Here is another great article from Bryan Lynch, author of Victorinox Swiss Army Knife Camping & Outdoor Survival Guide. Enjoy, JMc
I think most gun owners have at least one firearm that makes them feel nostalgic from time to time. The reason of its importance varies from person to person. Perhaps it was the first one you ever shot, or it was a gift. Maybe it was the one used on a successful hunting trip or it had been passed down through the family.
Whatever your reason, I thought I would take a moment to briefly share a few firearms that have been bouncing around my head lately.
I grow up in house of hunters and a shotgun was the primary firearm we used. But stuffed away behind the long guns was a Ruger Single Six sitting neatly in its leather holster and belt. For quite a while it fascinated me because it was the only handgun around and received little attention.
Then one day, when I was old enough, we took it out to the range, and I was allowed to fire it. I was in awe as the revolver was handed over and I shot my first handgun. It was a simple and beautiful gun. Smooth wood grips and an immaculate black metal frame. From that day forward that little .22 got quite a workout whenever we went to the range.
For the life of me I cannot recall the brand of the first shotgun I was trained on. But it was a single shot, break action like the Savage Arms Stevens 301.
It was the first real firearm that allowed me to join the hunting ranks of those around me. The one round capacity forced me to become hyper focused on every shot I took. This in turn increased my accuracy and I soon became the best shot in the group. Plus, there was just something about the break open action I thought was so cool. After a shot I would push the button, the barrel would snap downward, and the empty shotgun shell would pop out where I would catch it in midair.
Maybe it was because there were a lot of westerns watched in my house but at some point, I became obsessed with lever action rifles. It became the topic of most of my conversations for months and months and months until somebody finally caved in
A week later a Henry Lever Action showed up at the house. From my reaction you would have thought I had just received ten years’ worth of birthday presents.
We took that rifle out to the range every weekend, weather permitting. It was the first firearm I had experience with that could hold more than six rounds of ammunition and I savored every one of them. One would have thought I was practicing for 1000 yard matches as I dug in and became laser focused on precision.
However, it was also the first time at the range that I threw caution to the wind and sent many rounds down range in rapid succession. Flipping the lever over and over, watching soda cans dance around on the dirt was some of the most fun I ever had at the range.
As much as I loved those firearms, maybe it was not all about them. Maybe it was more about the experiences they provided, and the fun times shared by those involved.
Bryan Lynch is an outdoor and emergency preparedness enthusiast. Additionally, he is the author of Swiss Army Knife Camping and Outdoor Survival Guide as well as a content creator for various websites including www.guncritic.com