It takes an incredible amount of skill and experience to take an animal at 300, 600, or 900 yards—or farther. This is because the top priority of the ethical hunter is to make a clean and humane kill. This is also why long-range hunting is a bit of a controversial topic in many sportsmen’s circles. Ultimately the decision to take a long-distance shot is dependent upon the judgement of each individual hunter. These five videos showcase some of the best in long-range hunting.

1. 1,090-yard Wyoming elk

Brothers Mike and Aaron Davidson recorded this video with Todd Sholly and Curt Pilcher during a backpack hunt for elk in Wyoming. After following a group of elk, the party finally settled on a large bull elk more than 1,000 yards away. The shot, even at such an extreme range, was as clean as they come.

2. 1,860-yard coyote

In normal circumstances, .300 Win Mag and .338 Lapua are relatively big and expensive calibers to be taking coyotes with.

For the two hunters in this video, the additional cost of a heavier, powerful cartridge is a small price to pay for long-range performance. The hunters made two shots on a coyote a little over a mile away—roughly 1,860 yards. According to the video’s description, the shots were made simultaneously, although it was the .338 that struck and killed the ‘yote.

3. 825-yard bear

Not a whole lot of 16-year-olds can muster up the patience and skill necessary to adjust for an eight-foot bullet drop, especially when it comes to aiming for bears. Trevor Schneider’s harvest on public land is a superb showcase of his skill.

RELATED: 6 Close-range Hunting Encounters That Will Make Your Heart Skip a Beat

4. 805-yard whitetail doe

This video shows one hunter bagging a doe at 805 yards with a .300 Win Mag. The shot is clean and puts the deer down on the spot.

5. 975-yard Colorado elk

This shot was taken by Bob Beck of Extreme Outer Limits Television, and it seems to be right on-target. Even the forested mountains of Colorado offer little protection from an experienced marksman with the right rifle.

Image screenshot of video by ExtremeOuterLimits on YouTube

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  • I am not a fan of killing game and then just taking the horns/rack. I believe killing an animal for sport is not cool. Giving the meat to the needy, etc. is ok, but discarding it, is unethical hunting in my humble opinion.

  • Thom Raven

    this is bull—! No one who call himself a “hunter” will take a shot over 200 yards. The number of wounded animals as less experienced shooters try these shots is a disgrace to the outdoor community. Get close, make it sporting, or get of the air!

  • Jim Foster

    To take a shot at a long range is not hunting it’s shooting. Publishing information about the few foolish or maybe practiced people is very wrong when it gives the average hunter the thought he might be able to make the shot, then wound or cripple and animal who will be lost – I would bet money that hunter will kill again in order to use his/her tag. Why take a long shot when you are incapable of getting closer.

  • Michael Sabbeth

    this article illustrates many aspects of hunting that lead to compromised ethics, inspiring other hunters to try to duplicate irrational and or unethical shots and gives plenty of substance to anti hunters who argue that vanity motivates many hunters more than the elegance of the experience and more than the honor of fair chase. Figuring out a hold point for a clean kill on an eight-foot drop is far more a matter of luck than skill. I also ponder how many animals were wounded before the shots were made that are featured in this article. That is, I wonder what was omitted before this material was generated. Using a living animal to test some skewed notion of skill presents hunters in a very bad context. This behavior is not to be encouraged but strongly discouraged.

    • davezo6405 .

      If you think shooting long distance accurately is more a matter of luck than skill you know nothing about shooting..just saying . Dont give a shit about hunting ethics ..

      • R K

        The skill it takes is incredible no doubt. But that aside, even the most skilled miss as often as not. The lesser skill always miss unless pure luck. That doesn’t take away from the odds. The odds are not in the hunters favor regardless of the skill. It’s a gamble that doesn’t need to be taken. If you want to demonstrate your skill at incredible long distance, do it with targets. Not animals. Shooting at animals beyond 2-300 yards is irresponsible. Makes our sport hard to defend.

