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Poppin’ Prairie Dogs Shooting the Stag Arms Pursuit

Stag Arms has been creating a buzz in the industry ever since they made their exodus from gun-unfriendly Connecticut to the 2A-positive state of Wyoming in 2019. In 2022 when Ryan Donohue became general manager, the company began to skyrocket. With Donohue at the helm, the team is focused on constantly innovating. While their core products are solid rifles at buyer-friendly prices, they’re always figuring out how to make their products even better. Whether it’s offering a plethora of left-handed options (cleverly branded “Lefty Mafia”) or coming up with ways to enhance the overall shooting experience, Donohue and his team never tap the brakes on their momentum. When it came time to test out some modifications and upgrades to Stag’s popular Pursuit hunting rifle, the team put together a fun T&E adventure that I was all too excited to join—a two-day ladies’ prairie dog shoot in beautiful southeast Wyoming.

Shooting the Stag Arms Pursuit Rifle

As a Texas gal, I’m more than well-versed in the damage feral hogs pose to landowners, but I hadn’t been aware that fields in other parts of the country were falling prey to prairie dogs and their similar destruction. Named for the sound of their canine-like bark, these ground squirrels can dig burrows 7 to 15 feet deep. Not only does this pose the threat of injury to horses and cattle, but prairie dogs also cut down grasslands to expand their field of vision, limiting the food supply of cattle herds. 

Field Ready

Our group of seven ladies arrived bright and early at the rancher’s 500-acre field for the first day of the shoot. The sheer number of prairie dog mounds stretched as far as the eye could see. They were everywhere.

We spent the morning of day one zeroing our Crimson Trace Brushline Pro optics, loading up countless mags with Fiocchi Hyperformance ammo and staking out the fields for optimal shots. Stag already outfitted the Pursuit rifles with Silencer Central Banish 223 suppressors and BSF carbon-fiber barrels in .223 Wylde–both 16- and 18-inch variants. These rifle are great-looking. Cerakoted in a rich, metallic midnight bronze, no detail went overlooked, right down to a Stag-branded leather panel on the adjustable Magpul CTR stock to ensure a comfortable cheek weld.

We went to work in teams of two–one spotting and the other blasting. It played out like the carnival game–Whack-A-Mole come to life. Prairie dogs pop up randomly and then retreat into their burrows with seemingly no rhyme or reason. Often, there would be pairs or sometimes even groups of three on a single mound. At times, we were shooting farther than 400 yards, so finding these small creatures was an effort in itself. Occasionally, they’d run from one mound to the next, which helped to spot them, but it took quite a bit of practice and some good-quality glass.

Easy Like Sunday Morning

These lightweight ARs, even lighter with the carbon-fiber barrels, made for an easy time of switching up shooting positions and carrying the guns from spot to spot. And it always feels great to be able to forego ear protection while shooting suppressed with lightweight Banish suppressor that boast a 34 dB reduction in sound. Shooting was easy. The recoil was controlled with a VG6 Precision Gamma 556 muzzle brake, and the Timney USA short two-stage trigger made follow-up shots effortless , which is crucial with this type of shooting. Other than a quick lunch break back at the trucks, we spent the entire sunny, breezy day—and the next—shooting away, ending day two with an epic multi-shooter Tannerite grand finale, because who doesn’t love some explosives on a random Wednesday?

The thing that impressed me most during these two days of nonstop shooting in a dirty, dusty environment is that every single one of the seven Stag Arms Pursuit rifles ran perfectly and consistently with zero issues, which is a testament to how using American-made, high-quality components makes a huge difference in a gun’s performance. 

The entire adventure was nothing but pure fun, great shooting and lots of laughs, all while helping a local rancher. I’m honored to have been part of the group assisting in the development of Stag Arms’ new Pursuit Pro AR line. While the configurations may change over the next months as the Stag team fine-tunes the rifles, I’m excited to see the line launch at SHOT Show 2024. For more information, visit stagarms.com.

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Source link: https://www.athlonoutdoors.com/article/shooting-stag-arms-pursuit/ by Niki Morrison at www.athlonoutdoors.com

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