The Wind and the Steel Rifle Silhouette Targets

The Mirage Effect

Primarily with High Power Rifle Silhouette you can see the mirage effect from the heat while you are looking at the steel target. This can help you in determining the wind direction down range. The wind will appear to be blowing the mirage in the direction it is traveling. NOTE: If there is a heavy mirage you will most likely shoot high due to a refraction effect. Similar to that of looking into water, the objects you see are actually lower than they appear.

Understanding Wind Drift in NRA Rifle Silhouette

I am going to be giving wind drift for each animal relative to 10 mph crosswinds. All of the drift is directly proportional to the wind speed. So if there is a crosswind of 5 mph it is exactly half of the bullet drift of a 10 mph crosswind. If there is a crosswind of 20 mph there is exactly twice the amount of bullet drift and you shouldn't be at the range haha!  

The Wind Drift at the Chickens

In NRA Smallbore Rifle Silhouette a crosswind of 10 mph will push the 22 caliber bullet about 0.7 inches off target at 40 meters. When the High Power Rifle Silhouette bullet hits the steel chicken target, it is over 3 inches off course. Even though the bullet gets there in a split second the wind is taking the bullet away as soon as it leaves the barrel. The small size of the chickens and close proximity to the firing line can make it difficult to figure out which side a miss actually went. I tend to sight the Chickens slightly high of center. Their shape is a lot more forgiving at the upper end helping to be more forgiving on slightly low shots to slightly one side. 

The Wind Drift at the Pigs

The 10 mph wind will push the bullet off of the 300 meter steel Pig target by 8 inches in High Power Rifle Silhouette. In Smallbore Rifle Silhouette a crosswind of 10 mph will push the bullet about 1.6 inches off target. It is only 50% more distance than the Chickens but the drift is 129% more. That has to do with the "body at rest" principle of physics. It takes some time to get the momentum going that direction but once it gets going, the change becomes easier. There is not much to say here. A well centered shot should hit its mark every time. It sounds easy anyway haha!  

The Wind Drift at the Turkeys

A crosswind of 10 mph will push the bullet about 2.6 inches off of the Smallbore steel Turkey target. In High Power Rifle Silhouette, the bullet is pushed 12 inches off center. On a calm day the Turkeys silhouettes are difficult. A variable wind day can drive you crazy here. You need to be on top of any changes in the wind conditions. I sight in for the Turkeys slightly toward the chest side. The shape is a little more forgiving for elevation error there. There is some sacrifice for error on the chest side but I accept it.

The Wind Drift at the Rams

At this distance in Smallbore Rifle Silhouette the 10 mph wind can be having some real fun with your 22 caliber bullet and pushed it 4.5 inches off the center of the steel target. In the first 60 meters to the Pigs it moved 1.6 inches. In the last 23 meters since passing the Turkeys, it has moved an additional 1.9 inches. Thank goodness it is a wide target to help make up the difference. For High Power Rifle Silhouette the bullet is pushed over 24 inches with the wind. The steel Ram targets might be a little forgiving on windage but they are not forgiving for elevation at all. Know your elevation adjustments well for the Ram silhouettes.