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2013 Hog Hunt at Bangs Paradise Vally Hunt Club 

now known as Collins Low Country Hunt Club

March 6-10, 2013
I went on a guided hog hunt at Bang’s Paradise Valley Hunt Club.  The entire experience was top notch.  The lodge and meals were great, the guides were awesome, and the hunts were something that I will not forget.  During my time there I saw over 50 hogs.  I took two nice boars and a meat pig. 

They have not guided many handgun hunters and I do not think they have guided any serious handgun hunters.  They were a little shocked when I did not have a long gun, but they worked with me.  They have a large amount of stands and they are all expertly placed and safe.  Most of the hunting I did was from bow stands with open fronts.  These types of stands were great for me since I was using a traditional style pistol.  They do have rifle style stands with shooting rails but you will be missing out trying to hunt from these.

All of my hogs were taken with my custom 10mm handguns.  The load was a book load with Star Line nickel brass, WLP primers, Unique, and Sierra 165 JHC bullets.  This load performed extremely well on the pigs showing massive energy transfer and shredding vitals.  The internals were turned to pudding where these bullets impacted.

Details of the Hunts:

Meat Hog:
The first evening I was sitting in a hillside bow stand, about 45 minutes after being placed I had some meat pigs working up out of the swamp to come eat the nuts that were on the ground.  I was hunting with a 6” longslide 1911 fitted with an aimpoint optic.  To get the first pig down and out of the way I took the first shot I could.  At about 55 yards I placed a heart shot on a 40 pound meat pig and it was DRT.  The bullet went clean through the little hog.

Big Boar:
This was a great hunt.  My guide Rick watched the cameras and patterned the biggest boar they had on the property.  We settled on an up close and personal in a bow stand in a low swamp.  I was in an archery hang on stand at 19 yards from the pigs trail.  Several sows and piglets came out and then the big freak nasty boar worked his way out.  He came in really slow and cautious.  He stepped into the shooting lane at 19 yards and leveled and aimed my 6” long slide with the aimpoint on it and sent the Sierra JHC bullet through both lungs and the bullet had stopped in the opposite shoulder.  Once hit, he took off at warp speed and I quickly hit him with a second round that was a dead center hit on the heart and he plowed head on into a tree.  The pig was DRT or as my guide Rick would say he was down for a dirt nap.  The second round stopped in the shield after passing through the heart.  The bullet was recovered and showed perfect expansion and near perfect weight retention.  This boar was 220 pounds live weight.  It was all we could do to load the big freak nasty up in the truck.

Mini Me Boar:
The last night of the hunt I was sat on a hot stand for some meat pigs.  I ended up sitting well after dark with my 6” 1911 with iron sights and a Stream Light TRL-1.  Around 8:30pm I heard movement in the shooting lane.  I cut on my light and saw an opossum and in the far edge of the light I saw some green eyes.  I cut my light off and heard footsteps.  A moment later I cut the light back on and at 45 yards there he was, a young boar about 160 pounds.  I leveled the fiber optic sight and put it just behind the ear.  I let the shot fly and struck him about 6 inches back from the ear on the shoulder.  He instantly sat down in obviously great pain.  I tapped him again in a rapid manner and hit him in the back of the lungs.  He took off and we blood trailed him in the morning.  With one good hit and one ok hit he went about 300 yards.  A bullet was also recovered from this hog and it looked just like the one from the big boar.

Overall Review of the hunt:
Bang’s Paradise Valley is top notch.  I give the hog hunts an A+.  I give the food an A+.  I give the lodge an A.  The reason for the deduction for the lodge is the bedding was a little rough but still pretty good.  It was a family oriented business.  By the second day I felt like I had known my guide for my entire life.  It is a hunt I would recommend and will recommend to my customers.  

Gear Review: 
The 10mm worked out great.  Accuracy was great and energy was good.  Only issue was the fact the bullet did not exit so it didn’t leave good blood trails.  This was a bullet issue and not a caliber issue.  A lead bullet would have left the blood trails but the JHC delivered all of its energy and devastated the hogs.

From what I have noticed the best ticket for the handgun hunter would be big heavy bullets in a firearm capable of multiple shots.  Hunting the archery stands was a rush.  I wouldn’t want to sit back with a single shot and do it from distance.  Shot distances in most cases will be 50 yards or less.  If you want to sit in the rifle stands, you may be able to shoot 150 yards.  I feel that any firearm that is 357 magnum power or above will have plenty of energy as long as proper bullet choice is used. A quality red dot optic like the aimpoint would be my first pick for hog hunting.  It was fast for follow-ups and allowed pin point accuracy at distance.

Pre-Hunt Practice:
I practiced shooting with both 10mm handguns every day for three weeks leading up to the hunt.  I practiced from 25 yards to 150 yards.  Most sessions were 10 rounds or less.  Focus was on accuracy with two practice sessions focused on quick follow-ups.  I practiced on cardboard hog targets so I could get use to the sight picture on the hog.  I fully believe this practice is what helped me hit every target I put my sights on.