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Handguns, Crossbows and Hogs - Here’s Why


Editor’s Note: Doug Koenig has hunted all of his life, has been a Mossy Oak Pro Staffer for 10 years and a professional competitive shooter. He shoots 3-gun tournaments and Sportsman's Team Challenge. He's a handgun world champion and national champion. He's won the Bianchi Cup, the most-prestigious handgun competition in the word, 15 times. He also has a TV show – “Doug Koenig’s Championship Season” that airs on the Pursuit Channel. The show features shooting competitions and big-game hunting. Koenig’s favorite two Mossy Oak patterns are Treestand and Break-Up. But he quickly admits, “I believe I have every pattern that Mossy Oak makes. I use just about every one of them each year, depending on what and where I’m hunting.”

I hope you'll join me on the Pursuit Network each week to watch “Doug Koenig’s Championship Season.” It airs in the third and fourth quarters, at 10:00 pm EST on Friday nights. It’s on at 1:30 am EST too and Wednesdays at 5:30 pm EST. We’re in the NRA Freedom Friday block of shows. We have several purposes with our TV show. We want to show how much fun the outdoor lifestyle is, how exciting it can be, and why so many people have such a passion for living this lifestyle. 

Hog_llWe also want to show the marriage between the hunting sports and the shooting sports, and why sportsmen should be involved in both these activities. We cover competitive shooting matches and show how exciting and how much fun they can be. We have shooting tips to help our viewers learn to shoot better, and we also take our viewers on some exciting hunts. We show how I prepare for a hunt - how I take care of my gear, and how I get ready for the hunt. I take my hunting just a seriously as I do my competition shooting. I feel that I owe the animals that I hunt the respect to be ultra-prepared for whatever I’ll face on the hunt. 

The goal of the show is to look for the crossover between hunting and shooting. I’d like for competitive shooters to see how much fun hunting is, and I’d like for hunters to see how they can enjoy the shooting sports like competitive shooting when hunting season ends. Even if the hunters just want to go out with their youngsters and shoot tin cans and hand thrown targets, there's still a lot of fun in shooting and being outdoors all year long.  

Living in Pennsylvania, we don’t have very many feral hogs, but I've taken feral hogs with my pistol in other states. In the spring of 2015, I have a wild turkey and feral hog trip planned for Florida. On this trip, I’ll have an opportunity to take both animals. I’ll take turkeys and hogs with a pistol, and I’ll also be shooting crossbows. This hunt will be set up for April, 2015. In many states, especially in the South and in the West, you can hunt hogs all year long with many types of weapons. I believe that handguns are great for taking hogs. Hogs are a big problem in many states. Sometimes you can even hunt them at night. 

As I’ve mentioned earlier, I also bowhunt with a vertical bow and a crossbow. Right now, I'm shooting a TenPoint crossbow. I really like the fact that the crossbow has a trigger, and it also has a scope on it. It’s another piece of equipment that I really enjoy. Also, I enjoy my ability to shoot and hunt with my vertical bow, which now has a mechanical trigger. 

With the vertical bow and the crossbow, you hunt the same way you hunt with a handgun or rifle. You have to get close to the animal, you have to know the yardage, and you have to know how the crossbow or vertical bow will perform at those different yardages. I’m keen on the crossbow, because it allows the older bowhunters to hunt longer and later in life. The crossbow gives newcomers to archery a vehicle to get them into the sport and into hunting. Now, the sportsmen who only have hunted with a rifle can get into archery, because of the easy step from a rifle to a crossbow to a vertical bow. 

I think the greatest advantage of the crossbow is that it also allows young hunters to start hunting at an earlier age. In some states, the minimum draw weight for a longbow is just too heavy for a 10-12-year-old youngster to pull, hold and aim accurately. But the crossbow gives them an opportunity to get in close, to aim accurately, and to find the spot they want to hit. It makes that shot achievable for young people. 

Day 2: Doug Koenig: Hunting Prairie Dogs at 400 Yards and Whitetails at over 200 Yards with a Handgun

Tomorrow: Doug Koenig: Handguns, Air Guns and .22s

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