One Mile Shot by Kerry Stottlemyer

Written by Sierra Bullets Customer Kerry Stottlemyer

The powder, primers, brass and bullets (220 gr HPBT Sierra MatchKings #2240) were all purchased online while I sat around the fire pit in Akron. My uncle, Ron Stottlemyer, was serious about this trip and this shot. He was sparing no expense and assured me that everything would be ready in December to make this shot, the only thing left to risk was the weather. The area we were planning on has some unpredictable winds, but in December it’s pretty calm so we hoped for the best.

After a year of planing, my uncle arrived at the airport with his Remington Sendero in tow, a .300 win mag with a Leupold Mk4 LR scope on it. We went to my place to tear down the rifle, thread the barrel and install the muzzle brake I made for him. We worked hard to bed the scope base and remount and bore sight the scope before the weekend.

Remington Sendero

The rifle – a Remington Sendero in .300 Win mag with a Leupold Mk4 8.5-24X LR TRM scope, on Talley rings and a badger base. I threaded the barrel and installed the brake that we designed and I made, bedded the action, and bedded the scope base. Bore sighted it, reassembled it and tested everything for function and safety.

With everything packed, we headed out to the California desert to some Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land that would give us enough room to safely stretch the Sendero’s legs (see the photo below). Friday was spent reloading a few rounds at a time to get his scope zeroed, then on to working up loads for the next days attempt at 1760 yards (1 mile).

This is looking back at our camp from the target GPS marked 1.00 miles.

Looking back at our camp from the target GPS marked 1 mile.

Kerry Stottlemyer Reloading

Kerry Stottlemyer loading up the 220 gr boat tail Sierra MatchKings.

Saturday morning arrived and it was time to make breakfast and coffee. Mountain man breakfast in a dutch oven cooked over a camp fire. Bacon, sausage, potatoes, green peepers, onions, eggs, and cheese. Better then any breakfast made at home.

As we worked up loads, it only took about thirty rounds to get everything dialed in. I verified the powder scale again and loaded a little over twenty rounds for the attempt.

I set up my spotting scope get it dialed in and could immediately see that the wind was going to be an issue.

My uncle got the rifle up on the bench, got the bags positioned, dialed the magnification all the way up to 25X on the scope and asked me for the come ups. I told him to come up 150 clicks and give me two mil right windage.

He got set while I watched the wind see it settle into a rhythm and say “send it.”  He let one fly and it landed about ten feet left and about 100 yards short.  I scratched my head, the  wind was doing something funny. I said, “Give me two more mil elevation and another mil right windage.” He let another one fly and this time the bullet struck within feet of the target. Ok, we were getting there – a little more windage and 1/4 mil more elevation. He let another one fly but said he pulled that one.

We battled the wind for the next seventeen shots, getting within a few feet of the target each time. Turned out where the bullet was at its highest point of its path is where the worst of the wind was. He let go of the 19th shot and put that one right at the base of the target!  Then he said, “I got this one.” (Meaning he needed no more corrections from me.)

The 20th shot at a range that the .300 win mag (even in the best hands) has one hell of a time hitting, nailed the target just low and left of center! He did it! He nailed it at one mile with loads I built that day!

To say he jumped for joy is an understatement. He pushed that round further then anyone would have any good excuse to do so. Most would not attempt a shot like that without stepping up to the .338 Lapua, but no, he had it in his head he was going to do it, and he did.

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14 Responses to One Mile Shot by Kerry Stottlemyer

  1. firstriverbend says:

    Cool! 🙂
    While the ground is relatively open and flat, the windmills mean there are going to be fairly constant wind in the area. Which you found out, but over came!

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  2. Yes alot of it was flat. but where the 1 mile mark strecthed out to was about 350ft higher than my shooting position. And also the winds were gusting and constanly changing direction.

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    • firstriverbend says:

      When you add in the other few hundred feet of bullet elevation as it travels one mile, it shows just how hard it is go make the entire shot work. Good rifle, good bullet, good job!!

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    • firstriverbend says:

      Missed this reply and did not realize what you were saying in your post the first time I read it. Another way to think of this is having a 35 story building between you and the target, which is being shot over the top of, to make the hits!
      My first interests in this came decades ago, while reading about the Civil War and Revolutionary War snipers and the ranges they were getting hits at! Translated this into bullet drop and because it was easy to view it as the height of buildings, it became that much more impressive to me. 🙂

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  3. Thanks firstriver. my nephew and I make a good team 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Keith Akers says:

    What are the odds of doing it with a 308 Winchester

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  5. David Ruppel says:

    Being involved in long range handgun shooting, 3 of us got together and gave the one mile a try. I had my doubts we could do it. I had only started the long range game and until that day I had only made hits to 890 yards. We started out warming up at 500 yards. Then to 1000 yards then it was time for a try at a 24inch by 24 inch steel gong. We used a rifle scoped 6.5-284 Norma XP-100 Remington with an 18″ custom barrel and brake. Tyler was up first and nailed on his first shot. Then it was my turn. To my surprise I hit it on my second shot. Then the handgun owner, Mike, hit it . I was in total shock! I couldn’t believe I had hit a 24″ target at one mile, and with a handgun no less. That is a day I will always remember. What a thrill!
    Rupe

    Liked by 1 person

  6. bud hauser says:

    great job! i shoot 220 grain matchkings and love them! the furthest we have killed is a little over 1100. on this buck we had 74” of wind. killed him on the 3rd shot! 300 wby mag. 40 inch obermyer barrel , unertel scope.

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    • Yeah I don’t agree with you practices. you shouldn’t be taking pot shots at game animals like that. it’s not the way I was raised to dispatch an animal. 74″ of wind and three shots to do the job. That should be your clue you have pushed beyond your limits.

      Liked by 1 person

      • firstriverbend says:

        Have to agree with you Kerry! While it can be possible to walk a bullet into an animal at that range, the terminal ballistics are pathetic at best! 😦
        Overall the claims I read of the so called “long range hunters” crowd, never really talks much about what the terminal ballistics at their claimed ranges are, which to me shows extremely little compassion for the animal, nor a responsible attitude towards hunting. 😦

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  7. Update for everyone reading. My uncle and I repeated this evolution a year after this in Feb 2016, Then he tasked me to build a rifle from the ground up in .408 Cheytac. that task has been completed, and this time it took only seven rounds to connect at a mile on a rifle that had less then 100 rounds put through it and with near no real long range ballistic data to speak of. we were still field testing and verifying drops.

    Liked by 2 people

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