Sturm, Ruger & Co reckon their new Gunsite Scout Rifle is a credible rendition of Col. Jeff Cooper’s “fighting carbine” Scout Rifle. Guns & Ammo mag described the Col.’s concept back in May ’09: “Three kilograms maximum weight, one meter maximum length, a forward-mounted telescope, and chambered in .308 Winchester.” Cooper wanted a rifle that could go anywhere and do anything, from self-defense to an entire day’s hunting, taking game up to 500 pounds (so much for travelling light). In a country where gun owners can afford multiple quality rifles for multiple tasks (especially defense), the Scout Rifle never really caught on. So why is Ruger teaming up with Cooper’s Gunsite inheritors to bring it on back?
Something to do with money perhaps. Nothing wrong with that. And, as the unidentified scientist intoned at the opening of The Six Million Dollar Man, we have the technology . . .
The Ruger Gunsite Scout Rifle is a new platform in the Ruger M77 family. While the Scout Rifle has M77 features such as controlled round feed and integral scope mounts (scope rings included), the 10-round detachable box magazine is the first clue this isn’t your grandfather’s Ruger rifle.
The Ruger Gunsite Scout Rifle has a 16.5″ medium contour, cold hammer-forged, alloy steel barrel with a Mini-14 protected non-glare post front sight and receiver mounted, adjustable ghost ring rear sight for out-of-the-box usability. A forward mounted Picatinny rail offers options in mounting an assortment of optics – including Scout Scopes available from Burris and Leupold, for “both eyes open” sighting and super-fast target acquisition.
A Mini-14/SR-556 flash suppressor is effective on reducing the muzzle flash that may be present on some .308 Winchester loads when fired out of the short (16.5″) barrel. The 5/8-24 muzzle threads allow most standard .30 caliber muzzle accessories – flash suppressors, muzzle brakes, and sound suppressors – to be installed.
The Ruger Gunsite Scout Rifle features a matte black oxide alloy steel barrel and receiver on a black laminate stock with sling swivel studs and checkered grip and forearm. A soft rubber recoil pad, with three 1/2″ spacers allows the length of pull to be adjusted and allow the rifle to be properly sized for different shooters, or to give the shooter the proper fit with outerwear or defensive gear of varying thickness.
The rifle’s trigger guard and magazine well are formed with glass-reinforced nylon. The magazine release is a push-forward Mini-14 paddle just ahead of the trigger guard.
C’mon, you like it! (Except for maybe the wood finish that screams LOOK AT ME! I CAME FROM A TREE!) Ruger makes its best case for its seven pound .308 at the bottom of the presser, but kinda misses Colonel Cooper’s main point: it doesn’t matter when gun you use as long as you know how to use it. Oh well. Marketing needs must.
As they say, beware the man with one gun, for he probably knows how to use it. Never has this been more true than with the Ruger Gunsite Scout Rifle, the one rifle to have if you could only have one. It is the perfect lightweight, hard-hitting, do-it-all bolt-action rifle – where rugged, reliable Ruger meets the practical, tactical.
Practical, tactical what? Don’t you just hate it when the guy with the answer to mystery dies while trying to share it with the hero? Hey, I thought TTAG’s Armed Intelligenstia settled the question of “which gun would you want when the SHTF?” (Hint: It’s not an ArmaLite AR-10 either.) Ironically, the consensus was . . . the Ruger Mini-14. If things go seriously south, you want LOTS of easy-to-schlep ammo. The 308 round is too much cartridge for the job.
Anyway, the new Ruger Gunsite Scout runs $995. Which is a lot of coin for a little gun. Or not if you need it.