I'm able to shoot 5 inch groups consistently at about 60 feet. After that accuracy drops rapidly. At 100 feet I'll hit a standard paper plate about 4 out of 10 shots.
For shotgun firing with my Mosberg 590 12-ga., I shoot at human shaped targets between 5 and 25 yds. Just like my other firearms, I will also shoot from different positions, even esoterical positions.
I shoot my Vaquero 45 at 7-15 yards regularly, but out to 25 occasionally.
That is an 8x12 inch target, 2 hits out of 6 and the misses were very close.
I believe there are those better than I; so I don't disbelieve, but instead I endever to excel.
Of course, MOA (minutes of angle) being what they are, if someone mistakenly says I shot a 6 inch group at X yards instead of X feet, then they really shot an 18 inch 'group'... which would put most shots off the COM.
I think of myself as a decent shot, and I just did an IDPA classifier. On the third stage (which I shot first), you shoot most of your shots at 60 feet, and the 'zero' ring is 8 inches across. I dropped 9 points in 30 rounds. This was the first stage that I ever shot, and had a lot going through my mind. At any rate, I'm sure I could have shot more accurately had I not rushed, but at any rate, my point is simply that I consider myself a decent shot (I qualified as a 'sharp shooter') but still missed a gigantic target (8 inches) on a bunch of rounds. Judging by what I've seen others do at the range, I would hazard to guess that far too many people mistake yards with feet!
Some people no doubt confuse feet and yards. However, don't let some peoples' errors cause you to doubt the abilities of well practiced shooters. I can get sub 2" groups out of my 44mag at 50 yards. Likewise I can shoot minute of deer vitals with it out to 100 yards pretty handily. I've hit beyond 100 yards with it as well, but the front sight starts covering a lot of real estate at such distances.
It's mainly a matter of getting out and practicing up to the level you want to be at. Long range rifle shooting is much the same. The first attempts I made at our 880 yard target with my 300 win mag were almost comical. I swore up and down that there was no way that gun could connect at such distances. Shortly thereafter, a good buddy of mine who is a retired marine sniper picked up my rifle, stoked it full of 210 grain VLD over a big dose of h1000 handloads, and rang the bell 4 shots in a row from 880. He handed me my rifle back, expressed to me that I was a part of the female reproductive system, and laughed. He's since helped me immensely in developing my longer range rifle skills, and has made sure I always take a good ribbing in the process.
Good guidance and good practice can really take people a long way. The only bad thing is that a person can quickly spend a boatload of money developing their skills.
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I routinely practice at 25 yards/25 meters with a Ruger P-95 (9 mm). I do better with it than with the P-89.
Accuracy - I can't say I get three inch groups but I can say I hit the green on the police shilouette target. It may not be a one shot stopper but it will hurt.
Ya, I never doubted people can't shoot well at those ranges. I was WONDERING (lol) if some people do get the two mixed up.
Shoot, I've seen in person a friend hit 3" clays set up on a hillside at about 75+ yards with his 6" 44 mag. Very impressive.
I think tacman has me pinned about mixing up combat accuracy with target accuracy.
There's a BIG jump in skill...the vast majority of shooters I've seen have trouble getting decent hits on a target at 10 yards, much less 25 yards. Then you run into the guys that actually practice. Shooting IPSC, I'm amazed at what some of these overweight old guys can do accuracy-wise while running around on damaged knees. I've also seen some of the really good guys, like Rob Leatham, who, after locking into his firing grip and stance was shooting the middle out of the target while facing the crowd and talking...so without even looking (admittedly at maybe 10 yards or so) he was doing pretty well.
Wish I was more in the latter group, but I'm somewhere in between. 50 foot Bullseye I'm getting maybe 3 inch groups when including the all-too-regular fliers. Two handed freestyle, I'll get you a 2-4 inch group at around 10 yards while warming up for a match. So plenty of room for improvement on my part!
Could the OP possibly be talking about that guy you watched at the range shooting shooting at fifty yards then listening to the same guy later at the gun shop talking about the one hundred yard group he shot and using you as a witness?
Former bullseye shooter here. I always check loads for accuracy from a bench at 25 yards. Practice is at least 15 yards.
I know , if I state what I practice and know I can shoot from a normal standing position and standard iron sights .... I'll get a bunch of BS about it. I don't care. So, I'll mention only .... "why" I practice at 100 & 200 yrds..... all of the time with my handguns (revolvers and semi's).
I can guarantee you two things ;
1) you never will be able to do it IF .... you are convinced you can't, never try, and never practice it.
2) I look at it this way .... if I can hit it at 100 yrds, then I'm confident I can hit it @ 50 yrds.... if that's where the guy is standing who is shooting at me. And, I dang well want to better at it than him.
I'm in that older with bad knees group.
I'm about to start shooting two different rifles , done with purely iron sights, and see how good I do (since they are known for this distance) @ 800 yards. I watched a 55 yr old woman ... who shot one of these rifles and hit a torso sized target @ 800 yrds, time after time after time after time. I shoot 450 yrds with my 30-06 all of the time , but it's scoped. We'll see how I do @ 800.