Wingshooting: Heavy Shotguns for Faster Shooting

If you’re in a fast-draw competition with a shotgun, you want a heavy gun.

Earlier this week I wrote about how to shoot quickly. There is one last point to make on the subject: if you want to shoot quickly, shoot a heavy gun. It seems counterintuitive, since upland guns are supposed to be light and fast-handling.

And, light guns are easier to move, but fast-handling doesn’t translate into more hits, or even more speed. Heavy guns are smoother and surer to the target. Light guns are flighty and harder to manage.
A couple of years ago when we did the Field & Stream shotgun test, we had our test team members take turns standing five yards behind a trap, shooting going-away birds with Full-choked guns, starting from a low gun position. The five of us used a 20 gauge 870 Express that weighed 6 ¾ pounds, an 870 that weighed 7 ½ pounds, and the same 870 with a weighted magazine cap and stock-mounted recoil reducer added, which bumped its weight up to 8 ½ pounds.

The heavy 12 gauge was the fastest gun, and the most accurate. It was nearly a quarter second faster to the target per hit than the 20 gauge, and with it we averaged 71% hits versus 63% with the lighter 20 gauge. The unweighted 12 was in between. I suppose we should have controlled for gauge in this test, but the targets were close and I don’t think the ballistic advantage of the 12 was much of a factor.

If you’re in a fast-draw competition with a shotgun, you want a heavy gun, but I wouldn’t necessarily recommend an 8 ½ pound grouse gun unless you’re J.J. Watt. Fatigue slows you down, and carrying a heavy gun through dense cover tires your arms by the end of a day in the woods. I shoot better with heavy, weight-forward guns, but I prefer light, muzzle-light guns for brush hunting because they are easier to carry with your trigger hand while you fend off branches with your front hand.

Shotgunning is often about tradeoffs, and that’s what we’re facing here: you can carry a heavy gun that tires you out but that you can hit with, or a you can pick a lighter gun that’s easy to carry, but harder to shoot well. There is no free lunch here, nor anywhere else.




Look up Argentina in the dictionary and the definition says, ʻsynonym of meatʼ. Okay, thatʼs not true. But it should be, because this country is all about the carne. Give or take a few steaks, Argentineans eat about 55kg of beef each a year. Thatʼs almost double what North Americans put away. You soon get used to the smell of grilled beef that wafts from parrillas (steak restaurants) dotted on every corner and itʼs not unusual to see builders and shop keepers lovingly labouring over their make-shift grills during lunch breaks. Sundayʼs here remain sacred too, as families get together for asados (BBQʼs) and feast the afternoon away with a bottle of Malbec and charla (chat). Beef here is a source of national pride and after tasting your first fork full, youʼll see why.

The flat, central plains of Las Pampas are home to Argentinaʼs prized, grass-fed cattle. This said grass results in leaner cuts than corn-reared breeds and the meat isnʼt aged. Some places may let it rest for up to two weeks, but itʼs generally not hung. The cows are cut differently too, meaning names might not be what youʼre used to, plus theyʼre in Spanish. Either way, to the untrained beef lover, decoding the parrilla menú can leave you more than a bit bamboozled. So The Real Argentina is here to guide you through what can be an intimidating overload of dead cow. The list below includes choice cuts as well as other more daring bits – offal and all – that you may or may not have the pelotas to try. But hey! Youʼre in Argentina, so get ready to loosen your belt, eat a steak the size of your head and fall straight into carne coma heaven.


1. Roast Beef / err…Roast Beef
A cheaper cut taken from the neck, it’s best drowned in a tasty sauce and is often used for mince.

2. Ojo de Bife / Rib Eye

A familiar friend full of marbling fat which gives it tons of flavour. It’s a whacking great big chunky steak and comes from the best cut of the rib section. A personal fave.

3. Bife Ancho / Prime Rib or Rib Eye Roast

Akin to Ojo de Bife, ancho steaks are cut from the rib-eye roll. You can get it boneless or bone-in, which packs more flavour into an already tender, tasty and marbled cut.

