I just got back from my first trip to South Dakota, where I had a few days of hunting prairie dogs, viewing wildlife, and enjoying the wide open spaces. I took along a wide range of airguns, optics, and pellets to see how they performed in what I expected to be a high volume shooting situation.

My host on this trip was well known outfitter/guide Willie Dvorak, who hunts everything from deer and antelope to brown bear in South Dakota and Alaska. He also guides hunts for prairie dogs, pheasant, and predators

The shots on this trip was expected to include a lot of longer range opportunities out to 150 yards, and I brought several guns that I either knew or believed to be good candidates for this type of shooting.

I brought along the Benjamin Marauder in .22 and .25, the Airforce Taloin in .22, the Air Arms TWICE, the Rainstorm .22, and the Benjamin Rogue (which I expected to use for coyote).

The first thing I did on arriving was to head out for a session of checking the zero on my guns and getting used to the gun/pellet/scope combination at longer ranges.

There are thousands of acres of public grasslands where I could shoot, and I had but to drive out and find a convenient spot to set up and shoot. The pictures to the left and below shows some of the guns and gear I had set up for this outing.

For air I brought along three AirHog Carbon Fiber tanks, all of which filled to 4500 psi and would provide enough air for the many hundreds of shoots I planned to fire

My base during my days in South Dakota was the Fort Pierre Motel, which is a very clean and comfortable inn that caters to hunters and fishermen, and is nestled between two rivers. It is close to several good eateries and stores where anything you’ll need is available.

I saw more game in this area than I’ve seen anywhere before; mule deer, whitetail deer., antelope, grouse, prairie chicken, turkey, and literally hundreds, if not thousands, of pheasants

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