If you've hunted long enough, odds are you've wound up taking your rifle on some long, fruitless hikes. That's just hunting. And if you're the kind of hunter that often blazes new trails through the backcountry in pursuit of game, it's not a bad idea to pack a rifle that won't slow—or weigh—you down. For 2016, Savage Arms has a new offering available in its Specialty Series in the Model 16/116 Lightweight Hunter. Here are five things you need to know.
1. You've got options. The 16/116 Lightweight Hunter is available in short- and long-action options in five calibers: 223 Rem., 243 Win., 7mm-08 Rem., 308 Win. and 270 Win.
2. It really is a lightweight. This puppy lives up to its name, that much is certain. Your Lightweight Hunter will weigh somewhere between 5.65 and 5.8 pounds, depending on the caliber you select. If you're a hunter who's often on the move, you can't ask for much more. Savage managed to keep the weight low by borrowing the lightweight magazine and framework from its Trophy Hunter Series, replacing the standard heavy metal components found inside other rifles with a bulletproof base pad and rigid cross-bracing system that's crafted from polymer.
3. It's compact. As you might expect, the Lightweight Hunter is compact, too—it measures just over 40 inches long while sporting a 20-inch, light-contour barrel.
4. It's designed to take a beating. Odds are, if you're looking for a lightweight rifle, you intend to take it into the mountains or backcountry—rugged environments. The engineers at Savage know that, which is why they've built the Lightweight Hunter to withstand whatever you may throw at it. The synthetic stock and stainless steel barrel are built to survive the elements. It's not a pretty gun, but it's not supposed to be.
5. It's affordable. Did you expect it not to be? It's a Savage. The Lightweight Hunter ships with an MSRP of $729, and you'll find it on shelves for significantly less than that, I'd imagine. Considering the package the rifle delivers, it's a value.