  • Mike Kerby

    I think this type of long range shooting should be discouraged, maybe even fined. the shooters, not hunters that are doing this are hurting hunting. This not ethicical even for varmints. I hope true hunters and game managers voice their opinion.
    Mike

  • Russell L

    The only unethical shots are the ones not practiced… There are MANY 100 yard shooters who have no problem shooting at

    running deer… wounding and not even looking for them…

    tpishdad …. They take the meat home OK…. irresponsible to assume they don’t…. Everyone has Packs on…

    Thom, I agree with you on one point … less experienced shooters should NOT take Long shots they have not practiced..

    Learn how to shoot Long range because EVERYONE Makes marginal shots wounding animals…. Including the 100 to 200 yard shooters….IF the wounded animal runs 300 yards away from you now its at 500 yards what do you do? Take another shot at

    that distance (If one has prepared in advance to do so)…

    Jim… it IS Hunting… You don’t give the hunting community credit for having common sense (in this instance)…. We know there are alot of people who “Hold-Over” and “Guesstimate” Shooters in the Field…. already… even more reason to Learn what your “Modern Firearm” is capable of and know what your bullet can do at 100 – 200 – and 300 yards past your Imposed Limit…. GOOD PRACTICE….

    Do any of you know the Trajectory of your hunting bullet say 300 yards past your imposed limit??? IF you don’t … I would say THAT Is NOT Responsible ….. How many times has any of us (myself included) went into the hunting woods not knowing
    this VITAL Information….. But we can Learn….

    Davezo6405 is correct in stating that Long distance shooting IS NOT A MATTER OF LUCK…. Its about Preparation…
    bullet selection, shooting close, and shooting at distance, collecting data, and being truthful with one’s self…

    IF you practice out to 700 yards but can only reliably hit out to 500 Yards …. THEN DON’T SHOOT ANY FURTHER UNTIL YOU CAN…..
    Michael Sabbeth … the shooters are NOT USING HOLDOVER….. They are using a RangeFinder (good ones cost $700 to $1000) they range the animal THEN they DIAL the Elevation KNOB… account for Wind… and they Have a Ballistic Program
    they use in the Field… the shots in the video are well organized… you see that don’t you? yes they are “Testing” their skill
    on a living animal BUT…. They have taken 100’s of shots on Steel Plates simulating hunting conditions… they are not just flinging lead…

    RK the most skilled (snipers even) miss, and wound… but ALOT of the Missing is done on the steel plates during practice…
    IF one Practices similar to that of a Sniper then the shots can be High Percentage…. I would suggest you “arm” yourself with
    information about longrange hunting and BE Prepared to defend Longrange hunting (even if you refuse to practice and shoot far)… I can defend close range and longrange…..

    Mike K . you are entitled to your opinion …. I respect that… We still have freedom (for now) It IS Ethical to shoot Varmints in this Fashion…. And we shouldn’t be fined for doing so…. My Opinion

    We are No longer a “Nation of Riflemen” …. Because we No Longer Practice shooting…. and get mad and resentful at those of us who do….

  • Michael Sabbeth

    10/16/14

    The story Video: 5 Long-range Hunting Shots That Will Make You Squint and its included video generated
    interesting comments. In my previous comment I made several assertions: that such long range shots were presumptively unethical, that a kill shot was more a matter of luck than skill and that such an article and its inclusive video are
    likely to encourage more hunters to take more long range shoots, which would generate more unethical shots.

    Other comments were more or less in agreement, with subtle distinctions except for one person who wrote “Don’t give a sh-t about ethics,” which comment was confusing to me.

    The long-range shooting issue is important and merits discussion and ultimately a consensus on what is or is
    not ethical would be helpful to the majority of hunters that want to be ethical and serve as positive role models.

