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For friends, family and the random search engine visitor. This blog started as an experiment in mobile blogging from my Palm TREO 600, 700, Prē, HTC Evo, Samsung 5, Pixel 3, Pixel 6 Pro. Now it serves as a simple repository of favorite activities. Expect bad golf, good fishing, great sailing, eating, drinking, adventure travel, occasional politics and anything else I find interesting along the way including, but not limited to, any of the labels listed here...

Monday, October 4, 2010

Hunting with Grandpa's '97

As requested by The Reader, we are documenting the first firing in this millennium of Grandpa's Winchester 1897. We were not sure when this gun was last fired, possibly on HDW's 1990 walk in the woods, so exhibited an abundance of caution before pulling the trigger.

When last seen on this blog, the '97 was inspected by Ishpeming Wilderness Sports, where we learned it's identity and age. The gun was proclaimed in excellent condition, but we decided to ignore their advice to hang it on a wall as a collector's item. We just don't think grandpa would have wanted it that way. We did take their advice and procured low pressure ammo appropriate for a vintage century old shotgun. Polywad was our on-line source for the "Vintager" hand loads. Good outfit, good ammo.

After a thorough cleaning, we took the '97 out to our Escanaba River property to shoot clay pigeons and hunt for grouse. This was the first proper firing of the shotgun.

I did shoot one round into the air earlier (with my arms wrapped around a tree and the gun butt wedged in a tree branch). I didn't think that particular shot was suitable for documentation. No worries - the gun works and fires like a dream. Time for some target practice:

My gun bearer brings the pigeons

Hitting a hand thrown skeet proved to be difficult

We had better luck with stationary targets.

Then off to hunt for grouse

We flushed 4 or 5, but...

... hitting a moving grouse proved to be even more difficult than a thrown skeet.

But a great day for a a walk in the woods and hunting with a piece of history.

Next time - more practice with this...

At some point I'll update this post with some more edited clips of our afternoon in the woods.

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