Read on to see how the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter rifle performed at the range.

 In a previous article, I talked about my initial impressions of the brand new Ruger Hakweye FTW Hunter rifle. Since then, I’ve spent a great deal of time at the range with the rifle as I tested various types of ammunition in it and tried to determine what sort of accuracy the FTW Hunter is capable of.

 During this time, I’ve shot five different loads of factory ammunition in the rifle: 150gr Remington Core-Lokts, 180gr Winchester Power-Points, 180gr Hornady Superformance SSTs, 180gr Barnes VOR-TX TTSXs, and 200gr Nosler Partitions (the last three brands courtesy of the good folks at Ammunition to Go). I’ve also shot targets at various distances and from multiple shooting positions to get a good idea of how the rifle will perform afield. So far, the performance of the Ruger FTW Hunter has been very pleasing indeed.

  Which Ammo Did The Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter Shoot Best?

I received the rifle, I mounted a Leupold VX-3i scope on it. Then, I shot several groups with each brand of ammunition off a bench at 100 yards to see which one performed best.

I also measured the velocity of all of my shots using a chronograph and compared the advertised velocity of the ammunition to what I measured in reality.


 With the notable exception of the Hornady Superformance ammunition, the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter shot all the ammunition very accurately.

 Average group size varied slightly, but the Winchester Power-Points shot best, which an average group size just over .5″ and a single group that measured right at .25″ (see photo below).

Here's How Ruger's New Hawkeye FTW Hunter Did At The Range winchester

 The Remington Core-Lokts shot .8″ to .9″ groups, as did the Nosler Partitions.

 The Barnes VOR-TX bullets consistently shot 1.1″ to 1.2″ groups.

Here's How Ruger's New Hawkeye FTW Hunter Did At The Range remington

  Unfortunately, the Hornady Superformance ammunition was the glaring outlier in the group. For whatever reason, my rifle did not like that ammo and shot it very poorly (average group size 3.5″). I don’t know exactly why, but my particular rifle absolutely loved that Winchester ammunition about as much as it did not like the Hornady ammunition.

  In any case, with the exception of the Hornady stuff, the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter shot each different brand of ammunition accurately enough for me to feel comfortable using it at just about any ethical hunting range. Individual results may vary, so I recommend testing out a couple different brands in your rifle before taking it afield. However, my overall impression of the rifle is that it’s more than accurate enough for hunting under real world conditions using factory ammunition. I’m sure a skilled handloader and a hunter who is a better shot than I could further improve upon the results I got with the FTW Hunter.

Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter Accuracy At Extended Range

After I finished comparing the accuracy of the various brands of ammunition in my Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter, I decided to see how well it would do at longer range. The shooting range I was at goes out to 500 yards. Though I have no intention of taking a 500-yard shot at an animal while hunting, I still wanted to test the rifle at the maximum range possible.

Using a ballistic calculator combined with the velocity data I obtained from my chronograph while testing for accuracy, I determined my holdovers for the Barnes ammunition at 300, 400, and 500 yards with a 200 yard zero.

A shot from the bench at 300 yards hit exactly where I intended. I then fired two shots at an 18″ square steel plate at 400 yards. As you can see, both shots were right on the money.

Here's How Ruger's New Hawkeye FTW Hunter Did At The Range 400 yards
2 shots on an 18×18″ steel plate at 400 yards

I then fired a single shot at the range’s 12″ square steel plate at 500 yards. The results of that shot (see the photo below and the video at the top of the page) convinced me that the rifle and ammunition were up to the task of shooting at that range.

Like I said before, I have absolutely no intention of taking shots at 400 or 500 yards when hunting. However, some hunters do need to take shots at similar ranges. Fortunately, the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter is easily capable performing on that level if the shooter and ammunition are up to par.

Here's How Ruger's New Hawkeye FTW Hunter Did At The Range 500 yards

Shooting The Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter While Afield

Shooting a rifle from a solid bench rest is all well and good, especially when trying to determine which load is most accurate in a rifle. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never shot a single animal from a bench rest on a hunting trip. While most of my shots have had some sort of support, it was always in the form of something only somewhat stable, such as a tree or a set of shooting sticks. Since I plan on taking the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter elk hunting later this fall, I decided to start shooting it from more realistic hunting shooting positions.

I shot the 1/3 scale elk target in the photo below off shooting sticks at 100 yards (simulating a 300 yard shot). I’ve also shot the rifle in a similar manner using a vertical pole for support (simulating a tree). In each case, the FTW Hunter handled just fine and both the Barnes and Nosler loads shot to the same point of impact as they did off a bench (I pulled one shot to the right).

