Carolina Squirrel Hunting

I've been playing around with a couple of .17HMR rifles, one by Savage and this Mossberg International 817. This one is a tack driver, with some groups making one hole at 50 yards. It's a 100-yard squirrel gun, especially for the trophy of all small game, the southern fox squirrel. Shots in the longleaf stands where these beautiful and unique critters live can be very long and they are much larger than gray squirrels, making the .17HMR the perfect choice. 

Mike's Big Buck

This is a nice buck for southeastern North Carolina. The 4/12-year-old buck was scent-trailing a doe, about an hour behind her. Crossing a narrow opening, he offered me a fleeting shot at 175 yards - a good enough opportunity for a woods-worn Remington 700 in .30-06 caliber I've carried so long that shooting it feels like an extension of my thoughts. The handload consisted of 59.4 grains of IMR 4350 behind a Hornady Interlock 150-grain bullet. A broken right antler tip makes a less-than-perfect rack, but gives the buck character. "Luck" happens when preparation meets opportunity. I was simply in the right place at the right time.