    It is possible, I concede, that a highly trained professional-type shooter, with a support spotter and superb technology can make a long distance shot—let us leave out a yardage definition at this moment—more times than not if circumstances are ideal: no wind, a stationary animal, careful calculation of bullet drop and so forth.

    I argue that these combined circumstances are rare; probably very rare.

    One of the striking deficiencies of this article is the lack of substance or insight into the how much skill and practice is required to have even a remotely possible chance to make a successful shot. Practice must be considerable; self discipline must be considerable; the environment must be perfect, and knowledge of one’s rifle and ammunition capabilities must be mastered thoroughly. All of this is rare.

    The character or integrity of a person is determined not only by what he says or does but also by what he does NOT say or do. The videos do not show whether any of the hunters missed or wounded other animals; they do not show wounded animals. Yet it is not logical or probable that each of these hunters’ long range shots were their first attempt at long range hunting. Thus, it is highly likely that animals were wounded before these five videos of successful shots were made and then posted.

    The irresponsibility and lack of ethics exhibited by these shooters is evident from even their own words. In the video of the 1,860-yard coyote shoot, the hunters themselves described their success as crazy. They said it was an awesome shot. Awesome is not an adjective used to describe a shot that has a high probability of success. The hunters said they “broke the mile barrier on coyote hunting.” Well, that impresses me as a display of vanity and egoism rather than the mindset for making a prudent ethical high-percentage shot.

    In the video of the 825-yard black bear shot, one of the hunters said, “It’s kind of a hard target to hit.” “Kind of a hard target to hit” is not the foundation for an ethical high probability shot.

    Separate from the ethics—or lack of ethics—illustrated in this article on long-distance hunting is the ethics of Fair Chase, which I will leave for another day.

    I hope this lengthy comment clarifies my position and is useful for other hunters to evaluate the ethical content of long distance hunting. My conclusions are the same: it is more a matter of luck than skill when shooting in such a dynamic environment and it is unethical.

    Comments are welcome.

    MGS

    • jerwbuchuk

      These guys aren’t hunters, they are target shooters, using animals as targets! how much hunting expertise does it take to get within a 1000 yds of an animal. NONE. I wonder how many animals get wounded and lost that are edited out of their tv shows. No wonder the general public is getting more anti hunting every year. These guys do nothing to promote hunting and what they do is not remotely hunting. Good marksmen,yes, hunters? not by a long shot. Pun intended.

      • Michael Sabbeth

        excellent statement. The major point: these folks do risk damaging the image of hunters. It is difficult if not impossible to recover from such a damaged image. thanks

  • Ghost rider

    Welcome to the new era of long guns.where guns and powerful scopes and range finders help you reach out further.
    If it’s not hunting than what is it? Ask your self do you go out in wilderness and kill with your bare hands, no? Where is your sportsmanship. Silly people plenty of skill involved.

  • Simeli

    I know this is a very old thread, however I would like to point out some misconceptions.
    There are a lot more wounded animals left in the field by supposed hunters firing on running animals at 100 yards or less than any hunters making 500+ yard shots.
    The “typical hunter” does not have the discipline or skill and knowledge it takes to make a 800 yard plus shot on any animal. Most skilled long range shooters do in fact do a lot of target practice on paper targets, the vast majority of them know how to read the wind at different points along the bullet path. Try 1000+ yard ground hog or P dog shooting on a regular basis, or know that you can consistently group 5 or 10 shots at 8 inches around the ten ring on a target at 1000 yards.
    I have seen the typical ethical hunter hit a standing deer in the foot or rump at 300 yards, and then not want to trail him for more than that same 300 yards.
    In 45 years of hunting, I have never had to trail a deer more than 20 yards with 90% of them being spine shots that drop them dead where they stand, including many at 500 to 1000+ yards.
    Yes it is a skill, yes it is learned, but it is more than just practicing, it is learning how to load, how to accurize the weapon you are using including selecting the correct caliber, bullet weight, scope and then learning what it is capable of and how to use it..