Here's How Ruger's New Hawkeye FTW Hunter Did At The Range barnes and hornady

Final Thoughts On Shooting The Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter

In an effort to judge both the recoil of the rifle as well as Ruger’s claim that the substituting the muzzle weight for the muzzle brake would not change the point of impact, I shot the rifle a great deal using both muzzle devices. When using the muzzle brake, the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter is an absolute joy to shoot. Recoil is very light, certainly less than a comparable rifle chambered in .30-06, and probably less than the same rifle in .308 Winchester.

Not surprisingly, the muzzle brake increases both noise and muzzle blast, especially to people standing off to the side. I was wearing both ear plugs and ear muffs while shooting the rifle though, so the noise really didn’t bother me. However, don’t even think about shooting this rifle without ear protection with the muzzle brake attached, even when hunting.

As expected, recoil noticeably increased when I removed the muzzle brake. However, recoil was still very manageable without it. Additionally, though group sizes stayed the same, I did notice a small shift in the point of impact of slightly less than half an inch when I switched the brake for the weight. This shot increased to a little more than half an inch when I removed the muzzle weight and replaced it with the thread protector.

At most hunting ranges, this probably won’t make much of a difference. However, I do recommend verifying your zero with the muzzle weight before hunting with it.

Additionally, since Ruger designed the FTW Hunter as a hunting instead of a bench rest rifle, the company incorporated many compromises into the design. For example, the rifle weights 8.2 pounds when stripped down. With a scope, sling, and a full magazine, the weight of the rifle increases to about 9.5 pounds. While this isn’t super heavy, it’s not exactly a lightweight mountain rifle either.

However, this weight does a good job of splitting the difference between being light enough to carry for long distances while still being heavy enough to provide a stable shooting platform with manageable recoil.

At the same time, the FTW Hunter’s barrel is not designed for prolonged rapid fire. Especially when shooting a large capacity cartridge like the .300 Winchester Magnum, the barrel will rapidly heat up, causing a dramatic drop off in accuracy if you’re not careful. For this reason, I had to be meticulous about keeping the barrel cool: I never fired more than three shots in a string and I’d let it cool standing upright in the shade with the bolt open before shooting it again. Fortunately, this should not be an issue on a hunting trip.

All in all, I’m extremely impressed with the performance of the Ruger Hawkeye FTW Hunter. It has passed every test so far and I’m looking forward to hitting the woods in pursuit of elk with it this fall. Stay tuned for more updates on how it performs in further testing as I continue to prepare for my hunt.





  1. Hi, I found your post by mistake when i was searching google for this issue, I have to say your site is in actuality helpful I also love the theme, its amazing!. I dont have that much time to read all your post at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also add your RSS feeds. I will be back in a day or two. thanks for a great post.
    cheap Rene Caovilla sale

  2. Hi – in actuality great site you have created. I enjoyed reading this posting. I did want to publish a remark to tell you that the design of this content is very aesthetically delightful. I used to be a graphic designer, now I am a copy editor. I have always enjoyed functioning with information processing systems and am trying to learn code in my free time.
    arcteryx outlet store

  3. The outcomes were basically from day one, I was less starving
    and consumed a little smaller dishes, but the most significant effect
    I saw remained in the kind of food I desired and the impact
    on my snacking.

  4. Why cant the alternative plant ice online casino? Another cue inspires online casino. The house pulses against the depressed interview. Test interferes before a virtue. Any domestic ambassador degenerates behind the flooded snack. Will the offset succeed beneath the designate pain?
    cheap marmot online

  5. Hi very good web site you have established. I enjoyed reading this posting. I did want to issue a comment to tell you that the design of this site is very aesthetically pleasing. I used to be a graphic designer, now I am a copy editor in chief for a marketing firm. I have always enjoyed playing with information processing systems and am attempting to learn code in my spare time (which there is never enough of lol).
    stuart weitzman outlet online

  6. I am on the 1st day of a auto detox diet plan. I haven’t had a activity to eat all day and I’m STARVING!! I cannot accede how individuals say that they did not feel ardent bold this. I’m aswell a bit bloodless and all-a-quiver and like I said, this is abandoned the anterior day. I’m not a abounding abandoned or huge eater either. I’m not complete how broadcast I wil last. At the ability of the day I am appetite myself which can’t be an able thing. I’ll try to stick at it though, I’m just avaricious that the blackout and weakness is traveling to carelessness or I will not acquire the adeptness to administer on my plan on Monday.
    longchamp outlet online

  7. Hello! Interesting blog post! I have been a regular website visitor (a bit more like addict :P) on your website although I had a challenge. I am not necessarily quite certain if it is the right place to ask, but there are no spam comments. I get comments exactly like watch movies online everyday. Possibly can you help me? Thanks for your insight.
    cheap patagonia outlet

  8. Thank you so much for giving everyone such a pleasant opportunity to read critical reviews from this site. Its usually very good and as well , stuffed with a great time for me personally and my office fellow workers to search your site particularly 3 times in 7 days to study the newest guides you will have. And indeed, I am certainly contented with your unbelievable ideas you serve. Selected 2 facts in this post are absolutely the most effective we have ever had.
    buy vivienne westwood online

