The first time I had the chance to try real long-range targets was at a ranch in Colorado. I’m from the East where it’s hard to find a rifle range longer than 200 yards—800 yards might just be in the next zip code where I live and shoot. There were steel plates hung up at 500, 600, 700, and 800 yards across a red-rock canyon. A rancher said, “Wind’s calm. Have a go at them.” He called my misses—easy to do when bullets smash into cliffs. At each distance this wonderful “gong” sound echoed back when the bullets smashed into steel plates hanging on cables. I thought that paper is needed for precision shooting, but wow it’s useful and fun to shoot steel with a rifle at long ranges.
This is what the World of Targets Boomslang Gong from Birchwood Casey offers. These targets are made for those who want to shoot steel with their centerfire rifles.
The Boomslang Gong has a diameter of 9½ inches and is constructed of tough ½-inch AR500 steel. It comes with a stable base so you can keep on shooting it. The target also breaks down. Its base folds flat. It is rated for centerfire handguns and rifles up to and including .300 and .338 Magnum calibers. Minimum distances from the shooter to the target are 25 yards for handguns and 100 yards for rifles. Birchwood Casey says high-velocity rounds (those with 3000-plus FPS muzzle velocity) and magnum loads should be used at a minimum distance of 200 yards. ($155.60; birchwoodcasey.com)