Catch .22 Escapes


You know the bored, restless feeling we all get from time to time? It usually occurs during the lazy, hazy days of summer, at least for me. Our biological clocks have been set for us to unwind, down-shift, relax and enjoy those good ol’ summer days since childhood. It’s the perfect time for sneaking away from our responsibilities and act like the inner kid we all still have in us. If you don’t, look deep inside, real good. Release the kid! Besides, it’s more fun doing it when you think you’re getting away with something.

The Getaway

When I wuz a kid in need of adventure, I’d always make a couple of peanut butter (PB) sandwiches, throw them in a brown lunch sack, along with a few other goodies, grab my bike and head out for an all-day adventure. It didn’t necessarily matter what I was doing, just so long as I was away and engrossed in some outdoor activity. Going to the creek, looking for crawfish under rocks, fishing, or sometimes, just seeing how far I could ride my bike without stopping, was adventure enough. Even to this day, PB sandwiches are favorites during hunting and fishing forays, reminding me of freedom and adventures.

Even fancy shooters should be used for plinking. Don’t get caught in a Catch-22 situation. Shoot them!

Plinking Pleasure

When I turned eight, I got a Harrington & Richardson Plainsman bolt-action .22 rifle for my birthday. Now I had a means for big adventure. What started out as a few boxes of 50 rounds grew into a brick of .22s for an all-day marathon of shooting freedom. Again, with a sack of PB sandwiches, my rifle, ammo and bike, it was off for a day big of adventure.

Shooting cans, rocks, dirt clods, or other targets of opportunity was grand fun. These outings usually occurred at the nearby abandoned gravel pit, which was turned into a makeshift shooting range. There were a few rusted out, abandoned vehicles in the pits perfect for targets and imaginary shoot-out scenarios.

Heck, just sitting in the shade, choking down a sandwich, trusty rifle across my lap, gave me a special “grown-up” feeling. I guess you could say I was slowly realizing how special it was owning a gun and the ensuing feeling of respect and freedom it provided. I did feel more grown-up having it and sure wasn’t about to ruin it by doing something foolish with it. Whatever it was, I liked it!

Going to my grandparents’ farm was akin to going on safari. Because there, you had chances for trophy groundhogs, barn pigeons and rats that needed shooting. Roaming the fields with my faithful companion, Pupper, the farm dog, at my side, had me ready for anything. We’d walk for hours looking for dangerous game, always at the ready, and always with a few PB sandwiches with us.

Whether bolt, lever, double-action, semi-auto, or thumb-buster,
action type has no bearing during .22 escapes.

Twenty-Two Therapy

Whenever the need for distraction strikes me, or the urge to get out of the house, I automatically reach for a bulk box of .22s, grab a few rifles and handguns and head to the range. But, always making sure I bring a few PB sandwiches, to enjoy the day. PB helps trigger bringing back those memories like no other. It helps me enjoy the simple life.

While I don’t necessarily consider myself a .22 connoisseur, it’s amazing how many .22s I’ve accumulated over the years. I guess when I think about it, it’s no great surprise, as .22s and the “carefree” feeling they provide go hand in hand.

Tank was amazed at how many .22’s he had stuffed in the safe.
Deep down, everyone always has room for another .22?

The Guns

I’d be hard pressed picking favorites. I have a gaggle of Ruger 3-screw revolvers, most with dual cylinders, allowing .22 Magnums to be shot in the same gun and reminding me of how simple things were back then. I have new models, including a scoped Hunter, allowing cheap practice for upcoming handgun hunts. My S&W 617 is very accurate, as are my Ruger MK IIs, and are pure pleasure shooters.

I have a few fancy .22s adorned by Tyler Gun Works that are working pieces of art, as well as some old beaters with plenty of life in them.

A bare-bones basic kit for a Catch .22 Escape. Ruger stainless single-six
with Keith Belt Mountain cylinder pin and Fermin Garza front sight.

No Excuse Necessary

So, friend, as you read this, and you have an indescribable antsy feeling, get up, grab some .22s, along with your guns, and head to the range. But not before making a few PB sandwiches and a few of your favorite snacks you enjoyed as a kid. It’s well worth the time and effort of escaping, enjoying and energizing yourself on these time-machine trips.

This is what makes the .22 rimfire the most powerful cartridge in the world! Not ballistically, but spiritually. The only catch? You’ll want to do it over and over! Time spent shooting .22s erases time spent on earth for a longer life. Think about it …

Subscribe To American Handgunner