Photo: Before scoring their first Alabama buck double, Ryan Noffsinger (right) and his son Luke wanted to double-check the zero on their scopes. Ryan discovered a great target substitute when he lost his store-bought targets.
As an avid bowhunter, I don’t usually knock the dust off my deer rifles until after Christmas. This season was no different.
When January and the Alabama rut rolled around, it was time to ensure my gun sights were still dialed in.
My son and I set up a Caldwell Lead Sled on our shooting bench, then retrieved our rifles, earmuffs and other gear from the safe. We were all set for a fun afternoon of shooting except for one thing — the targets.
Where were they? I knew I had some new ones somewhere, but a thorough search of the house and garage produced nothing.
Having already wasted too much time searching, I thought about how to make a decent target quickly.
In the past, I’d used a Sharpie marker or spray paint to make dots on paper plates, cardboard boxes, milk jugs or anything with structure.
While looking through the garage, I spotted an unused roll of Christmas gift wrap paper.
Upon closer inspection, I was surprised to find the backside of the paper was faintly marked in a 1-inch grid to help guide scissors — perfect!
Store-bought rifle targets also have a standard 1-inch grid for scope adjustment purposes, so all I had to do was make the parts of the grid more visible.
With a Sharpie pen, a straightedge and a Keurig K cup (which have a 1-inch diameter), I easily drew a variety of circle-and-crosshair targets.
After affixing the wrapping paper to a backboard at 100 yards, my son and I were able to zero in our rifles on a 1-inch-incremented target instead of a milk jug. Both scopes needed minor adjustments, but after a few shots, we were dialed in tight and ready to hunt.
Weeks later on a frosty morning, my son and I set up in shooting houses 200 yards apart.
At 7:30 a.m., I heard the familiar BOOM-whop of my son’s 7mm-08. Two hours later, I found a nice buck in the crosshairs of my own scope.
With two bucks on the ground, it was our first-ever double!
It’s important to know your weapon is accurately sighted in, and I will continue annual double-checking my rifle on the firing range. Only now, I’ll be making good use of leftover Christmas gift wrap!
— Photos Courtesy of Ryan Noffsinger Read Recent Tip of the Week:
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