's Top 10 Stories of 2017

posted on December 31, 2017

2017 flew by, didn't it? What a year. That said, before the ball drops and 2018 arrives, we decided to take a look at some of the top stories to be published on over the past year. Some may call it living in the past, but we prefer to look at it as a collection of our greatest hits. To qualify, a story had to be an online exclusive that was published during 2017—simple enough. So, without further ado, we present's most-read stories of 2017.

1. Opinion: The .03-06 Sucks
Cartridge selection is driven by ballistics and emotion. The savvy among us trust ballistics, the rest follow their heart. Contributor Richard Mann of Empty Cases says the era of the .30-06 is long gone.

2. 2017's Top Compound Bows
Field Editor Jeff Johnston profiles this year's top new compound bows.

3. AAC Blackout for Deer?
Is .300 AAC Blackout the perfect deer cartridge? No, probably not. But don't hesitate to use it afield

4. Top 5 American-Made Hunting Rifles
Americans love rifles. From the Revolutionary Warwhere our Pennsylvania and Kentucky rifles showed a definite advantage over the British smooth boresto WWIIwhere the Garand was dubbed “the greatest battlefield implement ever devisedAmericans are proud of our designs. Contributor Philip Massaro discusses the five most iconic American hunting rifle designs.

5. 2017's Best States for Whitetail
Whitetails remain the single most-hunted game animal in the United States, and by a large margin. Roughly 44 states in the union play home to whitetail populations, which begs the question—just where is the best place to hunt America's favorite critter? We've crunched the numbers. To find out which states came out on top, click here.

6. 5 Things to Know About the Savage MSR 10 Hunter
Savage entered the AR-15/AR-10 marketplace this year, and with gusto. Here are five things you need to know about Savage's new AR-10 design.

7. Top 5 Hunting Handguns Under $1,000
Most of us who admire and use handguns have customized our favorites to some extent. But custom guns cost important coin, and many of us are not in a position to drop $2,000 to $3,000 on a custom big-game handgun. Many hunters just want to see what they can accomplish with a traditional, largely unmodified handgun, and most beginners don’t want to spend a large sum of money on something they may find isn’t their cup of tea. With that said, here are five excellent hunting handguns you can get for less than $1,000.

8. Behind the Bullet: .243 Winchester
While there are many cartridges that can handle medium-sized game, the .243 Winchester sits at the top of the heap for good reasons: it’s accurate, easy on the shoulder and delivers enough energy for the task at hand.

9. 5 Tips for Buying Used Guns
Hunters are increasingly turning to the used market when looking to purchase a rifle or shotgun. As with any significant acquisition, a little knowledge and forethought can go a long way to ensuring you make the correct buying decision. Here are a few tips to guide you through the process.

10. Top 7 Deer Bullets for the .308 Win.
Since its inception in 1952, the .308 Win. has increasingly pilfered proponents of traditional deer hunting cartridges, such as the .270 Win. and .30-06 Springfield, and, thanks to .308 Win.-chambered “tactical” bolt-actions and modern sporting rifles (MSRs), next-generation hunters have flocked to the round, too. Due to its popularity, there’s now an abundance of ammunition (and component bullets) from which to choose for pursuing deer. If you're looking for a “different” deer bullet for your treasured .308 Win., be sure to check out these seven superlatives.

There you have it, folks. Onward and upward in 2018! Happy New Year!


JTH The First Deer Hunt Lead
JTH The First Deer Hunt Lead

The First Deer Hunt: From Mentorship to Magazine

The only hunters in his family were his grandfathers, one of whom he never met and the other too old to take to the field by the time the author came of age. So the offer by a family friend to take him hunting was too good to be true for a youngster.

Federal Ammunition Adds Train + Protect 10mm Ammo

Federal Premium recently added a new line extension to its Train + Protect product line—featuring packaging that honors any shooter’s birthright to bear arms—with a new load in 10mm Auto.

First Look: Redding Reloading Equipment Die Sets for 400 Legend

Redding Reloading Equipment has introduced a 3-Die Set for the 400 Legend.

#SundayGunday: Benelli M2 Field

Get a closer look at the Benelli M2 Field, the latest addition to our #SundayGunday series.

Review: Trijicon Specialized Reflex Optic (SRO)

With an old bull in spitting distance and his target bull still hidden, Brad Fenson needed a combination of precision and situational awareness to keep life and limb together, much less take his trophy. For this, the Trijicon SRO2 came in clutch. Read on for his full experiences with the optic.

First Look: Kent Cartridge Fasteel+ Shotshells

Kent Cartridge has introduced Fasteel+, a hard-hitting shotshell line for waterfowlers.


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