After several weeks of planning, got my buddy Ben to go hog hunting with me. While he had a daylight rifle and we almost got him a daylight hog, that all passed and I loaned him a thermal-equipped rifle for the night portion of the hunt.
We spotted a target down in the oats that wasn't moving like a deer, so we set off across the field. Tracking the target was tough once we were down on ground level. Half way across the field, we lost it. However, we spied hogs coming out of the woods from a different direction, two that we could see, and so they became our targets.
Well my hog disappeared in the high oats and instead of gaming the situation in hopes of it returning, I told Ben to go ahead and shoot his hog. As high as the oats were, I knew that we could more easily lose this hog than have the smaller one reappear. I fired, unnecessarily, as backup. Ben made an excellent head shot.
We peeled back the hide on both sides to look at the damage done by the Hornady SST 123 gr. round. Chrono'd on two different occasions with different chronographs, I am getting a bit more velocity than usual out of my new rifle than might be expected at 2675 fps. I have always been a big fan of this round. It just plain works. In this case, it did not produce the massive permanent wound cavity seen by the Berger VLD-Hunting 130 gr. ammo I have been using recently, but it ruined everything in the neck and the muscle of the exit-side shoulder. While examining the tenderized tissue, I encountered several granules of dark, hard matter. I did not take the time to wash them thoroughly, but assume they are part of the bullet. On several previous hogs I have shot with the Hornady SST round, I find tiny pieces of lead and I am confident this was the case this time as well.
I was surprised by Ben taking a head shot at that distance with a rifle unfamiliar to him, but he did well. Looking back, he did shoot the largest visible area of the target, LOL.