How to practice my long range shots ?

Discussion in 'Competition Shooting Forum' started by mcgreen85, Jul 6, 2012.

  1. mcgreen85

    mcgreen85 New Member

    Hey guys, I have a Howa axiom 22-250 & I like to shoot out to 500-600yds. I've been practicing just trying to better myself. A friend of mine told me to print out a target that had 4 squares on it ranging from 1 inch down to 1/4 inch & to put it at 100 yards & try to shoot each square. I thought that was a good idea, I was wondering if any of you might have any ideas on some things I can do to help me get better, any info would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance for your replies, Matt
  2. Zane71464

    Zane71464 Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2009
    Ohio NRA Member
    First off, you shooting off a bench, sandbags?
    When I dial a rifle in and have it where I want it shooting/hitting @ 100yds., I make my
    own targets.
    I take an all white cardboard with a black 1 inch circle with crosshairs in that. I'll put a 1 inch (lightly colored) square 3" over top the black cirlcle and practice with just that.
    I dont like the targets that have "targets" all over them, as I dont like distractions and like to concentrate on just that 1" black ring with crosshairs drawn in it.
    If you have a decent scope and fine the saying goes, aim small, miss small.
    Everyone you talk to will have their own way and it's all good, whatever works for the person shooting the rifle is all that matters, but that practice is critical whatever type of target your shooting.
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2012

  3. aa1911

    aa1911 Well-Known Member

    Dec 12, 2010
    Pacific Northwest
    the only real difference would be things like wind, otherwise just a reduced target to simulate further range is perfect.

    rifle fundamentals = sight alignment, trigger control, body position, distance doesn't really matter besides environmental stuff.

    maybe play with different zeros, point of impact on crosshairs vs. parallel zero, etc... that would be the other (small) difference.

    and remember, there's always two zeros due to bullet trajectory not just one
    RobertFromTennessee likes this.
  4. Zane71464

    Zane71464 Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2009
    Ohio NRA Member
    So very true.
  5. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, AND PRACTICE. Practice breathing, Practice control, Practice soft trigger squeeze.

    Rest a penny on the barrel while your gun is empty, and see if it falls off when you
    squeeze off the trigger. Practice this often, it helps a lot.
    RobertFromTennessee likes this.
  6. redwing carson

    redwing carson Former Guest

    Dec 11, 2010
    western wyoming
    The 22-250 loaded with a 55 gr. bullet is an effective 500 yd. varmint rifle. They are used here on the high desert country for long shots. We have targets set up out 1,800 yds. That being said you must get the rifle shooting under i" at 100 yds. We set our rifles at 1 to 2" high at 100 yds. This will give you a POI of 300 yds or so. The corrections needed on the 500 yd targets is really simple after that. A better choice for the 500 yd shooting in the fall when winds pick up is the 25-06. The 25-06 has enough energy to roll coyotes at these extended ranges. My choice in the big .22s has been the .220 Swift. It runs a little larger engine and seems to have a small edge out in the "Dog Towns".:)
  7. Zhurh

    Zhurh Active Member

    Mar 19, 2010
    Upper Yukon, Alaska
    Main thing I need to do is nx winter extend my 200 yard range out behind the house, which means the stihls.
  8. Fisch89

    Fisch89 New Member

    Jun 22, 2014
    Hey McGreen,
    I've never heard of that rifle until i google searched it lol. So is it safe to say you have an optic? Theres a few questions i have, are you keeping data for your shots and scope settings? Are you consistent using the same bullet grain? With that heres my 2 cents:
    1: Keep logged data for your shots to include cold bore. For each shot, record distance to your target, point of aim, point of impact, and the setting on your optic for that shot, bullet grain, etc. You can get even crazier and record wind speed, elevation, etc. Theres even a formula for estimating target distance you could learn. Ultimately when you have enough data, eventually you wont need to look at it anymore because you know what your holdoff or elev/win settings should be for certain distances.

    2. Practice marksmanship fundamentals. Proper trigger squeeze, proper sight picture/ sight alignment, body position, and breathing. Dont fire during an inhale or exhale, wait until your at the top or bottom of a breath, hold for a second or two, then fire.
    RobertFromTennessee likes this.
  9. bullast

    bullast Active Member

    The formulas Fisch is referring to are:
    Target (in.) x 25.4 / mils = range (m)
    Target (in.) x 27.77 / mils = range (yds)
    Target (in) x 95.5 / MOA = Range (yds)


    Target (any unit) x 1000 / mils = Range (same unit)
    For example:
    You see your 24" target is populating 1.3 mils in your scope.
    24x25.4/1.3=468.9 meters.
    24x27.77/1.3=512 yards
    This is MUCH easier if youve got a first focal plane scope.

    The best way to practice long range shooting is to shoot. Keep detailed logs of temp (atmospheric and ammo), baro pressure, altitude, range, ammo, shots fired, muzzle velocity, etc...
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2014
  10. texas python

    texas python Member

    Feb 2, 2014
    Long range shooting is an art that has to be learned.
    It requires a rifle that is capable of 1" groups or less at 100 yards, ammo built for that rifle, and, a shooter that has sent a large number of rounds down range keeping accurate records, that is a good basics shooter.
    I have a .25-06 that my father built in the 60's. It is bedded and has a very good heavy barrel.
    With the original Weaver 16 power tactical optics it groups well inside an inch with hand loads and 1" with some factory ammo.
    Zeroed at 200 I can hit a half dollar sized target at 300 no problem. I am not a long range shooter.
    My father spent over a year at the range and the Prairie Dog towns testing different loads until he found the rifles sweet spot.
  11. That_Guy!

    That_Guy! Active Member

    Mar 7, 2014
    Lots of practice haha. If you are using factory rounds, search around and try many different types. Keep records of your climate and how your groups are on note cards. Once you find the rounds that best suit your rifle, practice. Get comfortable at 100 yds. You wouldn't believe the number of people that can't shoot consistently at that range. Once you get comfortable at that distance I'd recommend switching to a smaller target. Once you get comfortable with the smaller target increase the range and repeat. This is what worked best for me. I'm consistently shooting under 1 MOA with factory loads.

    Trial of elimination my friend. Good luck, stay safe, have fun! Don't beat yourself up if you aren't performing at your best. We all have good and bad days. If you start getting frustrated, stop and take a brake. The more frustrated you get, the more errors you will make, trust me.
  12. hstout1143

    hstout1143 Well-Known Member

    Jan 3, 2012
    If you're shooting off hand then get an air gun. They're great for practicing your breathing and trigger control and if your yard is big enough you can practice there. Not to mention it's cheaper on ammo.
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