4. Bife Angosto A.K.A Bife de Chorizo / Sirloin or New York Strip (U.S.)

One of the best go-to steaks for taste and quality, it’s probably what more than one mozo (waiter) will steer you towards. Proper carnivore bliss, it comes with a satisfying edge of fat and is usually served in portions huge enough to share. Beware, cheap cuts will have an indecent amount of fat on them.

5. Cuadril / Rump Steak

Used for everyday cooking in Argentina, the classic rump is nothing to write home about but is nevertheless a thick, meaty cut of reasonable quality. And you get a lot of it for your pesos. If you end up extending your trip, this is one to cook up at home.

6. Asado / Short Ribs or Spare Ribs

So this is confusing. Asado is the name for BBQ in Argentina but it also refers to the large section of the rib cage that produces the finger-lickin’ tasty morsels of short or spare ribs. You want them a bit crispy on the outside to contrast with the tender meat inside. Pure salty goodness.

7. Vacio / Flank

Delicious and often overlooked flank from around the belly of the cow. You don’t normally see this outside of Argentina, so take advantage of this best-cooked slowly strip which delivers on flavour and has an addictive crispy fat, smothering the exterior.

8. Colita de Cuadril / Tri-Tip or Sirloin Roast

Often roasted but also grilled-up and minced. A cheaper cut and versatile enough to smother a marinade over, which it soaks up like a thirsty campesino (countryman). Not memorable enough to order out.

9. Tapa de Asado / Rib Cap

Falling somewhere in flavour between bife de chorizo and ojo de bife, this is their not so meaty nor buttery hermano. It has to be medium-rare pink. It’s too tough past that point but isn’t the tenderest choice to start with. One for the asado en casa.

10. Peceto / Eye of Round

Best roasted rare, this super lean slice is super economical. Coming from the well used Round Primal muscle, this cut will give your molars a work-out.

11. Matambre / Flank Steak

A mash-up of the words ‘matar’ and ‘hambre’ (‘kill-hunger’), a very thin cut taken from between the skin and the ribs. It’s served as a steak but much more common as ‘matambre relleno’, a meat roll stuffed with a variation of carrots, peppers and hard-boiled eggs depending on the province.

12. Entraña / Skirt Steak

Rich and juicy this cheaper cut is a good bet if you’ve got time to branch out from the usual cuts. It can need a bit of chew if overdone.

13. Lomo / Fillet or Tenderloin
This famed cut is the fine dining of steak and comes with the heftiest price tag. Waiter’s at La Brigada (San Telmo) love to make a show of this meat star by cutting it with a spoon at your table. Low in fat, it’s not going to be a guilty pleasure pig out or full of the best flavour, but it’s tender and juicy and has to be tried.

14. Tapa de Nalga / Topside Cap

These various cuts are fairly tough and better left for a slow cooking pot than any parrilla.


I’ve added a few extra favourites that aren’t on our cow jigsaw but are on the menu and should not be missed.

/ Sausage

Moist, fatty, meaty. A good chori is a total pleasure. Shove it in a bread roll and it becomes the humble feast of kings known as the choripán from the chori-zo (sausage) and pan (bread). Pile on the typical local spicy chimichurri sauce and you’re good to go.

Morcilla / Blood Sausage
You’re gonna love ‘em or hate ‘em. Similar to black-pudding in the UK, they are made up of pig’s blood and ground up pieces of pork or offal and a few extra spices to make them taste less like pig’s blood. A much softer sausage than the chorizo.

No translation exists for this typical Uruguayan meat feast of veal, chicken or pork enveloped around a stick of cheese wrapped in ham and topped off with tomatoes, pancetta and peppers. If you want a heart attack on a plate, youʼve found it! For some of the best head to El Pobre Luis in Belgrano.

Mollejas / Sweetbreads or Thymus Glands
Not for the squeamish, mollejas’ unique gusto comes down to them being glands and not muscle tissue. Soft and delicate in texture, resembling pork on the taste buds.

