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The popularity of mounting a suppressor on a hunting rifle has grown with quantum leaps over the past two decades. The secondary benefit of a suppressor—hearing protection—seems to be the prevailing driver behind the acquisition of hunting rifle silencers these days.

One of the negatives of putting a can on a rifle comes from adding several ounces and several inches of length to what otherwise would be a trim hunting rig. I recently found a new suppressor that answers both negatives at a gun-writer editorial rendezvous in Idaho. The Silencer Central Banish Backcountry delivers good performance with less weight and length, helping keep a rifle compact.

While in Idaho I was able to shoot the new suppressor, taking it to 1,000 yards and producing hits on steel with regularity. A few weeks later a Banish Backcountry arrived at my door just prior to an out-of-state deer hunt. Over the following weeks this new Banish suppressor spent time on multiple rifles with success on paper and on game.

Backcountry Rig Complete

Backcountry hunts present their own unique set of challenges since you’re carrying everything you need on your person to be self-sufficient for the entire time you’re in the field. This means that you’ve got to be meticulous in selecting your gear not only in terms of durability but also in size and weight.

The old adage is that ounces equal pounds and pounds equal pain. This can definitely be the case on a backcountry hunt, and it can lead some people to leave certain pieces of gear behind. Hearing protection is normally one of those things that doesn’t make the cut, but it doesn’t have to be that way with the right suppressor—namely, something compact and light like the new .30-caliber Banish Backcountry.

Banish Backcountry

The entire Banish lineup prides itself on being quiet and lightweight, but the Backcountry takes things to a different level. You get the same unmatched sound suppression and durable titanium construction as the flagship Banish 30 suppressor, but in a package that’s shorter and lighter.

The Backcountry is a fixed-length suppressor that measures 5.7 inches in length and weighs just 7.8 ounces. That’s a full 1.3 inches shorter and 2.2 ounces lighter than the Banish 30 in its short configuration. That may not sound like much, but it makes a world of difference for backcountry adventurers who carefully pack their gear with size and weight in mind.

Rated for calibers up to the .300 Remington Ultra Magnum (RUM), the Banish Backcountry utilizes six baffles that drop the decibel level down to 135 dB for .308 Winchester, 137 dB for .300 Win. Mag. and 138 dB for .300 RUM—all of which fall below the hearing-safe threshold.

Utilizing a 1.375×24 Universal Mount, the Banish Backcountry is a direct-thread suppressor designed to eliminate any extra weight associated with a muzzle device method of attachment, but it is also available with an optional muzzle brake attachment.

At the end of your backcountry hunt, the only thing you should be leaving behind in the field is your footprints. Don’t leave an irreplaceable part of your hearing there as well when it comes time to take your shot. When size, weight and sound suppression are of the utmost concern, the Banish Backcountry suppressor allows you pack in ounces, shoot at hearing-safe levels, and pack out pounds.

On the Hunt

A few weeks after Rendezvous a Banish Backcountry arrived for testing. I was quick to mount it on a Ruger M77 Hawkeye chambered in 7mm PRC. The magnum cartridge was a good test for the new suppressor.

After a few hours on the range, I learned that this new suppressor was capable of retaining a rifle’s sub-MOA accuracy with it attached. Point of impact shift at 100 yards was minimal compared to the rifle fired without any type of muzzle device.

A few days later, a morning deer hunt put a mature 8-point whitetail in front of the gun. The 200-yard shot from the Ruger produced the desired results.

Now, I’ve got two seasons’ field experience with the Banish Backcountry. Last fall, I mounted it on a Pure Precision Carbon Ascent chambered in 7mm PRC. Fed a diet of both factory fodder and reloads, this rifle shot sub-MOA with practically every load.

When it was time to hit the road for a Wyoming public-land elk hunt, this rig packed in with ease. The lightweight nature of the rifle and suppressor became more than marketing hype when I was packing a load of elk meat off the mountain. A few weeks later a trip to Utah to find a respectable mule deer found the same rifle and suppressor combination in the truck. A half day into the first hunt this rig struck paydirt with a 349-yard shot.

If you’re looking for a lightweight suppressor for your hunting rifle, the Banish Backcountry deserves a closer look.

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11 COMMENTS

    • .40 cal Booger,

      Any quality suppressor should reduce the sound pressure level of a single shot to a “safe” level. Notice that I specified “one shot”. If you were are going to shoot several times, I would still use ear plugs in addition to the suppressor.

      Important note: while suppressors should reduce the sound pressure level of one gunshot blast to a “safe” level, they do absolutely NOTHING to reduce the piercing sound levels of the supersonic “crack” of the bullet plowing through the air.

      I have mentioned on this website before: I was about 40 yards BEHIND someone shooting a suppressed AR chambered in 9mm Luger and supersonic loads away from me. The sound level of the supersonic bullet crack was loud enough that I instinctively wanted to cover my ears.

    • ““The secondary benefit of a suppressor—hearing protection…”

      No, not really.”

      It damn sure is when shooting subsonic ammo….

    • I have 10 silencers with a couple more on the way. Every one is hearing safe and hearing comfortable with the ammo I shoot except one. When I shoot 62gr .556 through my Surefire SOCOM RC it is not comfortable without ear plugs.

      I shoot 9mm, .45, 300blk, .22, and my latest build, 8.6blk. All subsonic, all reloaded by me (except .22). My quietest gun/silencer/ammo combo (after .22) is the largest caliber.

      AR-10 in 8.6 blk (8in barrel), 300gr SMK .388 bullet (1000fps), and AAC Tirant 45.

      I have a Banish .338 on order but prob won’t see until winter.

      Some said ‘just shoot one shot…’. That kind of defeats the purpose of a silencer and I usually shoot more than that when I go to the range.

      There is a ton of info out there on sound levels, ammo, and silencers.

    • bcb,

      I would absolutely LOVE to use a suppressor when hunting. Unfortunately, that would cost me at least $1000 between the cost of the suppressor, tax stamp, and gunsmith fee to thread the end of my rifle barrel.

      And, if I have multiple hunting rifles, the expense to thread the ends of their multiple barrels adds up quickly to a substantial additional expense (even if I use a single suppressor on all of the rifles).

    • dacian always prattles on about how they wish we were more like civilized Europe, when it comes to firearms regulation. Well, when it comes to suppressors, I have to say I agree with them. They have a point, although I doubt that’s the point they are intending to make.

    • “Many places in Europe require suppressors when hunting. I understand you can buy them off the shelf.”

      That’s going to work in out favor when suing them and getting them off the NFA completely.

      This is going to be one of those times when they will regret asking for European gun control… 🙂

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