Gun Talk: Be prepared


By Steve Comus

The Boy Scouts, military and first responders forever have understood the value of being prepared. It is safe to assume, however, that most folks were not fully prepared for the pandemic currently playing havoc worldwide.

With the social lockdowns now in place and the need to maintain levels of personal distancing not previously imagined, the home space instantly has taken on both new meaning and significance.

Almost overnight, people have been finding themselves pretty much stuck at home where they must make it from where we are now all the way to the end of the pandemic.


It may not be totally a form of residential imprisonment, but isn’t very far from it. At this point, the most important thing is to assess the individual situation and take action that will work under the circumstances. As they say, it is more important how one plays the cards one is dealt than it is what the actual cards are — play a bad hand right and a better hand can be beaten.

Given all of the recent restrictions in place because of the pandemic, it is a good time to take stock of a lot of things around the house and then take things to the next level, or beyond.

Assuming that many folks are spending tremendously more time at home now than they usually have, maybe it is time to do all kinds of things that simply were put off before.

Of course, since this is a gun-related column, this is a great time to do some deep cleaning of guns. It never hurts to have a clean gun, even if it is for nothing more than being fully prepared for the next hunt or next session at the range.

However, it doesn’t usually take a whole lot of time to clean all the guns so much that they squirt. That’s fine. What about ammo?

CLEANING GUNS is a great thing to do when penned-up in the house. There is time to do deep cleaning on guns, both old and new. Here is a Santa Fe Model 1947 in .30-06 Springfield, made post-war by Golden State Arms in Pasadena. They attached a surplus 1903 Springfield barrel to a surplus Model 1898 Mauser action and then stuck it into a sporter stock. Older guns may have decades of dirt built-up, so why not get them ready to go back into the game?

There has been a full-on run on ammo nationwide since the pandemic kicked into high gear. Probably not much chance to get more ammo right away these days. No problem. The important thing is to take an inventory of what is on-hand and develop plans for all kinds of contingencies, based on what is readily available, not on what would be nice to have.

That is an important thing to consider in all things involved in overall preparedness. Look at what is there and figure out how to use it most effectively, given all imaginable scenarios.

For example, this is a good time to develop and practice emergency reactions to all kinds of situations. These can be scenarios ranging from fire, flood or earthquake to home invasion. A well-practiced plan can make the difference between disaster and success when emergencies come knocking.

Yes, this is the kind of thing that all folks should do as a regular routine. Fact is, however, that many families just don’t seem to get around to actually doing it. Now is a great time to put things right.

Regardless what reality looks like right now, it also is time to make a comprehensive list of things that may be needed, so that whenever it is that it is convenient to get out and acquire things, that exactly the right stuff is acquired and that it is put in the right place after that point in time. And then keep everything current.

Meanwhile, figure out ways to make do with what is there right now. If nothing else, it is something to do to avert getting cabin fever until the pandemic is a thing of the past.

Steve Comus is a nationally recognized hunting editor with Safari Club International and a WON Guns and Hunting Guns Editor. His column appears every other week in WON and he can be reached at