Another guide said when a client shows up for a plains game hunt with a .416 or larger he knows he is in for trouble. People do kid themselves, and some see recoil tolerance as a test of manhood. Some shoot their big guns very well at the range, often with the aid of added weight, and if limited to a shot or two a day in the field, they can get by. But recoil effect is cumulative and the old devil flinch is always waiting for an opportunity.

Another guide said the best game shot he ever saw was an American using a 7mm-08 rifle, with Barnes bullets as I recall. He took around 20 game animals, all one-shot kills, and it made no difference if the game was standing, running, near or far.

Inability to shoot offhand — I’m a bit skittish to mention this as I’ll always recommend using a rest if at all possible — and in Africa where the guide will have a tripod or bipod a rest is almost always available. But if game gets up suddenly, especially when following up wounded game, the ability to place a fast offhand shot is a good tool to have. Yes, it is a skill needing practice — and, while competitive offhand shooting is really hard, practical game shooting skill is not so difficult. If a moose or elk appears at 50 yards, rather than hunt around for a rest, just shoot it. Hitting a vital area the size of a microwave at 50 yards should be fairly straightforward.