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The Eight Longest Sniper Shots in History

Guns & Ammo recently recapped the eight longest sniper shots on record. Dominated by Yank, Brit and Canuck shooters, seven of the eight have taken place in the last ten years (most in Afghanistan) with one fired in Viet Nam. Not too surprising given the constant march of technology, improved equipment and training giving skilled shooters ever more ability to reach out and touch those special someones on the battlefield. As G&A puts it, “Teamwork, natural skill and even luck all factor into the longest kill shots in the military books. The variables when shooting at distances up to one and a half miles can be staggering. It takes more than technology and know-how to tackle crosswinds, elevation and even the Earth’s rotation.” Worth a click.


  1. avatar JT says:

    Since I’m at work and the article is “blocked,” I’ll take it the majority of those shots weren’t in combat situations? Not sure what it’s like for the boys and girls overseas, I don’t normally read about many snipers over there.

    I’ve seen tons of videos of people making 1000 yard shots. I’m just getting into long range shooting, and it’s a goal I want to make someday. I’d say just seeing a bit of lead fly over half a mile to hit accurately is impressive to say the least.

    1. avatar RightYouAreKen says:

      Sounds like from reading the article these were in combat conditions against enemy personnel.

      1. avatar JT says:

        Very impressive. We’ve got some extremely talented people in our military.

      2. avatar matt says:

        Is shooting at an enemy 1.5 miles away who cant return fire really the same as shooting at someone who could shoot you?

        1. avatar RAN says:

          It would be if they had indirect fire capabilities, air support available, or boots on the ground in the area of the sniper team.

        2. avatar Frodo B. says:

          Why let someone get close to you if you can take them out before they get close and take you or your fellow countrymen or citizens out?

        3. avatar NR says:

          No, it’s very different. Much better tactics, for one thing.

  2. avatar Aharon says:

    Last week, I read the article at G&A. It is worth a look. The longest shot at just over 2,700 yards is incredible.

    1. avatar Greg in Allston says:

      2,707 yards = 1.538 miles. Not bad, eh?

      1. avatar JT says:

        I wonder what the drop was at that range? Judging the wind speed/distance for that distance has to be near to impossible.

        1. avatar RightYouAreKen says:

          Article says they took 9 shots to bracket the target before taking the two guys (fixed place machine gunners from the sounds of it) out on successive shots. Says there was little to no wind. Still, amazing.

        2. avatar JT says:

          Wow.. no wind in a mile and a half? Does a higher altitude affect ballistics? Lower pressure and all?

  3. avatar Pete says:

    Although not one of the longest shots by a sniper, there was a remarkable shot by frontiersman, buffalo hunter and Medal of Honor recipient William “Billy” Dixon. In 1874, he ended the siege at Adobe Walls, Texas by firing a single shot that was later surveyed to have been taken at a distance of 1538 yards. The shot struck one of a group of fifteen mounted Indian warriors who were gathering to begin a third day of attacks against the 28 people holed up in the hunting camp. Amazingly, the shot was made with an iron-sighted, black powder cartridge rifle.

    1. avatar Texas Deputy says:

      I believe that the rifle used a Adobe Walls was a Second Allen, a converted .58 Springfield muzzle loader that had the barrel sleeved to .50, and a trapdoor action installed. I believe that it was in .50-90, a .50 RNL bullet backed by 90gr FFg. Only a few hundred Second Allens were made, and very few exist today.

      1. avatar Pete says:

        Was it equipped with a long-range peep sight, or the standard trapdoor sights? Either way, an amazing shot. Isn’t the bullet for the .50-90 a 700 grain?

    2. avatar Andrew Snyder says:

      The sniper with the most confirmed kills 505 was a Fin named Simo Häyhä in WWII. He used a mosin nagant and almost exclusively stuck to the iron sights.

      His view was that using a scope required making yourself to much of a target, whereas with the irons you could keep your head much lower and therefore more concealed.

      I enjoy distance shooting and have several rifles that are considered of the sniper varient. I can tell you that hitting something at 800 to 1000 meters with irons is much much harder than with a good scope.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        hitting something at 800 to 1000 meters with irons is much much harder than with a good scope

        Andrew, you have a marvelous knack for understatement. 🙂

  4. avatar Gossven says:

    This makes me feel a little silly for being proud of how I do at the 600 yard berm.

    1. avatar HSR47 says:

      Next time see how well you do with sub-sonic .22lr.

  5. avatar drew says:

    own a .308 model 700 w/ Leupold scope [I’m retired army] was deer hunting and decided to try that 1000m shot, after pacing it off [i added a few just to make sure, lol] aimed at the 12oclock position, the target was a paper plate, using a bi pod i touched it off, and damned if the whole target went away, had to walk all the way back down range, when i got there the round had cut the sapling i was using to hold the target. what to do? took out the leatherman and measured, the drop it was 32″ after counting 128 clicks walked back up range, got prone sighted in and shot 10 rounds, with about 2 min in between shots [temp 24 deg, clear and calm] hit 9 of 10 in pie plate. could not have been more proud and confident of the skills i had learned and the weapon i owned.

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