/ Small Intestines

As you’d expect, it looks gross and tastes…well it’s pretty particular and hard to describe so you’re just gonna have to trust me and try them. They should be well cooked and crunchy but never chewy, that means you got a dud plate. Squeeze abundant amounts of fresh lemon juice on top.


Weirdly, in a country where cow is king, it perturbs me that most locals, gauchos and all, run for the hills at the sight of pink meat. Me, Iʼm a bit more of the opinion that if an animal has died for my appetite, it should be served practically still flipping on the plate. Nothingʼs sadder than an overcooked steak. To avoid that happening…hereʼs your true and tested guide to ordering it the way you like it.

VUELTA VUELTA: The meat has barely kissed the pan. Nice and blue and bloody.

JUGOSO: Officially this means medium-rare in Argentina, but it tends to be more on the medium side for most parrilleros (the grill chefs).

A PUNTO: Medium, still a bit pink in the middle but not so juicy.

PASADO DE PUNTO: Medium to well done.

COCIDO: Well done. Well dead.

BIEN COCIDO: Why would you? But plenty of Argentineans do.


(Source: By Sonja D’cruze.

Tibet GTX Hi: Anatomy of Good Mountain Boots (And When to Wear Them)

Last month I hunted in northern New Mexico with a pair of Lowa Tibet GTX HI boots laced to my feet. We were hunting at 8,500 to 10,000 feet and the terrain was fairly steep, however it was not exactly rugged. The Lowa’s were awesome, but they were also overkill for this hunt.

Here are some points on what makes a goodpigeon hunting argentina mountain or backpacking boot and the best applications for them.

For shorter trips in regular terrain, you don’t need a souped-up boot like the Tibet GTX (it’s sort of like driving a Lamborghini to the grocery store). First off, the boots are relatively heavy. They weigh 1920 grams or 4.2 pounds. They’re also pretty dang expensive at $395.

But top-end boots become worth it when you are headed into rugged terrain for long treks. These boots are designed for durability and stability when you’re covering rocky, nasty terrain and packing weight. Think scree fields, and heavy hindquarters above treeline. On deep treks in rugged terrain, keeping your feet, ankles, and knees going isn’t just a matter of comfort, it’s about getting home safe.

Here are some of the finer points of the Tibets’ design:

  • Vibram Masai sole with lugs that are 5mm deep
  • Polyurethane midsole (which Lowa says will last up to 8 times longer than EVA)
  • High wall rubber rand wrapped around the upper
  • Full-grain nubuck leather and a a Gore-tex liner in the upper
  • X-Lacing tongue stud to keep the tongue in place and a flex design with a floating hook so the boot flexes comfortably

I opted for the Hi version (pictured above) for the additional ankle support but Lowa also makes a lower version.

The boots are so sturdy that it actually takes a little while to get used to walking around in them.



Partridge with pears and Christmas stuffing

The traditional pairing of partridge and pear by Galton Blackiston is perfect for Christmas feasting, here accompanied by a rich, seasonal stuffing. This festive main is sure to impress your guests and can be served with other Christmas side dishes.

