Choosing the right gun

This is a discussion on Choosing the right gun within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; hey all looking for a small but powerful pistol to carry while backpacking threw the woods with my family. never cared much when i was ...

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Thread: Choosing the right gun

  1. #1
    New Member Array JAB3's Avatar
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    Choosing the right gun

    hey all

    looking for a small but powerful pistol to carry while backpacking threw the woods with my family. never cared much when i was by myself, but i do see some wierdos out there sometimes

    thanks

    i should have added that its people i worry about, not the wild life. and its mostly just the forest preserves around the house
    Last edited by JAB3; October 22nd, 2009 at 12:39 PM.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array gdm320's Avatar
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    I never carry in the backcountry, and I take at least one backpacking trip a month. I've had this discussion over on Backpacker's Forums a number of times.

    Keep in mind that laws differ from state to state and park to park whether you can even carry there... although obviously there is that National Parks law that goes into effect next February. Even that will not cover everything though.
    "Bravery is the capacity to perform properly even when scared half to death." -- General Omar Bradley

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    Member Array coriantan's Avatar
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    Be careful where you are when carrying as not all backcountry is legal.

    That being said, Small but powerful would be anything from the Khar CW40 to multiple options of .45's. Cost effective, I'd recommend either a Springfield Armory XD Compact .45 or a Glock .45

    Another great choice would be the Taurus Judge which shoots either .410 shotgun or .45 Long Colt

    I'd also recommend a standard target practice full metal jacket round if you are going to be using it to protect against bears or other large predators.

    Good luck, and happy hiking.
    ~Coriantan~

    "When seconds count, the police are only minutes away." * "Don't bring a knife to a gun fight."

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    Member Array SnubMan's Avatar
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    Well it sounds like your concerns are only for people so... I would carry a mid sized weapon in 9mm 40 or 45. I would get something with a tough finish since your back packing --- the gun is going to get sweat all over it (depending on how you carry it). I carry a G19 -- tough finish, hi-cap, reliable and its 9mm which is plenty good enough for ppl.

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    I carry a 20 oz snubby 41 mag (Taurus 415ti, now discontinued) but taurus has a light weight 5 shot 44 that will work. S&W has a 26 oz 44 for a bit more $$. Some think the 10mm is enough, and Glock's 29 is very small. I doubt that you could run up against anything in the lower states that a compact 45 couldn't handle. Check all the laws. Sounds like fun.
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    Distinguished Member Array BlueNinjaGo's Avatar
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    I'd recommend a Springfield XD 9mm subcompact... I have one myself and it's a great firearm so far...

    Many will recommend .40 or .45's, but I'd recommend a 9mm... Why? It's got less kick, so you can place more shots quicker. Magazines will hold more rounds. Ammo is cheaper (which is important if you practice, which you should...) and easier to get. And the statistics point that you won't get THAT much of a better chance to knock someone down with one shot when using a larger round... (There's many threads discussing it.)

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    Good recommendations but personally I would prefer a quality revolver in .357 with a 4-inch barrel, more ammo choices and less prone to failure. Be sure to carry a couple of speed loaders for spare or different ammo.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

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    Member Array Cougar's Avatar
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    .38 revolver with a 2.5" or preferably a 3" barrel (for better accuracy).

    The various 5 shot models can be relatively small. Some alloy constructions can be quite lite in weight.

    I gravitate to S&W.

    In my mind, these are the most reliable, accurate, trouble free, easiest to operate, most cost effective answer to the question.

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    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    For hiking through the woods, I'm thinking a .357 revolver with a couple of reloads is in order.... Take your pick on the platform, S&W, Taurus, Colt most any of the major ones is a good choice. Personally I'd go for the Colt or the Smith. The .357 round is what's important for all possible critter encounters.
    "He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one." Luke 22:36

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    Member Array Cougar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msgt/ret View Post
    Good recommendations but personally I would prefer a quality revolver in .357 with a 4-inch barrel, more ammo choices and less prone to failure. Be sure to carry a couple of speed loaders for spare or different ammo.

    Good advice, but with one of the qualifiers being "small", I hesitate to advise .357

    Shooting .357 rounds with a "small" (also read "light weight") gun aint that much fun.

    They're fun in my 42 oz S&W 686 6" barrel, but not so much in the small CCW "small" guns.

    Plus, when you stick to .38 or .38+p rated guns the weight and cost of the choices tends to fall - relative to the .357's.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cougar View Post
    Good advice, but with one of the qualifiers being "small", I hesitate to advise .357

    Shooting .357 rounds with a "small" (also read "light weight") gun aint that much fun.

    They're fun in my 42 oz S&W 686 6" barrel, but not so much in the small CCW "small" guns.

    Plus, when you stick to .38 or .38+p rated guns the weight and cost of the choices tends to fall - relative to the .357's.
    Good points as to the small I was thinking along the lines of either the Ruger SP-101 or a little larger the GP-100.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

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    Member Array hellhound94's Avatar
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    Don't get me wrong here as I love a .357 Magnum loaded with 125-grain JHP better than almost anything, but trekking through the woods with a fully loaded .357 along with a couple of spare speedloaders may be too much weight for this 'ol boy.

    I would stick with a revolver though, for various reasons. Probably a snubnose
    .38 Special.

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    Quote Originally Posted by msgt/ret View Post
    Good points as to the small I was thinking along the lines of either the Ruger SP-101 or a little larger the GP-100.
    +1. I am looking around for a SP101 with the 3 1/16" barrel, for the same scenario. I think the longer barrel and heavier built SP will make shooting .357 rounds much more enjoyable.
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    Member Array mfcmb's Avatar
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    A Kahr PM45 is about as small, light and powerful as you can get all at the same time.

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    Member Array rugger8869's Avatar
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    Have you considered a Ruger LCR perhaps, or a S & W 642 j frame. Might suit you well being small, light weight for backpacking.
    "SI VIS PACEM PARA BELLUM"
    (If you want peace, prepare for war)

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