Christmas is a wonderful time to spend with family and friends, but early January soon rolls around and the days labeled as “holiday” on your calendar are past. While it would be great to shout “Humbug!” and keep doing whatever it is you do during days off, it’s time to get back to work.
But not so fast.
Chances are good that in addition to an ugly sweater, someone gave you cash for Christmas. Sure, you could use the money to buy a new dishwasher, but that would be no fun. I say wash the dirty plates by hand (or better yet, assign it to your kids) and instead get yourself something that will make memories for a lifetime, like a new Mossberg shotgun.
To be more specific, I have three models in mind. I’ve hunted with two of the three guns, and hope to give the third one a try during spring 2017.
The first is the Mossberg 930 Pro-Series Sporting Shotgun. During October 2016 l I carried this 12 gauge in the pheasant fields of South Dakota. This semi-auto is designed for the competitive clay shooter – believe me, I’m not one – but I found it to be just as deadly on birds made of clay or flesh and feathers.
To provide a competitive edge, Mossberg collaborated with professional shooting instructor and renowned OSP (Optimum Shotgun Performance) School Founder, Gil Ash, on its design and features. Unique to Mossberg’s Pro-Series shotguns are the boron nitride coatings on the gas piston, piston ring, magazine tube, hammer, sear, return spring plunger and return spring tube for enhanced corrosion resistance and ease-of-cleaning. And the shell stop, bolt slide and elevator receive additional finishing which reduces overall friction on internal parts and provides for faster follow-up shots.
The 930 Pro-Series Sporting 12-gauge, 3-inch shotgun has a dual vent-gas system for reliable operation and is housed in a semi-gloss-finished walnut stock and forend. The unique ergonomic design of the stock, with measurements formulated by Ash, provides for proper fit and eye alignment for most shooters. Mossberg’s 930 Stock Drop System allows for customization of fit with drop-at-comb adjustment shims. The slim-contoured forend has laser stippling for a positive grip. The complementing Tungsten-finished receiver is treated with a durable Cerakote protective coating and the 28-inch vent rib, ported barrel has a blue finish. And I really like this handsome touch: Completing this package is the “Pro-Series Sporting” logo engraved on the receiver.
This competition-ready shotgun features field-proven, performance-enhancing details including a beveled loading gate for quicker reloads; HiViz TriComp fiber-optic sight, which comes with interchangeable LitePipes of varied shapes and colors to maximize visibility in any competitive environment; and extended Briley choke tube set (Skeet, Modified and Improved Cylinder). The 930 also features a quick-empty release button that provides for convenient unloading of shells from the magazine. Nice!
If Santa placed $1,000 in your Christmas stocking, then the 930 Pro-Series Sporting Shotgun can be yours. (You’ve been nice, so do it!)
A second firearm to consider is the Mossberg International SA-20 All-Purpose Field Shotgun. For 2 days in South Dakota I carried the 930 Pro-Series shotgun for pheasants, but truth be told, I prefer a 20 over a 12 in most situations, so on day No. 3, I opted for the SA-20.
This lightweight, soft-shooting semi-auto has a classically-styled, gloss-finished walnut stock with traditional checkering on the forend and grip. The polished blue finish on the exposed metalwork looks outstanding next to the walnut. The 26-inch vent rib barrel comes equipped with front bead sight and SA-20 Sport Set of choke tubes (Full, Improved Modified, Modified, Improved Cylinder and Cylinder) for added versatility. The SA-20 has a well-designed gas system that vents excess gases to reduce recoil and eases stress on the operating components for smooth, reliable operation. The 20 will handle both 2 3/4 and 3-inch shells, and includes an easy-load elevator, interchangeable choke tube system and convenient cross-bolt safety.
For whatever reason, the SA-20 and I got along VERY well in SoDak, and seemingly every time I pointed at a flushing pheasant and pulled the trigger, the bird immediately fell from the sky. This fast-handling shotgun is deadly!
You can afford the SA-20 All-Purpose Field Shotgun if Santa left $600 in your stocking.
My third firearm suggestion is the Mossberg International SA-20 Turkey Shotgun. I hope to field-test this shotgun during the 2017 spring turkey season, and if it performs anywhere close to the SA-20 All-Purpose Field model I used on pheasants, then I feel sorry for Mr. Longbeard.
This model comes with a Mossy Oak Obsession camo stock and forend, and an easy-to-handle 22-inch vent rib barrel. It has an Extended Turkey choke tube and is topped with a Fiber Optic 3-Dot Sight, which should be ideal for low-light conditions. Completing this turkey-hunting model is a matte blue metal finish, receiver-mounted top rail for ease of adding optics, and dual sling swivel studs.
Again, the SA-20 Turkey can be yours if Santa left $600 in your stocking.
Author’s note: Check out the interesting video below to learn more about the Mossberg 930 Pro-Series Sporting Shotgun, and a few more pheasant hunting pics follow in a P.S. Enjoy!
P.S. At ScatterGun Lodge in South Dakota, hunters travel in style to and from pheasant fields in a comfortable shuttle bus. As the photo below shows, Mossberg 930s and SA-20s are held safely in place during the short journey.