1 – To make the stuffing, warm the milk in a pan. Add the bread and set aside to soak for 20 minutes. Meanwhile melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat
  • 200ml of milk
  • 100g of white breadargentina dove hunting
  • 40g of butter
2 – Add the onion and fennel and sweat until the onion is softened but not colour
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 bulb of fennel
3- Add the mushrooms and cook a little longer. Transfer to a large bowl. Pass the bread and milk through a sieve into the bowl with the onion, fennel and mushroom
  • 200g of mushrooms
4- Add all the remaining ingredients together with a good seasoning of salt and pepper
  • 450g of pork fillet
  • 450g of pork belly
  • 450g of sausage meat
  • 10 chestnuts
  • 50g of dried cranberries
  • 200ml of double cream
  • 40ml of cognac
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp of parsley
  • salt
  • black pepper
5- Using your hands mix really well
6- Heat the oven to 180°C/Gas mark 4. Press the stuffing into a buttered ovenproof dish. Cover with buttered paper and a lid or wrap in tin foil and bake for 45 – 60 minutes
  • butter for greasing
7- For the partridge, heat the oven to 180°C/Gas mark 4. Make sure the argentina pigeon huntinginside of each partridge is clean and dry by wiping it out with a kitchen towel
  • 4 partridges
8- Combine the softened butter, thyme, garlic, bay leaf and mix together. Divid into 4 even amounts and stuff inside the birds
  • 100g of butter
  • 16 sprigs of thyme
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 4 bay leaves
9- Heat a small frying pan on a medium heat; add a drop of rapeseed oil and 25g of butter. Season the birds all over with salt
  • 1/4 tbsp of rapeseed oil
  • 25g of butter
  • salt
10- Brown the birds one by one all over, then replenish the oil and butter for each. Cook in the oven for 8-12 minutes. Rest for 10 minutes
  • 3/4 tbsp of rapeseed oil
  • 75g of butter
11- Remove the breasts and the legs and keep them in a warm place until required
12- For the pears, slice longways 1cm thick and remove the core. Melt the sugar in a pan until lightly caramelised. Add the vinegar and let bubble for a minute. Add the pears. Toss until caramelised
  • 4 tbsp of caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp of red wine vinegar
  • 3 Williams pears
13- Cook the brussels sprouts for 45 seconds in salted boiling water, strain set aside. Re-heat the partridge for 2 minutes and warm the pears through
  • 4 Brussels sprouts
14- To serve, cut the stuffing to a desired shape and warm through with the partridge. Sit the partridge on top of a slice of pear and the hot stuffing on the opposite side. Scatter over the brussels sprout leaves and drizzle over some of the liquid from the pears.
(Source: by Galton Blackiston.


Nikon Introduces New BLACK Riflescope Line

With the incredible boom in the AR market in recent years, lots of optics and accessory manufacturers have been developing products specific to black rifles. Nikon is one of the latest companies to bring out an optic line built for America’s favorite rifle, as well as other tactical-type rifles.

Nikon’s new BLACK riflescope line will consiNikon-BLACK-X1000-6-24x50-IIlluminatedst of five models and is designed to meet the needs of both precision long-range shooters and action-shooting AR enthusiasts. The line is expected to be available to shooters sometime in the Spring of this year.

BLACK 1000

The first offering in the new Nikon BLACK riflescope lineup is the BLACK 1000. Tailored more toward precision shooters, the BLACK 1000 will be available in 4-16×50 and 6-24×50 models featuring either X-MOA or X-MRAD tactical-style reticles synchronized to elevated windage and elevation turrets. These new reticle designs offer clean views, while also providing added functionality to the shooter, and the elevated turrets should make precise dialing for windage and elevation quite easy.

There are three 4-16×50 models available. Two are available with illumination and either the X-MOA or X-MRAD reticle, while the other model features a non-illuminated X-MOA reticle. Meanwhile, the fourth model is the 6-24×50, which comes with an illuminated X-MRAD reticle.

BLACK FORCE 1000argentina wingshooting
For shooters looking for a riflescope for closer, more rapid engagements or action shooting, Nikon will also be offering its BLACK FORCE 1000 a 1-4×24 riflescope that utilizes Nikon’s unique SpeedForce reticle. The reticle features an interesting, illuminated, double horseshoe pattern in the center, which serves as a speedy reference point in rapid target acquisition and engagement. However, the SpeedForce MOA reticle also incorporates BDC circles and hash marks for accurate and precise intermediate-range holdovers.

All of these models in the new BLACK riflescope line feature a 30mm main body tube constructed from aircraft-grade aluminum alloy with Type 3 hard anodizing, meaning the scopes are rugged and ready for hard use. Other great features across the board include Nikon’s lead- and arsenic-free Eco-Glass lenses, which also sport a multi-layer surface coating; spring-loaded instant zero-reset turrets; and a waterproof, fog proof and shock proof design. Also, each scope is backed by Nikon’s No-Fault policy.

Pricing on the new BLACK riflescopes varies from $399.95 to $699.95, offering shooters several great options for the money. For more on the new BLACK riflescope line, visit the Nikon website.

(Source: By Drew Warden.


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