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One Gun for All Purposes

Updated on January 22, 2016


I have watched a few programs and read internet articles, as of late, on the latest fad of prepping for various scenarios. A lot of these list items that need to have in order to survive and defend themselves. I am not taking part in this fad, but it did get me thinking about if I could only have one gun for survival purposes what would it be?


With hunting season about over, I was cleaning and putting away most of my firearms. I thought I could give good reasons why most of them would be a good choice for the above question. For example a good quality .22 rifle would be an excellent choice for harvesting small game and ammo is normally available for them. The downside to this caliber would be in self defense situations it would be lacking in power. The 30-06 was another that crossed my mind. It has plenty of stopping power for both large game and self defense situations. The downside to this caliber in a survival situation is that it would have to much power for harvesting small game and would do to much damage to the meat.

My Choice

My choice, for the most particle gun for a survival situation would be a 12 gauge shotgun. The 12 gauge shotgun has a variety of loads that are geared towards different types of game. There are different sizes of shot that are tailored to squirrels, rabbits, and birds. Also there are loads that are specific for deer, turkey, and other large game as well. The shotgun is also an excellent self defense weapon.

Now that I answered the questions of what caliber/gauge I would choose is I only had one firearm to depend on. This brings on the next question I asked myself, What kind of shotgun would I choose? Not thinking in terms of name brands, but of action: semi auto, pump, or single shot.

My answer to this questions was a single shot. I have used quality pumps and enjoy using them and they have an advantage of a quick follow up shot. The reason I would choose the single shot is due to it's simplicity. This type of gun has fewer parts to fail or get dirty and foul up. Another point is most people when hunting with a single shot people are generally more accurate because they take more time before pulling the trigger knowing that the repeat shot will take longer.


The various types of ammunition and loads available for today's shotguns separates them from the other firearms in survival situations. The shotgun is a versatile and practical choice for these type of situations. Most people learned to shoot and hunt with some sort of single shot firearm. I myself, am an avid hunter, and I find myself still picking up the old single shot shotgun to take to the field today.


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