Book Review: Finn Aagaard on Guns and Hunting

Book Review: Finn Aagaard on Guns and Hunting

Finn Aagaard Guns and Hunting book coverWhen talk turns to the great gun writers of all time, the discussion usually turns around two figures: Elmer Keith and Jack O'Connor. But there's another writer more than deserving of consideration: Finn Aagaard.

Aagaard grew up on a farm in Kenya, where he developed a love for hunting, and eventually he became a professional hunter — which him allowed him see the effectiveness of various rifles on big game, and the ability of hunters to handle said rifles.

When Kenya was closed to hunting, Aagaard packed up and moved to Texas, where he began his gun writing career. Much of that writing was done for NRA's American Rifleman and American Hunter publications, and some of his best work has been collected into a book, Guns and Hunting, published by Safari Press. Over its 36 chapters readers are treated to some of the best, in-depth gun writing that appeared anywhere from the early 1980s until the early '90s. Much but not all of the collection is devoted to African game and cartridges, and there are some excellent insights into cartridges from the .280 to the .30-06 to the .458 Winchester Magnum.

I was a fledgling editor at American Rifleman for several years during Aagaard's tenure, and I learned so much from working on his pieces. In the years since, several writers have asked if they could write an article discussing which is faster: scopes or iron sights. I always told them no because, in my mind, Aagaard had already closed the book on this topic with his "Which Is Faster, Scope or Irons?" a 1987 American Rifleman article included in this collection. Aagaard didn't simply pontificate on the subject, which he certainly could've given his extensive experience. No, he got a bunch of targets and sights and armed his son with a stopwatch — running a series of tests that challenged his and others' notions regarding sights.


It's just one example of his willingness to go the extra mile in his quest for knowledge about rifles and hunting — and why this book is a worthwhile read for like-minded shooters. Limited to 500 numbered, hardcover copies, signed by his widow, Berit Aagaard.


GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Steyr Arms Announces Sniper Rifle in 6.5mm Creedmoor

Steyr Arms Announces Sniper Rifle in 6.5mm Creedmoor

Scott O'Brien from Steyr Arms sat down with Michael Bane at SHOT Show 2018 to take a look at Steyr's new tactical heavy barrel sniper rifle in 6.5mm Creedmoor.

All About .300 Blackout

All About .300 Blackout

The .300 Blackout is here to stay, and we take some time to look at new technology surrounding this cartridge. Next, we pit subsonic rivals against each other before stretching the legs of this CQB round out to 600 yards from a short 9-inch barrel.

Hornady 6MM Creedmoor

Hornady 6MM Creedmoor

Tom Beckstrand and Neal Emery of Hornady highlight the 6MM Creedmoor ammo.

Delta 5 - Daniel Defense

Delta 5 - Daniel Defense's New Precision Bolt Action Rifle

Those looking to explore precision rifle shooting without going broke will be well served by Daniel Defense's new Delta 5.

Trending Articles

The Federal Berger Hybrid Hunter Ammo combines high BCs with a forgiving bullet profile and promises versatile performance. Ammo

Federal Berger Hybrid Hunter Ammo

Brad Fitzpatrick - April 30, 2019

The Federal Berger Hybrid Hunter Ammo combines high BCs with a forgiving bullet profile and...

Thompson/Center Arms rimfire rifles are available with Traditional Hardwood and Flat Dark Earth Black Grit finishes. Rimfire

Thompson/Center Arms Adds Stock Options to Rimfire Line

Rifle Shooter Digital Staff - April 16, 2019

Thompson/Center Arms rimfire rifles are available with Traditional Hardwood and Flat Dark...

The author takes stock of rimfire rifles he's known and loved. Ammo

.22 Memory Lane

J. Scott Rupp - January 04, 2019

The author takes stock of rimfire rifles he's known and loved.

On June 2, 2014, Anschutz announced the start of a subsidiary branch in the United States. Industry

Anschutz Establishes U.S. Branch, Separates from Steyr

RifleShooter Online Staff - June 10, 2014

On June 2, 2014, Anschutz announced the start of a subsidiary branch in the United States.

See More Trending Articles

More Ammo

Craig Boddington explains why he will go along with the crowd and have a 6.5 Creedmoor before he gives up his .264 Win. Mag. Ammo

Craig Boddington on the 6.5 Creedmoor

Craig Boddington - February 27, 2019

Craig Boddington explains why he will go along with the crowd and have a 6.5 Creedmoor before...

With the rise of larger calibers, some question the .375 as a buffalo gun. Don't. Ammo

The .375 as a Buffalo Gun

Craig Boddington - February 01, 2019

With the rise of larger calibers, some question the .375 as a buffalo gun. Don't.

The Berger .22-cal 85.5-grain Long Range Hybrid Target bullet is a great option for handloading precision rounds in .224 Valkyrie, 22 Creedmoor and .223/556 rifles with a fast twist rate. Ammo

Berger 22 Cal 85.5 Grain Long Range Hybrid Target Bullets: First Look

RifleShooter Digital Staff - October 09, 2019

The Berger .22-cal 85.5-grain Long Range Hybrid Target bullet is a great option for...

Weatherby has announced two new rifles — the Backcountry and the Backcountry Ti — and the 6.5 RPM non-belted cartridge, their first non-venturi design. Bolt-Action

New Weatherby Backcountry Rifles, 6.5 RPM Cartridge Announced

J. Scott Rupp - September 06, 2019

Weatherby has announced two new rifles — the Backcountry and the Backcountry Ti — and the 6.5...

See More Ammo

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.