My dad and I took my oldest son, Connor, hunting last weekend which was a youth preseason hunt for turkey and whitetail. Youth preseason means if you are under 17 you can hunt with a gun while everyone else must use a bow. He took a tom and a hen turkey and a spike whitetail. Needless to say he was excited. He will be 7 years old in a little over a week. Some details before the pics. The rifle is a Marlin 336W in .30-30 with a Tasco 30mm red dot mounted on an XS Systems Scout Mount with XS ghost rings for backup. The red dot solves length of pull, eye relief , and parallax (spelling?) issues very well. The price for the red dot is around $30. There are some issues with these inexpensive sights. For example, when you adjust the elevation the windage will move a little, and the red dot is not a perfect circle. For it's purpose in this case - shooting a fairly big target at close range - it works very well. We never tried a real scout scope from Leupold or Burris. Maybe next year. Ammo was Remington Managed Recoil .30-30 with a 125gr. Core-Lokt bullet at a nominal 2175 fps for just over 1300 ft-lbs at the muzzle. He shoots an M1 carbine (110gr. @ 1950 fps) without any trouble so this load in a heavier rifle worked for him. He used a PAST recoil shield in practice but since he was wearing a T-shirt, sweat-shirt, 2 wool sweaters, and a heavy coat while hunting we didn't use the recoil shield in the field. He was so excited I don't think he would have noticed the recoil if I had slipped full power ammo into the rifle for the hunt. The rounds did quite a bit of damage to the turkeys. They worked well on the deer. The deer was hit broadside from about 30 yards and the bullet hit both lungs and exited. Amazingly the bullet missed the ribs on both sides, but it still expanded well and did a lot of damage. At the hit the deer flinched, stood still looking around for about 5 seconds, took a few steps, fell over, kicked a few times, and was still. I don't know how well this ammo would work if it hit a shoulder but it works very well on rib cage shots. If your kids can handle the recoil of an M1 carbine they can probably handle this. It is loud so make sure they have good ear protection. Electronic muffs let you communicate in the blind without yelling. Now for the pics: This is the mighty hunter thinks of his first turkey: Here is the hunter with his first turkey and Grandpa: Here he is with his first turkey: Grandpa insisted that I get my mug in here: Here is the hunter with the two turkeys he killed: The next 3 are Grandpa carrying him over the many grass burrs to his first deer: Here is the mighty hunter with Grandpa and his deer. The blood is from the exit wound. I somehow got in front of the camera again. Check out the expression on Connor's face. Here he is alone with his deer: The next two are him walking back to the blind. Here is a closer view of the blind. Grandpa was driving the truck up in the background. Here is the last group the big boy shot in practice at 25 yards. That is four shots in a little under 2.5 inches. I hope everyone had as much fun last weekend as we did, and I hope my pics aren't sized too big. Wanna kill these ads? We can help!