If you’re a gun enthusiast, getting out into the woods for a day of shooting can be fun for you and your hunting party. You’re connecting with others and with the great outdoors. Hunting lets you dig deep into your primal nature, helping you become more focused and patient. However, when you go out to hunt, it’s important to keep in mind not just your enjoyment, but also your safety. Safely handling firearms is vital for you and those around you. Here’s what you need to know about safely handling guns inside and out.
The right to bear arms is laid out in the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution. It was written in a time when men may be called upon to fight in the armed forces or, if necessary, a militia. Today, it’s your choice to serve your country, and it’s also your choice to own a variety of guns and firearms. Each state has its own guidelines for everyone to follow so everyone remains safe. Be sure to check in with your state’s regulations before you head out. You must make sure you have the proper licenses, and that you’re only hunting in areas where it’s allowed. The Department of Natural Resources for your state will also provide resources about where you are and aren’t allowed to hunt.
When keeping a firearm for personal safety and protection, there are also regulations to which you must abide. Check your state’s rules regarding firearm permits, and whether open carry or concealed carry is allowed. Be careful to inquire about the reciprocity of these permits as well, as some states’ permits are not honored outside of that state. For instance, in Virginia, your concealed carry license will be honored as long as you keep both your photo ID and your permit on you at all times.
What to keep in mind when hunting
If you’re enjoying a day outside hunting alone or with friends, it’s critical that you always practice caution and remember to stay visible to other hunters. Wearing a brightly colored vest will keep you visible to other hunters and can reduce the possibility of accidental injury. A bright or neon vest may not be the most fashionable accessory for your hunting day, but it will surely provide you with the most safety when you’re in the hunting area.
You may also want to invest in a quality pair of ear muffs to protect you from the sound of gunfire. Level-dependent ear muffs will allow you to hear while protecting your ear drums from loud noises, which can damage your inner ears or cause hearing loss.
There are also accessories for you to consider adding to your firearm that will increase your safety and can even better your optics and targeting. An add-on like a shotgun laser sight will give you the ability to cast a laser onto your target, which can increase the precision of your shot. It will also increase the likelihood that you hit your target and don’t cause an unintended injury or accident. Laser sights can be attached to many types of guns to help you aim across all your firearms.
One last thing to keep in mind while you’re in the great outdoors with your gun is to make sure you’re always spatially aware. Part of the fun of hunting is that it hones your focus and increases your connectivity to your environment. Never use drugs or alcohol when you’re hunting, and remember to stay calm and enjoy your day in nature.