Best Choke For Grouse Hunting

Do you go with a tighter choke, or keep it wide open? What exactly is the best choke for grouse hunting? If you talk to 10 different hunters you might get 3 or 4 different answers. It really comes down to what style of grouse hunter you are. I’ll dive into each style of hunting and what my opinion for the proper choke size is. I’m also a big over/under guy, so I’ll also detail what choke I would use for my 1st & 2nd shot. Something else worth mentioning before we get started is to make sure you’re selecting the right shot size for your shells.

Best Choke For Grouse Hunting by Hunting Style

The Road Hunter –

If you’re the type of hunter that typically sticks to the logging trails & doesn’t wander off the beaten path too much, you’re probably going to end up taking longer shots than the people that get into the woods. For that reason, I’m prescribing you a tighter choke.

Single Barrel: Improved Cylinder
Double Barrel: 1st Shot – Skeet Choke, 2nd Shot – Improved Cylinder

Just A Man and His Dog

I definitely fall under this category. If I’m hitting the brush by myself with my English Setter “Trigger” (he’s a rock solid pointer), I’m probably going to see some pretty tight shots. I’m also likely not going to be able to see as far as hunters with other styles. For those reasons I’m going to open up the chokes a bit for sure. When I’m in the thick stuff my motto is to open ’em up as far as they’ll go!

Single Barrel: Skeet Choke
Double Barrel: 1st Shot – Cylinder Choke, 2nd Shot – Skeet Choke

Hunting In Groups

If you’re hunting with a group of other hunters (or even in pairs) you’re likely see more of a mixed bag than if you were by yourself. It’s very likely that your hunting buddy is going to bump a bird or two, and when they do you’re going to have to be prepared for a slightly longer shot. In this scenario, I’m also assuming that you aren’t primarily road hunting.

This is probably the toughest selection simply because the distance that the birds are going to flush from you is going to vary anywhere from 2 yards to 15 yards. In my mind, you probably shouldn’t be taking that 25 yard shot anyways (if you can even see the bird anymore), so I’m still leaving the chokes opened up a bit.

Single Barrel: Skeet Choke
Double Barrel: 1st Shot – Skeet Choke, 2nd Shot – Skeet Choke

When it comes down to it the best choke for grouse hunting is going to vary wildly depending on what your hunting style is, your gun, how good of a shot you are, and what kind of habitat you’re hunting in. Don’t be afraid to try a few different chokes to see what’s best for you.

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