Knowing Your Caliber to make sure it can do what you need

What is the right caliber for XYZ

One of the biggest debates we have is “what is the right caliber to do XYZ” within our community and the lines are staunchly drawn with no one budging. I wrote an article a few months ago that asked the question if the 45ACP was dead, and immediately you could see the 45 fans circle the wagons saying it was “God’s Caliber” and the like. Do I love the round, absolutely. It is big, and slow, and my favorite analogy it’s like a brick, not fancy but it will get the job done at 800 feet per second. But one of the questions I also have NOT seen often is what is too small?

Are you more likely to encounter a Black Bear or a snake?

Many of us do a lot of activities, and as such we are constantly in different clothing and might have different needs. For example, if I am mountain biking, I likely won’t have a great spot to carry a large firearm like a Glock 19 or Compact 1911, but what about a small Ruger 380? Is that big enough to do most of the threats I am most likely going to face?

I don’t think it will do much to a black bear, but maybe do ok if shot placement is good, but I am more worried about the tweaker on meth who is cooking out in the backwoods (that has happened), and them thinking I am a flying demon. So, a compact 380 in a magnetic retention holster like the original that clips inside my shorts or in my bag at the top might be perfect.

When I go out on walks with the family, some of those areas are known to have snakes. On one occasion we saw a big Cottonmouth, and while it was not on the path for the kids, it is absolutely a place our beloved dog might go sniff. Now I usually carry a large walking stick for that, but it would be a lot harder for me to get a good shot with my 9mm or 45ACP on a snake unless close (especially a headshot).

So, one of the guns I am looking at, in terms of caliber, is a pocket 22magnum with snake/rat shot. With our holsters, it would be completely invisible in my workout shorts, and it gives me the option to have some decent snake defense, or a 22magnum should we stumble on a rabid raccoon or coyote. Not a ton, but enough to mitigate the threat, and if said tweaker does show up there, it will at least offer some defense, albeit not my preferred choice.

What is the minimum that you need your firearm to be able to do?

If you want one capable of personal defense and you live mostly in a city, do you need a 44 magnum? Conversely, if you are living in Alaska, you may want more than a 9mm or 45ACP for backcountry defense. Regardless of what you carry, get a great holster from us so that you will carry it more often because of its comfort, reliability, and secure carry of the firearm. Let us know what you think is the bare minimum caliber for you to carry and why.

Author: Ian Bolser