I’m a jerky fanatic, but I like biltong even more. If I had any idea how easy it is to produce, I’d have been making it years ago. The box cost $50 to make and gives us a continuous supply! I’ve lived all over the world and have spent almost as much of my adult life outside of the States as inside our borders. But my wife is South African, that’s where we married, it’s where I hunt every year, it’s been one of the constants in my life and there is a lot I love about the country. And on the food front, the thing I hold above all others is Biltong. Biltong fills the niche inhabited by jerky in the Americas and served the same purpose. In the past it was a way of preserving meat without refrigeration, and in present times it’s a snack to accompany a cold drink while watching football (rugby, soccer, or the real thing). Unlike jerky, which is smoked, biltong is treated with spices and air dried. The final product is similar, but even though I am a true jerky aficionado (a connoisseur even), must admit I like biltong even more. Every year when visiting family or out on safari we consume mass quantities of the stuff. The problem is that you can’t bring it back into the country and we haven’t found a place to buy it locally. The result is we have to go through a biltong drought eleven months ofRead More →

Jim Chapman and Eric Henderson head out on a Texas hog hunt at Lone Star Hunts. Here I was, back in Texas for another big game airgun hunt with Eric Henderson of Bigbore Airgun Adventures. We had planned to do the hunt in December; however my work schedule had precluded it. But then fresh into the New Year, I’d been called down to Dallas for a meeting …. and was able to schedule an open day for me. About 4:00 the day of the hunt (not my favorite wakeup time) Eric rolled up to the front of my hotel in the "Bigbore Truck" and after loading my minimal gear we were off. To make my travel easier, I left my guns at home and opted to use his. After a two and a half hour drive northwest of Dallas, and still in the dark, we rolled up to the gate of Lone Star Hunts. This operation is run by ranch owner Allen Shaffer, who after running dove, quail, and puddle jumping duck hunts for a number of years on his 2000 acre holding, decided to expand the opportunity for feral hogs and trophy rams. The ranch is open pasture with mesquite dotting the landscape, with particularly heavy cover along the creek running through the bottom lands. While Allen has a number of blinds and stands set up at strategic sites around the property, Eric and I both prefer still hunting, so that is exactly what we did. In this briefRead More →

If you have a big game animal taken with an airgun, email me your picture and we’ll get it up on the board. This is more than a bragging wall, it is intended to show the world what these guns can do! Chip Sayre and his Quackenbush .457 Chip hosted Eric and I on a hunt in Virginia this year (2010) and brought us to some really fantastic property. Chip shot this nice 9 point buck with his new Quackenbush .457 from a stand on his property at 30 yards. Chip is a very experienced hunter that has taken more deer than he can count, but this was his first gun with an airgun. I know that we have a convert to the sport, not to mention he has already put together a collection of airguns that would make many long time shooters envious! Seth Roweland 2010 Deer Season in Arkansas Seth is the owner of BHD and manufacturers a line of great hunting bullets for big bore airguns. Seth has several guns he uses for big game hunting, and in these pictures shows his successes with his Sam Yang 909, Jack Haley big bore and his Quackenbush .458 shooting BHD 250 grain solid cast bullets. Michigan Deer Hunt with Eric Henderson and Robert Vogel From last years hunt with Eric Henderson and Robert Vogel at Deer Tracks Ranch in Northern Michigan. We shot six deer in four days of hunting. Eric and Robert were using Quackenbush big bores inRead More →

I received several tins of H&N pellets to try out, and as I’m always on the look out for quality hunting pellets, was interested in seeing how they work out of several of my favorite hunting rifles. JSB Exacts and Beemans Kodiaks are excellent performers out of these guns, so I used them to benchmark the H&N Baracuda Match Part I: Close Range Shooting The Barracuda is a heavy (21.14 grain in .22 caliber) roundnose pellet that has been designed for field target and hunting at long range. The skirt of this pellet is substantially thicker than that on the JSB Jumbo Exact, exactly resembling that of the Kodiak.In fact I’ve been told these are the same pellets Beeman has marketed as Kodiaks, but I don’t know if there is any difference in manufacturing equipment use for the Beeman branded pellets. One thing I love about the H&N pellets is the packaging: for the H&N branded pellets, the tin is clearly labeled with model, the number of pieces, pellet weight, suggested application, the suggested range, caliber, and optimal energy level. Each tin has the information in the same place …… what a great idea! The packaging also protects the contents, out of several tins used there were no damaged pellets found. The manufacturer recommends the Baracuda be used in guns generating 12 – 40 fpe, so I pulled out a number of my hunting rifles to give them a go. The guns I selected were all proven performers that I’dRead More →

I am always looking for a gun that can be taken out for impromptu hunts when I am traveling. Looking at some of the online airgun shops I noticed the B-57, which is a breakdown spring piston air rifle. The Specifications: This guns is a spring piston power plant that cocks with a side lever and has an anti-beartrap mechanism to prevent the cocking lever shutting accidentally. The cocking effort is fairly light, and the pellets are loaded through a large chamber when the cocking lever is deployed. Performance: this rifle was chambered in .177 and the rifle generates about 620 fps with the light predator pellets. This yields a power of around 8fpe, which is adequate for small game and pests if the range is kept close. Later that night, I met up with my brother at a friends place to shoot some rabbits that were overrunning their commercial nursery. Rabbits were everywhere, but we only had an hour to shoot before we had to meet up with some other friends. These guys were fairly used to people and if you moved slowly could get into twenty five yards. On the first shot I lined up on the head and nailed him. The rabbit dropped without a twitch. As a matter of fact, I shot three more rabbits at about twenty yards, and each one went down stone dead. The last outing was a few days later in pursuit of prairie dogs, I went out to a property inRead More →

