Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Taurus Judge: Life Saver in the Brushlands

I’ve read articles written by what I presume are city dwellers regarding the Taurus Judge.  The articles slammed the revolver as inaccurate, impotent and an otherwise poor choice for self-defense.  So I’ve decided to set the record straight and make clear to those writers that the world is not one dimensional nor is it construed in such a way that all things are equal in every environment.  Now I’ll admit I’m not not much for city life.  It’s not hard to imagine however that some folks have different requirements when it comes to packing a pistol.  What I find amazing is that so many city folks are unable to think of any sort of world other than the concrete enclave surrounding them.  Now consider the Brushlands and desert regions of the Southwest United States.  Add to that the people who live far from things like sidewalks and asphalt and street lights and honking horns and McDonalds and…what’s the name of that coffee place?  Oh yes, Starbucks.  Imagine if you can a world where one can actually see millions of stars every night and where great-horned owls hoot from the trees outside the bedroom and coyotes sing sweet songs from just beyond the barn come midnight.  Add to that a place where regardless of day or night one can walk out on the front porch and water the grass, so to speak, and where occasionally one hears a loud piercing buzz emanating from a few feet away if the sun is on the wrong side of the earth at that moment.  Like someone said in a movie once upon a time, No Brag Just Fact—but I’ve probably got as much experience as anyone else living today when it comes to meeting up with rattlesnakes.  If you’ve read any of my books or simply kept tabs of this blog then you know I’ve known a few rattlers in my time.  I’ve been forced to take rattlesnakes with every kind of weapon you can imagine.  I’ve popped them with .22 long rifles and 12 gauge shotguns.  I’ve clobbered them with slingshots and shovels.  I’ve whacked them with machetes and big sticks.  I even squashed one with a cast iron frying pan a few decades back.  Nowadays my main rattlesnake gun is a Taurus Judge.  I sometimes carry a cute little J-frame S&W stoked with snake shot but the Judge is el Supremo when it comes to delivering the coup de grace on rattlers.  I never shoot rattlesnakes away from my yard but what I’m talking about here isn’t confined to el cascabel.  A few months ago one of my blue heelers decided to chase a bobcat that crossed in front of us as we circled the woods near a pond.  Unbeknownst to the old Woods Roamer and his dog was that a large boar was chasing the bobcat away from the pond and we didn’t see it until it appeared about twenty yards in front of us.  I carry three 300 grain .45 Colt handloads in my revolver and two 2 ½ inch .410 shells loaded with #6 shot.  The first out the pipe are the .45 Colt rounds because I can always rotate the cylinder for the .410 shells if I happen to run into a big snake in my “yard.”  But in wild hog situations there’s no time to mess around and I need three powerful slugs on my command.  It was a big hog and as it crossed in front of me I held on the vitals and popped off a round and then another.  The hog twirled like a ballerina a couple of times but didn’t move from the spot.  It took my strong 26 year old son to help load that hog onto the pickup bed.  That particular blue heeler, by the way, will never learn.  He’s been bit by a javelina.  He’s been bit by a rattlesnake.  And on that occasion he almost got gutted by a wild hog. But of course we love him dearly.

You see that little Maltese on the left. She almost got bit by the rattler I'm holding. My son made sure that didn't happen.
I have no idea what these city fellows are talking about when they say the Judge is inaccurate but I figure it’s because they spend a lot of time at the “gun range” shooting paper targets and maybe steel gongs.  But I don’t have anything like that around here.  All I’ve got are rattlesnakes with heads the size of your fist and bad tempered hogs that insist on chasing my dogs.  So I’ve never actually “grouped” any shots with the Judge and the only targets have been either fanged or tusked.

It seems like some folks spend too much time conjuring up scenarios about running into one bad guy or another or getting car jacked or maybe being robbed.  We’ve had an occasional moron come around here too but usually they’re dissuaded by six sets of canine teeth, a shotgun or two and the Taurus Judge.  Big holes at the end of barrels seem to produce a calming effect.  Anyway, I’d rather not imagine having to take the movie to the endings envisioned by some folks.  Lots of anger out there, I gather.  But while I respect every gun owner’s right to spend hours talking about this caliber and that gun I also know a few things about firearms underscored by things other than paper targets and gongs.  And the Taurus Judge is one hell of a revolver if you happen to live in places where diamonds come in rows and grunts mean trouble.