naked and 8 lbs with Leupold’s VX-6 3-18x44mm scope, my go-to test scope and hunting scope. Scope mounts are sold separately and are only for this rifle. The Vanguards internal magazine holds 3 cartridges and the 24 inch hammer forged Weatherguard coated Barrel is a mat finish. Typical barrels are 22 inches so yo get a bit more energy with the extra 2 inches.

The innovative fluted bolt includes 3 gas vent ports (seen above) in the event of a case failure thus venting gas safely. I have never had a case fail but hey you never know. The action works as smooth as I have experienced in more expensive rifles. The safety is a two position lever, located to the right rear of the bolt seen below and shown in the Fire position.

 

The Vanguard Trigger is a 2 stage (creep free) trigger that can be adjusted down to 2.5 lbs. My test rifle trigger pull weight is around 3 lbs 6 oz or so and breaks cleanly and consistently as advertised.

I am using the Hornady Precision Hunter 143 grain ELD-X bullet as my standard for off the shelf accuracy. I just love this Precision Hunter ammo.They fly true and proven at close range at 50 yards to 1000 yards in an accurate rifle.

The recoil pad is thick and soft thus reducing felt recoil substantially.

FEATURES INCLUDE:

  • SUB-MOA accuracy guarantee (.99” or less 3-shot group at 100 yards when used with Weatherby® factory or premium ammunition)
  • Adjustable Match Quality, Two-stage Trigger
  • Fluted Bolt Body
  • One-piece Machined Bolt Body
  • Fully Enclosed Bolt Sleeve
  • 3-Position Safety
  • Cold Hammer Forged Barrel
  • Integral Recoil Lug
  • Hinged Floorplate

STOCK:

  • Monte Carlo Griptonite stock features pistol grip and forend inserts
  • Right side palm swell

BARREL AND METALWORK:

  • 24-inch barrel
  • #2 contour
  • Tactical Grey Cerakote for exceptional weather and corrosion resistance

Below is first group 3/8 inch at 50 yards, very windy conditions up to 15 mph and swirling. I tried to shoot in the wind lulls.

Below is a 6 shot 100 yard group using the same ammo as in the 50 yd group above, again with 15 mph winds and swirling. The spread 1.75 inch spread is very likely wind driven but the core 4 shots are huddled at less than 3/4 inch. Will try again at some point as I am out of ammo. Experiences of Vanguard owners on the Weatherby website are all very exuberant.

This core group of 3/4 inch is what I would have expected with the 50 yard group so tight. The wind likely played a role in the lateral spread.

I was very pleased with how easy yet snug the bolt moved as I worked the bolt. The Rifle handled smoothly and the trigger was crisp.

What made me want to shoot and test this rifle was, first, its Weatherby name, I like the Comb on a Weatherby since I placed a large scope on this rifle it raised my cheek correctly.

I remember years ago when Roy Weatherby built a 300 Winchester Magnum rifle for John Wayne. See photo below

If John gets one, you know they are good. Today the rifle is made by Howa of Japan and the attention to detail is visible.

This is a hunters rifle and I believe it can handle far off places like Alaska in the frozen north with a measure of its rugged reliability as well as the plains of Africa and the 6.5 Creedmoor can easily handle Elk size game at long ranges to 400 yards or so or deer at 700 yards.

The rifle comes in many calibers from .223 to 300 Wby Mag.  http://www.weatherby.com/vanguardr-weatherguard.html

This is an “affordable” and highly reliable rifle I would want under my Christmas tree. Check it out at your local Sporting Goods Store!