Hard Realities

Most GUNS readers likely enjoy shooting and would shoot more if they could. But several things prevent this. One is cost. Centerfire rifle ammunition is expensive. Cost can be reduced by reloading, which brings us to the next issue: Time. Just getting to a range can take a couple of hours of driving. And reloading — though it can be enjoyable in its own right — eats up the clock as well.

Even with unlimited ammo and time, the recoil of centerfire rifles can take the fun out of lengthy shooting sessions. Recoil fatigue can reach the point where the shooter starts to flinch. And “practicing” a flinch is a lot worse than not practicing at all.

I love shooting .22 rifles. I can hardly imagine a rifle enthusiast not owning one. And yet … sometimes I’m a bit out of touch with the reality of modern life. Half a century ago by the age of 12 or 13, two or three of my pals and I could walk 10 minutes out of town, carrying our .22 rifles (and they were ours), find a safe place to plink or shoot gophers, walk home again and never draw a comment or sidelong glance. The past is indeed another country.