By Lars Dalseide | November 3 2013 13:53

Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod!

Kevin Reese employing a Blackhawk Sportster TraverseTrack Bipod under his rifle

Texas writer and outdoorsman Kevin Reese returns to the pages of NRAblog with the solution to his rifle bipod problems ...

The obstinate Texas sun forced me further into the shaded recesses of an outcropping of oak trees along the edge of a field of coastal grass. Stretched before me was some 50 acres of heavily rooted soil with isolated clumps of grass, certainly too few to bail and monetize. The population of feral hogs in the area generating this damage had only been defined by the landowner as “thick”.

Hours later, as the sun’s oppression finally submitted to dropping temperatures and a darkening sky, a sounder of hogs flooded into the field on my left. I steadied behind my Smith & Wesson MP15T Tactical 5.56 AR-15 topped by an Aimpoint H34S Hunter red dot scope as the hogs continued to rush toward an area of the field quite a distance to my right. As they crossed in front of me, I attempted to plant my reticle on any hog offering a shot opportunity. Unfortunately, none of the hogs stopped, even after I noisily attempted to capture their attention long enough to get a shot. They ignored me and continued to traverse from left to right.

In the end, none of the hogs offered an opportunity; worse, when I attempted to track them from left to right, the legs of my bipod bulldozed the soil, prohibiting me from getting the shot opportunity I was after. I moved the bipod into another position on my right and attempted to acquire a target once more but they continued, making an ethical shot impossible.

I’m not the only increasingly frustrated hunter using restrictive bipods. As a hog hunter and hog hunting seminar instructor, I hear and read of failed hunts often and routinely meet others hoping for an alternative. Personally, I’ve spent hours searching for a swivel bipod only to find that “swivel” simply means the vertical pivot that allows a rifle to be held vertically straight or rested on its side at an angle. By in large, I’ve found that “Swivel” DOES NOT mean the ability to swing or track targets moving from left to right – the very functionality we require as hunters using bipods.

The swivel mechanism for a Blackhawk Sportster TraverseTrack Bipod As important as functionality, I need a bipod to be durable and dependable; in short, trustable. As a Special Hog Weapons and Tactics (SHWAT) Pro Staff Hunter and Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA) member, I am demanding of the equipment I use. The extreme rigors I put gear through means I have to trust those products to survive my pursuits and perform flawlessly afterwards. The good news for me… and you is that OpticsPlanet offers a bipod that meets those demands - the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod.

The Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod is the real deal! Like most sitting and kneeling position bipods, it’s adjustable to fit your sitting or kneeling height from 13.5 to 23 inches. Like many other bipods, it also includes adjustability on a vertical pivot but unlike some, you can lock down the vertical pivot position. While a vertical pivot is where some of best bipods end, it’s just the beginning for the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod I received last week. True to its name, a second swivel axis allows for horizontal rotation. This means I can effortlessly track and lead targets on a horizontal plane. This function would have equated to hogs on the ground instead of another missed opportunity if I had ordered it a few days earlier!

More than vertical and horizontal adjustability, I love the Rapid-Adjust Lever Lock feature and easy installation. Even better for long predator and hog hunting excursions, especially in run-and-gun A Blackhawk Sportster TraverseTrack Bipod under riflesituations, this lightweight 18-ounce bipod is an easy tote. Did I know it was there? Sure. Did it bother me? No. My carry throughout the day was an easy haul.

Other positives I found on this bipod included easy installation and hunt-proven all-metal construction, spring-retractable tubular legs with slip resistant rubber feet, perfect for quick target acquisition on uneven terrain.

The only “con” (term used lightly) I found with the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod was in the tubular legs. I would love to see ribbed lower legs that further assist in ensuring level shooting; however, as a final thought, I can honestly say I have not experienced any negative consequence related to not having the ribs – it’s simply a personal preference. It certainly would never keep me from using this particular bipod.

I spent some trigger time with the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod this weekend. Refreshing doesn’t begin to convey my excitement over this bipod. I engaged numerous targets throughout a horizontal plane without adjusting the bipod legs or my own body. I also tracked numerous critters during a sit in the woods; however, shot opportunities eluded me – not as a fault of this truly incredible bipod! The Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod has taken its rightful place as my bipod of choice for future pursuits and I look forward to making good on those missed opportunities in the near future.

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