Common Ballistic Terms You Need to Know

Common Ballistic Terms You Need to Know

Long-range shooting is one of the biggest trends on today's shooting scene, big enough that it's driving purpose-designed new rifles and riflescope models. Whether your game is hunting, tactical, competitive or simply recreational, there's a movement within it to stretch the distance at which you can consistently and precisely hit a target. And there should be — pulling off a tricky shot on a small target a half-mile away is challenging, gratifying and takes skill and practice.


The movement has adopted several common terms and generated new ones. If you're new in the game, the jargon tossed back and forth at the range or during a match can be bewildering.

Here's a look at several common ballistic terms shooters use, along with details on how they apply to long-range shooting. So next time you hear a shooter say, "My dope is off; I had to come up a full minute to compensate," you won't have to worry about whether it's ok to let your teenager hang out with him.


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