Jan 9

Why you never shoot through your tent

A listener writes “In about 1966, I and 3 other companions found ourselves jammed with all our gear in a 1953 Buick headed up into the mountains above Lake Isabella, California. We were ages 17 through 18 and even though we were very young three of us were seasoned hunters. Upon arriving at a nice clearing we set up camp consisting of the old fashioned straight-walled military green tent. It had plenty of room for four individuals to sleep. We were going to do some varmint hunting and came equipped with varmint calls, rifles, shotguns, and sufficient lighting to obtain eye reflections in the dark.

Our plan was to go out after midnight and we were lying in the tent killing time until the appointed hour. We had not lit a fire since we were headed out of camp. I was lying on my stomach with a Model 12 winchester and 3 rifled slugs lying next to me. All of the others had their weapons next to them as well. My face was two inches from the tent wall when I heard footsteps and a growl right in front of my nose. Startled, I looked at the others and my friend at the far end of the tent waived his hand at me in ridicule when the growl occurred again. I was not interested in having something tear into the tent with a resulting melee of 4 heavily armed teenagers, so I chambered the slugs into my shotgun as did my friend on the opposite side of the tent and we both bailed out. I went to the left around and he went to the right. As I approach the back of the tent there was a large shadow looming directly in front of me. I pulled up my shotgun and, with my finger on the trigger, had it pointing directly at the midsection of a full grown man who had decided to play a prank on us all. Unfortunately for the intruder my partner had his gun aimed at the man’s chest. He was within a millisecond of being cut directly in half when he threw his hands up and yelled “Don’t shoot! Don’t shoot!” The foul and vile language which eminated from the group would have filled the heart of any longshoreman with the utmost pride.

The knees of another member of my group gave out and he sank to the ground next to the car.

Cudos to all of your guests who tell of refraining from firing their weapons through tent walls. A wise choice.

Great show Wes. Keep your head up and keep up the good work.”

10 Responses to “Why you never shoot through your tent”

  1. Kenneth M

    One that plays with fire deserves to get burned! Any fool that intentionally startles and deceives armed people in a tent in the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere, is asking to get shot. I am reminded of the scene in “Zombieland” where Bill Murray scares the kid with the shotgun only to receive a blast in his chest in return for the joke.

    Typically when this happens follow the Triple S rule shoot, shovel and shut up.

  2. m99

    ‘The foul and vile language which emanated from the group would have filled the heart of any longshoreman with the utmost pride.’

    ~No one sneaks up on a tent full of people and growls. What an idiot! And, personally, I don’t think you’d have been charged with manslaughter, under the circumstances. Just glad you didn’t shoot.

    Thank You Wes. 🙂

  3. Dave T

    Very stupid prank to play but people do stupid things. You don’t EVER want to shoot unless you clearly see what you’re shooting at. These boys did show some good restraint and did exactly the right thing by loading their guns and going outside the tent to confront who or whatever. The guy doing the prank must have been really dumb because as soon as he heard them boys load one in the magazine he should have said Whoa! Timeout!

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