Eric Henderson and Jim Chapman head out with big bore air rifles in search of BIG BOARS I’d wanted to set up a pig hunting trip with Eric Henderson for quite awhile, and earlier attempts had fallen through. So when I found out that business would take me to Dallas, I gave him a call and we planned to hook up for a hunt. After clearing my meetings out of the way, the gear was loaded into my rental car and I drove over to EricÂ’s house. Phoning ahead, Eric said the plan was for Mark Bolson, Eric and I to connect up at his house then head over to the huge Bass Pro Shop out near DFW to eat, shop, and talk airguns. We had a good time getting to know each other; and after hanging out at this hunters dream store we called it a night and headed off to prepare for the (early) morning start. I said my goodbyes to Mark, as his schedule was not going to permit his joining in. I do hope on my next trip down that way heÂ’s able to make the hunt, as in the short time I’d gotten to know him I had the feeling he’d be a great guy to hunt with. I left a wake up call for 4:00 am (that hurts to even say!!!) and was packed up and at EricÂ’s house before 5:00. We loaded up in his new truck (and I have to tell youRead More →

South Texas Night Hunt It was going to be my last hunt of the season, a return to South Texas for a quarry that had foiled me on three hunts to date. This animal is not uncommon, it is not overly intelligent or hard to hunt, many people roll out and bag one early in the first attempt, but for some reason the southwestern deserts little porcinoid javalina continued to elude me. I’d have been surprised and not gotten off a shot, I’ve had equipment failure, and I’ve just plain struck out ….. so this time I was determined. I booked a hunt through Pete Reyes on his property about 80 miles south of San Antonio, with the plan to hunt Javalina with my .308 cnterfire and bring a selection of airguns for coyote, bobcat, raccoons, hogs and whatever small stuff came my way. I would have liked to hunt the javalina with an airgun, but as it is a game animal airguns are expressly forbotten. It is somewhat ironic that I can legally take a 300 lb hog with my .45 airgun, but not a 50 lb peccary. However, Texas is one of the truly hunter friendly states so I won’t complain! I will leave this part of the story by saying, I am still after my javalina and believe that when I finally bag one it will be one of the most expensive trophies on my wall! But the portion of my hunt I want to tell hereRead More →

Jim, Eric, and Derrick travel down to Texas Hill Country for a ram hunt at the Wildlife Ranch, and to tape footage for the Bigbore Airgun Adventure video series. After our last big bore hunting trip in North Texas, Eric Henderson and I had agreed to set up another hunt in the not too distant future. The phone rang a couple weeks later and it was Eric saying that heÂ’d found a new ranch to hunt down in the Texas Hill Country south of Dallas, with several species of exotic ram. It sounded like fun and we set a date to coincide with my next trip to Dallas. Eric told me that there was another hunter that wanted to join us, a sixteen year old named Derrick that post on the yellow forum under the handle of Stealth, and what did I think of him coming along? I said that it was fine by me, so the arrangements were made to hunt as a trio. Eric picked me up at the hotel on Friday morning and we headed over to the huge bass pro shop to pick up my license and do some window shopping before getting on the road. The cost of a five day exotic game license is $45.00, so I paid my dues and was set to go. Our next stop was to swing by DerrickÂ’s house, meet his folks, get his gear loaded up, and depart for our journey south. The ranch we were going toRead More →

This brief article was intended for publication in AI before their recently announced closure. As you may know if you’ve read my earlier articles or book, I travel quite a bit to hunt. This is not as easy as it once was … following are some hints and advice on how to get from point A to point B with minimal angst when travel plans call for air transport. I take my rifles with me quite frequently when traveling. This is of course, pretty easy when taking off on a road trip; throw them into the cargo space and hit the road. The complexity increases though when I’m going to fly to my destination. In the good old days, pre 9/11, I did not bother to declare my airguns when checking my bags and never encountered any problems. But recently the rules have changed; and air arms are now viewed in the same light as traveling with firearms. But before getting on to the topic of checking in at the counter, let’s take a quick look at how I pack the guns in the first place. An observation made in passing is that people can get nervous when they see a guy walking through an airport or hotel lobby carrying a rifle case. You can get by with this in Utah or Colorado during deer and elk season, it’s an altogether different story when you’re walking through the lobby of the Hyatt in San Francisco or Chicago attired in aRead More →

On a recent trip over to South Africa, I had the opportunity to spend the downtime when not big game hunting, wandering the bush and working areas of a huge sheep ranch with a collection of airguns to get in some pest control shooting. The two primary guns used were a BSA Superten in .22, and a Quackenbush Exile in .25. In the BSA a number of pellets were used, including the Predator Polymer Tips, RWS SuperDomes, Beeman Kodiaks, and Crow magnums. In the .25 I used RWS SuperDomes and Field Trophy roundnose and pointed pellets. We performed a lot of bench testing with these pellets before hitting the field, and all were known to be accurate out of the guns being used. Both guns had silencers, which are legal on airguns in South Africa . These were a very effective piece of equipment in the field, allowing multiple shots before spooking other animals in the region. The animals identified as pest that I was asked to remove on sight included a variety of starlings, crows and ravens, a several species of pigeons, hares, springhares, hyrax, and if possible, any jackal I came across. We shot the pigeons around the animal feeders where they would literally fill the sky at times, coming in and eating vast quantities of feed. This was fun shooting,,, sitting beside a big tree and waiting for the doves to land first. We didn’t shoot these, but after a few minutes the pigeons would land, andRead More →