A new tradition started in the fabled chronicles of the shotgun sports.

The first Southern Side by Side Fall Classic took place over three days at the Back Woods Quail Club in Georgetown, South Carolina -- with a spectacular pheasant tower shoot as the day-before opener.

At the helm of the new event was the steady hand of Bill Kempffer, the guiding force behind the Southern Side by Side Spring Classic held the past nine years every April at his Deep River Sporting Clays and Shooting School in Sanford, North Carolina.

In the shadow of Capitol Hill, a forgotten patriot consigned to America’s trash heap of the unemployed has created a new national symbol that celebrates the values Sarah Palin holds true.

Down the hill, behind the old Jefferson County manor house, a six-point buck stood alert under the autumn sky. The dense trees put forward garden colors of carrots, raspberries, pumpkins and sweet peas. I rested against the stone wall. Traces of summer lingered with the few insects flitting around in the warm dusk. As the moon grew brighter I knew Prospect Hall would justly serve the Holland & Holland Royal in the trunk of my car.

The Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade Show and Conference (SHOT Show) is the largest and most comprehensive trade show for all professionals involved with the shooting sports and hunting industries. You'll find plenty of so-called black guns for the tactical market, state-of-the-art bows, ammunition, a boatload of pistols and just about every conceivable gadget and gear on the planet for the hunting and shooting enthusiast as well as tools of the trade for the police and military.

There are no signs on the factory at 420 North Walpole Street in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, but open the old door and the pungent smell of machine oil is your first hint that the Ithaca shotgun is being re-born.

You probably already have some preconceived notions about your dream shotgun, and that is just fine. But sometimes it pays to seek advice from someone who has had literally hundreds of shotguns pass through their hands, had so many different stocks touch their cheek, fondled so many receivers. Lucky for me, I am one of those folks, so hopefully what I’m going to tell you might help with your future purchase.

We’ve witnessed the revival of shotgun legends in recent years, but based on our field tests of the three new Veronas, none have combined the affordability, reliability and performance as these Italian workhorses.

Shooting 100 rounds of sporting clays with the new Caesar Guerini Apex is best summed up by how the gun performed on the last station: I crushed a pair of teals with a single shot.

Shotgun Fit: What You’re Missing

A proper fitting shotgun is so important that some folks are willing to spend $90,000 and more to get it. For that $90,000, you can take possession of a bespoke Purdey side-by-side custom fit to you much as the company did to the British landed gentry in the 19th century.

But for shooters who don’t have the money or the time to wait 12 long months for their shotguns, you can fit an off-the-shelf shotgun to your frame in ways that will enable you to hit plenty of targets -- consistently.

Ask the experts about purchasing a shotgun and the first thing they’ll advise is to make sure it fits. In this section you’ll find everything necessary to help you understand the dynamics of a well-fitting shotgun…

What to look for Eye domination Trigger pull Adjustable combs Adjustable butt plates Common mistakes Low gun fit

Cleaning Your Shotgun (Or Not)

Do you really need to clean your shotgun?

You’d be surprised that the answer is: “It depends.”

One 50-year veteran shooter will hardly ever clean his over/under. He’ll go shoot birds in Argentina with a dirty shotgun, spend a few days shooting 4,000 rounds or so -- and just keep on shooting without a drop of Hoppe’s ever touching it.

Then there are shotgun owners with semi-automatics that need to give it a good cleaning every 300 rounds or so.

And then of course there are shooters who clean their shotguns after a few rounds of skeet.

What’s right? What’s wrong? Well, it depends.

In this section you learn the ins and outs of proper shotgun care…

The importance of a clean shotgun Products that do the job

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Irwin Greenstein
Publisher
Shotgun Life

PO Box 6423
Thomasville, GA 31758
Phone: 229-236-1632

igreenstein@shotgunlife.com