Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Ultimate Survival Rifle

I have been around long enough to realize there is not really the perfect rifle for all circumstances but I would like to have a dialog about an often overlooked gun.
I was recently over at my friend Stephen's (standing outside looking in) place of business. I go over there sometimes because he is kind to me and lets me drink his coffee and use his bathroom, I know too much info.......anyway I saw an article in Shotgun News about a 22 sniper rifle. It went on to discuss the benefits of this and it got me to thinking and revisiting what views I have long held. I know most  prepers or survivalist's see the benefit of the 22 LR and the "experts" agree they are one of the must have guns in a SHTF situation however they mostly relegate it to the dispatching  of small pests and such. If you go into any gun store they are willing to sell you all kinds of expensive  rifles (some of which I do own) and you sometimes get the impression they look down at the lowley 22
I learned to shoot a Winchester 22 single shot like the top one here and learned as a youngster the value of making shots count. Many make the mistake of substituting training and skill with an expensive "Black Rifle" which is a big mistake on their part.  If in a survival situation you  were to pit a "armchair warrior" with $5,000 worth of guns and equipment against one  well trained gun handler armed only with a Ruger 10-22 (bottom rifle in picture) I know who I would put my money on and in return they would "own" the expensive equipment.  I have heard Prepers bemoan the fact they can't afford a lot of nice "stuff" I have been quick to point out money is not the most important factor in being well equipped, there are plenty of inexpensive high powered rifles to be had. My point here is to not overlook the 22. During the depression I had kinfolk who fed their family's with a 22 as did many others. I do not doubt that the 22 has killed every animal in North America although I don't recommend hunting bears with it fact is it has ,  Apart from the 30-30 I would bet the 22 has killed more deer than any other rifle. Now I know it is illegal to do so in any place I know of but my purpose is to say don't underestimate it's killing power, ever see "Swamp People" It's apparently their weapon of choice. I know of slaughter houses that have used the 22 to put down large beef cattle every day. One of my favorite guns to shoot is an AR-15 fitted with a 22 adapter, cheep and fun to shoot.  Another benefit of the 22 is not as loud, a bonus when stealth is important . In a SHTF situation there is nothing like shooting a 30-06 and announcing to anyone a mile away of your location when a 22 would have done the job. The Air Force issued the AR-7 survival rifle (22 LR) for many reasons I have listed here so downed pilots could survive.                             
In conclusion, I am not advocating a 22 being the only gun needed but don't overlook it's importance in your preps along with a lot of range time, it's fun and cheep to shoot.
  A good semi auto 22 may be worth it's weight in gold (maybe literately) one day.


  1. Duke, the coffee is always hot. Very good post and I very much agree. You and many others have heard me time after time say, "never underestimate a .22." They work. On the deer - I've downed at least four with a .22. Well done. I'm still looking for my AR-7 by the way.

  2. Thanks Stephen, I will take you up on the coffee.

  3. A Charter Arms AR-7 was the first gun my Dad gave me at the age of 10 (my first was a Marlin 60 given to me by my Grandfather at 2 weeks old). I have loved it ever since. I have had numerous people laugh at it while at the range, then stop when I dusted my targets. One of those people was a Recon Marine who was "teaching" his buddy how to sight in a AR-15 at 100 yds. They quit laughing when I knocked down all my coke cans and then proceeded to pepper the bullseye of their target, ruining it for the "sighting in" that was taking an awfully long time. I then walked off chuckling at their dropped jaws. She is a ugly little monkey, but oh so sweet. And yes...the stories about the originals going "full auto" every so often are true. Every once in awhile she'll do a three round burst. The first time was butt clinching, but now it's fun to watch the faces of folk while out shooting at the farm. Good read, Duke. 22s are the bomb!