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Now that you have picked the firearm to carry, how do you carry it? There are many opin­ions about the best way to carry. Here are a few:

Let me start off by say­ing that if you put your sidearm in the bot­tom of your pack, you are al­ready start­ing off wrong. That hand­gun will do you no good sit­ting there when that bear or boar is charg­ing down upon you. You need to carry in such a fash­ion that you can quickly get to it if the need arises.

The hol­ster you choose is a per­sonal choice. I hap­pen to wear my Spring­field XD-S .45 ACP in a Black­hawk hol­ster on my hip. My friend, Mark, car­ries his .357 Mag­num and .44 Mag­num in a shoul­der hol­ster and his .22 on his hip. An­other pop­u­lar method, es­pe­cially with the larger guns, is in a chest-mounted hol­ster. I per­son­ally don’t like these, but it is a mat­ter of per­sonal pref­er­ence.

GW Ed­i­tor Robb Man­ning is not fond of the shoul­der hol­ster rig, ei­ther, pre­fer­ring to carry his sidearm in a leather Mer­nickle Hol­sters OWB worn on the hip. He has a good rea­son for do­ing so.

“I don’t like shoul­der hol­sters, be­cause if I am ever taken by sur­prise and am tack­led and body to body, I can’t reach across my body to the hol­ster.” He did go on to say, “How­ever, dur­ing the win­ter, when its mi­nus dou­ble dig­its and I have a lot of lay­ers, my OWB isn’t ac­ces­si­ble. In this case, I have a mil­i­tary-style shoul­der hol­ster I ad­just so it cen­ters on my chest.”

Which­ever way you choose to carry your weapon, make sure you have the proper hol­ster for your firearm. Prac­tice wear­ing it and draw­ing your weapon from it.

Your sidearm will do you no good if you can­not get to it and draw it.

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