Christensen Arms
Ridgeline Titanium

When A Gun Speaks, Listen Up!
; .

Weighing in at a scant 5 lbs., 9 oz., sporting a 22" barrel and chambered in Hornady’s
6.5 PRC, the Christensen Arms Ridgeline Titanium is a near-ideal mountain hunting rifle.

Few things stir my imagination and motivate me to adventure more than a fine hunting rifle. There is something about a well-crafted, purpose-built, precision hunting rifle that just makes me want to get outside and see the world. Christensen Arms’ Ridgeline Titanium definitely conjures up this adventurous spirit and motivated me to go back to New Zealand to hunt tahr in the magnificent mountains on the south island. The plans were made, the trip was booked, then — COVID! Yup, yet another dream crushed by the pandemic! We need to talk about plan B.


Nope, not a tahr — Mark’s Axis deer taken with the assistance of
Maui Hunting Safari isn’t a bad Plan B though!

Love At First Sight

I first saw a Christensen Arms Ridgeline at my local gun store. I was immediately impressed by the quality and precision imbued into this rifle’s DNA. Guns like this aren’t just a one-off — they’re a culmination of years of knowledge, experience, craftsmanship and artistry. This is exactly what it takes to place a seed in your subconscious when you throw it up to your shoulder for the first time, thinking of possible adventures.

This is a mountain rifle and my current hunting passion tends toward mountain hunting for animals living on the top of the world. So, when I threw up the Ridgeline to my shoulder — Presto, I’m at the top of the world pursuing some of the world’s most elusive critters in some of the most beautiful and remote places on the planet. Yup, we’re doing this! Then I learned the “Titanium” model had just been released with enhancements over the Ridgeline I was holding. When I finally got my hands on one, I was ready to book my hunt!

Okay, so what about this gun whisked me from the local gun store to the highest peaks? In my experience, quality has a distinct feel people instinctively understand. If you hand someone a plastic ballpoint pen and a Monte Blanc roller ball at the same time, they’re going to see, feel and know the difference.


Initial range work by Mark showed exceptional accuracy and mild recoil
from the 6.5 PRC cartridge. He wasn’t a fan of the muzzle brake.

Building Blocks

Materials are a good place to start when exploring the distinctions. The first thing jumping out on the Titanium is the weight and balance of the rifle. So sweet and so comfortable. At 5 lbs., 9 oz. with a 22″ barrel, it hits the sweet spot for carryability.

Christensen Arms is one of the original carbon fiber barrel makers and they have it down to a science. Light weight, rigidity and heat dissipation are some of the benefits. The stock is made of carbon fiber as well, continuing the theme of lightweight durability. There is also the titanium receiver. Titanium is one of the lightest and strongest metals, and its use for the receiver adds to the nimble feel and agility of this rifle.

Another factor on the continuum of quality is precision. The way things fit together matters, understanding the difference between tight and too tight, and knowing how to get there is what sets some companies apart. Christensen Arms started in the aerospace industry, literally building rocket and aircraft parts where exact tolerances are the expectation and anything less is unacceptable. Cycling the bolt on the Titanium gives you the feeling of confidence you get when precision is in your hands.

In my estimation, another gauge of quality is design. While some of this is purely aesthetic, much is predicated on effective use. Little things like the spiral fluted bolt reduces weight and the fluted bolt handle adds grip texture while adding a striking look. The stock is finished in a metallic gray with black webbing adding texture as well as a distinctive subdued look for hunting situations. The contrast of the bead-blasted titanium receiver and the “aerograde carbon fiber wrapped barrel” is stunning, and both features reduce weight without sacrificing strength. Altogether, it’s a great-looking rifle and life is too short to hunt with an ugly gun.


The lightweight titanium receiver, carbon fiber-wrapped barrel and carbon
fiber stock give the Ridgeline Titanium its nimble feel and agility.

To get the most out of the long-range capability of the 6.5 PRC a quality bipod is a must.
This B&T Industries quick-detach Atlas V8 model is ideal for a light mountain rifle.

Accuracy first

Christensen Arms has a “Sub-MOA Guarantee” and this rifle is within the tolerance. I recorded ¾” groups with Hornady 143-grain ELDX loads and slightly over ½” groups with the 147-grain ELDM.

Another factor I really like about the Titanium is it’s offered in the relatively new 6.5 PRC cartridge. For those who haven’t heard, the 6.5 PRC is the best cartridge ever made and can cleanly kill an elephant at 2,000 yards. Since you can’t see me, I hope you can sense the sarcasm in my words. I’m well aware of some of the claims made about several new wonder cartridges, but I truly love how we live in a time where we can have these debates and discussions.

I am a fan of the 6.5 PRC but will admit to initially being a bit of a skeptic and late- adopter of the 6.5 bore — but now I’ve been shown the light. Clearly there have been many good 6.5s before the 6.5 Creedmoor and the 6.5 PRC but I think the 6.5 PRC is an ideal cartridge selection for a mountain rifle for pursuing medium-size game like most sheep and goats. As shortening your barrel will reduce velocity and downrange energy, starting with more velocity allows you to shorten your barrel length to handy, light, mountain rifle-configurations while maintaining enough downrange energy to reach a little farther — and, sometimes in the mountains, you need it.

One thing I wasn’t a fan of with the Titanium was the included 360-degree “Titanium Radial Brake.” I applaud them for including a muzzle brake as well as a thread protector, but it’s not for me. My first couple trips to the range left me covered with dirt and dust from the blowback. Like all brakes, it increases the noise and blast to the shooter, which I can do without. I do appreciate the benefits of reduced recoil and will shoot some rifles with a brake but in this case I think it’s unnecessary as another advantage of the 6.5 PRC cartridge is it’s relatively mild recoil. Even with the diminutive configuration of a light mountain rifle, it’s not going to create enough kick to inhibit accuracy and cause you concern.

I sometimes envy one of my hunting buddies’ approach to hunting rifles — he has a 7mm blue/walnut Model 700 he’s been using effectively for decades. He’s confident with it and it has never let him down.


Mark added Caldwell’s PIC Rail Adaptor Plate to the sling stud, giving the rifle
a Picatinny rail mounting point for a bi-pod and a sling attachment.

Choices, Choices

I, on the other hand, struggle with compromise when it comes with hunting rifles. I guess I’m a bit of a gun whisperer. They just speak to me, telling me what their mission is and prodding me to get out there and get it done. Judging from some of my other hunting buddies, I’m not alone though. I challenge you to seek out one of these Christensen Arms Ridgeline Titanium rifles and throw it up to your shoulder. I’m pretty sure it’ll have a message for you …

Oh yeah, Plan B. Ultimately, Hawaii opened up for travel and after a couple COVID tests and lots of travel drama I was able to hunt with my trusted friends at Maui Hunting Safari. Axis deer are some of the toughest animals I’ve ever hunted and the Titanium in 6.5 PRC was an ideal selection. The 143-grain ELDX loads cleanly dispatched a nice buck and several does. The Christensen Arms Ridgeline Titanium spoke up, I listened and now we have fantastic meat for the foreseeable future.

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