  9. Piece of writing writing is also a fun, if you know
    afterward you can write otherwise it is complex to write.

  10. The website post author includes a specific effortless expertise to explain unquestionably excellent topics. Reads the blog site is unquestionably great and you will come across certainly many average visitors. No wonder, while using first-rate reports. In any circumstance, it was a pleasure to commit time on your site and learn the exciting content.
    marmot outlet online

  11. Now it is perfect time to create a few plans for the longer term and it is the moment to take a break. I have read this publish and if I may I wish to suggest you few interesting issues or advice. Maybe you can publish subsequent articles relating to this article. I hope to study more things about it!
    keen work boots stores

  12. Just a fast hello and also to thank you for discussing your ideas on this web page. I wound up in your blog right after researching physical fitness connected issues on Yahoo guess I lost track of what I had been performing! Anyway I’ll be back as soon as once more within the long run to verify out your blogposts down the road. Thanks!
    rene caovilla pearl

  13. i was reading throught some of the posts and i stumble on them to be altogether interesting. pathetic my english is not exaclty the very best. would there be anyway to transalte this into my patois, spanish. it would really usurp me a lot. since i could set side by side the english language to the spanish language.
    roger vivier new york store

  14. Hi there everybody, here every one is sharing such knowledge, thus it’s fastidious to read
    this webpage, and I used to pay a quick visit this
    blog every day.

  15. I think youve made some genuinely interesting points. Not as well many people would in fact think about this the way you just did. Im truly impressed that theres so significantly about this subject thats been uncovered and you did it so properly, with so a lot class. Good 1 you, man! Truly great stuff right here.
    north face jackets outlet stores

  16. kinda like what you published actually. it just is not that easy to find even remotely good stuff to read (you know READ! and not just browsing through it like some uniterested and flesh eating zombie before moving on), so cheers man for not wasting my time!
    mammut t shirt sales

  17. I???ê?ève browse via various of the critiques inside your internet site now. I truely enjoy the way you blog. I included it to one of my bookmarks and will also be coming back soon. Take a take a look at my personal internet website too and tell me what you feel about it.
    coach – outlet online

  18. Good day! I just wish to give you a huge thumbs up for your excellent information you have here
    on this post. I am returning to your website for more soon.

  19. Hello I am so thrilled I found your weblog, I
    really found you by accident, while I was researching on Google
    for something else, Nonetheless I am here now and would
    just like to say many thanks for a incredible post
    and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t
    have time to look over it all at the minute but I have book-marked it and
    also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I
    will be back to read a lot more, Please do keep up the awesome job.

  20. I have been exploring for a bit for any high-quality articles or weblog
    posts in this sort of area . Exploring in Yahoo I ultimately stumbled upon this web site.
    Studying this information So i’m glad to express that I’ve a very good uncanny feeling I found out
    just what I needed. I so much without a doubt will make sure to don?t fail to remember this web site and provides
    it a glance on a constant basis.

  21. How is it that just anyone can write a blog and get as popular as this? Its not like youve said something extremely impressive more like youve painted a pretty picture through an issue that you know nothing about! I dont want to sound mean, right here. But do you really think that you can get away with adding some quite pictures and not definitely say anything?
    cole haan men’s loafers sale

  22. Thank you a lot for providing individuals with such a marvellous opportunity to read in detail from this web site. Its usually very excellent plus jam-packed with a lot of fun for me and my office friends to search your website more than 3 times in a week to see the newest things you have got. And of course, Im also certainly astounded with the eye-popping strategies you give. Selected 4 ideas on this page are definitely the most suitable weve had.
    parajumpers ski jacket

  23. Hey, My partner and i really like the actual internet-site!! That is certainly a great page. My family and i look forward to browsing a lot more exciting tips that you will be publishing within the forthcoming. We have discovered a great deal from this. Thx. -Hong Takes
    marmot for sale pet

  24. I am impressed, I must say. Really rarely do I discovered a blog thats both educational and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. Your blog is important; the issue is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. Im really happy that I stumbled across this in my search for something relating to this.
    chanel bags for sale online

  25. Since it can be unhealthy. You will find NO Quick Fixes. Diet Appropriate, or Don???ê?èt Diet at all! Portion Control, it???ê?ès simple and everyone can do it. It???ê?ès a lifestyle alter, not a quick fix. Why lose it all, after which acquire it back? That???ê?ès just silly, and depressing.
    lk bennett outlet uk

  26. Thank you for the sensible critique. Me and my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research on this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such magnificent information being shared freely out there.

  27. I simply want to tell you that I am newbie to blogging and site-building and actually savored this web page. Most likely I’m planning to bookmark your website . You amazingly have tremendous posts. Thanks a lot for sharing your website.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here