I can think of several reasons why deer hunting with a handgun is enjoyable. For starters, it’s something different. If your hunting regimen seems monotonous and you’re thinking of trying something new, little else will wake you up in the morning quite like the roar of a hand cannon. It’s hard to emphasize roar enough here.
Plus, as we see more wildlife agencies allowing the use of straight-walled cartridges during firearms seasons that were previously shotgun and/or muzzleloader only, handguns have emerged as viable tools for long-range deer hunting. I can’t tell you how many big bucks I’ve heard of being harvested this year with straight-walled cartridges, but it’s enough to get me excited. Plus, several of the hunters who’ve shared their stories with me are novices to handgunning. That offers hope for a strong upturn in participation throughout this special interest niche.
In large part, handgun hunting for whitetails is worthwhile simply because it’s different. Aside from feeling a bit like “Dirty Harry” Callahan as you make your way to the stand with a serious handgun in tow, you’ll also feel excited to hunt with a weapon you’re not all that experienced with. As with other types of hunting, traveling the learning curve to proficiency is incredibly rewarding. It’s all part of the fun.
Without a doubt, you’ll be challenged — especially if you’ve never tried handgunning. It isn’t easy. Even when using a high-performance model, you need to be able to hold it steady to make a…